gotta rebuild

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radtech
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gotta rebuild

Post by radtech » Wed Sep 04, 2019 4:29 pm

So, I just pulled my engine apart to see what was wrong with it and found a broke piston. Debating on sending it to CAD company and having it completely gone over, ported, bored out, new pistons, rods, etc and increase hp to 7-800 or doing the same, but taking it to Buddy Branch. It's a lot of money, so I would likely get quotes from each first. The best # I can find for Branch is from a 2011 post, so may need to research more or put it in the hands of SA brothers that may know him. Any help on which way I should go would be appreciated. Thanks in advance!

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by radtech » Wed Sep 04, 2019 4:35 pm

a lil pic...
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piston.jpeg

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Deano
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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by Deano » Wed Sep 04, 2019 5:22 pm

With no disrespect intended to Courtney or anybody else at CadCo,
IMO you would be doing yourself a disservice to use that option rather than Buddy Branch.

First, Buddy is local (compared).
Second, while CadCo has mucho Caddy experience, they are not experienced airboat tuners.
Your picture of the broken ring land could well be a result of either improper assembly and/or
an ineffective tune and in either case, is surely something you don't want to see again.

Even IF all other things were equal (and I would not perceive they are), the mere fact that Buddy would
as a matter of course, put the final tune on your boat (which would not be possible for the boys in AZ), should
be reason enough to go with Buddy.

On more than a passing note, I acknowledge the CadCo catalog and a fat wallet can create unintended over exuberance.
Do NOT overlook the fact you are building an airboat and not a drag car that will run in short bursts measured in seconds.
You don't need 7-800 hp. Likely what you need/want primarily is longevity. Most likely 500 -550 will do the job you are looking to do.
Buddy has the ability and track record to that in whatever fashion you perceive is necessary.

IMO, if you REALLY need over 700 hp, the Cadillac platform is not what you should be starting with if longevity is part of the equation.
Not that it can't be done, but it is not the most cost, or time, or fuel effective means of attaining that end.
"The suppression of uncomfortable ideas may be common in religion and politics,
but it is not the path to knowledge; it has no place in the endeavor of science."
- Carl Sagan

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radtech
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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by radtech » Wed Sep 04, 2019 9:43 pm

Thanks for the input, Deano. I happen to agree to be honest. I would much rather be able to drive it down and talk face to face with someone and be clear on what I'm getting. And I'll be honest, the last couple times I've dealt with CAD I received the wrong parts. I will look into getting in touch with Buddy Branch and get an estimate on getting a rebuild done. I am, in truth, undecided about what I want to do at the moment. If it's gonna cost 10k to rebuild, I may just look into a water thunder. I've heard good things about them. Either way, it looks like taking a while to get the money up to get it done. I'll have to save up the $$ first. lol

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by Striker543 » Thu Sep 05, 2019 10:02 am

Do you have a gearbox now? My recollection is that you were running a direct drive. If that’s the case, you will never see 700hp at the prop and buying that type of engine would be a waste of money. I’ve dealt with buddy branch in the past when I ran a direct drive Cadillac and highly recommend him.

If you don’t have a gearbox, another point is that you will need one if you intend to buy a waterthunder. Gearboxes are about 3k, and you’ll also need a different prop, which will be another 3-4 k. My guess is you would be looking at about 20k in total to upgrade to a water thunder with a gearbox.

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by radtech » Thu Sep 05, 2019 10:14 am

No, I don't currently have a gear box, but I was planning to eventually buy one. I'm certainly down for a while, so I'm pretty liquid in my course of action. I have a friend here who is using CAD to build a high HP 500 Caddy and he said it was going to cost 10k for the build with him providing the engine. I may be wrong about that. My memory ain't what it used to be. If it would cost that for Buddy to build mine, I would consider looking into a WT. If it isn't near that much, I would rebuild mine and add a gear box

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by Striker543 » Thu Sep 05, 2019 10:20 am

I think your most economical option is going to be to have buddy build you a stout dd engine. I’m a gearbox fan and have one now, but even buying used you likely need to add $5000 to your overall cost for the gearbox and prop alone. Then you’ll also need to modify at least your engine stand, likely your cage to accommodate the longer prop, and maybe also your seat stand to accommodate the extra length of the gearbox.

If you’re going to go gearbox I think you would be money ahead to sell the boat you have and buy a used gearbox boat

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by SWAMPHUNTER45 » Thu Sep 05, 2019 11:22 am

Branch Engines (352)797-9910 aka: Cadillac Performance Engineering located in Brooksville, Florida

Looking at the pic you posted, it leads me to believe that your engine was damaged by detonation.

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by One Eyed Gator » Thu Sep 05, 2019 12:00 pm

I ran a DD caddy for many years did great. Even rebuilt it and ran it again for a few more years. Sold it to a guys in Louisiana and it is still running today. Now it certainly wasn't a branch motor, but it did run very well. Not that I wouldn't used buddy I just like do stuff myself.

There is a guy Ron Fiedler was building a 514 for a hot rod, it is for sale. Has diamond pistons, cad co rods, oversize valve heads shaft rockers. It can be found on facebook - HotRODS, RATRODS & RUST BUY SELL TRADE.

A few years ago I swapped to a LS and have never looked back. I have around 3,000 in a 6.0 with about 415-420hp. I found a used gearbox and prop. I have run my motor very hard the way we fish and did the same thing with my caddy. The ls allows me to get to places I would have never thought about going before and it is on the same hull. So to say that the 2 are apples to apples is just not correct, I would much rather have 10k in a gearbos LS motor and setup than a DD caddy. If you rebuild-it how much more are really going to get over what you have now.

I started with a 500.00 all stock junkyard 5.3, used 2.68 stinger and a used 3 blade R. I then bought a 6.0 and pieced together a 10.5:1 6.0 with a stock bottom end. Intake, accessories (alt, water pump, and balancer), starter and headers all swapped over to the 6.0 and I still have less then 11k and have a motor to sell or keep as a back-up motor.

Now before y'all get your stuff bunch-up I like my caddys, there is just no comparison in my opinion.

Just my 2 cent

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by SWAMPHUNTER45 » Thu Sep 05, 2019 2:10 pm

I guess you gotta decide how involved a project you want and what your budget will be.

Last time I checked a Series 1 engine from Branch cost around $7,100 plus tax and came with a 2 year warranty. It is a DD engine that has a few upgrades and generally spins a 72 or 74 Q blade. Gonna be hard to beat that dollar value. That is a turn key running engine with everything from starter to Carberator.

All you do is bolt it on and hook up a few wires and hoses.

Then sell off your old parts if good and recoupe some of your money. Parted out you should easily get $1,000 back in your hand.
Last edited by SWAMPHUNTER45 on Thu Sep 05, 2019 3:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by radtech » Thu Sep 05, 2019 2:20 pm

It's definitely a lot to think about. I will have to do my research. To be honest, I am not fond of having an engine that has to have a computer. I can't work on them, and I have found my current engine rained on more times than I'd care to admit to. If it is not terribly expensive to do so, I would like to beef up my cad and add a gear box eventually. Thank you, swamphunter, for confirming the Branch # for me. I think my first course of action will be to call him and see what my options are and how much it would cost.

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by radtech » Thu Sep 05, 2019 2:25 pm

Swamp, You're saying if they provide the engine it's 7700? That is not bad at all. I will definitely call and talk to him, though I would like to know if it would make a difference if I provided the engine. I already have a brand new 74" Sensenich Q ready to go on it, so DD I'm ahead of the game a bit. May go that route for now and then buy a new hull and rig it for a gear box and bigger prop

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by One Eyed Gator » Thu Sep 05, 2019 3:34 pm

Radtech sent you a PM

I run the gulf the majority of the time and have not had any issues. I do run a carb not EFI but that is going to change it the near future. I did put together an EFI boat for a buddy and it has been n the water for over 2 years. It runs the gulf as well.

With an iron block ls with a box you'll still lose 150lbs off the back of the boat.

Motor 5.3 750-1000.00 6.0 1200-1700.00
EFI harness and computer 250-500 flash ECM and tune 300-500
Or Carb if you had a holley carb thats covers intake and MSD box 750.00
Header Norman clay 550 or alumitec 375.00
used GB 2,200.00
used prop 2500

And as swamp said you still have a few parts to sell.

Don't get me wrong I always said I would never have what I am running now, swamp and deano know I was tried and true caddy guy. I love my setup and just bought another 6.0 block to start my next motor as it seems to take me a year to find the money to build it. And so many options for parts.

Good luck with whatever you do. Been in the same spot.

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by SWAMPHUNTER45 » Thu Sep 05, 2019 3:50 pm

I just checked and it is $7,100.00 plus tax for the complete Series 1 engine. That is a engine built similar to a stock engine with a few upgrades. If your happy with a stock engine this is slightly better in performance as the cam is airboat specific.

If you want a little more power than a stock type engine offers then a Series 2 would be $7,800.00 plus tax, it gets a few more upgrades and will be a little bit snappier.

Both the Series 1 and Series 2 are direct drive airboat engines that use flat tappet camshafts and hydraulic lifters. They offer years of reliable use if properly maintained. He has engines in the field that have 10 plus years of service. For the money it is a good value.

If you provide the engine and parts it is a little cheaper but NO WARRANTY. That is why I told you to sell off your parts and get a complete engine from him.

He has core engines in a warehouse that were pulled out of cars 20 years ago and stored. Most of these were hand picked engines not junk that had been run to death, overheated or on a boat before.

Buddy has built several engines for me so I am going to warn you that "It is like crack" you get addicted ! I have learned alot from him over the past 6 years and together we both have learned things about the platform.

If you decide to visit the shop let me know and I will stop by I have a engine in the works and usually get over once a week to visit. Mr and Mrs Branch have become like family to us. Plan a few hours as he has plenty of video to show off the different builds and boats. There are a few advantages in getting an engine from Mr. Branch in that if you decide to sell your boat the buyer can call and confirm it is in fact a Branch engine. In addition in your case it is a simple drop on install with no need to do wiring harness or ignition hacks or rebuild your rigging.

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by Seven3 » Thu Sep 05, 2019 4:48 pm

I know nothing about the Caddy engines, so I’ll stay out of that part of the conversation. But I feel the need to offer some advice with regards to the overall direction you want to go with the boat. IMO, think about what boat you ultimately want to end up with...whether it is DD, gearbox, Water Thunder, newer hull, whatever...just figure out what you ultimately want...build that boat from scratch now. I have rebuilt several boats, and I have learned that if you only do part of what you want now, with the intentions of doing the rest later, it never ends up being one homogenous vessel and you will be disappointed. Building and running a DD boat for now, Then eventually switching over to a gearbox and having to modify the engine stand, rigging, etc.… People always regret doing that. You end up doing everything two or three times, and it’s usually noticeable that something was modified. If your ideal boat is more expensive than you are willing to pay right now… I would say make it a long-term project and build it correctly the first time. Then get yourself a cheaper boat to play around on for right now, that you can sell and recoup money from when your dream boat is finished.

I have seen friends upgrade their engines, then they realize they now have too much power for the hull. So they get a new hull, but the old rigging doesn’t fit the new hull, so they build new rigging. Next thing you know they ended up building a completely brand new boat… Piece by piece… While working within the parameters of the old boat that they no longer have. Like I said, just start fresh after figuring out what you want.

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by SWAMPHUNTER45 » Thu Sep 05, 2019 5:05 pm

I can tell you why that happens initially Seven3, we can call that Phase#1 and nearly every time it is because of the persons budget! Almost every time boaters take the cheaper route to "just get started"

You are totally on point that many people don't really know what they want or more importantly need in a boat. We can call that Phase#2, it comes after they get what they thought they wanted and they then discover they want or need more.

Heck that's part of the learning curve!

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by Seven3 » Thu Sep 05, 2019 5:19 pm

SWAMPHUNTER45 wrote:I can tell you why that happens initially Seven3, we can call that Phase#1 and nearly every time it is because of the persons budget! Almost every time boaters take the cheaper route to "just get started"

You are totally on point that many people don't really know what they want or more importantly need in a boat. We can call that Phase#2, it comes after they get what they thought they wanted and they then discover they want or need more.

Heck that's part of the learning curve!
Yessir. I learned the hard way myself. I have owned 5 old Thurman airboats. I liked them all, and I even loved a couple of them. But they were all built for someone else when they were new, they were someone else’s dream boat, none of them were EXACTLY what I wanted. So I finally went and had my very own brand new “Thurman” hull built by Benny Webb. It will be exactly what I’ve always wanted when it’s finished...But the way I want it to be built is going to be expensive, so I’m going to spread it out over a few years while the hull sits in my garage. In the meantime I’ve been looking for an inexpensive boat to play around on. Everybody’s different, but that’s my plan.
Last edited by Seven3 on Thu Sep 05, 2019 5:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by Seven3 » Thu Sep 05, 2019 5:23 pm

delete
Last edited by Seven3 on Thu Sep 05, 2019 5:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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radtech
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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by radtech » Thu Sep 05, 2019 5:27 pm

Lol. I know what I WANT. I just can't afford it. Lol I want a 14 ft alum with grass rake, lighter rigging, and a gear box engine. Swamp, I will definitely take you up on that! I'd like to finally meet you in person and I do plan to visit mr Branch's business one of these days.

One eyed gator...that is definitely a tempting way to go, though if I spend that much money putting one together, I'd just as soon someone who knew more about it built it instead of me. Lol i responded to your pm, btw

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by radtech » Thu Sep 05, 2019 5:30 pm

That may be what I do as well. Yes, it will take longer to get it done? But I've always wanted a sled. I'd like to find I nice 12' sled relatively cheap and play on it for a while

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by SWAMPHUNTER45 » Thu Sep 05, 2019 6:24 pm

I doubt you will be able to sit around looking at the boat and not put it back together...ain't no way!

You might as well order your engine now and be done with it that or hatch a plan or hack a junk yard find.

Everyone I know goes stir crazy when there boat is down to include me.

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by radtech » Thu Sep 05, 2019 8:55 pm

I hear ya, brother! I am already there. I'm thinking about getting a center console from a friend just to have something to do while I put the money together. Lol

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by SWAMPHUNTER45 » Thu Sep 05, 2019 9:04 pm

I suggest you call Mr Branch and get his 2 cents.

A running boat is easier to sell than a yard ornament. If you don't like your boat get it going and sell it off.

Sometimes he gets engines on trade or knows guys who are getting a new engine and may have an old runner to sell.
I heard there is a client of his who has a Series 1 direct drive on a boat that is a few years old and the guy was talking about upgrading to a new engine. Maybe he can take your number if the guy decides to trade it in he can put you on his list.

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by radtech » Thu Sep 05, 2019 9:09 pm

That is a good plan, Swamp. However, I will need to put together a substantial amount of money before doing anything major at this point. lol At present, I can come up with about $200 unspoken for.

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Re: gotta rebuild

Post by SWAMPHUNTER45 » Thu Sep 05, 2019 9:10 pm

LOTTERY tickets...lol

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