Where we at

Wednesday, July 22, 2020


There's never a dull moment in boating.

Last night we had a rip-snorter of a thunderstorm. It was bad enough that our dog was pretty freaked. We let her sleep with us until it passed. Many close claps of thunder followed brilliant flashes through the window coverings. Very cool. I love a good t-storm. Lizzie, not so much.

The winds from that storm, which affected a sizable part of the bay, churned up the waters a bit. So when we left this morning (crazy early) we had a couple of bouncy moments. As the day progressed it all calmed down. Ultimately a great travel day.

Up and out before sunrise.
Long day, so we wanted to be in before any storms
Except for this one thing: About 30 minutes out of port, as Russ was making us our lattes for the morning, the "Hot Engine" light went on for the port engine. I cut both engines immediately, which made Russ run up the stairs to see what was wrong (that's typically our "I need you" signal), only to have to run downstairs and check the engine. Which was smoking and filled the room with that burnt rubber smell. Yep, broke the fan belts. Again. Russ checks these every time he does an engine check, which is every time we travel. So it was a surprise.

In Cambridge there this little 1 room house.
It apparently is where Civil War business
took place. Just an office, no one lived here.
Given we'd been through this before we a) had backup belts to replace the shredded ones, b) knew how to drive with boat with 1 engine (which is a lot easier with autopilot, let me tell you!), and c) knew he'd have to wait until the engine cooled before doing anything. He continued to make coffee while I continued to move us along at 6 knots, making sure to overtax the remaining engine. About 30 minutes later, the belts were replaced and we were on our way. About 30 minutes after that (we had to wait for the place to open or it would have been immediately) Russ contacted an engine company in Annapolis for suggestions and ideas, namely replacing the current belt rig with a serpentine one which is stronger, easier to get on, and will clear this bolt.

Lovely calm waters all day.
Yes, it's a bolt that's the issue. Apparently one of the belts run very close to it and, if it vibrates at all, starts to shave just a little bit of belt away until there's a massive integrity issue. Quickly loaded the second belt immediately explodes. I'm sure it's exciting to watch.

On the plus side, Russ found a new engine guy he likes. So, you know, it's all about silver linings.

Last night's storm... it went on for quite a while.

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