Exotic Repair Locale No. 1 – Elochoman Marina, Cathlamet, WA
Cruising is often jokingly referred to as fixing your boat in exotic places. Looks like we are definitely cruising. Upon checking the oil before making another attempt on Astoria, we found the oil was low and obviously leaking. Dan had replaced the shaft seal and oil pan gaskets on the engine right before we left – probably should have had more run time on the new gaskets before taking off…Fortunately the Perkins dealer is in Ridgefield, WA, so daughter was able to pick up the shaft seal and bring it down. That was successfully changed, but the pan gasket still leaked – bummer, as the only way to access it is to remove the fuel tanks. This involved having more gaskets shipped to us via UPS, borrowing some fuel jugs (big thanks to Joel at the local Napa Auto parts who loaned us the jugs and delivered them to the marina), pumping out the 60 gallons of fuel, and pulling out the aft two fuel tanks.
Good thing Dan is not very big and can fit in small places! Also good that we had previously replaced the original 100-gal. tank with three 33-gal. tanks or else we would have had to pull the engine.
It’s almost back together now, and this afternoon we will fire up the engine. Hopefully we will be on our way to Astoria tomorrow. The winds have returned to the NW and the seas are dropping – looks like the River Gods may allow us to escape the Columbia River this weekend – keep your fingers crossed!