Fire at a Marina

Over Christmas vacation we were in Sanford working on our old digs, getting them ready to sell. As we do not have kitchenware we ran by one of those fast food joints and headed to the lakefront to enjoy a view with our dinner.

Something was burning.

As we ate we notice one, then two, then three fire trucks heading towards Marina island. Of course we had to see what was up.

Here be firemen.

Sure enough there was a boat fire at the marina. Smoke was coming out of a cruiser we guessed to be a 30ft with inboard motors.

Is that a chainsaw?

We could not see the name on the boat as there was a hard bottomed dink strapped to the transom but it looked pretty nice. Sporting a good quality dink, marine radar and communications mast.

Smoke was coming from the cabin and as the firemen were working we saw flames licking up from the fantail area in front of the dink.

A fire hose was produced and a chainsaw started to work and although obscured we assume they cut a hole in the deck and sprayed into the cavity underneath the deck.

After they appeared to get the fire under deck (one can assume engine fire) under control the fire crew proceeded to liberally spay down the inside of the cabin and cockpit.

Lori and I found the entire event quite traumatic. What if that was our boat motor on fire? Our cockpit being hosed down? Our prayers go out to the boat owner.

After a bit we left the drama of the fire with fire crews roaming about. The boat was still afloat and by later in the day that followed it was gone so we can guess the owner had it towed and pulled.

Lori Bell

She still floats. I now have an Alexa boat list of work to be done to her. She will be getting a new bottom (osmosis) once the Sanford house sells.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thinking about the boat..  Will get back to it in the next few months.   I hope.

Blog posts.

I just realized a few of my latest posts did not get published. Most likely my fault.

Short version.

So we now live beach side, are attempting to get our old inland home ready to sell and are about to get slammed by a hurricane. Granddad’s truck is running fine. Now back to it…

All things come together.

Waiting for parts.

The truck saga has new urgency today. This relates directly to the Lori Bell and actions surrounding it.

Last week we visited the Bell. She sits in her slip covered in sad green mildew. Her batteries float at 13.5 volts on the solar panel and the interior sees the predations of time and inattention. On leaving her we discussed speeding the repairs to the broken pressure washer I got for free from a friend.

Driving the block to the beach ramp we noticed an Open House at a residence for sale, stopping to look at it we discussed it was not what we wanted but we would love to live beachside.

Another Cane

Stopped by the boat as another hurricane approaches. Looking at the float on the house batteries it is time to replace them. If we survive this event that will be first on the list, followed by getting her moved to a marina close to the house.Have our new to us place beach side all buttoned up. Let us hope this is a big non event. The next few days will tell. Here is the surf as of September 2nd, 2019 just down the street. Not a good day to be out in the ocean unless you are a adrenaline junkie with a death wish.

Granddads Truck

Lizzy and I have been working on granddads C10.

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It is very fun to climb around on.

We have accomplished quite a bit since August.

we have the new 350, manifold, clutch and transmission all back in the truck.

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New head lamps and LED parking lights.

I have given the wiring a bit of attention. All bulbs but the headlights are being converted to LED arrays.

Removed the bed to rehab the rear end.

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There she sits.

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Before

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After

New coil springs, shocks, fluids, stainless brake lines and POR-15 rust coating.

I also moved a frame cross member and installed a 31 gallon Blazer fuel tank and plumbed in a fuel line.

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Rough fit, the tank actually ended up 3″ further aft.

The interior has been worked on, cleaned up.

New seat belts, new seat cover, all new gauges in a new dash insert, horn  circuit rebuilt.

Here are some teaser before pictures.

Whats Left?

The front disk brake conversion and brake bleeding needs to be done. After that we put the bed back on and plumb the fuel fill hose.  The truck then drives to a local shop for a new exhaust system and windshield install.  After that we find a body shop and spend some money.

Pulling of teeth.

 

I have been  spending some quality togetherness time with the C10.

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I endeavored to pull the motor, and to make it easier I have pushed her up closer to the garage and put up the awning we use at the beach to keep the sun off the work area.  A good setup if I say so myself, coupled with a nice fan it is almost comfortable even in the peak of the afternoon heat.

 

I had to disconnect everything from the engine and transmission. The drive shaft, all wiring, fuel, exhaust, gauges.   It all adds up to a lot of bolts and small parts in plastic bags.  PB Blaster is your friend, along with a pneumatic ratchet and impact gun.

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Disconnecting the drive shaft

I did document a lot of what we had with photos, this should really help when hooking up the wire harness.

 

We had purchased a lift on Craigslist and put it to work after we had pulled the fan and radiator to protect them from a swinging motor.

 

Then came the lifting.

 

We took our time pulling it out, no one wants to be rash when swinging 500 lbs around.

After we got the old engine out I pulled the transmission an bell housing off.

 

Followed by the clutch basket, pressure plate and clutch.  I then cleaned up the flywheel and measured it for run out.

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Run out was less than 2 thousandths if an inch, good.

After finding the flywheel to be in good shape I took it to a machine shop to be resurfaced.

Now we move to the new 350 we purchased to replace the 283 we pulled.

The first part has been added to it,  an Edelbrock 7101 intake manifold. A part the Larry had purchased, I think he was planning to upgrade and it never happened.

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The 7101 now waits for the 1406 4 barrel carb.

I hope to get the Harmonic balancer and carb on the engine this week.  I hope to get the flywheel back from the Machine shop and install the new clutch and put the transmission back on.  Hopefully next weekend we can drop the new engine into the truck.

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No Engine!

Oh, and we replaced that broken garage door.

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This post was sponsored by a 3 year old girl with access to a camera, eating seafood Louisiana style.

 

Here are some clearer photos.

 

 

 

And Now for something completely Different…..

Since we have this blog just sitting here and a big project ongoing I thought why not.  The boat is still going to happen but is on hold at the moment due to the entire work a lot thing.    I will be back at it hopefully sooner than my countdown timer over in the margins would suggest.

 

Last year Lori’s dad Larry passed on.   For the past month we have been busy working on his truck.  It is a 1962 Chevrolet C10 Custom with a 283 and 3 on the tree.

It had been sitting under his carport since sometime in the early 90’s.  We went and picked it up and brought it home.

 

The first order of business was attempting to install the new windshield with the gasket and glass Larry had already purchased.  Turns out that rubber shrinks over time and the gasket would not go around the glass, it was just to small.   We had to order a new gasket and hope to get the glass in soon.

After the glass attempt I removed the carb and rebuilt it,  once reinstall and hooked to a temporary gas tank the truck would still not fire.

I then replaced the distributor and coil with a new HEI unit from summit racing. At this point she fired right up.

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Stock 283 with Rochester 2 barrel carb and new HEI distributor.

I could not get the engine to idle at lower rpm.  My guess was timing as I had only eyeballed the distributor when I installed it. I bought a timing gun and rotation tool to get it sorted.

Once the rotation tool arrived and I could move the crank I discovered the timing chain is pretty much toast. I was getting 4.5 to 5 degrees of slop between the crank and the distributor.  No point in timing it before replacing the chain.  Also I had found that it is now blowing oil out both ends of the crank seals.  The motor needs to be pulled and rebuilt.    So taking from my experience rebuilding the A4 for the Bell we did the wise thing, we ordered a new GM factory 350 motor.   Crazy thing is it will probably cost us less in the long run than rebuilding the 283.  Plans are to keep the 283 and I will probably rebuild it myself sometime after I retire.

So now we have an engine hoist, engine stand and bunches of parts waiting on the engine to be delivered this afternoon.  Looking forward to seeing the new plant.

Other things we are going to work on with the truck, well, everything.   Mechanically it will all be upgraded or replaced.   Electrically it is in decent shape.  We will be adding reverse lights an seat belts.

After the wrench turning is done we send it to the body shop.  Any suggestions on a local shop?

Swab those Decks!

Life as a way of getting ahead of us and sometimes we forget why we enjoyed doing things.  Case in point is SV Lori Bell.

On our last trip out we noted a nice thick layer of scum growing on the decks and gunnels.   Deep inside I knew we had to go out and give her a scrubbing and I need to get her A4 back in running condition.  Making the time is an entirely different animal.

Last weekend we took a day and went out and enjoyed the beach and the boat.

Beach

Sitting at our favorite spot at high tide we watched this fellow para surfing.  Interesting to not the can sail himself into the wind much like a sailboat.  We witnessed him getting about 30 to 34 degrees to windward and moving fast.  Looks very fun and left us curious if it was physically more intense than standard surfing.

We all love the beach,  even if it is only about 70 with 20+ knots of wind and the water is cold.

 

 

BOAT

Here I am doing my swab thing.  I have a better brush someplace in the vast area that is the Q berth but went with the one readily at hand.

Lizzy found a trove of toys from the last few trips out.  Kept her well occupied below with the help of mom.

Our activity of throwing berries and dead crabs overboard and washing the boat brought us attention from the local Pelicans.   We were all pretty stoked to see them, as one thing we miss about sailing is interaction with the wildlife.  Even if it is just birds.

I like this photo.

Lizzy thinks I need to stow some lines and clean up the dead crabs.

 

Well that is the trip.   She looks better and the topside is again in order stem to stern.  We will need to start working below next trip.  Maybe in two or three visits new projects beside the motor and we be on the list.

One discussion we had was marina location.  We love our slip and that our marina is a walk to the beach. The problem is that at 5′ we can not get out except a high tide.  There are cheaper and more easily accessed slips in the area, but none with the a location location location.

Temptation is to put a wing keel on Lori Bell or replace her with something with a dagger board as to enable us to keep the slip.   It would be worth is in a lot of ways.

 

Lori Bell is still afloat. As are plans and dreams.

Irma has long since gone.    The Bell came thru with not even a scratch so I call that another win.

 

Marina Notes

During the hurricane someone broke into the ships store and stole some merchandise and the boaters lounge and stole some beer.    Just goes to show that people stink.

In unrelated news I have not heard from our diver since Irma,  strange he has been cleaning our boats since we had the Knot A Clew.   Looks like this week I will be looking into a new diver.

I plan on moving the boat to a non tidal restricted marina this year.  I want to start day sailing again and since we are now paying $9 a foot the $30 for the ability to use it on a whim seems worth it.     Now that we have 3 dogs overnights are pretty much out of the question for some time in the future so restricted sailing times is no longer really an option.