How come I do not see Volvo up there?
I know how people feel about Volvo but until I bought one and now have really worked on mine I actually think I would consider buying another one. I have a TAMD41PA which is one of their good ones to start with. I've done just about everything from above the engine deck and have been amazed at how for 14 years old how good it looks inside at 2,000hours. People with this disimiliar metal thing, perhaps at one point for sure, but they have things pretty tuned down I think even with these. There is alot of isolation of components that I like, everything just looked put well together. The parts can be expensive but from what I compare it looks like its not as large of a gap as before. I also think when you buy a new engine there is a thing if the part isn't to you in so many hours, its free. I think its a really well engine put together.
I can tell you haven't been to happy with Cats but I like how there is information on the engine widely available as well as parts. I installed a 3406E in our HH40 and it was interesting to do that. The aftercooler core had a been wipe mark down the side of it, I tried to return it to Cat but it fell within their specifications. That didn't put me off on the right foot, I want a tip top everything when I just paid $65,000 for the engine. I'm a firm believer in removing the aftercooler before even installing the engine to make sure there are no problems down the road with it and for this we needed to do it for the application. Then on sea trial, engine never came up to operating temp, engine was shipped without a tstat, no big deal as I know different applications could have different tstats. At 800 hours the oil pump housing failed, wiped out the turbo, 2 cylinders and a bunch of other stuff. It was two months but Cat did replace that engine for us. I do know that we sold the boat with 50 hours on it and at 70 hours it blew a turbo that had to be replaced.
One other thing that never made me feel comfortable is I worked on a ship with 5 Cat 3608 generators. Our first major service period was at 6,000 hours on them and I had a chance to work on three of them for the first time. Everything was all hunky dory until I did the last one. That last one had all different length bolts in all the wrong area's. I was amazed to find that, couldn't believe it. This was taking off the after-cooler, three t-stat housings and a all accessories. I really wondered about the QA with all that.
I wish EMD made a range 350HP engine! Okay, so maybe a 6-71 will do.