Saturday, March 10, 2007

Thursday 8th March

Anse Deshaies

16 19.776 N
61 48.771 W

Our day started with emails from Lorie saying they had a lumpy trip to Antigua and she expressed her anxiety about anchoring in the dark in an unknown anchorage – I would have given anything to have been her yesterday! Any way we sent them the brief version of our trip and told them about the engine problems, Lorie came back with some ideas about places to get stuff fixed which was our mission for the day. We started the day of right, I made pancakes for breakfast and then it was time to get into it. Gerry took the engine cover off and proceeded to examine the engine whilst I did the dishes and tried to keep out of the way. To recap on the engine problem to date: Gerry had changed the Raycor filter and restarted the engine, it ran for 15 – 20 minutes with blue exhaust then the engine shut itself down again. When Gerry looked at the cooling system he found a split coolant hose, he began today by cutting away the split part and reattaching the rest of the hose to the top of the coolant system, topping up the coolant as he went. Then he changed the main engine fuel filter, with much grunting and groaning as it was very tightly screwed into place. Having done this he started up the engine and progressively opened and closed the fuel lines to each of the four fuel injectors. The fourth cylinder seemed not to be affecting the engine revs so he tried to change the number 4 cylinder fuel injector with the number one fuel injector. In the process he managed to break the rubber bleed line hoses on both, meaning that the problem was now compounded with having to replace these hoses. It turned out that the number 4 injector was definitely not working. So we had a reason for our engine problem, all we had to do now was find the solution. We packed a bag with the broken bits, our boat documents, some cash and the camera and took the dink into the town dock with the purpose of clearing customs, trying to find spare parts, an internet access and explore the town. It turned out to be a pretty unsuccessful trip, there customs office was closed until 14.30hrs (and then it was doubtful), there are no banks and one of the two ATMS wasn’t working – thank goodness the other was. There was no hardware store and the garage was just a fuel stop. The internet café was out of action. We enquired about hire cars and if there was a repair garage anywhere close, the pharmacist told us it was about 2 kms away, he didn’t add that it was all up hill! After a cold drink and a pastry we set out to find the repair garage. I gave up after the first steep hill and returned to the dock to wait for Gerry who went on to find the garage. Eventually he returned to the dock with some success to report. He had managed to buy some hose to replace the ones he had broken but had no luck with finding a new fuel injector. We retuned to the boat and he fitted the new hoses whilst I typed up some blog notes. Once the fuel lines were replaced we moved the boat in closer to the town in the hope that we would be a bit more protected from the wind if it blew up again tonight. As a lot of boats had left during the day we had a wide choice of places to anchor and picked a very central spot. After watching quite a few new boats anchor all around us, some times too close for comfort, it was time to go back ashore and have a meal. We arrived at the restaurant a little too early for dinner so we found a bar and had a couple of pre dinner drinks. After paying our tab we made our way back to L’Amer where we had a delicious dinner before returning to our boat for the night. Tomorrow we will be going in search of the elusive injector, we plan to hire a car and head to Point Pitre where there are supposed to be plenty of boat part stores. I also want to try and see the botanic gardens if we have time but as always the boat repairs will come first.



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