Dead?… well not really but it sorta seems so. Sailboats have been sailing for centuries without an engine. I have tied up to my mooring under sail alone (a couple of times) but lets face it…. I ain’t no sailor, just a methodically minded wingnut… and a lucky one, at that. And furthermore, the old Perkins ain’t dead, just very unhappy.
She starts with difficulty and won’t idle. When she runs, she spews losta white smoke (not steam) which is apparently unburned atomized diesel. On Tuesday afternoon I went over with Kostas. He took the atomizers (fuel injectors) off and noticed some kind of branch or plastic string in cylinder two. We couldn’t pull it out. After closing it all up we ran the engine for half an hour. It did get a bit better but still the same illness. Kostas says it’s usable to get back to port for haul out. The good news is that it’s not broken. Probably that little stick got in when the engine was out last winter and slowly made its way to the valve inlet traumatizing the valve seal. So the heads coming off. Might as well do it on the hard in a month or so or earlier. I went back on Thursday equipped with new tweezers and a new set of combination wrenches (Kostas hates me for not having one) and planed on removing that “thing” in there. Getting the atomizers off is real simple. Disconnect the fuel input and take off the return line (mind that little “under’ washer!). Undo the holding bracket and its off. I was feeling REAL optimistic that I’d remove the culprit and all would be fine. Put the culprit was nowhere (naturally its gone by now) to be found. Closed it all back up and the status is the same. Went to the port to hang, told Kostas I was depressed (cause I was!). He just laughed and said not to worry and we’ll fix it together. Ok… but ol’ Zoot is dead! (sniff, sob, boohoo)
Weekend. My friend Alexandra who has helped alot on ol’ Zoot is having the roughest time this year with the collapsed economy (she’s got a jewelry shop), I wanted to give her a weekend to relax and rejuvenate. The weather was beautiful, mild heat and winds… perfect… almost. The sea was full of those darn saloufa jellyfish, again! She showed up by 11am. After getting situated she wanted to go sailing (like everyone else was), but I declined saying it was “relax time” not being in the mood to stress out myself. She had brought some home work, made a couple of necklaces while I cooked (first time bringing the pressure cooker to steam with potatoes in mostly salt water… 45min and they came out fine). Later on we took the dingy on a five minute ride to the Praso island for a swim without them jellies! That evening was nice and relaxing and hard not to fall asleep too early!
Sunday. Since the weather is forecast to change this week it was time for the “good luck basil plant” to meet its maker and become pesto! I’ve never done it before and used what I had.
Dice up 3 garlic cloves (whoops…. too much…he he he)
Dice ’em together. Take you time and enjoy the cleaver and the phat cutting board.
Get some pistachios and divide ingredients to two bowls (dividing the work) Also break out the olive oil, shot glasses and raki (from Crete)
Utilize the raki and the shot glasses. Then pour some olive oil in the bowls, stick your thumb in the shot glass and start the smooshing. Pace yourself, it takes awhile.
Find a spot around the boat with no jellyfish and have a swim.
Back on board, serve and … bon appetite!
Whatever. At some point we where bored and energetic and attacked the stainless stanchions with vinegar (from the lack of oxalic acid) and pot sponge. Ol’ Zoot may be theoretically dead…. but “she’s a shinin'”!
Stay tuned… for what… I have no idea
ps… something amusing. With Kostas, I asked if he had a compression meter and he shows me the “thumbs up”. I wasn’t sure what to make of that. So after we had the injectors off, he had me turn the engine over. A hilarious sight seeing air blowing out the four holes. Then to check the pressure, Kostas proceeded sticking his thumb into the holes individually to see if they had “any” pressure (which they did). That’s when I fell over laughing. Not a very precision way of doing things but better than nothing!
pss… the garlic in the pesto is still loud and proud a day later…woot!