Thursday, March 31, 2011

Engine Repairs

I decided to take advantge of the spring-like weather today (and the fact that I have 2 weeks of unused vacation that I lose as of tomorrow) and do some repairs to Exploit's iron jib.  Inspection of the impeller went fairly straight forward and didn't need to be replaced.  I then turned my attention to the stuffing box which seemed to be leaking more than it should last season.  I must admit, lying on the quarter berth and trying to work on the rear of the engine was not something I was looking forward to.

Mistake one.  I found some advice on the internet.  There was a specific recommendation for a particular brand of penetrating oil and wrenches from West Marine.  It would seem it worked better for them, than it did for me.  I ordered not one but two wrenches from West Marine.  If you'd like to have them, I'd be happy to send them along.  I'll throw in the flax extractor I bought it the same time, altho you'll need a replacement part.  I struggled for a couple of hours trying to loosen the nuts and then decided to visit the local hardware store and pick up a couple of pipe wrenches.  Success within minutes!

I ordered a couple of sizes of packing to make sure I had the right one.  The packing that was in there seemed too small so I went with a 1/16 inch larger which seemed to be correct based on my measurements.  I struggled to get one piece in and had no luck getting a second wrap in.  After several hours I opted to leave the first piece in and added a second wrap of the 1/4 inch.  Hopefully it'll work!

The good news was, during one of my visits to the hardware store, I ran into a old windsurfing buddy of mine.  He lives completely "off the grid" in back of Tatamagouche although I couldn't quite figure out what his source of income was.  He'd need some income to pay for the stuff he was buying in the hardware store.  I figure I need to go visit.

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