Thursday, June 9, 2016

Early June: Service & a Side Trip

The day after we arrived at Old Port Cove in Palm Beach, Rick changed the oil & oil filters on both the main engine and the generator as a part of our routine maintenance regimen (250 and 200 hour intervals respectively); that’s pretty straightforward stuff given the convenience of the Reverso oil drain pump, but between the two diesels they consumed 28 quarts of fresh 15W-40 engine oil.
Tivoli Looking Good @ OPC

The evening before we left Palm Beach for St. Louis we hooked up with Clayton and Deanna, owners of N50 Tivoli, who were docked next to us at OPC.  They were just wrapping up their own Yacht Tech punch list, and headed north towards Maine for the summer.  As always it was fun to meet other Nordy owners and learn from their experiences.

Danielle Wake Surfing Behind
Their Tige Boat
Nick Wake Surfing at Lake
 of the Ozarks
Our side trip to St. Louis was fabulous…a little golf and a lot of family time, including a weekend at the Lake of the Ozarks with Nick, Danielle & our three grand kids, all with excellent weather.  It actually felt a little odd taking a spin in a boat that could reach 40 MPH, and it was a blast watching them wake-surfing.  It was even more fun watching Danielle surfing with 4-year-old Grace tucked in between her legs.  (EDIT: here's a YouTube video link of that.)

But while we were away from Ghost Rider, and now having returned to Palm Beach, we’ve also been getting a lot of work done on the boat courtesy of James Knight’s gang at Yacht Tech.  We have a lengthy punch list, including:

·        R&R the wing engine’s stuffing box…after 8 months of mucking around with multiple adjustments in a vain effort to cool it down, in the end the boat had to be hauled out and the wing shaft pulled, engine lifted, followed by modification and repacking of the stuffing box.

·        Re-wire the engine room intake fans to the battery bus bar (vs. a single battery) and install a new inline 24V converter.

·        Repair / rewire the LinkPro battery monitor gauge & reconfigure for our 24V system.

·        Replace the raw water pump on the generator; it had an intermittent leak at the rear seal; it also turned out the impeller was starting to come apart, too, and we were careful to retrieve the missing chunks from the heat exchanger.

·        The slow transmission oil leak at the base of the dipstick turned out to be a worn out crush washer which was replaced.

·        We also decided to address some minor plumbing issues with the fresh water system (low pressure at a couple of faucets – replacing with new assemblies.)

·        Strip & repaint the bottom….the latest ablative coat was simply not adhering to the previous coats of bottom paint (see pics); bottom line (I suppose that’s a pun) is that bottom paint is a consumable that needs to be periodically replenished; the soda blasting, however, is an expensive procedure & hopefully never needed again.
Peeling Bottom Paint

Most of these items are getting knocked out efficiently, but as I write this the boat is still up on jacks in the boatyard for all the bottom paint work that needs to be done; getting all the players and supplies coordinated for that has been like herding cats.  Plus the weather is not cooperating – all this rainfall is not conducive to quality outdoor painting.  We are guessing at approximately a week’s delay as a result.  Even that may be optimistic, but a revised departure date of 18-Jun is the current plan.
Bagging the Bottom to Prep for
the Soda Blasting
The good news is that our great friends Bernie and Sylvia are located nearby in Jupiter, and have given us a place to crash as well as a car (a Jaguar, not bad for a free rental, eh?)  Their hospitality has been and remains amazing….although we may accidentally found out how long they can tolerate us.

In the interim I’m contemplating an addition to my “bucket list”….while we’ve made good progress with acquiring the right vessel and pursuing the desired adventures, am wondering if operating that vessel for at least a period of time without an open punch list might also be achievable.  Once in a while you have to howl at the moon and tilt at a windmill, right?