Story And Photography By Steve D’Antonio
A Well-Kept Secret
Cummins Reconditioning Program Gives
Diesel Engines A Second Lease On Life
sat comfortably in a conference room at the world
headquarters and marinization facility of Cummins MerCruiser
Diesel (CMD) in Charleston, South Carolina, on a sunny April
afternoon. With me were Rob Dorfmeyer and John Wooldridge,
PMM’s publisher and editor-in-chief, respectively, as we discussed
the facility’s capabilities and CMD’s strategic outlook with several
company officials, including President Alex Savelli.
During our conversation, a passing reference was made to
CMD’s remanufactured engines.
“Stop the presses,” I exclaimed. “Did you say that Cummins has
a dedicated remanufacturing program for marine diesel engines?”
A hush fell over the room, and I’m sure the CMD folks were
thinking, “You’ve got to be kidding. PMM’s gearhead
extraordinaire doesn’t know about this segment of our business?”
The fact is, I didn’t. Nor, I suspect, do many of my colleagues
in the marine industry. Remanufactured engines—often called
“recons” (for “reconditioned engines”)—are not usually
considered for repowers or direct replacements.
“This is a well-kept secret in the trade, gentlemen,” I said. “Tell
With that, we were given a brief overview of the
remanufacturing program that CMD has had in place since
1999 for its over-the-road, industrial, and B and C Series marine
diesel engines (and some Q Series marine engines). It’s worth
noting that the bulk of the marine engines available through
this program are mechanically fuel injected—a holy grail of
sorts for cruisers who are looking to keep things simple.
The more I learned about CMD’s recon program, the more I
wanted to tour the factory where the engines are remanufactured
and share the story with PMM readers. Clay Gaillard, CMD’s
public relations manager and my inside man at the company,
said he would be happy to show me around the facility.