E38 in WA


Member I
Final post on this thread, just to wrap up the 55hp engine fuel economy topic. Cruised the final 20mi to her new home yesterday, ran at 1500rpm, 5kn+, gauge indicated .75gps, temp stayed the same 175deg. I followed the recommended revving/clearing procedure for prolonged operation below the recommended operating speed at the end of the run. Both the engine and I seem happy. I can't say I'd recommend anyone else make this choice but with less than 1k hrs on her, she's here to stay. Maybe I should paint some hot rod flames on the sides...

Alan Gomes

Sustaining Partner
Sounds like you've got the right idea. Since you already have it you may as well use it. But I do think sometimes running it hard, in gear, will be important for the health of that engine. Running it at 1500 rpm continuously will probably not be good for it.

On my little Yanmar, per the Yanmar manual, I rev it up in neutral about 5 times while I'm at the dock at the end of my trip. This blows out the carbon and whatever else out of the cylinder. But in addition to that, I try to run it at a good cruise RPM to load the engine up. I think if you do that, at least for some of your motoring, your engine will thank you.


E27 Roxanne
Someday at a bar crossing with a strong outgoing tide, you will pat her and say "good girl".

Loren Beach

O34 - Portland, OR
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
This thread begs the question of what is the right hp for a E38?
Since the factory was installing a 32 HP four cylinder diesel for about a decade, that must be an acceptable basic HP for most owners. In the mid-80's they installed some similar-hp Yanmar three cylinder diesels, also.
And then... EY would install whatever the initial purchaser wanted to pay for, also. (within the limits of space, of course)
I would view it as calculating horsepower to weight.
For comparison, our 10600# boat was equipped with a 23 hp diesel and we always found it to be totally adequate. When we repowered we went slightly up to a Betamarine25, and there is really no difference in actual use.
It might be best to compare your displacement to HP ratio to ours, and given that there were several versions of the 38, I do not know what the displacement of your model is. You could do the math, though.

Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
Thirty-two HP is just right for the E38. Not necessarily the 40-year-old Universal 5432, although mine runs flawlessly.

But seems to me that Vtonian's 55hp is a plus, as long as the (typically barely adequate) access in the E38 engine bay is maintained and the prop is right. The difference in fuel burn is a shrug.

Kenneth K

1985 32-3, Puget Sound
Blogs Author
Looking at the radar mast in Post #41--I think that's really cool. Does it surround the backstay, or is it just aligned with it? Also, did the stern rail have to be modified to make it fit? Looks great that it matches the lines of the boat! Can you post more pictures of how it's mounted? Thanks.


Member I
Ah, sorry, that is a cool radar mast but not mine. I just swiped the image for the 'joke', my apologies to the actual owner.