Jun 022014
It’s one thing to have a leaky boat, one which you know leaks and when you arrive there’s water in the bilge. That’s expected.

But to have a dry boat, such as Ocean Blue has been thus far, and to arrive with 2-3 cm of water in the bilges. That’s not nice!
There are at least 2 good things. 1) I’m 100% sure where it’s coming from and 2) the torrent has ceased some time back.
It’s the stern gland. Not where the prop shaft goes through the gland but the grease cap thingy-majig. I gave it a twirl after our last outing and noticed a steady drip before I left. And there’s a definite trail down the the bilges and past the raw water inlet on the way to the bilge proper. No doubt, that’s where it all came from. Is that supposed to leak? The gland itself, sure! But a leak through the grease nipple? Doesn’t make sense unless the grease needs to be replaced?
I also know that it’s stopped leaking because the trail is now totally dry when I run my finger over it.
But damn. It leaked more than it ever has since I became caretaker of this little Miura. I’ve notice that every time we run the motor, without fail, there’s been some water in the bilges the following week I visit. (That’s a good thing. It means the stuffing box is properly adjusted and is letting water in to cool the packing while the shaft spins.) Each time it’s been a small, manageable amount, less than 5mm in the main bilge and after mopping dry, it’s remained dry until the next time the prop is spun.
This time it’s different, way much more. Normally I don’t touch the grease container, so that’s what may have caused the abnormal quantity. Don’t know. Will have to keep an eye on it.
Actually I need to strip the damn thing and re-grease/re-pack it but I’m unsure what grease to use and where I would get it !? That’s why I’ve been shying away from the task. Thing is, this time I got a little scare. May need to make a plan!
The next problem is the electric bilge pump. It runs fine when you flip the switch. Problem is the switch was found floating and so not activated! Poor installation. Will need to address that ASAP.
I’m off to enjoy a red with the last of the sunset. Mopping the bilges will need to wait for tomorrow. The barometer is exactly where it was last week – halfway between ‘fair’ and ‘change’ – 1025 mB. I don’t think we’ll have any major wind tonight. This would be a perfect night at anchor, if only I had plans to leave the mooring.
Bilges are dry again, a whole bucket [~20l] removed. Bilge switch just floats with the water and so, although this was to be a no-work-weekend, I’ve fashioned a temporary wooden wedge and a screw to hold the darned thing steady. It’s not perfect but it should at least keep until I can make something a little more professional.
One more item added to the list of infinity!

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