Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Update on Working on the Beaver Monterey Engine

This is a cherry picker - it's an air driven lift.  Mike, on the right, and Matt are trying to attach the chain to the cylinder head so they can get it out.  The cylinder head is about 200 pounds.

Matt ended up crawling into the engine compartment to work on it.  Good thing he's young, flexible and wiry.

Here is an update on the Beaver.  We don't have to pull the engine, so there will be no cutting off of the back of the bus.  Essentially we are doing an in-frame engine rebuild.  We'll be doing cylinder kits (new sleeves and pistons), new fuel injectors, and new rod bearings.  Interestingly enough, the Caterpillar C9 is not a popular engine in this part of the country.  Getting parts has just been a bear.
The new bad news today is that the turbo charger is in the process of failing.  The center shaft has back and forth play in it.  This is a bad thing.  It can be rebuilt, and shouldn't cost an arm and a leg.
ALL of this is unexpected and Mike has referred to it as a freak failure.  I've asked if we can ever trust this engine again, and he assures us that we can.  The engine is very clean.  There's no sludge, no build up - no explanation for any of this.

We're exhausted.  Stress has an amazing ability to tire a person out.  We think we're going to try a flatish hike tomorrow and get the blood moving.  At this point we do not know when we'll be out of Kanab.  Stand by to be amazed.


  1. Lucky you to be the ones to suffer a freak failure. A hike should help relieve some stress. And have you ever taken the tour at Best Friends Animal Sanctuary? It is well worth it, such an impressive property, and a little animal time might help take your mind off things.

  2. Yeah, how about that? Guess we need a new rabbit's foot! The shop owner says that he has never seen a failure like this at such a low mileage......they usually occur in motors with hundreds of thousands of miles on them........ We are going to do the Best Friends tour, all the reviews say it is well worth it. Hope you guys are well. Stay tuned for updates.