It’s a terrible joke but I’ll make it again: marine diesel engines always fail at the worst time. From an engineering standpoint, this is a bad joke because there is a perfectly good reason why engines choose rough weather to fail: big seas stir up the asphaltenes or blobs of microbial growth, which then get sucked up into lines and filters. Many boat owners like to blame old, dirty fuel tanks or having “gotten bad fuel” at their last fill up, but the reality is that keeping fuel clean requires constant vigilance even on new boats. The ship’s log our our Hylas 54, Rover, show that she was experiencing engine failures due to clogged fuel filters when she was only a year old. Below is a great a video from Distant Shores TV showing they had the exact same experience on their one year old boat – and, as always, the engine failure occurred in an choppy inlet, which is when they always do. If you watch the video all the way through you will see that a terrible design flaw in Southerly’s fuel plumbing directly contributed their failure too.
How To Prevent Incidents Like This Continue reading An Object Lesson In Keeping Diesel Clean
Don’t you hate it when you want to add a dockline to one corner of your boat, but the nearest piling is 15 feet away and much too tall to throw a line over it? On our Hylas 54 we found the prior owners had rigged heaving lines to solve the problem. Heaving lines are relatively light and small, but long lines with a weight on one end. Here’s what ours look like:
Continue reading Ever Struggle To Get a Dockline On A Far Away Piling? Rig A Heaving Line
For more backgound on this post, see this post and this post. In summary, the fresh water tanks on a boat can get pretty disgusting inside if they aren’t managed carefully. We cleaned the water tanks on our Hylas soon after we bought her and it was a big job that I’d prefer not to have to do regularly. As such, I needed a means of draining the very last bits of water out of each tank once they were “empty” (but not really empty, because the pump pickups are high enough from the bottom of the tank that small amounts of water remain in each tank, then go rancid and start growing small swamp monsters). Continue reading Keeping Water Tanks Clean: Part III
This weekend we had 3/4 of Team Rover aboard for a quick one-day trip to Miami to see the University of Pittsburgh play Miami in men’s basketball. Just like the last time Lisa and I did a Lauderdale to Miami cruise aboard our Sabre 42, the forecast was for 15 knot easterlies, and just like the last time the forecast was way off (we had 25 knots with higher gusts again this weekend)! These were some of the liveliest conditions we’ve had the Hylas in, and the boat was fantastic. She really comes alive in these conditions, yet she somehow also exudes a confidence that makes everyone aboard feel completely at ease. Plus she makes seriously good time! Here’s a short video clip of the trip down with a reefed main and jib:
Continue reading One Day Miami Cruise!