Monday

I fixed breakfast and made coffee. That was the last time they let me make coffee. No, that's not seagull poop. It was a beautiful day, weather wise. The weather had been perfect and would continue that way throughout the trip. We weighed anchor and set out to the north again. A few hours later the engine died again. We cracked an injector and found we were pumping air. I know we have lots of fuel. In fact there is the odor of diesel everywhere and a small drip is coming from the vent for the port tank. We've got the selector valves set to supply from the port tank and return to the port tank. If I didn't know better I'd think we were manufacturing fuel. Something seemed strange. We cranked it up again after bleeding and went on a bit, and it died again. We pulled the line from the output of the electric fuel pump and found that it wasn't pumping. We looked over at the shore and US 1 is running right along the ICW at this point. We can't tell, but it looks like a parts house is on the highway, so we decided to anchor and dingy in. It's about 10:30 and we're just south of Melbourne.

 

Now you've got to understand that the 15 HP Johnson that came with the boat must have been sitting for a couple of years and the carb is pretty well gummed up. By keeping the engine at almost a full choke, we can make our way in. Of course it died a few times on the way, but we got there. There is an OLD, rickety, dock connected to an Italian Restaurant (closed for the day) that we tied up to. It wasn't the most pleasant place. There was a raw sewage outlet from somewhere dumping into the ICW a few feet up from the dock. We took our life in our hands and climbed the stairs. The parts house wasn't but there was a service station nearby. We wandered in and spoke with "John", the owner. Like a number of businesses in Florida, there was a sign over the door announcing John's hometown. I think it was somewhere in Ohio. In a nutshell, John ordered a new pump for us from a nearby parts house and had it delivered. He let us have it for cost. He refused to accept any payment. I wish I could remember the name of the station so I could give him a reference.

 

Meanwhile back on the boat, Gary and Phil were popping beer tabs and one of them ordered up a toast, "This breaking down isn't such a bad thing". You have to understand. Here we were on a open expanse of the ICW with attractive surroundings, palm trees, nice house, a porpoise or two breaking the surface, weather to die for, 80's, 10 knot winds, a few, high, wispy clouds, a cooler full of beer, a fridge full of food and a decent sound system with Jimmy Buffet blaring forth. Unfortunately Stan and I weren't enjoying it at the time. I'm jealous.

 

Off to Wind Angel to replace the fuel pump. On with the new, off with the old and away we go once again. But not for far. The engine died again. Hm. Fuel filter looks OK. What the heck is going on? I started tracing the fuel hoses and found that the bloody fuel selection valves were plumbed entirely wrong. There was no way that they could work. No matter what you did, you couldn't put fuel into the starboard tank, but you could get it out of either. Stan, the plumber, replumped the valves in a jiffy and I started to pull fuel from the port tank. We were real familiar with bleeding procedures by this time. Didn't make it very far before we plugged up the fuel filter. We called for a tow, since we finally realized that the starboard tank was empty and since the filter was plugged, I didnít trust the port tank. Turns out a marina wasn't very far away, but Tow BoatUS came to the rescue.

I put 50 gallons of fuel in the starboard tank, bled the air from the system, yet again and were off. The crew abandoned the boat and found a source of beer. We took on more beer. We made it as far as Whitley Marine in Cocoa. Picture to the right is of Scott, the dock master. He lives on his 41' Morgan O/I. You see him here in his "office" which is a glider sitting next to the dock. We got in early and had time to shower at the marina. The showers are part of a doctor's office located in a building adjacent to the marina. Stan washed clothes for us after dinner.

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