Large Cruiser Engine Access

pault1216pault1216 Indianapolis, INPosts: 197Member ✭✭✭
I am wanting to move up to a 340 class or larger Rinker. I had a 260 in '92 and a 270 in '07. There really wasn't anything I could not access to repair or service (DIY kinda guy). I must say I was taken by surprise when I raised the hatch of the '01 340 I just sea trialed (mentioned in gel coat cracks I posted). Access to anything, in particular batteries, pumps, gen, etc, would be difficult at best. I could not even get to the bilge float switch to test it. How do those of you with big twin cruisers deal with it? Completely remove engine hatch? Rely on a shop? Use a skinny kid? I just did not anticipate such a tight space after having single engine set ups. Thanks. Paul

Comments

  • Dream_InnDream_Inn Annapolis, MDPosts: 5,194Member, Moderator mod

    Paul, the early 340s have to be one the worst for engine access.  If you want decent access, move to looking at the 342s.  The 2003/4 is still a bit tight, but in 2005 they moved engines back and much easier.  I wouldn't but a boat that wasn't easy access to work on things.  The 2001/2002 310s were also great to access everything.  The 400 is also great.  420, IMO is not as good, especially items in aft/mid cabin. 

    So, if can maybe spend a tad more, look at 342s.  Or 310s.

    Dream 'Inn III -- 2008 400 Express

  • pault1216pault1216 Indianapolis, INPosts: 197Member ✭✭✭
    That is a big help! I will adjust my search. 342 may be my limit to keep it in my price range for maintenance and insurance. Thanks Dream Inn.
  • CrewLoungeCrewLounge Norris Lake, TNPosts: 92Member ✭✭
    I've got an 02 342 in Tenn for sale
  • pault1216pault1216 Indianapolis, INPosts: 197Member ✭✭✭
    Thanks CrewLounge. I sent a PM.  Paul
  • LaReaLaRea Alexandria VirginiaPosts: 3,397Member ✭✭✭✭✭
    I'll second the 342. Engine access is similar to my 370.  

    As an aside -- the 342 with 350's will plane at much lower speeds than the 340.  It'll stay on plane down to 18 or even 15 mph.  That  is a big deal in rough water.  
  • Cableguy GregCableguy Greg Pittsburgh, PAPosts: 3,881Member ✭✭✭✭✭
    I looked at upgrading to a friends 340 who was getting out of cruiser boating. When talking to the Rinker mechanic in my area, he stated the same thing that DI said. Engine access is not very good. Lot's of room up top in the cockpit area, but poor design in that room. They greatly improved the design with the 342. There is one for sale in Cranberry Twp PA (25 miles north of Pittsburgh), but the owner has pulled his post from Craigslist. It is still in his yard, so I doubt he sold it. He probably doesn't want to show it over the holidays. It is on a trailer, so you could transport it almost anywhere. I will keep an eye out for you if you are interested...
    2008 280 Express Cruiser, 6.2MPI, B3, Pittsburgh, PA "Blue Ayes"
    Go Steelers!!!
  • pault1216pault1216 Indianapolis, INPosts: 197Member ✭✭✭
    Thanks Greg. I am focusing more on boats further south to simplify transport issues. My 1/2 ton would pull less than 1/2 of a 342!  Paul
  • Cableguy GregCableguy Greg Pittsburgh, PAPosts: 3,881Member ✭✭✭✭✭
    pault1216 said:
    Thanks Greg. I am focusing more on boats further south to simplify transport issues. My 1/2 ton would pull less than 1/2 of a 342!  Paul
    I understand that. I pulled my 280 back from Baltimore with a F-250, across I-68. That was an interesting ride...
    2008 280 Express Cruiser, 6.2MPI, B3, Pittsburgh, PA "Blue Ayes"
    Go Steelers!!!
  • Dream_InnDream_Inn Annapolis, MDPosts: 5,194Member, Moderator mod
    Yeah, I've worked in a couple 342s and 340s.  Took me all I could do to change the impellers on a 340.  Less than a foot of access in front of the engines.  The guy (good buddy) gave me an outdrive for changing them (helped that he had a spare and at the time I needed one).  But also, as I've said, the earlier 342s have less room as well.  I believe up thru 2004 (maybe 2003).  Then, you get about another foot because they get rid of the ledge along the top of the transom.  Much better design!

    My friend has a 2005 342 that he is selling himself (he moved up to a 4460 Regal).  We will be using it in the Annapolis Parade of Lights this Saturday.  Paul, you could drive it down from my area.

    Dream 'Inn III -- 2008 400 Express

  • pault1216pault1216 Indianapolis, INPosts: 197Member ✭✭✭
    Thanks D_I. Gathering data for a purchase sometime after 1st of the year. Building a house and Christmas has got in the way of my fun. I need to further research the space as to what year the 342 gained a foot in the engine room (do you know what year Al?) The boat I was looking at had both engines and gen tuned and pumps serviced which was hard to pass on (new transom assemblies as well). Darn those cracks!
  • StodgeStodge Lake St. ClairPosts: 2,405Member ✭✭✭✭
    Agree on the 342. I actually crawl in and lay down in the engine space to get to things.  The remote oil filters are handy too.

    2002 FV 342 on Lake St. Clair - Past Commodore SHC - Vessel Examiner USCGAUX

  • LaReaLaRea Alexandria VirginiaPosts: 3,397Member ✭✭✭✭✭
    My '03 342 was the new design, so look for a hull ID number ending in B303 or later.  (B means February, 03 means model year 2003)
  • pault1216pault1216 Indianapolis, INPosts: 197Member ✭✭✭
    Thanks!!!
  • Michael TMichael T Posts: 6,558Member ✭✭✭✭✭
    @pault1216....you won't get any kind of "lay down" engine room space in a later model 340 or 360. Their engine rooms have plenty of stand-up head space but with their generators on one side (starboard on 360) and battery banks (port on 360) you have to twist a bit to get at things....still most of it is doable. True that taller and larger guys will have less room. 
  • pault1216pault1216 Indianapolis, INPosts: 197Member ✭✭✭
    Thanks. If I have access to batteries, seawater pumps, gen and maybe the bilge pump I will be happy.
  • Michael TMichael T Posts: 6,558Member ✭✭✭✭✭

    @pault216, I'm really tall and I have the biggest engines Rinker will put in a 360 - so that's the most crowded it will get. To access the bilge pump and "stuff" at the rear of the engines and the inside transom wall I just throw a blanket over the engine (to avoid cuts from ring clamp ends etc. and I can reach anything. My tech is much shorter and he gets around just fine. He whines about access to the generator LOL but he manages to get at it! Access to batteries, waste tank, fresh water tank, water heater, battery charger, trim pumps, gasoline and tank sensor senders, all engine and drive fills, etc. is super easy, so it has to be better in any Rinker cruiser with 377s or 350s.

  • DanD2DanD2 Posts: 711Member ✭✭✭
    I've got an 05 342 and am very impressed with the room in the engine compartment. Yeah, generator on one side a battery bank on the other but compared to my 06 Monterey 282, I can have a party down there. 
    2005 Rinker Fiesta Vee 342
  • Michael TMichael T Posts: 6,558Member ✭✭✭✭✭
    @DanD2, I agree. Even with twin 502s in my engine bay there is a lot more room than any other cruiser that size I have been in.....and the hatch opening is a lot larger and easier to get at too. Some cruisers have to have an aft bench removed to open the hatch - not the Rinkers!
  • pault1216pault1216 Indianapolis, INPosts: 197Member ✭✭✭
    Thanks gentlemen. I have refined my search for a 2003 or later (price permitting).
  • Michael TMichael T Posts: 6,558Member ✭✭✭✭✭
    Good luck Paul!
  • Dream_InnDream_Inn Annapolis, MDPosts: 5,194Member, Moderator mod
    Great Paul!  Glad you got your search figured out.  After working on many 342s, you'll be quite happy with the setup!

    Dream 'Inn III -- 2008 400 Express

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