After building a nice place like that, I sure patching it up would be a piece of cake. Probably not even worth the insurance deductible to file a claim. The bad luck sucks, but hopefully you can fix it up without too much trouble.
Probably a little too late here, but I have taken apart a few Mercuriser and Volvo Penta Stearn drives.
Both use "marinized" GM engines. Marinized meaning that they are equipped to handle prolonged high rpms better than a typical GM truck engine. For example my boats 4.3L Merc runs 4500 at cruizing speed and the 4.3L in my blazer red lines at 4000. I believe (not 100% sure) the the crank, cam and bearings are different than a typical GM engine. Only dual engine boats have the port engine running backwards, to even out the torsional forces of the prop rotating.
I once overheated my marine 4.3 to the point of cracking both heads, and did not damage the pistons. We just slapped new heads on and were back on the water the next weekend. So I would suggest that you tear this engine apart, and if need be send her to the machine shop go .030 over and rebuild. Unless installing a 5.7L is appealing (it would be to me).
Another word of caution: once you replace the engine don't forget the new impeller. It would be a shame to cook another motor for a little rubber part that is $11 at Canadian Tire :) And for the future, Mercruiser recommends the impeller be replaced every 500hrs, it is the most common inboard failure point, and likely the root cause of your overheating problem.
I did the opposite of Dogcharmer: I put my cooler in before the rad cooler, so the coolant warms up the tranny fluid after the cooler cools it down.
I dunno about Ford trannies, but GM tranny lines can build upwards of 300PSI (and GM trannies will also empty the pan in mere seconds and make a very, very big mess if you start the engine with a line disconnected - don't ask me how I know this). Because of my experiences with GM transmissions (remember, I worked in GM shops all my life, so almost all my experience with broken cars is GM) I recommend to always use hoses specifically designed for transmission cooler applications, as other lines may not withstand the pressure.
I dunno why, but I've always preferred a top-to-bottom flow for coolers. I guess it stems from cooling system theory - the water pump inlet will always be connected to the lowest point on the radiator, to prevent the pump sucking any air that might be in the radiator and to allow any air in the system to stay harmlessly in the top part of the rad. I know not much air would get into a transmission or oil cooler, but for some reason I've always just used that same logic.
That reminds my of a funny story. A few weeks ago I was installing a 18,000K tranny cooler in my new truck (05 Chevy Blazer LS) and could not remember what line was the return for a GM 4L60E so I took off both lines flared them, connected the bottom to the cooler, and decided to test the top one. I bent the line back slightly from the upper rad fitting, wrapped it in a rag, and went to bump the starter once or twice to see if a few drops of fluid came out.
However,,,,, I forgot the new GM's have that stupid smart start system, and after turning the key to on the truck "started itself".... In the second it took me to turn the key off, about a quart of tranny fluid splattered all over the engine compartment and my clean, white garage walls.
Five minutes later, I'm under the car removing the skid plate to clean up all the split fluid, and my neighbor walks in the open garage. She starts screaming, thinking the trans fluid splattered all over the walls was blood and that I was lying, hurt, under the truck. It was very funny afterwards!
Speaking about over cooling the transmission, its is DEFINITELY possible. I've seen it many times. Keep in mind I live in a colder climate that you all, but in winter many times we have to let our vehicle's idle upwards of 20min before the fluid will even warm up enough to go into gear. In winter I effectively block off the entire grill of my truck so no air circulates through the rad or aux. cooler speeding up warmup.
That car by chance didn't have Manitoba plates (green and white) on it? Because we had a local 1968 dodge charger R/T at the Winnipeg world of wheels this year, and I know the owner drives it all across the country.
Were at -16* right now, with no change of above freezing weather in the next few days. But we're ok with that, cause cold weather just prolongs the ice fishing and snowmobiling season. But spring must be just around the corner because the local dangerous and delicious creatures are getting desperate enough to eat my groceries off the front steps.
Don;t worry its not another, how much do you think my car is worth thread :)
I was just wondering if these cars are getting to the point where they are becoming historic, rare, desired, or classic (what ever you want to call it) in that they can command increasingly higher prices. I know there are a select few who prise these cars, but is the market getting to the point where a mint condition 88 Thunderbird is worth $5000?
The reason I ask is; locally there is an 88 T-bird and an 83 Cougar for sale for around $5000 each. They are both in decent shape but have high miles and are no where near "show cars" exhibiting normal wear and tear for something 20 years old. However, I thought the rarity of these cars (at least around here) is commanding prices double the blue book price.
I've also driven a TDI, infact I test drove about 10 different VW's and also considered buying them strickly because of the fuel mileage of the diesel. I drive about 40,000 a year, so I use quite a few $ of fuel. My consensions is, they are not a car you want to buy used! They are generally very good cars, but it seems a few real lemons exist, especially w.r.t. electrical problems, and Timing belts on the pre 03 modles. Also prices seem to be greatly inflated around here, because of a lack of supply. (We have one VW dealer in the entire province.) But they really drive nice, and get better than rated mileage in the summer.
The other thing that detered me, which probably won't affect anyone else, is they will not start without much assistange in the cold winter months, and VW advises against extended idleing. Infact you can end your warranty through hours or miles in Canada so if I left in running all the time (like I do with my tempo now) I would void the warranty.