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Old 03-13-2021, 02:01 PM   #1
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Running System

Does anyone know how much it would cost to replace the running gear on my 34’ Californian trawler?
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Old 03-13-2021, 02:57 PM   #2
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Like from the engine to the prop? Probably $50,000

From behind the transmission to the prop? Probably $10,000

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Old 03-13-2021, 05:03 PM   #3
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What is wrong with it? Does it all need replacing? Just shaft, struts, props, what exactly? Is it a vibration issue? We need more specifics please.
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Old 03-14-2021, 10:56 PM   #4
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In another thread you said you're running ford/fiat? If they are the same base engine as a ford/lehman you might be able to keep your transmissions, engine mounts, shafts and props. Pete's estimate of $50,000 might be close.

If it's a full repower. All new from the front of the engines to the props on a twin you could be looking at $100,000.

But these are wild guesses not real estimates.
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Old 03-15-2021, 09:00 AM   #5
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More thoughts on my wild guesstimates.

Here's a write up on repowering a 34 ft Mainship. This link is to page 6 of 6, the costs. Runaway - Repower of a 34 ft Mainship project costs. Unfortunately there is no date on the write up so adjusting for inflation is not possible. His costs of $19,804 are doing most of the labor himself. I can give you one example of the difference between DIY and hiring it done. He has the cost of a new shaft and coupling at $948. So two shafts would be $1,896. I have an estimate for new shafts for a Californian 42 at $3,000 to $3,500.

If you are up to DIY repower start your thinking at $39,600. If not DIY then a rule of thumb that I use for first pass on big project rough estimates when I hire the work done is 2 X whatever "it" costs sitting on a palette next to the boat.

Reading the questions you've asked in other threads and the fact you don't live near the boat I'm thinking DIY is not an option for you.

Taking the small amount of labor out of his costs I get $18,964 for one engine. $37,928 for two engines. $75,856 for the job hired out. I always add 25% for growth and it usually comes out to more than that. Now the guesstimate stands at $94,820.

Things to think about other than costs.
  • Length of engine, will the new fit.
  • Height of engine from mounts to top most part, will the new fit.
  • Depth of engine from mounts to bottom of oil pan, will the new fit.
  • Actual HP required to use the boat the way you want to.
  • How will the old be removed and new installed? Do you have good enough access through doors and hatches or will the boat have to be cut open to do the work?
  • Are your fuel tanks outboard of your engines? If so time to evaluate them and deal with that issue while the engines are out.
That's just the 'get started' thinking about it list. I suggest a membership at boatdiesel.com and start reading.

With ford/fiat engines and the age of the engines and boat you are not likely to find a quick swap like repowering a late model vehicle.

Sometimes the best option is to sell it for less than you paid for it, take your lumps and walk away. You've asked about control cable problems, water tank leaks, electrical problems. What else is lurking on the boat that might be more expensive than those relatively minor items? What will the boat be worth after a repower?
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Old 03-15-2021, 09:51 AM   #6
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More info on my previous post.

Curiosity got the better of me. I scrolled through boatdiesel's articles on repowering and found the date of the link referenced above. 12/1/04. So add 17 yrs inflation to the costs in the article.

Also this link from 6/17/05. Repowering a 34 foot Californian. Another DIY project with used engines this time. This will give you a better picture of what's involved in repowering your Californian with respect to getting things out and in. This author brought the project in at $9,000. So if you're willing to go with used gear and DIY then it can be quite affordable.

Regarding DIY working on boats isn't rocket surgery. But experience helps a lot. And taking the time to research and plan every aspect of a major project before diving in. Avoid the allyougottadois monster.
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Old 03-15-2021, 11:35 AM   #7
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Why bother asking a question like that and provide so few details? It just makes the possibility of a helpful answer nil
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