Bad Things Come in Threes | Sailing How to Run Aground in 8’ of Water When 1 day ago   17:47

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Sailing Soulianis
Oh dear…This one’s for you dreamers out there who will one day become newbie boat owners, just like us. Take notes! Hopefully you won’t have to make these same mistakes.

Last episode, we had issues with our centerboard, which were — surprise! — caused by yours truly. We ended up running aground, because unbeknownst to us, our board had dropped down; the temporary line we had slung under the boat to hold the board up had slipped off the keel. After building a new mast plug to properly crank the board back up into the trunk, we had to haul out to free the stuck centerboard pennant. This whole ordeal turned out to be Bad Thing #1. Finally, all was well, and we were back on the river, heading south.

The mast unstepping and haul out had us feeling pretty ragged, and in desperate need of a hot shower. We arrived at our first marina only to find they had no such thing, only port-a-potties. They did have diesel, so we quickly filled up and rushed off to the next marina with water, forgetting to put the fuel cap back on the deck fill. This led to Bad Thing #2.

At the next marina, Kirk thought it would be a good idea to clean the boat, as she was incredibly dirty after spending three days in the boat yard under the Skyway Bridge. With the fuel cap still off, this meant all the water he sprayed was washing right down the deck and into the fuel tank. *Facepalm.

Water in our fuel was very very bad. The guys in the service center at the marina told us if it was a small amount of water, we could probably get away with replacing our fuel filter and all would be well. We set about changing the filter — for our first time ever.

After the swap, we started the engine, and it fired right up! We ran it for 30 minutes, and this, we read, should mean we’re in the clear. As this took us the better part of the afternoon to figure out how to change the filter, we decided to continue our journey the next morning. We spent the evening applying sound deadening material to our engine room.

The next morning, we fired up the engine (again!) and set off south. We made it 1/4 of a mile… and the engine DIED. Bad Thing #3. We drifted, slowly losing steering. Kirk threw the dinghy in the water and rowed us the last few hundred feet toward a dock, but before we could get there, we ran aground, again.

What did we do wrong? Why wouldn’t the engine start? We wracked our brains. You need three things to run a diesel engine: compression, oxygen and fuel. Kirk knew it couldn’t be the first two — we didn’t change anything with those. It had to be a fuel problem, but we had ran the engine for a half hour already. How could there still be air in the lines? We tried bleeding them again, to no avail.

Then, we remembered towing was included in our insurance coverage, and we figured, this is as good of time as any to call for a tow. An hour later, an incredibly nice tow boat operator from BoatUS brought us back to the marina we had just left. Now, to figure out why the engine wouldn’t start…

We’ll let you watch to find out what happens. ;)

Hope you enjoy!
Lauren & Kirk


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Comments 451 Comments

Hula Moon
I spent at least 6 hours trying to determine why my depth gauge wouldn't work. hours tracing wires, checking connections etc.... When I checked the routing of the wires from the gauge, I was dumbfounded to see the wire bypass the distribution panel and head forward. Until.....I realized the wire was going to the SWITCH that controlled all of the gauges. Head slap here. If your interested, I know there are classes you can take to learn about your engine. My friend took one in S. Carolina, $800. They took the engine apart all they way to splitting the crankcase and you only passed if it ran when they put it back together!
Bernd Kretzschmar
Dude there are diesel courses. Might be time to take them
Bernd Kretzschmar
maybe u should do Yoga full time instead of sailing LOL
Bernd Kretzschmar
seriously yoga
kimbiwa
The very best thing you got from this, the HARD way, which BTW is the BEST WAY, was living the principle of Occam's Razor. Never forget it. Always start at the most basic possible problem and work UP! It applies to so many more things than just mechanics, and it may well save your life one day. I learned to live this principle as a Marine. So, when I tell you this thought process might save your life, I speak from experience. I'm actually really happy for you that you endured this. Great building block!
Ian KELLY
a little thing that will make bleeding easier - in the fuel line between filter and engine install a little Fuel Primer Bulb  - makes bleeding really simple
alphasxsignal
Hope you get to warm weather soon.
dmmadde x
You guys stayed pretty cool throughout this situation.
18E
I am perplexed you are going blue water sailing, with long inland legs first you did not clear, rebuild and change the racor before you departed. Did you even change the oil in the motor, racore the heat exchangers, replace hoses thermostat etc?
Jason Lee
Hi, I am so looking forward to your next post. Hopefully you are busy motoring or sailing getting some mileage under your keel. Cant wait for next installment. Hope you didn't run into a winter storm
Martyn Randall
If you turned your fuel off does that mean your fuel tanks are higher than your engine? If so that is good thing and makes so much more easier to bleed. I know you said it was a westerpeke ,they are Perkins probably a 4108 or 4107 if so there is a really good face book blog for these engines. Let us know how you get on.
nathan miller
That has to be so disheartening. Im glad you guys are safe and didnt give up!
ColinWatters
You can still see the palm prints on your faces :-) Been there done that myself.
thomas
Maybe it’s the wrong timing, if it ois sorry. but I was just watching your guys tube and now at where you were checking out your secound catamaran in Mexico. That was too corroded. Well I knew catamaran Are expensive but after everone gain the experience and want one soon after, you just can’t beat the smooth ride. I know there expensive, but I checked and seen this one. And I just looked and remember where your are, your first tube where I found you
https://multihullcompany.com/boat-details/?catid=6869915
Isn’t The layout is really cool.
The Next Big Thing
I Love your Videos and i am from Ottawa Illinois (i now live in Florida) and i have boated that entire river a million times. You both are super cool people, and if there is anything i can do to help on your trip or when you arrive down here please let me know. We would love to meet up and meet you two! Connect with me on Facebook (Nathan Marco). Keep up the great videos and your sense of humor!!
Hooha888
Why wouldn't you learn some basic maintenance BEFORE getting on the water. That's just asking for trouble and not good common sense. You have the responsibility for all lives on board and basic engine maintenance can mean the difference between life and death, especially on the open ocean or in a shipping lane. A ship isn't going to go around you if you're dead in the water.
Preparation is a must.
qaannat
Well, if you learned something, it was certainly not wasted. And you got the cool sunsets and boat life stuff, check.
warp21drive
Well things like this were sent to test you , and you passed. Defiantly some unusual causes for you breakdowns but you got up and running again all on your own by the third time around .....even if you did have to call a friend!
I hope you have figured out the other common engine things , cleaning the 'sea strainer'/water intake filter and changing the impeller in the raw water cooling pump( which often needs doing when you forget to turn the water back on after cleaning the sea strainer) don't ask how I know ...you know already!HA!
Cheers , keep the faith , enjoy Warren .
Sailing Blue Moon
Wow what chaos for your first few days motoring! Those racor filters are an awesome invention, make sure you check to see if you have a secondary filter aswell.
Ken Baumgartner
Love you channel. But the sound drives my wife nuts, and it’s tuff to hear you so I turn up the tv, and then the background music comes on and it’s loud. I go from level 20 to 30 and back so many times an episode. Can you equalize it somehow. I’m sure I’m not alone on this.
Thanx
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How to Run Aground in 8’ of Water When Bad Things Come in Threes | Sailing 1 day ago   18:35

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At the end of our last episode, we left you thinking we ran aground. Yeah, we did. Though in all fairness, it was more of a “nudge the bottom” situation. The question was, how did we manage to run aground in 8 feet of water, when we only draft 4?

Turns out we were drafting much more. Unbeknownst to us, the line we had strung under the hull between the midship cleats had slipped off turning our several mile journey from the yard to our first marina. Believing our board was still up (we draft 4’ 2” with it up), we thought we’d just squeak into a slip with 5 feet of depth.

Nope. We hit bottom about ten feet before reaching the dock.

Now what? This turned into quite the drama for our first days on the river. We started with staying overnight at a lock, which you generally aren’t supposed to do — especially without permission; fortunately the lock operator on duty was sympathetic to our situation, as the lock itself was the only area in this part of the river with enough depth for our boat in its current state.

The next morning, we backtracked six miles, first to Crowley’s Yacht Yard to procure some hardware for a new mast plug. The plug needed to bear the weight of the 200 lb. centerboard (via the pennant running from the board up through the partners and to the rope clutch on deck). This was our other problem: The first version of the mast plug we had fabricated didn’t work; we needed to make a new one.

The rigging master at Crowley’s was incredibly helpful, and even gave us a couple blocks for free. We headed back to Skyway where they had dock space for us to start building the new mast plug. We were hoping that with a new plug we’d be able to pull the board up. Alas, no dice… We had to haul out.

Three hundred and seventy-five dollars later, our board was back in its trunk, and our boat was again drafting 4’ 2”. We found out the centerboard had swung forward of 90 degrees, and the pennant had become jammed between the board and the trunk. Once we had the boat out of the water, we were easily able to free the pennant, and winch the board back up.

Onward downriver!

Hope you enjoy,
Lauren & Kirk


P.S. If you’d like more Sailing Soulianis content or would like to support our video production, consider becoming a patron here: https://www.patreon.com/sailingsoulianis



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Her Hearse - Neo Soul https://jinglepunks.com
Take it Easy - Foxy Basey https://jinglepunks.com
Special Moment - Dixxy https://soundcloud.com/dixxy-2
Adventures - A Himitsu https://ai-tube.com/videoai/8OKAjaknIDR



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