If you had a 31  with dead engines, ie frozen 327 Q's, what would you think would be the optimal repower?

If you shift to 350 flywheel aft, will there be a lot of trouble with shaft length, wiring, engine placement to make the conversion?

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350 crusaders work nicely. Done it. Lee


I'm with you on the long block rebuilds.  Lee helped us send in our cores and had them rebuilt.  Lee then moved all the accessories to the rebuilt cores.  We had previously had the trans rebuilt.  Added new intakes and carbs to get essentially "new" engines.

If I had to do it over, I would go with the new long blocks instead of rebuilding ours.  Not sure if the Q accessories would fit, once you flipped the engines around.

The boat now runs better than ever and I suspect maybe even better than when it was new.

$500/side for 327 rebuild kits, including new oversized pistons. I have no idea what machine shops cost these days, but I'd be surprised if you couldn't DIY the rebuilds for $2k all in. If you were paying somebody to do it, I could see the benefit of just buying new or maybe good used engines.


The rear motor mounts on your engines are attached to the Paragon transmissions. With the correct bell housing, a Crusader will take your present Paragons. This means your current stuff goes right back where it was, shafts, couplings, rear motor mounts. This really makes the swap much easier as all you have to do is get the engine angle correct and mate the Crusader front mounts to your stringers. According to Crusaders web site, they still make reverse rotation small blocks, see pdf's below.


12 years ago I put in brand new MerCruiser 350 Horizon MPI with VelvetDrives.

Did they fit? Just!

Required work on cockpit deck stringers? Yes, some!

Many hours of trouble free boating? Yes!

Expensive? Yes!

Worthwhile? Definitely!

Did you see much change in your fuel consumption, Alarik?



Yes, there seemed to be a significant drop in consumption. Du to various problems with the old engines I was never able to make a very exact measurement of the old engines' consumption. I estimate the drop to be somewhere in the 10-20% bracket. 

Hello all,

I am now in the phase of  life where re-powering the old 327Qs is looming on our 69’ Commander.

I am looking for any and all information/advise available related to best new and re-build options, costs, etc. 

Brad Hackett

69’ Commander 31’ Madjik

It's more work but I'd suggest if you are dropping in brand new engines to concider also installing brand new tranys so you would have many many years of reliability. 

And when you need parts they'd be available in 20 more years

Still working on mine, but I went with the new Mercruiser 6.2L 300HP units. Had to do some modifications to the hatch covers and a little widening for the tops of the exhaust manifolds. A very tight fit, but they are in there. Haven’t splashed yet as we’re still finishing the interior cabin renovation. Hoping for an August launch and engine start up.

Like the previous post, I wanted the state of the art equipment so no more wrench turning once she’s done. It hasn’t been a cheap endeavor. The engine package and DTS controls ran $34K round numbers. Once she’s done I’ll be posting a lot more info on the overall project.

Couldn’t help but chime in on this one...


Another consideration is the rare and only opportunity to check and replace the old fuel tanks after the engines are removed. A fraction of the entire cost and a good thing to do.

Second that! I made the mistake of not replacing tanks when replacing the engines. A few years later one of the tanks started to leak ... grrr

Lewis Perrault said:

Another consideration is the rare and only opportunity to check and replace the old fuel tanks after the engines are removed. A fraction of the entire cost and a good thing to do.

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