Atomic 4 Mechanic near Middle River, Maryland


New Member
Recently bought a 1975 Ericson 27 with an atomic 4 engine that I can’t get to start and have not read enough of the Moyer Marine manual yet. I’m fairly new to boating and was looking for a mechanic or someone savvy with this engine who could help me out. Will post pictures tomorrow


Member III
Its a pretty simple engine and pretty easy to get running. You should start with the basics which aren't A4 specific: Fuel, Air, Spark. If you get all of those in range the engine will run. First check the air intake for blockage, then the spark. Take out a plug and observe it while trying to start the engine (make sure there's no gas fumes present of course). If you're getting a good spark and the plugs look good, check the fuel supply. How old is the gas in the tank? More than a year you should drain/replace. Make sure the carb bowl is full and if not, figure out why. Fuel pump issue? Tank empty? If the thing's been sitting a while there's probably gunk in the carb. Take it off and clean the jets out with a small strand of copper wire and carb cleaner. Don't use anything harder than copper. Get some starting-fluid and spray in the carb (make sure everything is well ventilated for that). If it starts easily that way but then dies, you have fuel supply issues. If none of that works you have some trouble. Good luck.

Gary Holford

Member II
That pretty much covers it. I would also add you could dibble a little gas down each cylinder, replace the plugs, run the fan and turn it over. It should fire for a bit and maybe keep running.


Member III

Welcome to the Ericson club.
The 27 is a great boat.

I you find someone who can do routine maintenance on the A4 please let me know.
I have been (reluctantly) doing my own servicing.
It's not hard but it takes time.

Some additional simple but easy to overlook stuff:
- use a good starting battery;
- check the dipstick to be sure there is oil in the crankcase;
- make sure any fuel shutoff valves in the fuel line are not closed

Here is a carb cleaning vid from Moyer.