The last couple days have been engine work days.
We started installing an anti-siphon device for the raw water exhaust
injection. The engine sits below the water line and the water will siphon
back from the exhaust into the engine unless we close the raw water through
hull. The reason is a bit complicated and probably beyond the scope of
this blog to explain, but I'll do my best. This boat was designed with a water jacket cooled
exhaust instead of injecting it straight into the exhaust. But, though it
is a beautiful copper/bronze thing, it has pin holes in the water jacket
which causes a leak into the exhaust. The previous owner had wanted to put
in an anti-siphon riser but never got around to it. We started putting it
in behind the stairs yesterday. Tomorrow we will complete it and post
pictures. We also need to install a petcock/valve to drain water from the
water jacket when we shut off the engine.
We removed the raw water pump today and found water had mixed with the oil
around the shaft of the pump. So we are replacing/rebuilding the pump. We
also adjusted the valves and though they seem to have never been touched
they were remarkably well set. We also took off the fuel injectors for
service and 1 will be replaced. So for the time being we are engineless.
This is not a good feeling, but there is nothing we can do except wait for
parts to arrive. We had ordered parts but one was the wrong part (the raw
water pump) and the other (injectors) turned out to need more parts.
Overall, however I feel good about the state of the engine. The top end
looks remarkably clean and the oil smells good.
Lila is getting more secure with the boat and is typically sleeping in the
raised guest berth above the settee. Hannah and I went shopping today and
food is getting much more expensive. It's a little disturbing. But
tonight we had Tuna Casserole and farm fresh green beans.
Oh, because of the cold weather the water was shut off on the dock so we have
been seeing how long our water will last. So far it's been 9 days of
reasonably normal water usage. It will be interesting to see how long it
will go. As an issue with this, we are still leaking fresh water into the
bilge and I still don't know where it is coming from! Over the week we
dumped about 10 gallons overboard with bilge pumps. This will be a priority
Date:Fri Dec 03 03:19:02 UTC 2021
More Engine work
Today we finished the exhaust anti-siphon
by adding another length of hose. Then we put back the stairs and the wall
behind them. In the evening I worked on the wifi repeater and set it up
for the neighbors. As soon as my groove comes in I'll setup ours
permanently. I want to pull the ethernet cable from the starboard
lazarette to the navigation station. I think the wifi repeater should be
inside the cabin not out by the auto pilot.
It was a beautiful 70 deg day today and sunny and the marina turned back on
the water. So we could have filled the tanks but we are waiting till we
run out. I want to see how long we can go on 200 gallons of water. At
this point we are at 13 days.
I tied a rope to my feet with towels around the rope and Hannah and Samuel
pulled me up inverted. We don't have an inversion table so this is the
best I can do at the moment. I'm worried about my back.
Date:Sun Dec 05 02:17:26 UTC 2021
I spent most of the last couple days doing web
site updates and upgrades and wifi installations for friends. Of note
however is that we are now mirrored on gopher so even the simplest text
system can follow us. I also optimized the website a little bit for text
only browsers like lynx. I am playing with making a static version of the
site so that it loads a little faster.
The weather has been wonderful lately and temps are ranging from the high
40's at night to the 70's in the daytime. Tonight the sunset was amazing
with salmon and pink rippling across the water and the christmas lights on
people's boats reflecting on the black water.
We spent the afternoon watching a movie in the clubhouse and eating popcorn
and fresh doghnuts from Dunkin.
My groove wifi came in today so I hooked that up. as well.
Date:Tue Dec 07 22:27:54 UTC 2021
Today we put in cleaned/adjusted injectors.
Then we put in the newly rebuilt raw water pump. The raw water pump has
one of the 4 allen screws stripped. Someone previously just filled it with
red rtv and hoped it would stay in. Two of the holes are wallowed out on the
pump as well. The impeller was in really bad shape. After the work the
engine started right up no problems. My water anti-siphon loop worked
flawlessly and the drain worked well as well. There was a leak on the
output of the transmission cooler so we tightened up the hose clamp. Now
comes the bad news. We still have a knock on number three. So the likely
hood is that we have a compression problem on 3 so that there is
incomplete burn causing a knock. When we loosen the injector input the
knock/rattle goes away. It's not a valve adjustment because we already did
that and it's not the injector because it's new. We ran it up to 3000rpm
and it starts to rattle somewhere at 2800. Under load we ran it up to
2000rpm and the knock on #3 is worse under load than without load.
Then I flushed out the entire bilge and vacuumed out the water where it
collects/sits on top of the grey water tank. So now we can start tracking
water leaks again. But for now we have an engine again. The next step is
check the compression and see if it's low on #3.
Date: Thur Dec 09 04:59:46 UTC 2021
It rained today nice and hard and so we used the
opportunity to find leaks. Only 1 new one! That's not bad for an old boat.
As boats go this is a very very dry boat. We have 1 starboard
portlight/window that needs to be re-bedded, two bolts side by side that
need proper bedding on the cabin roof and the new one is the dorade over
the kitchen. A couple of screws that hold the dorade to the cabin roof are
not sealed correctly. Oh, and one of the deck boxes has a crack. But the
only one that was new was the screws for the dorade.
However... that hose with the terrible emergency fix from when it filled
the battery box with water... that one. Well as it turns out where the
hose had been crushed over the pex it sprang a leak. When I put it over
the hose barb after being crushed previously it decided to spring a leak
and was spraying water again. This time however I caught it quickly and in
digging through my spare parts found the proper fitting. A pex to 1/2 pipe
fitting and a 1/2 pipe to 1/2 barb! wonderful! Anyway so that's fixed
properly now. But of course it happened after dinner in the evening and I
just finished. We also used the opportunity to tie down with wire ties the
little valve that I had put on the exhaust raw water bilge drain. So two
more items off the list.
When you fix something temporary you always
generate more work. If there is any way it's best to do it right the first
time. But years and years of just doing it 1/2 way has left everything to
me now to fix. And of course it's 1 time to solve the emergency and then a
couple days later do it again with the right parts. Ah well...
Date: Thur Dec 09 23:12:35 UTC 2021
Still More Leaks
Today it was cool in the 50's but no rain. We
went out early and found a lot of caulk that was wet so pulled it up to let
it dry. In a couple days we'll start caulking.
Hannah went out today to a sisterhood party in Newbern and so Sam and I
took the opportunity to fix more leaks under the galley floor.
The cold water side and input to the hot water tank were leaking so we used
a lot of the spare plumbing parts and fixed all the leaks, vacuumed out
excess water, emptied the bilges 3 times and 4 hours later just before
Hannah returned we put the floor back... Then about 1 hour later I found
the input to the water heater leaking again. So I built a custom fitting
that was a pex elbow to 3/8x1/2 reducer. The threads were right but they
were not pipe threads so they didn't taper. I epoxied the heck out of it
with putty type epoxy both inside and out and it's holding now. At least
all the fittings are correct now. Once again I found pex stuck inside
3/8th inch hose and clamped. I replaced with with 1/2 pipe to 3/8th barbed
connected to a 1/2 female pipe to 1/4th inch tube compression fitting which
works for pex just fine. There is a metal insert inside the pex to keep it
At the end of the day I took a picture of the cat
eating at her spot on the table. The aft end of the table is her spot and
she sits there a lot to sleep. She also eats there. She demands to eat at
the table when we eat and has very good manners. We recently tried feeding
her sardines. She loves them. Previously she would only eat chicken or
turkey and turned her nose up at fish but she likes sardines which is
wonderful because they are cheap cat food!
Date: Sat Dec 11 03:27:27 UTC 2021
In the morning I worked on re-caulking the
window to the aft head. Temporary fix only but it should hold till we
can get it rebedded properly. Ok, it was cloudy but the forcast was not for
rain till Sunday, but NO as soon as I started pulling up some wet caulk on
the teak decks it decides to rain! grrrr. And I left the aft lazzerette
open as well and went to the library. Samantha came over for a visit and we
had chile mac and chocolate covered cherries! We spent the day buying too
many books and then I spent the evening working on the wifi network. (we
got a new router for $3 at the thrift shop.
Today it was cool in the 50's but no rain.
Date: Sat Dec 11 23:53:53 UTC 2021
In the morning we went to the post office to get
a po box but they closed before we got to the window. We'll try again
tomorrow. This is becoming painful and a bureaucratic mess. Then in the
afternoon I worked on re-caulking the decks. Some of the areas had dried
enough, some had not. We are expecting rain tomorrow so I wanted to get do
as much as possible. Then in the evening we found that the small repair to
a leak in the aft head was dripping slightly again. So I modified one of
the fittings to fit the old thin pex A blue 1/2 inch lines i have. Now I
can fit that old blue pex to the new 1/2 inch white stuff if necessary.
Then we found that the port wall forward by the head and on to the hanging
locker port are damp. I'm sure something is leaking but now finding it
will be a chore. So everything is open and airing out now. Hannah is
doing wash and there are lintels on the stove for when she comes back.
Date: Sun Dec 12 23:27:15 UTC 2021
In the morning I started looking at leaks after
the rain. The Aft head port light was not leaking after the caulking job
from a couple days ago. But the forward one over the nav station was. So
I decided to see how they were construsted and start working on it.
Several hours later I had it re-bedded and cleaned up. 4 or 5 of the bottom
screws were not even screwing into fiberglass but were just siliconed in.
I put in some epoxy to set the glass better and give myself room to drill
and tap them. Everything is bedded now, but 3 or 4 of the screws are still
stripped out. I'm thinking about how to re-epoxy and tap them but epoxy is
so brittle. I'm not sure what to do yet. That being said, it's not
leaking now. And I know how the others are put together so as I attack
each one it will be easier. I do need some custom made glass for them.
The polycarbonate or acrylic? is cracked. In the early afternoon after the
leak was fixed we decided to go for a sail and check the headsail that sam
and I had worked on a while back. So we went out. It was a beautiful
afternoon and the wind was about 12-15 knots out of the north with light
chop on the water. As it got on toward sunset the wind was quite chilly.
As for the head sail, we didn't get the roller furling set right so when we
were rolling it back up (tighter than at the dock) we ran out of rope so
we'll have to re-load it tomorrow. But the good thing is it didn't get
stuck or twist around. once back at the dock we started running out of
power for the bow thrusters...I'm not sure why but evidently they are not
charging when the engine is running...I'm not sure the balmar is actually
working. We have been fighting with it for a while now but I shouldn't run
out of battery that quickly especially when the engine is running.
Hannah is making roasted vegitables, potatoes, and eggs for dinner.
It's going to be cold tonight in the 30's but the days are warm and nice.
Parts of the deck are still not dried out so I'll let them go for a few
Date: Wed Dec 15 01:30:46 UTC 2021
Clean up and Caulk
I guess this is a maintenance blog...Anyway,
Monday and Tuesday was caulking day. There is so much and you have to wait
for it to dryout on good days. But back to the leak on top of the gray
water tank. I can't find where the water is coming from. I've fixed 3
different leaks that could have been contributing to the water on top of
that tank but to no avail. There must be a leak in a hose under the engine
between the sink and the aft of the engine. I just don't know. But it's
pretty clean water. I also finished off the stripped screws in the forward
starboard portlight. I filled them with epoxy and tapped them again. I
found an old tap and die set under a pipe in the aft hanging locker up
against a wall and the venier was peeling off so I glued it down and it's
sitting now with a 2 gal water jug on it for a clamp. Today also Hannah
and I went to the post office to get a P.O. box. Sam spent the day trying
to get a video of us working on the port light edited and uploaded to the
net. We are going to get a vlog going on youtube as soon as we can get the
editing down. We have two videos so far. So stay tuned for that!
A couple of people on the dock here left today to head south to Florida for
the winter. We might leave as well but I really want to get the spreader and
the exhaust done first as well as the charging issues. One step at a time.
Date: Sat Dec 18 01:21:03 UTC 2021
Today Sam and I pulled ethernet cable from the aft
lazzerette to the nav station under shelves behind heads around corners and
then made an anderson powerpole distribution bridge for the POE and cisco
router. We also took apart and tightened up the shifter and throttle in
the binicle. Then while we had everything apart we put screws in to hold
the B&G chart plotter t-12 into the Navipod. When taking the navipod apart
we found the screws had an allen head with a pin in the center for a
special tool so we got out the dremmel and made the screws into flat heads.
In the evening we ran out of water and my mother asked why there was a
machine sound coming from the stern. It was the water pump running dry with no
pressure. I need to fix that so it turns off if there is no water. And in
that process I tried to turn on the deck lights to fill the water and found
there is a short in the switch and it blows the fuse. It did this once
before but I wasn't sure what was wrong. Now I am. Then this evening we
found more condensation under the forward vberth cushions, but in that
process we found a cubby we didn't no existed and in it we found a dinghy
anchor! yea! presents. I guess we still need to do a full inventory
Today was a beautiful day in the 70's but rain is coming Sunday so we put
the covers back over the cockpit in preparation. Tomorrow we are going to
the Christmas craft fair/farmers market in Beaufort.
Date: Sat Dec 18 23:01:54 UTC 2021
This morning I took a coding test for a job
programming. Then Sam and I worked on the short in the mast light circuit.
We can't find it at the moment but we have a few leads. one of the
switches is shorting. I think it's wired wrong. I think it's putting
electricity in reverse polarity into the lights on the mast. I hope it
hasn't blown the lights up there but I'm afraid it has. We put the panel
back together and went to the last farmers market of the year after going
to Lidel's shopping. It's a wonderful craft fair at Beaufort. I think
it's better than the craft fair at Reelfoot lake. It's smaller but the
items for sale and the interesting crafts are better. There's lots of
handmade jewelry and art. There is woodworking and knitting and of course
lots of good foot and usually some form of musical entertainment. This
time there was a sextet of christmas singers. When we returned to the boat
Lilah was being very brave and after our dinner of split pea soup which was
cooking while we were away she went out into the cockpit and onto the deck
by herself... this is a first. Now I'm not sure we'll be able to keep her
in. Then this evening I went looking for that damn leak on the gray water
tank as it's back again. It is fresh water this time so it must come from
filling the tanks. There are water tanks under the settee and I think it
might be coming from there. I'll have to take the other seat apart
tomorrow. I took one apart today but couldn't see the top of the tank.
Looking under the floor I think I can see the line that comes off the tank
and I think it's wet but it's really difficult to tell. Well it's late and
we had a full day so it's off to bed I go...
Date: Thu Dec 30 04:11:23 UTC 2021
As the year comes to a close the winds are strong
out of the south at 15g20 and the barameter is 29.91. The skys are clear
and the tempratures are running in the high 70's. It's been a quiet couple
of weeks. The holidays have been gentle and I have taken a break from
working on the boat for a bit. We've been out sailing a time or two with
friends and we had a Christmas party at the club house and watched movies.
I finally found the leak that has been putting water on top of the grey
water tank. It's coming from the forward water tank overflow behind the
sink and under the dinette. I'm going to be updating the web site for the
new year this week and adding an RSS feed for those of you who want to get
regular updates. To all of our friends out there, Be safe, Be well, and
watch your six. Here's hoping 2022 will be a good year. God be with your
Any questions or comments may be directed to
info@SailingWithGrace.com Grace is one of only 8 48 foot Hinckleys and is loved by her family
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