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An oil free bilge...finally!

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  • An oil free bilge...finally!

    Well, it's been a long and torturous road, but (fingers crossed) I think I have finally fixed my front cover oil leak...

    To summarise.

    2006 4.3MPI. Developed a front engine oil leak a few months after warranty expired. Pulled engine and found (plastic) timing cover broken where the sump presses against it. Replaced cover and 30 engine hours later it did the same thing again. Very close inspection of the sump revealed a fault in the casting, a high spot. At this point Mercury Australia and the dealer wiped their hands of the problem with "it's out of warranty, we can't help you".

    Since then I have had the engine in and out of the boat more often than I change clothes. This time home (4 weeks) I have had it out and back in 4 times!

    I eventually conceded defeat and bought a new timing cover, sump pan and gasket, but not from Australia. I bought them on the internet from a GM engine parts supplier. The price difference is staggering. In Australia sump $700, timing cover $350 and gasket $85. From the online supplier sump $159, timing cover $39 and gasket $9.... Yes I had to pay for freight, but it was still SO much cheaper...

    The last timing cover I had been supplied here was Chinese and the gasket associated with it ('built-in') was too thin and that was what was causing so much drama. The last time I did the job (3 days ago) I decided to run the engine up on the stand. This is a bit more difficult than it sounds, but I had it sitting there ready to put oil in the sump and I looked at the front cover/sump seam. I couldn't believe my eyes.... OIL leaking, and I hadn't even put oil in yet! But this time I actually saw where it was originating from, because the engine was out of the boat and I was able to get my head right in among the belts... There it was, running down the OUTSIDE of the cover gasket. So I put the engine back on the 'rotisserie' and pulled the sump and cover again... This time I put a Canadian made cover on, and could see quite clearly how much better the seal around the edge was. I put another sump gasket on with silicon sealant (being VERY careful not to overload the front groove with sealant) and let it sit upside down overnight for the sealer to cure without having ANY fluid touch it...

    Next morning (yesterday) I flipped the engine back over and finished putting the front of it back together. I connected up all the various fruit and veg and eventually got the software going on the computer so I could monitor the vitals. Fired it up, bought it to temperature and let it run for another 10 minutes. Shut it down and let the heat soak in a bit and checked for leaks... So far, so good. Left it for another 3 hours, checked it for leaks, ran it again... 4 hours later I fitted it back in the boat. That's when I was also making those videos.

    My son-in-law and I went fishing today. Did ok with the fish (got a nice shark mackerel and a bag of whiting), trolled around for about 4 hours at 1400rpm and quite a bit of travelling at 3200rpm... I checked the engine a couple of hours ago, and still dry.

    Here's hoping it stays that way....

    The main reason for this is to bring those interested and who have been following this mess up to date, and to let people know that a lot of parts on these engine can be purchased DIRECTLY from a GM supplier, and not through Mercury (or Volvo) at significant savings. These parts are the same ones GM use for these engine when they supply them to Mercury and Volvo....

    To anyone who is experiencing an oil leak on the front of the sump of a 2005 or 2006 V6, there is a way to fix it which does not involve spending huge amounts on 'genuine' parts. Just buy your parts from the people who made the engine in the first place.... GM.... Anybody wanting the part number for the parts required to do this, I have them, just PM me.... Or look up parts for a 2006 GM Silverado 1500, V6 engine....

    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)



  • #2
    Re: An oil free bilge...finally!

    Glad to hear you got the thorne out of your side so to say! And a great slice of very usefull information. It's always good to cut the head off the snake in the middle to save $ these days.
    I recently have found the shortcut to the oem marine grade elcetrical parts for my little 3.0LX at a very large savings.
    1996 Searay 175 Five Series
    3.0LX ser #F553706
    Alpha1Gen2 ser #OF530668
    1998 Chevy1/2 tonW/T
    "faster dad faster" my baby girl in the tube

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: An oil free bilge...finally!

      Originally posted by fat fanny View Post
      Glad to hear you got the thorne out of your side so to say! And a great slice of very usefull information. It's always good to cut the head off the snake in the middle to save $ these days.
      I recently have found the shortcut to the oem marine grade elcetrical parts for my little 3.0LX at a very large savings.
      It's been a thorn for almost 3 years! I only had the chance to work on it while I was home (which is also when I wanted to use it), which was only about 100 days last year, and looks like being less this year.

      Always good to save money, as long as it doesn't cost more down the track....

      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


      • #4
        Re: An oil free bilge...finally!

        Chris, for all the help you give all of us I'm glad you have got this solved! All the best .... Rick
        2000 Splendorsigpic Platinum 240

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: An oil free bilge...finally!

          Glad to see you have solved the problem. I bet that feels good.

          What are you doing while away from home? Private contract work?

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: An oil free bilge...finally!

            So what turned out to be the problem, a combination of an ill fitting China timing cover/thin gasket and the pan flange bump?

            What was the deal with the China timing cover and Canadian cover you eventually used? Are all the GM timing covers made in China now and did you have to look around to find one made in Canada?
            2001 Crestliner SuperHawk 1800, Mercruiser 140HP
            2007 Tracker 1436 jon boat, 7.5HP Force

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: An oil free bilge...finally!

              Originally posted by joewithaboat View Post
              Glad to see you have solved the problem. I bet that feels good.

              What are you doing while away from home? Private contract work?
              It's more a relief than feeling good... But my wife has asked the question.... If you don't pull the engine out of the boat, what are you going to do with your time now?

              I work as an ROV supervisor... (Basically, underwater robots in the oil and gas industry)...

              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


              • #8
                Re: An oil free bilge...finally!

                Originally posted by fishrdan View Post
                So what turned out to be the problem, a combination of an ill fitting China timing cover/thin gasket and the pan flange bump?

                What was the deal with the China timing cover and Canadian cover you eventually used? Are all the GM timing covers made in China now and did you have to look around to find one made in Canada?
                The Chinese ones were what was supplied in Australia, the Canadian ones were supplied by GMpartsonline... and yes, a combination of all those things. Had I run the engine up on the stand the first time 'round it would not have dragged out so long, but I was confident I had sealed it up so I just put it back in...

                Once in the boat it's too deep in the bilge to get my head in close enough to have seen the actual source of the leak, and once it was out and upside down on the spit I though the source was the sump gasket itself.... Just looked like it was tracking from there and making its way to the cover... not the other way around... Then I thought it was the sealer I was using, bought a different brand...

                Anyway... all done now...

                Cheers....
                Last edited by achris; January 1st, 2013, 01:35 PM.
                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


                • #9
                  Re: An oil free bilge...finally!

                  Originally posted by joewithaboat View Post
                  What are you doing while from home? Private contract work?
                  Originally posted by achris View Post
                  I work as an ROV supervisor... (Basically, underwater robots in the oil and gas industry)...
                  At least that's his cover story...
                  2001 Crestliner SuperHawk 1800, Mercruiser 140HP
                  2007 Tracker 1436 jon boat, 7.5HP Force

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: An oil free bilge...finally!

                    Originally posted by fishrdan View Post
                    At least that's his cover story...
                    and it pays the bills...
                    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


                    • #11
                      Re: An oil free bilge...finally!

                      Which is the "sump" that you refer to? I'm not clear on that terminology

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: An oil free bilge...finally!

                        Sump is Australian for oil pan.
                        Don S.


                        Please, no PM's (Private Messages) regarding boat/engine problems.
                        That is what the forums are for.
                        Only forum/moderator issues will be answered in PM's.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: An oil free bilge...finally!

                          Originally posted by pepevara View Post
                          Which is the "sump" that you refer to? I'm not clear on that terminology
                          Nevermind, I see that it's the Oil pan. As you were, carry on...

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: An oil free bilge...finally!

                            Found the anwser of my query.
                            Will let the fat sod know about this as I am printing this out, go in my XB 351 Clevo car that he admirres so much and deliver the message!

                            Comment


                            • #15
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                              Re: An oil free bilge...finally!

                              My 3rd timing cover and redesigned oil pan, timing cover also redesigned by gm, no more steel dowl pins which lock cover in stationary position, the new cover has a short roll pin which barely makes contact with block, left side of cover has a small rectangular type roll pin also almost no contact with block, the left side is the side that has always cracked on this engine, machining on front of oil pan much cleaner and no bump out on left side, gasket already in pan also redesigned not to push inner lip with as much force, donot use fel pro gasket it is an 1/8th of an inch taller from base of pan in front valley, this gasket completely broke 2/3rds of the inner lip off, also according to a gm s new procedure they donot want any silicone in the front valley other then a 5mm by 25 mm strip in each corner, same in rear corners and through the rear valley, ihave always used it sparingly in the rear as there was never a proplem back there, there techs claim the ridges in the front valley of the gasket allow the gasket to compress and move with the expansion and contraction due to the heat, they claim that if you use silicone on this it doesnt expand and contract correctely making the gasket more rigid utimately cracking the cover again, manufactures of these gaskets say to never use silicone anywhere other then the corners, I guess they are not taking into account a defective product, Oil pan from gm received a superceeded part number in 2006, and the cover was just redesigned as last years gm cover still had steel pins, The dorman cover made in china is softer plastic but leaks from front seal and sides as they supply washers for middle bolts to pull cover tight, Well I followed this new procedure if it fails again im going to a v8, which also comes in the same glastron, luckily I can swing engine in and out in 3 hrs, did about 24 hrs of research on this many different opinions, Thanks out to achris for the pan insite, going to try encon as these engine are a pollution oil spill hazard from your bilge, have to rattle someones cage"

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