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Gas vs. Diesel

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mikekomm
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Joined: October 18th, 2013, 2:52 am
Vessel Info: 1989 4207
Location: Channel Islands Harbor, Oxnard, CA
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Gas vs. Diesel

Postby mikekomm » October 18th, 2013, 2:54 am

I'm planning to purchase a 36-40' boat to live on in one of the marina's in Southern Calif.. I'm new to boating and need help with some basic information. I plan to go on couple excursions per month. One of the local islands is about 165 mile round trip and the other is approx. 50 miles. I know that gas engines are far less expensive and will run far less hours between rebuilds than diesels but what is the number of hours you can run the a gas engine with "average " maintenance? Also, what is the "average" for diesels?

Is there a rule of thumb for the average fuel consumption per mile for gas vs. diesels?

Any help would be appreciated.

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waybomb
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Vessel Info: 1987 3697 Carver Mariner
1988 Cougar 46 Kevlar Vee offshore
1969 15' Glaspar / 1969 Johnson Electrmatic 85
1964 Barron Flat bottom drag boat
A couple of dinghies
Location: Saint Joseph and Trenton, MI
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Re: Gas vs. Diesel

Postby waybomb » October 18th, 2013, 7:42 am

Unless you use your boat almost every day, you will never recoup the cost of diesels on fuel costs alone. What you gain is safety and maneuverability.
Having kept my gas-engined boat in Ventura, I would think a 36's boat with gas engines would be fine. Any larger and I'd be considering diesel engines.

I had a 4207 with gas engines. Loved the boat; hated driving it in weather. I piloted a 4207 the same year as mine repowered with 500hp Cats - what a joy to drive and dock. With gas engines, the boat could not get out of its own way. I dreaded going out in 4'+ conditions, so stayed in port.

On the flipside, if all you are going to do is drive out to the islands or to the next port, and have the luxury of having the ability to stay a few extra days at your destination until the water settles down, buy the gas boat and save some money.

I did buy a 36' boat with gas engines so we could do regular boating (wife hates the go-fast boat). However, we are looking for a project 4207 powered with at least 450hp diesels. Then we will have our dream boat.
Thanks
Fred
1964 Barron Flatbottom with BBC Chevy
1969 Glaspar Avalon /1969 Johnson Electromatic 85
1987 Carver Mariner
1988 Cougar Kevlar 46' with triple blown 572s
http://s4.beta.photobucket.com/user/waybomb/library/
Past - 1988 2807, 1989 4207 Aft
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Dpoelstra
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Re: Gas vs. Diesel

Postby Dpoelstra » November 6th, 2013, 7:25 pm

This is a great response. Many guys will swear by diesel no matter what...I know of 36 and 37 footers that will sell in the $50s, while the same boat with deisels will sell into the $90s. I would love deisels, but I can not justify the expense up front.

Deisels are more expensive to buy, more expensive to work on, and really expensive to replace. Gas engines are cheap, cheap, cheap, just use a lot of gas and can't build enough HP for the really big boats, say 37 and above. Everything is a trade off...just decide how you want to use your boat, and get what you will use.

Deisels still use lots of fuel, btw...just less than gas. For me, heading to Catalina once or twice a year, and some joyriding to Newport or Long Beach, it's not worth the added expense. If I wanted to be able to go to Mexico a few times a year, then you would need deisels...

Great response...
Dan
"Brown Eyed Girl"
1981 Carver 3007 30ft. Aft Cabin
Huntington Harbour, Ca

"But why's the rum gone....?"
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agskinner1
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Vessel Info: 1989 Carver 4207 with twin Cat 3208's

Re: Gas vs. Diesel

Postby agskinner1 » March 8th, 2014, 5:36 pm

Hi There,
We purchased a 1989 4207 Carver with twin 3208 Caterpillars last year, and we absolutely love it! Before this boat we had a 1984 Uniflite 36 aft cabin with twin 350 cu. in. Chevys. At about 8.5 knots in the Uniflite, we averaged about 5 gallons per hour fuel burn @ 2300 RPM. Those Chevys performed perfect for the 8 years that we owned the boat. Just the Pertronics breakerless ingnition added, and lots of oil changes and those engines were perfect.
With the 4207 with Cats., we average about the same GPH, but @ about 9.5 knots running at about 1600 RPM.
Like was said before, gas or diesel doesn't matter that much if you really like the boat, but if the boat is over 40 feet in length, I personally would prefer diesel over gas.
Happy Boating
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mikekomm
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Posts: 16
Joined: October 18th, 2013, 2:52 am
Vessel Info: 1989 4207
Location: Channel Islands Harbor, Oxnard, CA
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Re: Gas vs. Diesel

Postby mikekomm » March 8th, 2014, 6:45 pm

I haven't used the boat enough to get a handle on much fuel we're burning per hour, but if it's anywhere near 5 gal per hour per engine, I'll be real happy. My mechanic told me it would be probably double that.

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