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Installed 4.3 Vortec engine from Chevy S10 in a boat

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  • Installed 4.3 Vortec engine from Chevy S10 in a boat

    I'm here to share my experience now that my boat is working and on the water. I have seen several questions and discussions on this subject so I figure I would share my experience and with that will pose a question at the end of this post

    I bought a 1995 Bayliner boat with a non winterized engine with a cracked block, one head and both exhaust manifold cracked. I figure there is no point in saving the engine. Too far gone

    I got myself an engine from a 2002 Chevy S10. I sourced the intake and exhaust manifolds from https://www.michiganmotorz.com/ (the 1995 intake does not fit as I'm sure most of you know)

    At first, when I started the process of finding a 4.3 engine for my the boat I didn't know the difference from a marine engine to one from a Chevy truck/van. After I got the engine I learned about the camshaft differences.

    I proceeded to install the engine anyway exactly the way it came from the truck. I redid all of the gaskets on the engine by removing the heads and oil pan and cleaned it up very nicely as well.

    Since the 2002 engine come with a serpentine belt I removed all pulleys and the water pump. I used the water pump and other components from the old engine. The timing belt cover on a 2002 vortec is plastic and the bolts stick out further. The water pump would not fit with one of the bolt heads in the way. I took one of the bolts by grinding down the head and cut a grove so that I could tighten the bolt with a flat screwdriver.

    There were a few other small modifications I had to make but everything works.

    For those of you who are highly familiar with the 4.3 engine and knowing the difference between the marine and truck/van engine what difference does it really make once in the boat is on the water?

    The engine performance nicely.

    I look forward to some feedback


  • #2
    I'm jealous. Are you using a 4bbl or 2bbl carb?

    '86 Glastron Conroy X-19, Merc 170
    '04 Carolina Skiff J14, 25 hp Mercury
    Richmond/Montross, VA

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by nola mike View Post
      I'm jealous. Are you using a 4bbl or 2bbl carb?
      Jealous why? :-)

      I'm using the 4bbl carb that the original engine came with

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Gerhard Peters View Post
        ....For those of you who are highly familiar with the 4.3 engine and knowing the difference between the marine and truck/van engine what difference does it really make once in the boat is on the water?

        The engine performance nicely.

        I look forward to some feedback
        Regarding the engine block, the head gasket material, the core plugs and the circulating pump are the main differences...

        You did change the core plugs to brass or stainless, didn't you?

        Chris....
        xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
        The world takes on a whole new perspective when viewed from 100’ below.
        1972 Bertram ‘Bahia Mar’ 20
        2006 Mercruiser 4.3MPI (0W617679) w/Alpha One Gen II (0W829301)
        (Original - 1972 '165' In-line 6. Previous - 1994 4.3LX)


        Comment


        • #5
          Yes I bought the head gaskets at https://www.michiganmotorz.com/ and yes indeed I did replace the core plugs with brass

          Comment


          • #6
            Ayuh,..... Congrats,..... Sounds like a successful swap,.....

            I wouldn't loose any sleep over the cam either,......

            If the motor came outa a fire breathin' Hot Rod,..... Ya, change the cam,.....

            Outa a truck, or even a dead stock sedan,..... Forgetaboutit,.....

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Gerhard Peters View Post

              Jealous why? :-)

              I'm using the 4bbl carb that the original engine came with
              Cuz you're on the water!

              '86 Glastron Conroy X-19, Merc 170
              '04 Carolina Skiff J14, 25 hp Mercury
              Richmond/Montross, VA

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by achris View Post

                Regarding the engine block, the head gasket material, the core plugs and the circulating pump are the main differences...

                You did change the core plugs to brass or stainless, didn't you?

                Chris....
                So did any of the blocks come with brass? My '01 has gold colored non ferrous plugs... Anything else they'd be?

                '86 Glastron Conroy X-19, Merc 170
                '04 Carolina Skiff J14, 25 hp Mercury
                Richmond/Montross, VA

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by nola mike View Post

                  So did any of the blocks come with brass? My '01 has gold colored non ferrous plugs... Anything else they'd be?
                  You sure they are non-ferrous? I've seen plenty of 'gold coloured' steel. It's gold coloured because they have been anodized. They'll rust out just as quick. As far as I know, all car engines have steel plugs from the factory, it's cheaper than brass.

                  Chris......
                  xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
                  The world takes on a whole new perspective when viewed from 100’ below.
                  1972 Bertram ‘Bahia Mar’ 20
                  2006 Mercruiser 4.3MPI (0W617679) w/Alpha One Gen II (0W829301)
                  (Original - 1972 '165' In-line 6. Previous - 1994 4.3LX)


                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I did the same swap with a 93 bayliner 2052 4 years ago. New motor was an 02 vortec. Core plugs where also non ferrous. I also bought new marine head gaskets to swap out but they were the exact same gaskets that was already on the engine so I didn't bother.
                    I ran the boat for 2 years in salt before I sold it and has been run in fresh last 2 years with no problems. It runs faster then it ever has at 50 mph on gps
                    1996 Scarab 26 - 496ho

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I should have added too that the gaskets I bought at https://www.michiganmotorz.com/ were the exact same as the gasket set I bought. I doubt that there is any difference in head gaskets. Nevertheless, I ended up using the ones from Michigan Motorz

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by achris View Post

                        You sure they are non-ferrous? I've seen plenty of 'gold coloured' steel. It's gold coloured because they have been anodized. They'll rust out just as quick. As far as I know, all car engines have steel plugs from the factory, it's cheaper than brass.

                        Chris......
                        Yeah, I still have one of the old plugs--I took it out before I realized. I'll grab it tomorrow and double check. There was a screwdriver hole through it, and IIRC it was gold all the way through, so I'll reinspect it tomorrow and report back. Internets has complaints of these things rusting out on blazers and being impossible to access, so maybe GM decided to spend the extra $0.50 on brass at some point. Seriously, I got 8 on amazon for $10, what do you think they cost GM?

                        '86 Glastron Conroy X-19, Merc 170
                        '04 Carolina Skiff J14, 25 hp Mercury
                        Richmond/Montross, VA

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by achris View Post

                          You sure they are non-ferrous? I've seen plenty of 'gold coloured' steel. It's gold coloured because they have been anodized. They'll rust out just as quick. As far as I know, all car engines have steel plugs from the factory, it's cheaper than brass.

                          Chris......
                          Ok, so got the plug. Definitely non magnetic. I filed the edge, looks gold throughout.

                          '86 Glastron Conroy X-19, Merc 170
                          '04 Carolina Skiff J14, 25 hp Mercury
                          Richmond/Montross, VA

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Yep, looks like brass. Try filing it.
                            xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
                            The world takes on a whole new perspective when viewed from 100’ below.
                            1972 Bertram ‘Bahia Mar’ 20
                            2006 Mercruiser 4.3MPI (0W617679) w/Alpha One Gen II (0W829301)
                            (Original - 1972 '165' In-line 6. Previous - 1994 4.3LX)


                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Sign up today
                              Originally posted by achris View Post
                              Yep, looks like brass. Try filing it.
                              Didja read my post ?

                              " I filed the edge"

                              '86 Glastron Conroy X-19, Merc 170
                              '04 Carolina Skiff J14, 25 hp Mercury
                              Richmond/Montross, VA

                              Comment

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