Monday, September 10, 2007

Add It To The List

Check engine issues. Change oil and fuel filters. Haul-out, paint bottom. Put on name board. Spare bulbs for navigation lights. Varnish, brushes, pine tar. Insurance. Life raft. Anything else anyone can think of?

I probably already have it somewhere on my master list.

It seems lately I need someone around to actually give me that extra 'push' to start getting stuff done, and to start the process of crossing things off this list. When Mike G. found me in the local coffee shop and offered to take a look at my engine problems (himself procrastinating his own list for the day), off we went in my little dingy to the mooring.

A couple of weeks ago while sailing with a friend on the eastern shore, my engine, which until now had proved itself utterly infallible, took the notion to stop. After doing a bit of troubleshooting, we found a bit of air in the fuel lines. I assumed a fuel leak of some sort, but could find no evidence of diesel on the engine or in the bilge. After manually forcing more fuel into the lines, she started up again, and off we went.

For a little while.

I think we had to repeat this process 3 times before finally making it back to Eastern Passage. Obviously this was something I'd have to deal with sooner or later.

Mike G., removing the hatches around the engine, began to poke around. After removing some fuel lines from the tank and not being able to draw any fuel, he determined there was some sort of blockage in the tank itself. Probably an easy fix, he told me. Just a bit of sucking and blowing required. He politely offered to do it himself and sure enough, when he blew as hard as he could through the rubber tube, we heard bubbles in the fuel tank itself, which was followed by a rush of diesel and soot back to the air source (Mike's mouth). "A glass of water please, Laura?"

That's one project crossed off the list.

Post script: Thanks be to my editor, David M., for prompting me to edit the above entry from its previous form. My obtuse sense of humor might have added further evidence to the notion that I am indeed a sailor.