Many parts can often be purchased at an auto parts store if you
know the right numbers to ask. Sometimes the store will know what
parts fit the Atomic 4, but most know nothing about marine engines.
The Annapolis NAPA Auto parts store is one of the exceptional
ones; you can give them a call at (410) 263-2695. Cobe Marine (1-800-414-COBE)
in Pasadena, MD tells me they've got a tune-up kit with points, condensor, cap and rotor (Sierra Products #18-5268) as well as other Atomic 4 parts.
a list of part numbers over the years, some of which I've personally
used and some of which I've gleaned from others. I'm no expert
and I don't guarantee anything. It's best to take the old parts
with you to compare. Remember that a lot could have changed since
the boat was delivered. And please,
let me know
about any errors or additions.
Belden 700999 (custom wire set at Annapolis NAPA store)
Carol 32570 (82 Datsun)
Cooper Automotive "PowerPath" #700705 (longest wire is a slight stretch).
Pep Boys Auto Parts #1924 (for all 1974 Volvo 4 cyl. engines)
There are two distributors used. The older engines (serial numbers
71000 through 170507) had a Prestolite distributor which, I'm
told, is the same as that used in a circa 1944 Willys Jeep. Newer
engines (serial numbers 170508 and up) came with a Delco distributor.
Verify which distributor is actually installed in your boat; don't
just depend on the serial number of the engine.
For the Delco distributor, you'll do well at the local auto parts
shop by telling them you've got a 1974 Chevy Vega (thanks to Gavin Peters
for that suggestion). That gives a different condensor part number than
I've got listed, but I guess that's OK.
A number of water pumps have been used over the years. For raw-water-cooled
engines, the most recent (and the replacement for previous models)
is the Oberdorfer M202-3. The Oberdorfer M202-7 has a taller
"shoe" for higher output. This shoe is interchangeable between
We went to a Windjammers lecture to hear Bill Seifert and I was impressed enough to buy
the book on the spot. I've heard a lot of people talk about ways to improve a boat, but
I've never heard one person suggest so many good ideas that I hadn't considered. Part
of the charm is the specificity of the suggestions. Everyone says you should secure your
floorboards, hatchboards and batteries. Bill shows good suggestions on how to do so.
The suggestions are very practical for the do-it-yourselfer, too. Many show how to
make or adapt inexpensive solutions. Tip #12 on closing the deck blower vents is one
that will pay off for me without ever going offshore. I'll implement that one to
stop the wintertime storms from finding their way belowdecks.
Besides modifications, the book also includes advice for operating offshore, cooking,
boat selection, dealing with bureaucracy, and more.
Bill Seifert has worked at Tartan, TPI, and Alden Yachts. He's a veteran of many
Marion-Bermuda races and now runs his own yacht management company. His tips are
born of experience--not of book-learning--and it shows. He obviously knows his