Engine Mounts (and Main Bank Alternator)

Last April (2011), we took Kosmos into a local boat yard, Driscoll, to have some work done. The two rear engine mounts had worn out, causing some vibration, the main house alternator was nearing the end of its life, and the a through-hull needed a new barb. Driscoll was supposed to replace the two back engine mounts, rebuild the alternator, and fix the through-hull. The work took two days. Christi was onboard all day both days, holed up in the pilot house working on The Unexpected Circumnavigation Part 2. Since the mechanics went in and out of the engine room through the hatch in the living room, they usually didn’t see her. But she heard them come and go, and heard every noise they made in the engine room, including their conversations. She noted exactly how many workers there were and how long they worked for. The labor hours totalled 11.

When the work was completed, Eric inspected it. The mechanics had forgotten to tighten one of the bolts on the engine mounts! And the alternator was not the same one they had taken to rebuild! The mechanics immediately tightened the bolt as Eric requested and apologized for the oversight, but both argued with Eric about the alternator, insisting it was indeed ours. For a good fifteen minutes, they swore up and down that Continue reading Engine Mounts (and Main Bank Alternator)

Off to San Francisco: Leg 1 and Repair/Maintenance Items

On Wednesday we left for San Francisco. Leg one was from San Diego to Ventura, which took 24 hours. We left at 1130. For the first seven hours, the wind was steady at 15 knots from the forward port side, with two to four foot swells, gently shaped, at about 3 – 6 second intervals. Wind chop was about 1 – 2 feet, also gently shaped. We wish all rides in head seas could be so nice! Speeds varied from 5.5 to 6.5 knots at 1775 RPM depending on currents.

As the sun started to get lower in the sky, the wind picked up to 18 – 20 knots and the wind waves became slightly bigger at 2 – 4 feet, but noticeably sharper and at more rapid intervals. The pointier waves caused Kosmos to hobbyhorse and sent some sea spray over the bow, but it still was not a bad ride considering it was head seas.

The rougher conditions only lasted a little over an hour, then we got into the shadow of Catalina Island, where the seas slowly but steadily improved. By midnight the ride was relatively pleasant again (for head seas) and speeds had picked up to 7 knots. There was no moon and it was pitch black out, so there was no visibility all night.

We expected conditions to worsen once we passed Catalina, but they didn’t. In fact, they continued to slowly and steadily improve the whole rest of the trip. By 1000, the wind chop was completely gone, leaving only the gentle swell, making for a lovely ride.

Shortly after leaving San Diego, we had a small SNAFU arise. The entire downstairs reeked like the blackwater tank. Christi Continue reading Off to San Francisco: Leg 1 and Repair/Maintenance Items