Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Another learning experience

Luckily I have people that have been wrenching on cars and boats for a number of years to help me out.  In taking on this boat, I have had little to zero mechanical knowledge in regards to engines.  I still have very little, but I am learning. 

My friend was able to beat the thermostats out of the housings and I was able to try and get the boat running again last night.  After replacing the thermostat, the engine would start but immediately stall out.  I sucked a good bit of water that was sitting in the carb so the amount that went into the carb had to be pretty significant.  We decided to pull the spark plugs and turn it over to get any water that was left over out so we would at least get some ignition.  I had replacement spark plugs so we just went ahead and swapped them out.  After restarting, the engine sounded better but it was still wanting to stall and wouldn't idle.  My buddy cleaned some corrosion off the distributor and gave the carb a quick tune up and now it idles as she should.  I plan on going back down Weds and Thurs to just run the boat for awhile and make sure everything still checks out.

Things I learned last night:

1.  Spark Plug Gap
       -I had no idea what this was even for
2.  How the distributor worked and the corrosion inside it

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Frustration of inheriting mistakes

Well, I will tell you that buying a used boat is always an adventure.  Assuming that work by the previous owners is done correctly is always a gamble.  Today we were at the boat, shocking we had the time to go there, and we were hanging our new blinds.  We are taking the boat up river to the baby shower this coming weekend and I wanted to start the engines to make sure everything was good.  Well, the starboard engine wouldn't start.  At first it wouldn't turn over but then finally started turning over and not firing up.  Assuming it was an old battery I ran to advance auto and bought a new battery.  I meant to replace the batteries this spring anyways.  New battery hooked up and still no go.  I decided to just go ahead and install my new thermostat and replace the failed one.  Upon inspection with my friend, he informed me the current thermostats are installed upside down.  To make matters worse, they are stuck in the housings.  My buddy is going to attempt to remove them tomorrow.  I went ahead and ordered two thermostats and housings.  It seems like I will eventually have a brand new engine if I keep buying new parts.

So the plan is to get the new thermostat in if my buddy gets the old housings cleared out tomorrow.  If not, I will replace the whole thermostat housing and thermostats when I get them.  Hopefully I can crank through the water in the fuel tomorrow as well.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Nothing to see here folks

Well, I was completely wrong about my engine.  Turns out I didn't change the oil when I replaced my exhaust manifolds.  After speaking with the gurus at houseboatmagazine.com forums, they were dead set against it being a cracked block.  I decided that I would flush out my engine.  This pretty much involves me just changing the oil a bunch of times.  I was able to drain the oil as much as possible and that did the trick.  We have the boat docked and gave her a good wash.  Hopefully we get some time to use her soon.