House sitting?

End of September - Paradise Village Marina in Puerto Vallarta Mexico

Leaving Paradise Village Marina in Puerto Vallarta Mexico.
 
Stuck now in La Cruz.
 
We also got an invitation to house sit for two weeks in October but we declined as the timing is not good. We will be in the thick of getting ready to sail away for the Rivera then. We recommended John and Kelly on Emerald Lady as there engine is blown and will be here for a bit longer.
 
 

Engine running on clean fuel - Enzyme fuel treatment

End of September - Paradise Village Marina in Puerto Vallarta Mexico

Debbie put 3M UV 4000 around the deck fill for the fuel tank. A just-in-case measure.
 
 
Debbie then had to remove the silicone from the top we just put on because we decide to add some fuel treatment.
 
All done.
 
I then back filled the Racor filter and when Jack came by he watched as we bleed the system all the way through the injectors. Debbie did the starting because the bleeding at the injectors requires turning over the motor. The engine started on two cylinders as we tighten the back two up and then were bleeding the front two on a second round when the engine fired up. We just continued to tighten up the injector fuel lines and it started running on all four cylinders. Interesting.

Now life can get back to abnormal! We were starting our autopilot repair when this went down.

 

Fuel polished, Racor filter cleaned and engine bleed

End of September - Paradise Village Marina in Puerto Vallarta Mexico
 

 Today was a busy day. We first worked with Elizabeth's crew. Elizabeth owns a chandlery here at the Paradise Village Marina. There are two chandlers. She also owns SG Boatworks who the crew works for.



They first removed the fuel gauge and went into the tank from that port. It is small but worked out. They pumped out the fuel and then poked around getting any crud they could. There was not a lot of water but enough.

They did a nice job and polished all 80 gal of fuel twice or maybe three times. Then they pumped it back into the 80 gal fuel tank. 


Then they put back the tank gauge and we supplied some acetone and some silicone which they used to seal up the fuel gauge port.

And off they go!


 They finished about 1:00 PM and that's about the time I started on cleaning the Racor filter. I only did one, as remember it is about 95 deg here and 88 percent humidity. So there is a lot of sweating going on. After we're up and running we will pick a day and turn on the AC, then clean the second Racor filer. Too much in and out today to have the AC running, at least in the salon area.

Debbie helping get the bowl off the Racor filter.
 

Some of the crud.
 
 
Now these filters were not as cruddy last month. They were cruddy enough for us to have scheduled for them to come apart and be cleaned next month.  What we think happened is water got into the fuel tank. The water settles on the bottom of the tank and then works its way to the Racor filters. The one we were using was full of water. We did not think to look closely at the filters as we have only been running the motor once a month and what could happen just sitting here. Well plenty as you and we now know. Now we will run the motor each week, why not - we live aboard! We will definitely check for water in the filters now. When cruising when we reach a port we drain the filters before sailing to the next port or every 10 hours, which ever is first.


 So we got the filter apart and cleaned it out. We had to give the plastic bowl a couple hacks with the rubber hammer to get it loose.
 
So we looked at the possible suspects for water leakage. Remember, we get 38 inches of rain in Puerto Vallarta Mexico in August;September about the same. Now in Paradise Village Marina which is in the Northern part of Banderas Bay we get less but still we get a lot of rain. It was raining mostly at night so it did not seem like there was much rain but there is.
 
 So the deck fill is the most likely place for water to get into the fuel tank on our Islander Freeport sail boat. We removed the cap and the O ring, then cleaned it up.
 
You can see one hole here with the light shinning through. Without the O-ring.
 
Debbie noticed a couple holes in the cap. Looks like they are there on purpose or by a machining accident. Maybe the O-ring is supposed to keep the water out, still holes?
 
 
See hole?
 
 
Debbie put silicone in the holes to seal them and then we put a new O-ring on close as we could get to original and then Debbie put silicone on the cap in with a bead around the top. We will not need fuel for months.

 
We checked under the deck but it looked sealed up good.
 
We did tighten the deck screws and tomorrow we will climb back into the lazerett and silicone up this whole deck fill and around the hose joint etc. just to make sure there is no leaking. The dark area is not leakage.
 
We talked about the vent but was assured it was not a problem but we will check that out too.
 
About 2:00 PM Jack and his assistant showed up, that was on-time. Jack is a diesel mechanic. We could have done this ourselves if we had to at sea but we thought this was a better approach. He spent less than an hour with us bleeding the motor and we learned a few things.
 
Jacks assistant Frank.
 
Jack.
 
 
 We got the motor started and ran it for a while. We thought we should disconnect the fuel lines to the Racor fitters and drain out any water but Jack said to just let Racor do it. We got the motor started after some tries as there was water in the injectors. Jack left and we let the motor run for about 10 more minutes. Then we shut down the motor and drained out more water from the Racor filter. Then we started the motor up and put the motor in gear and it died. We tried several times to start it and could not. I called Jack on our Mexican cell phone and he said it must be air locked and would come by tomorrow to show me how to bleed it out. After hanging up I was thinking how could it get air in the system? Then it came to me! Damn, I forgot to back fill the Racor filter after draining the water out. Just a mistake made because we are out of practice.
 
 We want to back fill the Racor filters without using a jug of diesel fuel.  I was thinking of adding a valve in the fuel line to get some diesel fuel. Jack mentioned using a 12 volt inline pump with an on\off switch. Makes it easier to bleed the system in a seaway and would back fill the Racors. They are sold at Auto Zone so you know where we are going soon. John and Kelly installed one for their Perkins 4 107 and like it. They just blew a rod on there newly re-built Perkins and got towed into La Cruz as Paradise Village was further and the channel more difficult. That is another story for another post.
 
 Tomorrow Jack is stopping by to see me bleed out the air in the fuel system - make sure I do it ok :)

Water in fuel?

Middle of September - Paradise Village Marina in Puerto Vallarta Mexico

Our Racor filters.
Right filter.


We started the engine like we have been doing each month. We start the 38hp Beta and let it idle for about 10 minutes then put it in forward at about 10,000 rpms and let it run for another 20 min.
   This time it ran for a few minutes and shut off.
 We tried bleeding the fuel filter and then the pump. We saw what looked like water coming out.

Some of what we got bleeding the fuel system.
We tried this twice after switching to the left filter. No luck starting the engine.
We think we should drain some fuel from the fuel tank by the filter fuel hose.
Then examine the fuel for quality.
Then remove the bowl’s and filters from the Racors and clean and replace the filters.
Then remove the fuel filter. Then bleed the fuel till clean fuel comes out of where the fuel filter sits using the hand fuel pump. Will that work?
Then backfill a new fuel filter with good fuel of course and then bleed the injector pump.
Then try to start it?
After taking the pictures of the Racor filters and looking at them, well I am ashamed to say they look bad. These filters we were going to remove the bowls and clean them next month before we start heading down the Mexican Rivera in November. We have had no problems so far and I never thought to look real close at them before starting the engine. They look like something is growing in them!
We have an 80-gallon fuel tank which is full.

Cockpit sun shade

Middle of September - Paradise Village Marina in Puerto Vallarta Mexico


 Debbie got some more work done on the cockpit shade screen.

Notice my new hat by the guitar!
 
Snapped on!
 
We put some snaps on the starboard side of the dodger piece and Debbie sewed up some Velcro and tabs for the pieces to connect to each outer. Also she did some hemming.

Shade Tree separators

Middle of September - Paradise Village Marina in Puerto Vallarta Mexico

Starboard side with some clips on the inside and some on the out side - no snaps yet.

We put snaps on the port side of the Shade Tree separators.

Snaps are on the port side.

Need a couple by the stay and one at the bottom forward. Debbie will curt it off to match the two Shade Trees.

It is so nice to walk by on deck and not knock off clips. Also when putting them on there is no need to bring a pile of clips with you!

Debbie will be making a boot for the mast at the top that will connect to the two separators.

 We put snaps about every eight inches. A bit of work but the last time it will need to be done. Next summer simply snap in place!

We still need to or Debbie still needs take a tuck in the separator fabric and they need trimming etc.

Solar panel chafe

Middle of September - Paradise Village Marina in Puerto Vallarta Mexico

We will trim it up and wash it up and wala, good chafe gear!

We scored some solar panel chafe from the electricians working on the docks. They are the wire insulation. Heavy black rubber and I do not think it will rub off on the Shade Trees.


 The wind pushes the Shade Tree into the solar panel and causes chafe on the Shade Tree. It will cut through as it has done a bit on the starboard side. So we use chafe on the panel. The other chafe we had will wear out quick but it was all we could find. So score one for dumpster diving! Well no dumpster to dive just asked the dock guys for the left overs :)

Our custom kayak racks

Middle of September - Paradise Village Marina in Puerto Vallarta Mexico


These custom racks are one inch wider and have a slightly different radios on the bend.

One of our custom kayak racks got mounted. The bolts that came with them were too short. They are the same size as the kayak racks we bought but the mounts the for the custom ones are beefier so the bolts are too short. We had a few bolts that would work so we mounted one. The chandlery here did not have any that would work. There is another chandlery here at the Paradise Village Marina and we will check it out soon. The block under the rack is a bit loose and jams if you try to tighten it more so we are hoping the rack will hold it in place or that it will work fine the way it is. It will take some testing with the furler line which we will do soon.

Chasers Sports Bar here in Nuevo Vallarta etc

Middle of September - Paradise Village Marina in Puerto Vallarta Mexico

 One of the nice things about staying here during the summer is you get to meet the locals.
 We have meet Andy who owns Chasers Sports Bar here in Nuevo Vallarta, Mexico. We are planning on going over for some good food with Hue and Barb on M\V Aussie Made.

 Also soon Ross who we met will be playing in his band there on October 2 and we plan on checking it out.

 Things are a lot slower if you can believe that in the summer and people have more time to talk and hang out. They see your here for the long haul and etc.

Shade tree separator is getting snapped

Middle of September - Paradise Village Marina in Puerto Vallarta Mexico


 Yes we decided that snaps was the best way for us to fasten the separator to the two shade trees.


We got a few snaps in and then decide to oil up the snap tool and carry on again soon.

Shade screen for cockpit

Middle of September - Paradise Village Marina in Puerto Vallarta Mexico

We added dot fasteners to the separator between the bimini and the dodger.
 
Debbie doing some fitting of the shade screen.
 
It is all up now but there is still a lot to do.
 
Each piece needs to fasten to the other. We need some grommets at the bottom so we can tie them off. They need to be trimmed at the bottom and hemmed.
 
Debbie snuck in some work on her bathing suit! She is adding a snap. Excuse the rags as the ghetto boat is being worked on :)
 

Finished off stern rail lifting by winches

 Middle of September - Paradise Village Marina in Puerto Vallarta Mexico

Cutting some 1" SS tubing.
 
This is right in front of our boat.
 
Got it done!
 
This is the tubing e needed to finish off the starboard side where we lift the stern rail so the winch handle passes by without nicking the stern rail.
 
 

Summer fun

Middle of September - Paradise Village Marina in Puerto Vallarta Mexico


We have just had two storms go by. One a hurricane that went to the east and below us and one that turned into a hurricane after it went by us but out to sea a bit.
 So far we have just had a lot of rain the last couple days from those storms. There has been really no lightning to be concerned about or wind. It is just a summer and nothing dramatic so far. In fact I think summer is almost over here. Any way here at Paradise Village Marina all is good and life is fine.
We did take down our shade trees so Debbie could go up the mast but we got a little surge from the last storm and the boat was moving a bit so we canceled the up-the-mast trip.

We took off the port life lines and put the furler blocks back on. We had a spare so we replace one that was binding. We Mc Lubed them and they are spinning nicely. We then cleaned the life lines and put the back on.
Debbie has been doing a bunch of sewing on the cockpit enclosure for sun protection.
Yesterday we went to lunch with Hue and Barb on Aussie Made and then they gave us a ride to the grocery store, Mega. When at lunch in Bucerinas I got a new hat. A real Mexican hat and it looks and feels good. Cool and shady. Buying local makes life easier and helps the locals. The hat I am replacing is the white floating hat sold at West Marine. It is on it's last days. Only good for working in it now. This new hat is about a third of the price and I have a story with it!
We have been working on the stern steps block and tackle and lots of other small projects.

We now have three dock boxes as we had to empty out the lazeretts for the autopilot replacement.
The manual wind vane has been broken off by a prehistoric bird so we are replacing it.
We are also adding some bird spikes!

We had to bend it so it will clear the VHF antenna at the top of the mast.
This is right in front of our boat. He has his hand on the vice.
 
They are working on the docks and there is a vice there on a tripod. Lucky for as we needed it to bend that shaft.
And on it goes.

 

Hockey puck GPS and SeaClear II

Middle of September - Paradise Village Marina in Puerto Vallarta Mexico



Debbie purchased a hockey puck GPS from the web for about $35.00 and picked it when she was in the states.

BU-353 / BR-355    SN 0252737

We are using SeaClear II as our back up charting program. It runs fine on the PC with Windows 7 and the puck.

We got the hockey puck GPS up and running first.
The puck works fine right at the nav station.
We removed all USB attachments.

We plugged in the USB hockey puck GPS and then set the com port to comport 1.
We did this in Windows 7 by going to   “Control Panel\Hardware and Sound\Device Manager” and then double clicking on the “USB-To-Serial Comport com port”. This is the GPS. We then selected “Port Settings” and changed the seed to 4800. Then we clicked the “Advanced” button and changed the com port to 1 instead of 10 which it was. It told us that something else was using that com port but we said too bad took it any way. We later did not see any problems with the computer.

The we re-booted. Then we opened the GPS info utility that comes with the puck GPS. It scanned and checked the comports for the GPS and found it and scanned for position data. Knowing that worked we went to SeaClear II and started it up.

In SeaClear II we chose “Tools\System” then “NMEA Input Monitor”. That got the position data for SeaClear II.

Now that we know where we are J all we need to do is figure out how to get charts for Mexico into SeaClear II.

We are on our way to having a nice backup charting program.