View Full Version : Perkins 4107 - Gearbox problem

31-01-09, 17:58
Went to move the boat down the pontoon today. Engine running fine, engaged gear, no drive. Took the filler plug out of the gearbox and the dipstick was was dry. It took a litre and a half to get it reading on the dipstick again.

Now we've had the boat for just on two years and I have to admit I have never checked the level. I was going to do it, honest. The reason I was moving the boat was to put it on a more convenient pontoon to start doing all those start of the season jobs. So I can't tell whether the level has taken 10 years to drop to the level it has or there has been a rapid drop in a very short time recently.

Anyway, moved boat ok engine engaged and ran fine. Switched it off and thought I would recheck the level and the transmission fluid on the dipstick has gone from red to a cloudy light brown - I would guess emulsifying.

So how much of a problem do I have? A bit of condensation that has caused it and nothing to worry about or is it signs of something serious? Where should I be looking now?

The only slight nagging worry I have is that at the end of last season, there were partly emulsified flecks of oil in the exhaust water when the engine started up. I put it down to injectors/fuel pump and it seemed to disappear. Is it conceivable that the transmission fluid is going out through the cooler and there is water coming into the gearbox the same way? Did the flecks of oil in the exhaust water stop because the gearbox had emptied itself through the cooler? Or am I barking up the wrong tree?

Any help would be appreciated.

31-01-09, 18:01
what g/box
the oil would be "aerated" if the box was used
so was it aerated or emulsified

31-01-09, 19:26
pressure in the oil cooler is usually fairly low, so water in is more likely than oil out.

red auto oil goes brown as ages,gets bits in it,etc after all you added oil to what was there. Therefore likely to be at least 2/3 old oil.

emulsified = white,usually pastey thick gloop.

31-01-09, 23:01
is it a Nicor - TMP?
Visit http://www.thameswaymarineproducts.co.uk/ for some good info, and they are good on the phone.
The oil level/dipstick thingy is not as simple as it should be.

01-02-09, 09:57
On my 4107 I have a TMP 'box and that takes SAE20 oil.. are you sure that you are using the correct oil ?

The oil becomes aerated (as mentioned above) after running and the 1st time I checked mine immediately after running I thought the same that it was emulsified...after 30 mins or so all the little bubbles dropped out.

Once again assuming its a TMP....it has an oil cooler between the bell housing and the 'box... apparently this can corode through ( or poss crack if frozen ??) I got that unpleasant sounding bit of info from the chap at TMP in Weybridge....he also suggested getting rid of the copper piping that takes the raw water from the 'box cooler to the pump and replacing it with flexy stuff to avoid electrolysis.

Good luck..


01-02-09, 10:01
TMP Box - oil & fliter change yearly ??

01-02-09, 10:07
It could be a PRm box as well ... Perk's are able to take a variety of boxs.

have to admit that my PRM hasn't had a look for years !! Must get round to seeing if Dipstick will actually come out !!

01-02-09, 10:13
PRM recomend oil change @ the same intervals as engine oil
i have the 150

01-02-09, 13:56
It's a Borg Warner Velvet Drive (or so I am told).

01-02-09, 13:57
thats me stumped then
quite intimate with the TMP /forums/images/graemlins/mad.gif & copper pipes /forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif

01-02-09, 19:48
Now peeps understand why I posted ... without knowing what gearbox he has ...

To another who mentions oil change when engine ... I know - I have the book ! But my gearbox looks like a reject from the rubbish tip ! I'm afraid to unscrew anything on it !! Literally don't know if it will go back again !!




I know I should sort it ... and I will - I promise !!

01-02-09, 19:50
not a TMP then

01-02-09, 20:10
Nope - a PRM jobbie ... /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif

Hate to think what the oil must be like in it !! /forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif

01-02-09, 20:11
Know any body who could test it /forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif /forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif /forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif

02-02-09, 07:47
Know any body who could test it /forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif /forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif /forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif

[/ QUOTE ]

Ha Ha Ha !! I don't think I could take the embarrassment of placing a sample with my people ! There again - would be interesting to know what over 10yrs use has done to it !! /forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif

02-02-09, 10:39
I read in the 4108 book and TMP info that the saltwater feed to to both the gearbox and oil cooler were redundant if you don't go to 3K revs, so I took mine off. The gearbox was full of salt and sludge anyway...
So, going back to the original question, If I had the L'escargots experience, I would run the box for a while then drain and examine the oil for contaminants. (put it in a beer glass and let it settle). Also, where did it go in the first place? If it's a hydraulic actuator, the lack of drive is explained.

02-02-09, 12:11
I read in the 4108 book and TMP info that the saltwater feed to to both the gearbox and oil cooler were redundant if you don't go to 3K revs, so I took mine off. The gearbox was full of salt and sludge anyway...

[/ QUOTE ]

Yes I heard that about the gearbox cooler as well, but when i mentioned it the the TMP bloke he said he hadnt heard about that......so ...??


02-02-09, 12:16
thats me stumped then
quite intimate with the TMP /forums/images/graemlins/mad.gif & copper pipes /forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif

[/ QUOTE ]

Apparently if you have on your engine(as I do) a copper water feed from the gearbox cooler to the raw water pump, it can set up an electroysis issue with the gearbox casing...I didnt want to risk it so replaced mine with flexible plastic pipe.


02-02-09, 12:21
Got the Tee Shirt cost £1100 to fix & had changed pipes /forums/images/graemlins/mad.gif /forums/images/graemlins/mad.gif
since re engined /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif

02-02-09, 13:15
The suggestion put to me today is that the drop in transmission fluid has caused the plates to slip and the contamination is the dust from the plates. So I am going to run it for a bit, see how it runs and see how quickly (or not) the level drops and where it is going to.

If it looses the fluid again it will need to come out for the seals or whatever to be done. If the level doesn't drop I might just replace the transmission fluid a couple of times and see how I get on. Either way probably time to start looking round for a recon/exchange gearbox.

02-02-09, 14:31
This is the text of a PDF that I can't put on Photobucket for some reason. The photos are missing, but it may be of interest to TMP thrashers.
I can't get more than 2.2krpm with my present prop, so I bypassed the units in plastic piping -much neater and less worry.

T M P 12000 Marine Gearbox
(Thamesway Marine Products)
Appleyard Lincoln started fitting Perkins 4.107 diesel engines in many of the Elysian 27's and practically every Elysian 34 that
left the yard in Ely. Perkins were supplying TMP gearboxes as part of a ‘turn-key’ package ,complete with bell housing , drive plate
and coupling. From the three popular models listed below, to the best of our knowledge only the ‘Direct Drive’ model and ‘2:1
reduction’ models were installed into Elysian type boats.
How does it work? (There really is no easy way of explaining this)
The gearbox incorporates an epicyclic gear train for ‘Astern’ running and the input and output shafts are locked together in ahead to
give a direct through drive. There is a small reduction in output speed in ‘Astern gear’. In ‘Neutral’, when the engine is running, the
output shaft is prevented from rotating by a hydraulically-actuated automatic brake. When the engine is stopped, the brake retracts,
so that the propeller shaft is free to rotate. Gear selection is achieved hydraulically by moving the control lever located on top of the
main box. The gearbox contains its own oil pump and oil reservoir. All bearings in the direct drive version are force lubricated and a
renewable element filter is fitted. In the case of the ‘Reduction’ model the bearings are bath lubricated although bearings in the main
box are force lubricated as in the case of the ‘Direct Drive’ version.
Water Cooling
Water cooling of the gearbox is advisable when used on engines with a maximum rotational speed in excess of 2000 rpm and
essential when used on engines with a maximum rotational speed in excess of 3000 rpm. The cooling water may be taken from the
engine cooling supply system, but the cooling water must pass through the gearbox water jacket before entering the engine.
Things to remember
! Do not exceed 4000 rpm
! Always use a good 15/40 multigrade oil
! Do not stop the engine with the gearbox in gear.
(This may result in the gearbox locking in gear, and require the box to be dismantled to
free the lock)
! The gearbox is hydraulic, always keep the oil level to the mark using the dipstick.
! Avoid over filling with oil, it can cause overheating and damage oil seals
! Allow plenty of time between gear changing from forward to reverse.
! The water cooling chamber must be drained completely prior to ‘laying up’ during the
winter as ice formation within the chamber may result in damage to the aluminium
casing. In some installations the drain plug is not easy to reach , if this is the case then
a 50/50 mix of antifreeze and water should be flushed through the cooling system.
Want to know more ?
Thamesway Marine Products are still active and provide a full parts/repair service.
They have a very good web-site which can be found at the following address:-
www.thameswaymarineproducts.co.uk (http://www.thameswaymarineproducts.co.uk)
Or contacted at:-
96 Thames Street
KT13 8NH
TEL - 01932 843072
Example of Epicyclic gearbox

02-02-09, 15:26
Photobucket cannot accept PDF format. You would have to convert to a graphic format acceptable for PB to upload.

02-02-09, 20:16
BW boxes normally have paper surfaced plates. If the box has been slipping , the oil goes black, from the burnt paper.

as to repair there was a guy at pentonhook marina who did re builds. You can upgrade to bronzedrive plates.

I dont pesonally think you have much of a problem, if water had been in the box , the plate surface would have disolved , so the remaining potential problem is an oil leak.

have run 2 x BW boxes since 1970-88, then 2 x since 1990 - now. A great box inmo.