Saturday, June 28, 2014
Final Push #2: Exhaust Noozle
This is the exhaust elbow. The last time you saw this it was bolted to the rear of the exhaust manifold. It's now on a bench in Titto Torres' machine shop, where it is being used as a pattern to fabricate it's replacement plus an additional spare.
Titto's shop is quite an establishment for a Panamanian business. It takes up an entire building. The majority of small service businesses are run out of a small, grungy, ground floor shop or a small shed. His shop is in a neighborhood where a gringo like myself might run into trouble. I could probably walk out to a major road without incident, but if I did get mugged the blame would fall on me for stupidly being in the wrong place at the wrong time. The buildings are kind of shabby but they have good bones
Back to the elbow. I am having two of these built because my existing elbow is at the end of it's life cycle, and I can get two very robust replacements that function every bit as good as the factory part for half the price.
Here's the fabricated part. It's not as pretty as the original, but after a two hour test run, I can attest that it works just as well
We did have a bit of a glitch with this elbow. We installed it, did a test run and found it necessary to remove it. One of the welds had a pin hole leak requiring a return to Titto's.
The shop ground out the weld, and made many new welding passes rebuilding the ground out area. When the job was completed we returned to Grace, installed the repaired elbow, test ran the motor, and everything was good.
This ends, I hope the engine saga.
I haven't, until now, posted much about what it takes to keep Grace running figuring it would bore my reader (hi Mom) but what I just went through is one of the realities of cruising. Everybody out here has these kind of problems. Engines, water makers, fragile electronics, etc. are breaking down all the time.
We had a boat come through a couple weeks ago get hit by lightening just moments after completing a canal transit. While on the Caribbean side they had installed a whole array of electronics for their trip to the South Pacific. Everything they had just finished was fried. He was on a schedule, so he hired virtually every boat worker in the area and was underway again within a couple weeks. He had to pass through the ITCZ on the way out. We have not heard from him. Hope they're ok.
Kenny is bringing the second elbow over this morning, I will have him run me down to the bank to get what's left and pay him off. Then I will come back to the boat and figure out what to do with my Alder Barbour refrigerator that suddenly stopped cooling yesterday, after only 29 years of trouble free service. It's running, I can hear gas entering the evaporator, but no cooling is going on. I've probably got a refrigeration leak. This thing is so old that it uses R12 type refrigerant. R12 is nearly impossible to find even in Panama, so may have to replace the whole thing. It's gonna cost a fortune.