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Departing from Newport for Westport

08/12/04 Thursday Dick Rein, Royal, Roxane and Dan are on board from Port Ludlow. We were out of the jetty at Newport about 8:30am, after a delay at the fuel dock. Northward bound. Everything was working as hoped. The weather was 2-4' swells from the North. As we passed the Columbia River things were still working fine and we decided to press on, even though darkness was approaching. Then came Friday morning. Roxane is looking pretty green and not feeling well at all.  She just slept curled up in a ball on deck for most of the trip.

Arriving in Westport

08/13/04 Friday - About midnight we were near Grays Harbor, WA. Then it happened. I noticed that one of the battery chargers had died. No lights on it at all. Then the starboard engine started falling off and after a quick filter change it seemed to clear up. Then I turned my back for only a second and it died. Now the batteries were too far down to re-start. I even tried to "penny" four of the six cylinders to get it started, but not a chance. About this time one of the screws in my glasses decided to fall out in the engine room and the lens also fell out. I couldn't find it anywhere.


Now we were two miles from the first buoy at Grays Harbor and in a condition of very hard steerage. It became impossible to hold a course. The harder we struggled the more tired we got. So we threw in the towel and called Coast Guard Grays Harbor and requested assistance getting in. They dispatched a 47 footer and a great crew. First they threw across a line with a VHF handitalky and a flashlight. I'm crawling around on my hands and knees with only one lense in my glasses and the other one with water drops. I managed to get the tasks completed. That eliminated any incompatibility in the communications. They then passed the towing line and off we went towards the harbor. Then they shifted to a side tie and snuggled us up to the dock.

Then the fun began. Inspection time. They ripped through the boat looking at everything. We passed all things except the "safety of the engine room." That was a true statement. While we were "dead in the water" slopping around in the trough, the oily bilge water slopped up over the top of the floorboards and it looked terrible. BM1 Marshall indicated that our trip was terminated until it was cleaned up.

The lens for the glasses was in my sweatshirt pocket all of this time. I had a repair kit in my bags and got it re-assembled.

At 4:30am we finally got to bed. Then back up at 8:30 to get started. We did a general boat cleanup, a trip to Wal-Mart for oil and batteries, Sears for battery chargers and then got busy in the engine room cleaning things up.

About 7pm we called the "OOD" [Officer of the Day] at Coast Guard Grays Harbor to request the inspection. Its now 10:15 and we have not received a reply call. Off to a shower, pizza dinner (I fell asleep at the table) and on to bed. An early start now looks doubtful.

On Hold in Westport

08/14/04 Saturday - We were finally inspected about 10:30 am and headed out for Neah Bay about 11:00. After being underway for about 30 minutes, we decided that we really did not have enough daylight or fuel to make this leg of the trip safely. We returned to Westport fuel dock and took on another 345 gallons.

When we started the starboard engine there was a terrible clanking noise in one cylinder. We left the fuel dock and went back to the original slip to ponder our condition. We decided to put the trip on hold and send Nancy, Roxane, Royal, and Dick back to Port Ludlow, leaving me with the boat to insure that the bilge pumps stayed operational.

08/15/04 Sunday - I inflated the Avon and spent about 3 hours with the bucket of sawdust stopping a few leaks. In the afternoon Chuck Fowler drove over from Olympia and we discussed future projects and possible time frames. Chuck also knew of someone with a few ideas to try to isolate which cylinder was knocking. I will try those tomorrow.

08/16/04 Monday - I met with Mark from Westport Diesel. Yep, she is toast. In the Starboard engine one of the cylinder liners has shifted upward and several pistons show signs of over temperature. (No lie) After a conversation with those close to the regular activity of the boat, I decided to go for an "in-frame" overhaul. This may take 5-10 days depending on what things look like once they start digging in.

Since I will leave the boat during this period I have to move her to a dock that has shore power. I have been charging batteries and having house lights using the Coleman generator on deck. During the night the batteries have carried the bilge pumps OK. I have been using a 1500 watt inverter to provide limited lighting and cellphone charging using one of the starter batteries, during the evenings. Today I have a rental car and have found a couple of WiFi wireless sites to download this web update timely.

08/17/04 Tuesday - Royal and Dick Rein tried to fly over to Westport from Jefferson County Airport (in Dick's plane), but the Westport airport was socked in with fog and low clouds, so they flew back. After getting the word that they were back I returned to the boat and ran into relatives of Royal that had come over to see the boat. We called Royal to tell him that they were over and he said he would leave immediately and drive over to help move the boat to another slip that had shore power.

I needed reliable power to keep the batteries charged to keep the bilge pumps going. Royal and Sue arrived about 3 hours later and we moved "her" and got hooked up to shore power. We stopped for dinner and drove back to Port Ludlow. Finally I got a hot shower and a night in my own bed at home.

08/18/04 Wednesday - Ah, what a night in your own bed can do for the aches and pains of those "pipe racks." Today I scanned in these newspaper articles that appeared in the Sunday and Wednesday Peninsula Daily News. They are pretty neat.

08/19/04 Thursday -

08/20/04 Friday -

08/21/04 Saturday - Chuck Fowler and I looked at the new dock in Port Townsend built by the Marine Heritage Foundation, to see how difficult it might be to tie up there. It is a great arrangement and we may try it a couple of days on the way down. I received an envelope of photos from Selby Drew BMCS USCG (Ret) and family of our arrival, stay and departure at Ft. Bragg. They are really great.

08/22/04 Sunday - Day of rest.

08/23/04 Monday - Visited the Coast Guard Museum-Seattle and scrounged up lots of documentation about colors and hardware layout on the 83's. In the afternoon visited the different organizations that will participate in Tacoma Fest, the final waterfront event of the summer. We are now invited to be there. So now I must get the old girl home and put on some "makeup" before we take her out in public. Tonight I got the photos (Tacoma and Gig Harbor, WA) from Tom McAdams (ex-OinC of 83527) scanned in.

08/24/ to 08/30 - Talked with other 83footer guys and got more photos and stories.

08/31/04 - Tuesday - Engine is reassembled and runs fine at the dock. We opted for the lower end rebuild which consisted of new main bearings, rods, pistons, rings and sleeves. Our plan is to depart Port Ludlow and arrive in Westport before noon tomorrow and give the boat a 2-3 hour test run in the immediate area and get some other projects out of the way.
The Current Schedule should look like this:

9/1 Wednesday - Engine should be completed Tuesday afternoon or Wednesday Morning. We will get a clearer sense of that on Tuesday. But the plan is to leave Port Ludlow in my Van early on Wednesday morning and get there with time to do 3 or 3 hours of sea trials after the rebuild.  

9/2 Thursday - Assuming success on 9/1 depart very early in the AM for Neah Bay. It will be about 10-11 hrs, depending on how hard we push the new engine. Stay the night at NB. 

9/3 Friday - Depart Neah Bay for Port Angeles. Arrive Port Angeles Coast Guard Station mid afternoon. We are invited guests of theirs at the station. Do some PR and guest appearances with "Peninsula Daily News". Share the boat with Coasties on the base. Stay the night there. 

9/10 Saturday - Around noon or so depart for Port Townsend. Arrive at the new Maritime Heritage Center dock at Port Hudson. Stay there for one or two days and greet the public and unload lots of excessive crap that I have collected (life rafts, transmission and rental safety equipment). 

9/XX Who knows, move down to Port Ludlow when our welcome is worn out at this dock.


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