Monday, April 9, 2012


If I had back all the hours I’ve spent working on generators over the last 5 years I could live to be 107.  I thought I had enough parts to build a generator from scratch but it turned out I was missing a few bits.  Actually I knew I was missing the block but I thought I had pretty well everything else.

Saturday night we were swinging peacefully at anchor in Otter Bay, waiting for Marilyn’s potato scallop to cook so we could take it to the yacht club potluck.  Fortunately the scallop potatoes were cooked by the time the genset packed it in.  Once again it was one of the pulleys that drive the two water pumps on top of the engine that had worked itself loose.  I replaced both of them just over a year ago now – I’m not sure why they are failing.  They’re not the best pulleys – your basic el-cheapo pot metal variety available at Ukrainian Tire or NAPA.  I definitely need to look for some better hubs but I suspect that will be difficult for an A-width belt.  This time I drilled and tapped the hub for two extra setscrews.  And I’ve already added “check the effing pulleys” to my weekly checklist.  I’ve also got two spare pulleys in my parts store now – of course they couldn’t be the same pulley on each pump.  They’re the same OD but one has a 1/2 inch bore and the other a 5/8 bore.

On the plus side while I was fixing the pulley I noticed that I had a fuel leak so I fixed that too.  When I changed the filters in Howe Sound a month or so ago I noticed that the replacement secondary filter was a larger diameter than the one I took off.  The seal surface was the same dimension but the can itself was about an inch bigger diameter than the old one.  I didn’t think much of it at the time but it was evidently enough bigger to rub up against an oil line while the engine is running and vibrating.  It had managed to wear a small hole in the filter which was leaking diesel into the engine tray.  I caught it before it got bad but it wouldn’t have fixed itself. 

As today wore on and the forecast deteriorated we decided that rather than rush away this afternoon we will wait another night and watch the forecast before we leave.  We want to get across Georgia Strait and even if we cross from Gabriola Pass that’s a minimum 4 hour crossing.  I think we’ll be OK crossing Wednesday but we’ll make that call tomorrow. 

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