Re: Digest Number 672

The Kubota engines are great, we sell alot of them under the Universal
brand name. Westerbeke Corp ownes Universal and has made some
significant improvements in the production end to co-share some marinizing
parts; in particular the V-band coupling of the exhaust mixing elbows, makes
them easy to replace when the time comes.

Of the big three Westerbeke, Universal and Yanmar, they are all evenly
matched on Price, durability and reliability; if any one of the three
has an edge, I would say Universal has a slight edge concerning
maintenance and durability.

Although we have sold all three in the past, Westerbeke & Universal
continue to be clear winners when it comes to parts, service and warranty
here on the West Coast.

Best wishes,

Marty Chin wrote:
There is 1 message in this issue.

Topics in this digest:

1. Re: Kubota engines
From: Marty Chin


Message: 1
Date: Tue, 23 Dec 2003 11:04:40 -0800 (PST)
From: Marty Chin
Subject: Re: Kubota engines

To give you a little history on Kubota diesel engines, in the early stages of developement of Kubota Marinized engine, most engines were converted tractor and stationary power plant engines, as such, base engine parts, pistons, bearings, rods, heads, overhaul gaskets sets were available through Kubota tractor dealers. Marinized parts, exhaust & intake manifolds, heat exchangers, seawater pumps were only available through the marine dealers.

In recent years, as confirmed through Kubota corporate in San Francisco, Kubota has evolved into seperate divisions of manufacturer, Agraculture, stationary power plants, industrial and marine; there is currently no crossover usage between division of manufacturer, in other words, the parts do not interchange.

Engine owners of marinized diesel engines that are manufactured in limited quanities will always experience some difficulty in finding parts and service as dealers shift ther focus toward more popular and traditional brands, such as, Westerbeke, Universal and Yanmar. The Kubota based Beta engine, as well as, many other recently emerging marine diesel manufactures, are relatively new to the market, the dealer network is still in its infancy.

Many of the smaller engine manufacturers, especially concerning older engines, do not stock some of the marine parts; it's not uncomon as in the case of Nanni diesel which also marinzed Kubota diesels, to backorder an aluminum exhaust elbow through an outside vendor (foundry), with a shipping date of 3 months or more.

The primary problem I foresee with Beta diesel is the available of complete engines and the shortage of factory trained mechanics, dealers and spare parts network. Historically, emerging marine manufacturers have flooded the market with complete boats, engine or systems, through magazines, newspapers, selling direct to the consumer; dealers with unprotected sales regions or zones, shipped engine worldwide, without local dealer support. Beta in particular, has been selling through boating publications and shipping direct to the consumer, and more recently, on EBay.

While it may appear to be, we are not intending to malign Beta diesel engine manufacturer, dealers or consumers; all marine diesel manufactures need to balance service with sales to increase consumer confidence and product reliability.


Marty Chin
Bay Marine Diesel
1150 Ballena Blvd,#83
Alameda,CA. 94501

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