Latest News from Parts & Power

Tony Tuckett BVI Trade Expo

We have been very busy during the opening months of 2015, so thought we would share some of our activities with you! BVI Trade Expo We had a large stand at the recent BVI Trade Expo, with featured products from Summit, Paint-Over-Rust, Eaton, Perkins generators and JCB amongst many others. JCB machinery took pride of place outside the expo as well as within – see the picture on our website home page! Tony Tuckett BVI Trade Expo We were also delighted that our very own Tony Tuckett (pictured) was invited to speak on behalf of the Exhibitors at the opening ceremony. For more pictures of the event please go to the Parts & Power Facebook page. Product News Here is a bulletin on our latest product news: JCB  JCB TLT30DHL

  • Meridian Construction recently purchased a JCB 3DX Backhoe loader
  • The last of the Perkins mechanically governed Marine Engines will be manufactured in 2015.  Parts & Power is stocking up on them. But this is the last chance to re-power with a new mechanically governed engine.
  • Road Town Wholesale purchased a JCB TLT30DHL. It has specially modified forks for a higher lift.
  • Clarence Thomas Ltd have ordered a JCB TLT35D4x4
  • We have a new JCB 540-120 with a man basket in stock

Staff News Our latest staff news and training is as follows:

  • We conducted a training class on Northern Lights generators for staff from the Moorings.
  • A week long training class was held for staff on the JCB Loadall
  • Our service manage Clive departed to run the Moorings base in St. Lucia. His successor as service manager is Andrew Bell
  • A new engineer in Service joined us – Mr Moses Telfo
  • Our Sales manager Drew Bremner retired and returned to his native Canada
  • Staff training was held on the new Yanmar SD60
  • Kester was promoted to Warehouse Supervisor and Somora was promoted to Parts Sales Supervisor
  • Mark Chambers was hired as a Journey engineer.  He has over 30 years experience.
  • Sanchez was promoted to Shop Supervisor
  • Shawina is our Eaton Champion and attended 2 Eaton training opportunities in 2014.

Make sure you return to the Parts & Power blog regularly for all our latest product news and happenings!


Northern Lights Visits Customers at Antigua Charter Yacht Meeting December 2014

From 5-11 December members from the Northern Lights family visited customers at the Antigua Charter Yacht Meeting (ACYM). The Charter Yacht Show was very successful with 105 yachts ranging in size from 60 ft to 295 ft. In addition there were another 40-50 yachts in Falmouth Harbour which were not in the Show.

Mike Prado, from Deerfield Beach, Chris Krok, from Seattle, and Tom Gerker from NL Distributor Parts & Power visited vessels on Falmouth Harbour Marina, the Yacht Club Marina, the Dockyard Marina and the Catamaran Marina. They found many of the yachts had Northern Lights products on them, both generators and Lugger propulsion engines. In most cases they received nothing but favorable reports from Engineers and Captains. A few vessels had questions or problems that Chris, Product Development Manager, and Tom were able to address. In many cases they found a recurring theme that they had discovered at previous Shows. Many of the NL customers simply needed advice on how to maintain their Northern Lights equipment, and where to go to get information.

They found that, in some cases, customers were overhauling their generators prematurely. Because they had owned competitor’s products in the past who recommended overhauls at 10, 15 or 20,000 hours, they felt that they had to do the same on their NL product. One customer, who had always done meticulous maintenance, overhauled his 155 kw generator at 20,000 hours. He found so little wear that he was tempted to re-use his main bearings. Chris and Tom recommended using oil analysis and valve adjustment measurements to monitor wear, as many Northern Lights generators run well past 30,000 hours with nothing but routine maintenance.

Northern Lights was the only engine or generator manufacturer who attended the show, and have done so for over 15 years, to meet their customers and get their feedback on the performance of their equipment. Having the Product Development manager at the show allowed him to hear the Voice of the Customer to make changes and improvements to the current product and get an idea of what customers were looking for in future products.

IMG_1385After 4 days of visiting customers, Northern Lights, along with local dealers Seagull Services and Marine Power Service, threw a Crew Party at Temo Sports. The crew were able to relax without brokers and owners present. 115 past, present and future NL customers were in attendance. Master of Ceremnonies, Chris, asked Trivia questions and gave out presents to the participants. It was a great crowd of engineers and other crew who mingled with their counterparts from other yachts. Wonderful fellowship was shared and a good time was had by all. The friendly staff at Temo Sports, as they have for many years, kept the drinks flowing and the crowd happy.

Extended Service Contracts for Perkins Engines

Anyone who lives in the Caribbean and has ever owned or worked on a diesel engine equipped boat or machine knows Perkins Engines. Their legendary reliability and serviceability, combined with readily available spare parts at reasonable prices, has made them the engine of preference among discriminating boat and machine owners for years.

Parts & Power is therefore delighted to offer Extended Service Contracts (ESC) for Perkins engines owners and operators.

Extended Service Contracts


Why not give yourself peace of mind from the unexpected and protect you and your engine from additional costs with a Perkins Extended Service Contract (ESC).

An Extended Service Contract covers the cost of replacing defective engine parts, repair time and labour and the travel time beyond the standard warranty period.

ESC’s are designed to help you minimise the downtime caused by breakdowns and stoppages. We offer you tailor made solutions – You choose the coverage that’s right for you from a range of options. You can register for an ESC at any point during your standard warranty period, and the ESC is fully transferable between users.

There are several coverage options depending on your requirements. These include:


Comprehensive Protection Plan
90% of engine components covered
Protection From:
Labour Costs
Material Costs
Travel Costs
Excludes certain parts e.g. turbochargers


Total Protection Plan
100% of engine components covered
Additional Protection From:
Software Updates
Electronic Faults
Code Resets
Excludes engine services

Backed by an unrivaled network of Caribbean Servicing Dealers, with readily available and reasonably priced parts, Perkins Engines remain the best serviced Diesel Engine in the Caribbean. You can be assured that you have someone nearby who can keep your Perkins Engine running at top performance.

Contact Parts & Power, or see your nearest Perkins dealer to discuss the options best for you.

Why buy genuine OEM parts?

Volvo Penta Genuine Parts and Accessories are the exact same parts that were designed and manufactured for the engine and drive when it was originally built. The philosophy of selling genuine parts challenges our point of view as to how we provide aftermarket support.


Most aftermarket parts are not made to the same standards upon which Volvo engineers insist. They may be made with different materials or compounds that do not meet our specifications. Although they may often look the same, slight variations in manufacturing can result in different performance and durability.

Material specifications for parts can vary greatly. Cost reductions in manufacturing may mean lesser materials are used in producing them. Nongenuine parts are simply copies of the original part, potentially with little or no consideration given to the integrity of the engine or drive and how it functions as a complete engineered system. All of these concerns can lead to failures that will cause additional expenses, extra downtime and unwanted headaches for your customers.


Measuring the full cost of ownership is more important than looking at just the initial purchase price of a part. That’s because a part that doesn’t do its job over time can reduce the life of other components. In addition, replacing a component prematurely can mean more downtime and more costs, not only in lost revenue but also in parts and labor as well.

There was a television commercial that illustrates this point well. You may have seen the insurance company that promotes the use of genuine parts in their claims. They show a rattlesnake in need of repairs but, instead of getting a genuine rattlesnake tail replacement, he is fitted with a baby rattle that is duct-taped to his body. Needless to say, instead of conveying the agility, intimidation and brutal force that he should, the rattlesnake is ridiculed by all the surrounding rabbits that would normally fear him.


Volvo Penta Genuine Parts exceed industry standards for design, reliability and extended product life. Their features and benefits are proven to combine to save customers time and money by reducing their maintenance and downtime expenses. By using advanced manufacturing processes and high-grade, quality materials, Volvo Genuine Parts assure lower operating costs and deliver long-lasting durability, performance and reliability for outstanding value.

Article posted courtesy of Volvo Penta marine engines.

Remanufactured Long Blocks

Volvo Penta offers a complete range of Long blocks from 4.3L through to 8.1L.

Remember, the focus of Volvo Penta Reman is always on quality with good value for the consumers. Volvo Penta equates quality to long term cost of ownership vs. not what one can save today.

Volvo Penta offers:
• Factory warranty and service support
• Labor based on Volvo Penta flat rates, not limited

The customer benefits from a stringent Volvo Penta Remanufacturing Process:
• Tightly controlled process, insuring high quality. All engine assemblies are remanufactured to original factory specifications and provide original equipment durability and performance.
• Volvo base engines are completely remanufactured with the correct components as required for the marine environment. The valves, pistons, bearings, timing chain and oil pump are always replaced with new pieces that are equivalent to or better than a new marine engine.
• Camshafts are polished or replaced with new ones, they are never reground.
• Engines are built with correct marine specification stainless steel head gaskets and brass freeze plugs for use in salt water environments.
• 100% magnaflux inspection of all block and cast iron cylinder heads.
• Connecting rods are checked for straightness and twist. If out of tolerance they are replaced, never bent back into shape.
• CNC machinery and computing sets our powertrain apart from the rest. Consistent, reliable machining centers deliver the highest quality standards for all of your remanufactured applications.
• Cutting edge robotics allow for fully automated processing. This flexibility leads to faster turn around time and the accuracy needed to exceed factory standards every time.
• Dynamic Engine Testing: All engines are checked and measured for proper torque to turn, cylinder compression, oil flow, oil pressure as well as audibly monitored for any unusual noises.
• All engines must pass the same rigorous testing, inspection and acceptance standards as new engines before they are program certified.
• Using the original engine specifications, the engines are then continuously monitored for oil pressure, power, torque levels, oil consumption, overall integrity and noise levels.
• Quick Delivery: 2-3 day delivery from date of order to most locations, freight prepaid with a liberal core return policy.

These features set Volvo Penta apart from other engine rebuilders. Volvo Penta doesn’t just fix what’s broken, we remanufacture to today’s specifications. That brings peace of mind to customers that their reman long block is as good as new.

Article posted courtesy of Volvo Penta marine engines.

The importance of Oil Analysis

What is an Oil Analysis?
An Oil Analysis is a basic driveline “health check”. The process is simple. The first step is taking a sample of oil from your engine, followed by sending the sample to a laboratory for testing. The next step is a rigorous analysis done at the laboratory where a great amount of data is collected including water/coolant content, viscosity, fuel, contaminates, the amount of metallic particles, and more. The data collected is compared to the data that Volvo Penta has on acceptable limits in Volvo Penta engines. After the testing is complete, a user-friendly report is generated. Then, the analysis can provide early warnings which make possible the timely replacement of components before problems appear and damage occurs.

What does Oil Analysis test?

Our Oil Analysis tests for wear metals, oil additives and contaminants, viscosity, soot, water, fuel dilution, and glycol on engines. On gears and transmissions, we test for wear metals, oil additives, contaminants, viscosity, and water. We also test for wear metals, oil additives, contaminants, viscosity, water, acid number, and particle count on Hydraulic fluids.

Why should a customer have an Oil Analysis performed?

The main purpose of the analysis is to find problems before they occur to avoid downtime and expensive repairs. If you conduct regular oil analysis, you will be one step ahead of possible damage occurring.

What does Oil Analysis do for Customers?

Oil Analysis can help detect problems early so your dealer can schedule future repairs and part replacement if necessary.


Test for glycol is positive. There is a high concentration of glycol present in the oil. There is a moderate concentration of water present in the oil.


We advise that you check for the source of the coolant leak. We recommend that you drain the oil from the component if this has not already been done. We advise that you flush the component thoroughly before re-filling with oil. We recommend
an early resample to monitor this condition.

Article posted courtesy of Volvo Penta marine engines.

Evolution of Perkins Engines

Anyone who lives in the Caribbean and has ever owned or worked on a diesel engine equipped boat or machine knows Perkins Engines.  Their legendary reliability and serviceability, combined with readily available spare parts at reasonable prices, has made them the engine of preference among discriminating boat and machine owners for years.

Twentieth Century

Many of us now older generation cut our teeth on the 4.108, 4.236, 4.154 and 6.354. These became known as the “Range 4” engines.  These engines have been around since the late 1960’s and early 70’s and many are still in operation.  

In the 1990’s emissions requirements forced all engine manufacturers to change the design of their engines.  For Perkins, the Range 4 series became the 1000 series, meaning 1 liter displacement per cylinder.  The 4.236 became the 1004, and the 6.354 became the 1006. Due to the popularity of the Range 4, the 1000 series were in most cases drop in replacement engines that were a little smaller, a lot quieter and cleaner.

New Millennium

In the 2000’s emissions requirements, once again, forced a change in the Perkins engine design.  The resulting engine became the 1100 series (1.1 liter per cylinder).  The same size as the 1000 series, due to technological advances in metallurgy and engineering, these engines produced more horsepower, were quieter and cleaner than their predecessor.

Tier 4 introduced in the 2010’s forced yet another change resulting in the 1200 series engines.  These engines, with 1.2 liters per cylinder, are designed to meet all the emissions challenges for the foreseeable future.  Although designed to meet all the complexities of Tier 4, these engines (as well as the 1000 and 1100 series that are still being manufactured) still come with lower Tier ratings.  In some cases these ratings are as low as Tier 0.  They are the same engine and the fully emissions compliant version, but without the sophisticated electronics.  But they are as compact, quiet and clean as their more sophisticated brethren.

Caribbean Engine Support

Backed by an unrivaled network of Caribbean Servicing Dealers, with readily available and reasonably priced parts, Perkins Engines remain the best serviced Diesel Engine in the Caribbean.  So whether you have a 4.236/ 6.354, or a 1204/1206 in the Caribbean, you can be assured that you have someone nearby who can keep your Perkins Engine running at top performance.

Perkins Engines…the Heart of Every Great Machine.

Contact Parts & Power, or see your nearest Perkins dealer, to discuss the option best for you.  

Perkins M92 helps ‘Ganesh’ out of a tight spot!

It was dawn, and we were running dead-down as we approached a small island (one of 17,508) in smoky, mysterious Indonesia. We’d just sailed 3,200 nautical miles and used the engine exactly three hours, mostly to keep it dry and lubbed. Anyhow, I decided to jibe and furl my large genoa jib. Normally, we both do this but the wind was moderate and the sea fairly smooth. Perhaps I was a tad drowsy. In any event, I attempted it by myself. Without Carolyn (who has sense except when it comes to men) I managed to somehow hopelessly wineglass my genoa jib – for the first time ever I was at sea with a partially furled and partially not furled jib. By the time I realized that it was really, really tangled and I wasn’t going to solve the problem by swearing – I was almost on the beach.

I could hear the surf line ahead-not a nice sound.

My whole 30,000 pound boat was shaking like a rag in a dog’s mouth.

I cranked up, and, thanks to the extra power and good torque of the Perkins M92B (supplied by Parts & Power), was able to power away from the immediately danger… the windy, wave-crashing beach… even as my entire rig was going berserk from the flogging sail attempting to commit suicide and/or sink my vessel.

I needed a lee and I needed it fast.

Thus I revved our Perkins up to 2200RPM and powered into the lee of the same island, and managed to anchor in 147 feet of water-despite almost hitting a salt water crocodile begging for table scraps in the head with our hook! (Amazingly, we were right in front of an ancient Hindu temple-with, perhaps, Ganesh lending a helping or hurting hand!)

Once the anchor was set, and we were both able to think… Carolyn cleared the problem within ten minutes while muttering, “I married an idiot!”

…the lesson learned was to never send a stupid man to do a good woman’s job!


Unfortunately, we couldn’t leave. Our brand new Rocna anchor and our just regalvanised chain was fouled in 147 feet of water – perhaps by the unhappy croc – I dunno.

My anchor gear costs $2,000, and I certainly didn’t want to leave it there. So I tried every trick in the book-nearly yanking my wife (poor, poor woman) and our anchor windlass right off the foredeck. “BANG!” went our one-inch Nylon snubber… making a sound like a cannon shot as it parted.


Only, perhaps, a grinning croc laughing at us on the bottom.

So I finally allowed almost full scope out and almost full power… and, canting the bow way down with steady pressure and a slightly offset rudder… made a slow giant tug-boat circle… until… POP! And we broke off the tip of the mountain or whatever was fouling us below.

Hooray, again, for Perkins and its massive power!

Do I think I could have saved GANESH and twisted up an underwater mountain with a Yammer or Stammer or some other high-revving engine?

I doubt it.

…nobody in their right mind would go up against an ugly salt water crocodile mano-o-mano with one of those pathetic ‘numbers game’ engines!

Thank gosh for my low-RPM, high torque Perkins, and the team who installed it.

Article courtesy of Captain Fatty Goodlander.

PS. Carolyn wants a divorce but I told her we couldn’t afford it. 


Tom & Barb Gerker visited Northern Lights Seattle factory on 7 & 8 July 2014. They met with Executive Vice President & General Manager, Larry Repman to discuss Northern Lights issues and products, and how they affect customers and dealers in the Caribbean. Larry brought the Gerkers up to date on the new IMO emissions regulations and how they are and will affect product up through 2021. He showed them the Glen Fitch Memorial Test Cel. Glen’s last NL trip was to the Antigua Charter Yacht meeting in December 2014. His talents and good humor is sorely missed by the entire Northern Lights family.

They discussed a growing number of Fleet Operators who are using Northern Lights generators exclusively and how to better serve those customers. Customers such as Voyage Yacht Charters, Marine Max and, increasingly, Tui Marine and the Moorings are loyal Northern Lights Customers.

Tom & Barb met with Bill Faldalen, who was recently promoted to Materials Manager and is now in charge of Purchasing, as well as inventory. Bill is working with UPS to try and get better shipping rates for dealers in the Caribbean. They also met with Scott Vansteenvort, who has now been promoted to Parts Manager.

They met with Scott Dyball, who is the new Customer Service Manager. Scott has taken over the position from John Baisch who recently retired. Scott comes from the Service Department, so has a deep background in troubleshooting and repairing Northern Lights generators. His experience with the product should prove to be a big help to Northern Lights dealers in the Caribbean.

Tom & Barb met with Paul Leask and Diane Paulson, from Northern Lights warranty and Service. They discussed service issues and warranty processing.

A highlight of their visit was meeting Jennifer Dowling, who is responsible for the website. They had discussions about how to improve the website and keep it relevant to Northern Lights dealers and customers. They also met with her boss, Scott Putnicki. They discussed upcoming shows in the Caribbean, including BVI and Antigua Charter Yacht Shows.

On Wednesday, 9 July, they met with Dick Gee. Dick was responsible for designing the principles and products for the Northern Lights generator and propulsion engine line. He retired a few years ago as Vice President of Engineering. He shared stories of how he started with Harold Johnson in the 1960’s in Alaska, and the founding days of the then Alaska Diesel Electric. Dick took Tom & Barb on a tour of the Boeing “double aisle” production facility in Everett, WA where they build the 747, 777 and 787 Dreamliner.

The weather was perfect during their entire visit.

Engine Emission Ratings – What they mean for Caribbean-based operators…

If you are considering buying a new piece of equipment for the Caribbean with a diesel engine, beware!  Whether you are buying a generator, backhoe loader, excavation equipment, lawnmower, welder, compressor, light tower or any of the myriad of equipment powered by diesel engines, you need to check what the emissions rating of that engine is. The higher the EPA rating is does not mean it is better.  In fact, depending on where you are using it, it might be worse.

Tier 4

The newest emission rating for diesel engines is Tier 4.  It started with Tier 4 Interim in 2010 and has already progressed into Tier 4 Final in many applications.  Tier 4 engines will only operate with Ultra Low Sulphur Diesel fuel.  Anything else will damage the exhaust treatment devices installed on the engine.  Why do you care if you are in a non-compliant, Lesser Regulated Country (LRC)?  The reason is that there are sensors in the exhaust system to monitor the amount of NOX and Diesel Particulates (soot) in the exhaust.  If those sensors detect unacceptable levels, they will continuously de-rate the engine until it will only idle.

This will render your new piece of equipment useless.  The repair for this is very expensive and is NOT covered by warranty.  Warranty does not cover misapplication. This is a very unfortunate circumstance for the unsuspecting customer.

Advice to Vendors

We have seen several situations where customers purchased equipment without telling the vendor where it was going.  Or, even when advising the vendor, the vendor did not know that the correct fuel was unavailable in the customer’s home country.  We’ve never yet seen any vendor or manufacturer pay for the required repairs or modifications required to put that engine, and its equipment, back into service.

So check the make of the engine and contact the engine manufacturer to see if the engine’s rating is acceptable for the fuel available in their country.  While checking, it is also a good idea to see if there are any qualified dealers in your country to repair the engine in the machine you are buying.

Fully Electronic Engines

Many Tier 2 rated diesel engines, and all Tier 3 rated engines and above are fully electronic. The training and tooling requirements to be certified on these engines routinely cost $5,000 and can be considerably more.  Then there is a licensing fee that needs to be paid every year that can run up to $1500 or more.  With such a large investment, few Engineering companies bother to buy the Electronic Service Tooling necessary to repair the equipment.  So you may have to fly someone in from a neighboring island (if you are lucky), or the US or the UK.  It is common in such cases for the Servicing Company you need to ask for a $10,000 to $15,000 deposit before they will even get on a plane…even if the unit is under warranty!

With the inevitability that you will someday need to Service that diesel engine, it is worth the time to find out, up front, what your costs will be.  It also makes sense to “buy local”.  There is a much better chance that, if you buy from your neighboring region, you can get it serviced.  But don’t assume.  Ask if the selling agency has ALL the equipment to service your diesel engine and the machine it is in.

Engine Selection in the Caribbean

When selecting an engine for applications in the Caribbean, it is wise to select a Perkins engine.  Why?  There are Perkins dealers on most Caribbean islands.  They might not have invested in the Electronic Service Tool, but all Caribbean dealers have access to the tool through Parts & Power, who are the Perkins Distributor for the Eastern Caribbean.

Of equal or, possibly higher, importance is that Perkins parts are very reasonably priced and readily accessible.  With Perkins Global Technical Support (GTS) located in the Midwest US and UK, there is nearly 24 hour access to service information and support. Better, local, support available 7 days/week backed by readily available, affordable, parts makes Perkins engines the best serviced engines in the Caribbean.

So, when you buy new equipment, check which engine is in it.  Always look for equipment with a quality Perkins engine in it.  Perkins Engines…the Heart of Every Great Machine.

Contact Parts & Power, or see your nearest Perkins dealer, to discuss the option best for you.