If you remember, at one time we had 8 significant holes in the bottom of the boat: 5 thru-hulls, 2 old transducers removed, and the hole where the prop shaft goes. Well, as of yesterday, they’re all filled. If we were put in the water right now, we’d float. Couldn’t steer, but we’d float.
We had an appointment to have the engine lifted back into the boat the day before yesterday but, the yard ran into snafus trying to get the boat next to us on a trailer for transport to San Diego. So, yesterday, as soon as she was gone, the loader came over to do the deed. Took all of about 10 minutes before the engine was, once again, back where she belonged.
Still have to connect hoses and wires but at least she’s home again. The first order of business, after installing the new PSS shaft seal and the transmission coupling on to the propshaft, was to get the engine fairly well aligned with the propeller shaft. To do this, I bolted the shaft on to the transmission and then messed with all the various adjustments, eyeballing whether or not the shaft looked like it was entering and exiting the hole where the shaft log goes, more or less in the center.
It was sort of intimidating at first as there were so many possible adjustments. The engine beds had a certain amount of side-to-side adjustment available as did each of the vibration isolators. Then, each isolator also was adjustable up and down which could throw the alignment off side-to-side as well as up and down. Yikes! I finally got it adjusted pretty close side-to-side and then locked down the beds and the bases of the isolators. From there on out, all adjustments would be made with the up-and-down capability of each of the isolators themselves. This simplified things immensely. I was up and down the ladder a lot, checking how the shaft looked exiting the stern, but finally I liked what I saw.
At this point, I slathered the stern tube (shaft log) up with bedding compound and slid her in to place. If the shaft had not been aligned well, I would have had problems somewhere along the line but, the log slid in without a hitch. Here you can see the shaft log shoved all the way home. The big gap is where I ground down a bunch of filler.
But, no worries. A little bit of Super-Mend and everything is as it should be.
At this point, the shaft still turns very freely by hand. I suppose I should uncouple the shaft from the transmission at and use a micrometer or feeler gauge or something to fine-tune the alignment, but, since they say you need to realign once you’re floating again anyway, I think I’ll wait.
Here’s a shot of our new Vesconite cutless bearing. Although I received one recommendation by a very experienced cruiser to not go this route, I decided to give it a try anyway. Heck, if we never tried anything new we’d still be sending e-mails on Commodore 64s, if we were sending e-mails at all. The Vesconite may turn out to be a mistake but I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.
But, after a tough day at the yard, installing engines and such, I, for one, like to come home to a sumptuous spread. Towards that end, Lulu whipped up a batch of crack to knosh on.
But, as man does not live by crack alone, she followed this little appetizer with a shrimp stir-fry.
And the best thing about stir-fry besides how good it tastes? Well, any leftovers end up in fried rice the next night (that would be tonight).
So, as you can readily see, things are moving along nicely. Our goal of back in the water by November 1st still looks do-able. Wish us luck. Everybody say “¡Buena suerte Esteban y Lulú!” Grácias a ustedes.