Maintenance log

Maintenance log

On our previous boat, we were (just barely) able to remember when all mechanical systems needed service as the hours mounted and time passed. But that system broke down when we got the current boat. There are far more systems, many of the ...


A more flexible power system for Dirona

A little over a year ago, we worked our way south from Fanning Island, Kiribati towards Nuku Hiva in the Marquesas Islands. We were on a long, fuel-constrained run where we would cover 2,600 nm without fueling. For most of the trip, we were ...


A helping crane

Our next-door neighbors, Mark Mohler and Christine Guo of Nordhavn 62 Gray Matter, recently upgraded their davit to support hydraulic power-rotation. The base came off in two pieces, but is much easier to put back together at the shop. The ...


Lubricating the bow roller

After frequent anchoring, the bow roller bolts eventually would begin to jam and not turn easily. The anchor then would not freely deploy when released, and this also was causing wear on the stainless cheek plates on either side of the roller. ...


The Economics of Sea Freight

We love Whangarei. It’s a beautiful town, we enjoy the restaurants, and we have the primo spot in the Town Basin Marina in front of Reva’s restaurant. Another advantage of Whangarei is you can get great service work done at ...


Dirona Fuel Manifold

Nordhavn delivers an unusually complete fuel manifold with far more flexibility than most production boats. In fact, the manifold is sufficiently complex that some new owners can find it difficult. More than once, I’ve heard of an owner ...


Battery thermal runaway

One of our eight Lifeline AGM GPL-8DL batteries recently went into thermal runaway, and we’ve had a few questions on the nature of the problem and why we chose to replace the full house battery bank. The lazarette smoke/CO alarm had gone ...


Autopilot NAV mode

Most autopilots have NAV mode, which essentially asks the pilot to steer to a plotted route rather than just in a specific direction. It’s particularly useful in cross-currents and strong winds, or when travelling longer distances. NAV ...


Replacing the main steering ram

Steering is a great area to be picky about in overall mechanical system health. About three months back, we noticed a tiny amount of play at the spherical bearing that forms part of the rod end where the steering cylinder connects to the rudder. ...


Blogging Hiatus Until Mid-August

We’re voyaging north to further explore the Hakai Luxvbalis Conservancy Area and the outer islands north of Seaforth Channel, so we won’t be blogging again until we’re back and caught up in the mid-August time frame.  More then.   ...


Bayliner 4087 Fuel Consumption?

A recent question on Bayliner 4087 fuel consumption: We are currently in negotiations to purchase a Bayliner 4087, 2001 model with 330 Cummins Engines.  Can you set my expectations for fuel burn? Second question, we have just sold our Grand ...


Are Synthetic Oils Worth It?

Some time back I came across a  query on whether synthetic oil could be safely used in marine diesels. My response:   Most manufacturers permit the use of synthetics, but don’t allow longer oil change intervals when employing ...


One hour in 10 at Wide Open Throttle?

Some time back I got a question from an owner of a larger Bayliner concerned that he wasn’t running his engines hard enough and that, as a consequence, they may not last as long. The advice he’d been given was that diesel engines need to run ...


Transom Diesel Soot

I recently had a question on how to eliminate diesel-engine sooting at the transom.  It’s an interesting topic because almost everyone is convinced they have a solution. These solutions run from expensive diesel fuel additives to passing ...

More Nov 26, 2007

Blog Data Corruption

The only thing worse than no backups is restoring bad backups. A database guy should get these things right.  But, I didn’t, and earlier today I made some major site-wide changes and, as a side effect, this blog was restored to December ...


Sherwood vs Seamax?

A recent question: I am just learning about these pumps and at 1000 hrs on 330B, my starboard raw water pump began leaking at a rate to great to ignore. So after plunking down over $1600 with California’s 8.75% sales tax for two, if one’s bad ...