The culprit is found.
27 March 2011 | La Cruz marina
Sunny and HOT!
Butch showed up about 0800 and I sat down with him and explained the problem and it's symptoms as well as what I had done on Saturday to try and fix it. In he went tools in hand. Now Butch is about 6 foot 5 inches tall so most engine rooms are a bit tight for him. Ours was a cinch. Big and airy. He disconnected and re connected and started the engine. It ran for about 8 minutes and shut down just like it did on Friday. Back in again. We did this several times, each time the engine dying about 8 minutes later. I won't boor you with all the things he did but we found that the washers--yes that's right, the washers under the bleeding screws on top of the secondary filters were defective. They are supposed to help seal the bolts once they get tightened. Instead, they leaked, not only air but also allowed air into the system. I just happened to be looking across the engine with a flashlight and saw some bubbling by the screws. Out came the screws and on with new washers and that part was fixed. But as expected, the engine still didn't work right.
After more exploring, it finally came down to the small electric pump that we use to bleed the air out of the fuel lines. Instead, a seal had broken somewhere on it and it allowed air into the system. So, Butch disconnected it from the fuel loop and once the engine started, she ran really well.
Tomorrow, Butch will be returning with a new pump and will plumb it in where it belongs. For some reason, it was after the first filter instead of before it. Now it will be put in where it belongs, before the primary filter so it can do its job properly. We let the engine run for a good 50 minutes in gear at the dock to put some stress on it and she ran just fine. Once the new electric back up fuel pump is on, we will run it again for several hours at the dock to make sure it works as it should.
With that being said, our new cast off date is Wednesday. The weather window is good for that day(at least that is what the forecasters think). We will fill up the water tanks tomorrow and get more things stowed safely so that by Wednesday, we will be ready to cast off.
Say a prayer for us that tomorrow works out. We are both chomping at the bit to get out of here and see new sights.
The picture is of the electric fuel pump that caused our problem. Tomorrow, out it comes.