24 April 2014. She runs, however...
Wednesday was a very good day.
For the first time the engine started and ran in Seaweed. She is a
bit noisier than on the dock -- more vibration and I have some
learning to do too. Things like how to bleed the engine, etc.
That is not particularly difficult and is something that every boater needs to
know for their diesel.
And ladies, my manicure is intact.
It may sound icky but "bleeding the engine" is really a case of
letting the air out of the system so that only fuel goes into the
motor. It can be done on my Volvo with wrenches (three sizes,
and yes, I will have them attached to bulkheads where needed so I
will not have to hunt 'em down) ... anyway, bleeding is just releasing
the air from the fuel lines. It is not a filthy job.
So, aboard Seaweed we (specifically,
the mechanics at Jerry's
Just Right Marine) had hooked up an auxiliary fuel tank. It is
really an outboard fuel tank (the red ones you see everywhere) but
this one had 1.5 gallons of diesel in it.
With the compression lever raised
on the front cylinder and the throttle at 1/2, we gave her a go.
Seaweed started right up and remained running. A bit of
adjustment and we settled down for a "break in" period.
Basically the engine was run at 1/3rd throttle, checking oil pressure
and temperature for any aberrations.
This is Steve ↑
All sounds were normal. Steve (a
mechanic at Just Right) showed me how to put on the air intake mufflers and
I fixed one with a small
crack in it.
stretched and wrapped around solved that. It's my belief all boats that leave the
dock need at least one roll of Rescue Tape. I prefer clear so I can
see what is being covered.
Just above the FUEL FILTER (Red
Arrow) are the two silver air intake mufflers. They are
now painted white.
With 1.5 gallons in the auxiliary
fuel tank we gave her a go. She basically just idled for 3.5
hours. And did not burn even a gallon of fuel. That is amazing.
My friend Bob (see
article) said his only burned a quart an hour but men, well, they
do not always talk truth, especially when it comes to motors.
There are two types of diesel
talk: The fellows who swear theirs only sips fuel, and then the
macho types to don't know how to throttle back and complain about
burning 16 gallons per hour at 12 knots. Or worse.
And still, I do not know what my
fuel economy will be. At idle is one thing, but Under Load* is
*Under Load essentially means
while being used. Underway, versus in neutral at a dock...
So after 3.5 hours of perfection
the decision was made to take her out into the river and give
Seaweed a go. She was magnificent. We moved nicely through the water
and at 1/2 throttle didn't kick up a wake. There's something
about a displacement hull... It was wonderful to again be mobile.
For five minutes.
Then the engine temperature
started to rise. The exhaust is right outside the door on the
starboard side so putting my hand into that water allowed me to
gauge that the temperature had indeed raised. What was of more
concern though was that the water flow seemed restricted, and there
was oil in the exhaust water.
We came back to the dock ASAP.
Within ten minutes we were again tied up and the post-mortem began.
The following day (this morning)
the manifold came off.
The thermostat was stuck, with a bit of rust
in it. Not good.
Where we are at now:
Hoping the issue is the thermostat
(that's a cheap fix)
The Good News: it might be a bad
cylinder head ($1000!!!)
Worst Case Scenario: it might be the manifold and
that's a $1,300 part!
I am trying to wrap
my head around the idea that Good News
can cost ONE THOUSAND DOLLARS for a part. Plus labor!
Seaweed is a boat and goodness
knows they are not inexpensive.
She is my home, and I would
have it any other way. More
news after the manifold is soaked
in muriatic acid for a couple days.
Life is great afloat and I will
confess I'm enjoying the use of a power line. The refrigerator
has been on 24/7 and a couple days ago I ran the crock pot all day
long. I tell you, this decadent lifestyle is simply amazing.
Get a boat and come on out here
too. Life aboard Seaweed is fun -- even when stuff goes not-so-great,
this is still
better than dirt.
Have you ever had an engine overheat while underway?
What was the issue and how did you fix it?
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In the Bilges,
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