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Gray Light Four Model

Old Marine Engine » Gray Marine Gas Engines - 4, 6, and 8 cylinder » Gray Light Four Model « Previous Next »

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Henry May
New member
Username: hm0316

Post Number: 1
Registered: 04-2008
Posted on Thursday, April 24, 2008 - 11:53 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I am in the process of purchasing a 1930's vintage sailboat that is without an engine. Total displacement is about 26,000 lbs. The original construction specifications states that the engine will be a "Gray Light Four model with 2:1 reduction gear..." The specifications do not give a model number. The propeller, which also has been lost, is specified to be "two bladed, 18" diameter, 13" pitch..." I am new to this forum and to old engines generally, but would appreciate any help in figuring out what engine this was, how much it weighed and what its power might have been. I will most likely need to replace it with a modern deisel (which I realize may be contrary to the spirit of this forum and for which I apologize) and would appreciate any suggestions concerning an appropriate engine and transmission. Thanks for your help.
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Howard Tattrie
New member
Username: howard

Post Number: 3
Registered: 10-2006
Posted on Thursday, April 24, 2008 - 12:17 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Hi Henry,

I have a 1937 Philip Rhodes designed cutter that displaces approx 14500 pounds and the motor (original) that is in it is a Gray Marine Lugger 4-112. This is a 40hp flat-head 4 with a Perco drag-type reverse transmission coupled to it. I don't know that this is the exact engine that might have been in yours (your boat's heavier), but it's probably close.

It drives a 1" stainless shaft to a 2 bladed prop that I think is about 12" long (I'm not sure of the length or pitch, but I can find out).

As far as where you can get one, Lugger 4's are still pretty prevalent believe it or not - they were very popular engine and were used in tractors as well as marine applications.

There is a place in Port Clinton, Ohio called Lakeland Auto and Marine (http://www.lakelandautomarine.com) that has parts and engines.

There is also a guy named Dave Van Ness who runs Van Ness Engineering in New Jersey. I dont have Dave's address or phone, but here's his email: David Van Ness [vannesseng@optonline.net]. He's a real good guy to work with, has a great selection of parts and, last I talked to him, several complete motors.

Anywho - hope this helps - good luck with your search.

H
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Darrell Street
New member
Username: darrell

Post Number: 1
Registered: 11-2009
Posted on Saturday, November 28, 2009 - 08:17 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The Gray Light Four that was sold in the 50s was the name for the 16hp (1800RPM)engine which is basically similar to the 4-91 and the 4-112. It was used in my light displacement Controversy 30 (7000lb)for example. While the reduction gear would improve efficiency/thrust, it would be woefully undersized for a boat of 26K displacement, so perhaps there was some other engine called Light Four in the 1030s.
Some designers specified very low HP per ton (1/2 to 1)on the theory of just getting through calms or into harbors. Many early GRP boats were underpowered just to use the available diesels, but most boats now have a reserve of power, like 2X or 3X that required to propel at the square root of waterline (in knots) in a calm. There is added safety in having reserve power.
DES

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