4.2 engine and other bits arrive for boat project

Well I got the engine and gearbox, because he couldn’t be bothered to split it, I’ve got no idea what sort it is, or if it’s any good.
I got the engine harness, the complete front to back harness,with fuseboards,relays, etc etc
I got the whole dash with the dials,the ECU,fuel pump,fuel filter,air box, BUT no AFM , he did try to get me another, with no success.
No engine mounts, they were rotten, £20 for a pair on EBay.
Few pictures.

Going to have to get gearbox off, first job, too heavy and big to get on my trolley and get round to workshop.
Rob. Busy weekend.

I assume transmissions are not needed for boats, especially tired automatics, but maybe that’s wrong?

If so, you are the first person I have advised seriously (rather than in jest) to consider using the trans as a boat anchor…

Of course, if the chain and boat are too small for your desired mooring depth, the transmission might take you down with it…



I’d love to see that dashboard in your boat - you might fix some extra guages with a compass and a barometer.

When I did my wood years ago I used marine quality 2K urethane clear coat in like ten layers. Looks good and no change until today.



75 XJ6L 4.2 auto (UK spec)

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Well I got the gearbox off,came off quite easy, once I balanced the engine and gearbox in line.

Got the engine on my little trolley, and with a couple of pieces of thin ply on the stone chip path, pushed it around the back, just outside workshop, thankfully a lovely day as well.

I’ve taken the air con compressor off, the power steering pump off, I’ve even took off the inlet manifold, for now, very crispy wiring to injectors,and some perished tubing, that will have to be looked at completely separately on the bench.

Unfortunately the water pump is broke, now it could have been like that when I bought it, or it’s got broke during removal/ transportation I don’t know!

I need to remove the flywheel, so I can fit my flywheel from 3.8, then I can fit my bellhousing, then I can fit the starter, set up a basic cranking circuit, and check for compression etc.
Hopefully it won’t need a tear down, but I would rather know now.
On a positive note,I took my other boat out yesterday for a couple of hours, and all seems well with her, got some new wiper blades to go on, as the others tottaly perished.

Just seen a new water pump on EBay for £95, seems like a good deal as the repair kits are 60/70, l know I need a new housing but there’s not a lot of difference in the prices,
Anyway that’s me for now.

I’ve seen plenty of cast iron pulleys danaged in transit but never a broken pump body. Are there marks on the pulley? Could have been dropped on its nose when it had a fan and clutch on, I suppose? Where are you on the UK coast?

Not much on maritime engines. But, at least a simple box is needed. Foreward, neutral and reverse…

I’m in Southampton, cruise the Solent a fair amount, with an annual trip to the Channel Islands, or to the Westcounty Devon and Cornwall

I’ve got a J60 intake manifold and Solex carb coming next week, just to see if I can make it work.
It made 195hp on the Scimitar cvrt ( mini tank of 7.8 ton) and pushed it to 50/60 mph, should push my little Fletcher along nicely.

From your earlier comment about the removed gearbox, I shall grab what bolts are worth having, and take to scrap yard.
Do you think the AC compressor is worth anything ?

It doesn’t have to be shiftable while moving, though.

Might need to shiift it. Reverse prop rotation to cut speed. As on approaching the dock.

Or backing away from the slip… Well, not in motion yet…

Caveat: a mariner, i am surely not…


No starter on the ‘new’ engine, Robert?

Some variations exists; flywheel/engine mating, and starter/ring gear with different pitches. But it may not apply in your case anyway…

xj6 85 Sov Europe (UK/NZ)

Well I got the 4.2 flywheel off. Got the 3.8 on. Got my bell housing on. And the original starter fits, and she did turn over.
I will need to get a new battery as my old one had no umph and only turned it very slowly.
It’s just a mock up at this stage, so not every bolt is in.
Have been looking at the looms, and trying to decide the best way to approach shortening it all, that’s going to be a challenge in itself.
Cleaned all the valley where the plugs sit, cleaned all the plugs, that look in really good shape,cleaned the distributer,coil,leads,etc
All in all quite a good day yesterday.

Had a look at the crankcase breather gauze, and it wasn’t that bad, gave it a clean anyway.
The oil in the engine is very tar like, where it was stuck to the sides behind the gauze.
What would be a good solution for flushing the old oil out?
My thoughts would be to drain off some of the existing, add some thinner oil and run for a short period of time, does this sound about right?

I use diesel fuel: once running, you can idle the engine, using 50/50, diesel/cheap oil, and it cleans stuff up quite well.

By accident I used 100% Diesel once. The engine survived with no damage (took off the oil pan and looked at the bearing shells).

A colleague complained about rising oil level in his Skoda Octavia Diesel recently. Turned out he had 15% Diesel in his engine oil. I wonder what that will do to the engine under full load.
Oh the wonders of modern Diesel engines… Fuel is injected after the combustion cycle. It is supposed to burn in the exhaust, heat up the particle filter and clean it that way. Was an extra injector in the exhaust really to expensive?



I have an old diesel tractor, where the injection pump leaks fuel into the crankcase… it fills the crankcase, such that I have to drain it out, every few hours. I just run it as its lubricant, and have for years.

Diesel has a high lubricity, and really wont hurt bearings under light to moderate loads.

That is quite reassuring and also explains why no damage was done to the engine I hand idling on just Diesel instead of a mixture.

A major issue with putting gasoline in the tank of a diesel powered vehicle is pump and injector wear. They rely on diesel for lubrication…

I did a few of those in my former profession.
From a few gallon to a lot of them. distributor
dumps 5K gallons of gas in a diesel underground tank… …

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That was my go to mix, but it’s always worth asking eh

There’s an awful lot of wires in the xj6’s main wiring loom, trying to reduce it to just what I want, is turning into a big job. When I’m not in the mood I DONT do that job, is a thing I’ve learnt along the way, cause if I’m not tottaly focused on it I either break it or bodge it.


When my BMW needed the head gasket doing (it was my only car at the time) I borrowed my dad’s Golf Diesel. And of course one day I started filling it with petrol (never had a diesel and just wasn’t use to grabbing the Diesel nozzle). Had a couple of gallons in the tank before I realized. So I bought a can of 2 stroke oil and added it for lubrication. Then drove straight to Aldi and bought 30 bottles of rapeseed oil and topped up with that. Not sure if the latter did any good, but I kind of thought the higher viscosity might give better lubrication then topping up with Diesel.
Pump survived.


I just drove to Cincinnati and back Friday/Sat. which meant lots of refuelling. Most gas stations here are opposite to Europe in using green nozzles for diesel and black for gasoline. Most, but not all, .

The old oil should be drained completely and filter changed, Robert - and fresh oil filled; there is no point in thinning out the old oil. And since the engine is out; you could also remove the sump and clean it - it is not strictly necessary, but it will keep the oil cleaner longer…

As an aside; a petrol engine will not run properly on diesel, nor will it harm it. But diesel is not a proper lubricant - a diesel engine use oil in the sump for that purpose. And a diesle engine run on petrol will require extensive repairs…

xj6 85 Sov Europe (UK/NZ)