Saturday, April 9, 2016

Titusville - Provisioning and and second thoughts on the old outboard

Titusville Marina is getting full, the word is getting out
In the morning I looked at the alternator. Nothing seemed to be amiss. I had been avoiding use the genset over the last few days thinking it was not needed. We ran the TV for a couple of hours and as the days passed, the batteries were getting progressively drained. That put a higher than normal load on the alternator and the belt that was driving it. I concluded the belt was overstressed and eventually loosened and started to slip, hence the burning rubber smell. I ordered more belts but in the meantime I retightened the belt to spec. I think I'll keep a close eye on it when we start north again on Tuesday rather than replace anything yet.

That gray box under the red stripe is the WiFi antenna for our area of the dock, 6 to 12 Mbps speed!
As for the outboard, the new one is working fine. I was thinking about the 10 year old one that quit on me and considered the fact that nothing had been done on it for 10 years other than oil changes. A mechanic highly recommended using a fuel additive called "Ring Free". Its function is to clean the motor of carbon deposits. Now consider, a 10 year old motor with carbon deposits plus Ring Free which is supposed to loosen those deposits. Where do the deposits go? Well, the only route out of the fuel system is through the carburetor and its needle valve. The 10 year old deposits, loosened by the additive, could well have caused a starting problem (I had just added Ring Free to my gas tank for the outboard about a week before starting the motor up after a two month stay at Key West). After all, the old gas tank and the old fuel line between the tank and the motor may also have deposits affected by the additive. So, a future caution. If you have an old motor and hear a recommendation to use an additive for the first time, be careful and consider the possible consequences.

We are now provisioned for the trip north, at least until Charleston. Well leave Tuesday and see how the weather goes.