Kaimusailing

s/v Kaimu Wharram Catamaran

Vessel Name: Kaimu
Vessel Make/Model: Wharram Custom
Hailing Port: Norwalk, CT
Crew: Andy and the Kaimu Crew
About: Sailors in the Baltimore, Annapolis, DC area.
08 July 2024 | Somers Cove Marina, Crisfield, MD
25 June 2024 | Somers Cove, Crisfield, MD
12 June 2024 | Somers Cove, Crisfield, MD
03 June 2024 | Somers Cove, Crisfield, MD
25 May 2024 | Somers Cove, Crisfield, MD
21 May 2024 | Somers Cove, Crisfield, MD
12 May 2024 | Somers Cove, Crisfield, MD
09 May 2024 | Somers Cove, Crisfield, MD
01 May 2024 | St. Marys, GA
23 April 2024 | St Marys, GA
17 April 2024 | St Marys, GA
07 April 2024 | St. Marys, GA
02 April 2024 | St. Marys, GA
21 March 2024 | St. Marys, GA
01 March 2024 | St. Marys, GA
23 February 2024 | St. Marys, GA
15 February 2024 | St. Marys, GA
11 February 2024 | St. Marys, GA
06 February 2024 | St. Marys, GA
26 January 2024 | St. Marys, GA
Recent Blog Posts
08 July 2024 | Somers Cove Marina, Crisfield, MD

TFH!

I was out of cheese and ham. This meant a grocery trip and then of course, visit the American Legion. Cuddily said she would be there after baking fresh fish that she got from her neighbor fisherman.

25 June 2024 | Somers Cove, Crisfield, MD

June is Too Soon

It is Juneteenth, election day for the City of Crisfield, twenty four hundred voters. Up for election are two city council seats for three candidates. The mayor wants to keep her current city council team.

12 June 2024 | Somers Cove, Crisfield, MD

Raindrops and Rainbows

You can take the Mediterranean diet too far, especially with the wine consumption. The noodles are OK if you are burning up the calories, but otherwise they will put on the pounds. So you are left with antipasto, not much else, salad? Chicken Parm? Yes, the chicken parm is probably in itself pretty [...]

03 June 2024 | Somers Cove, Crisfield, MD

Prejudicial Treatment

The excitement of a new baby in the family had me receiving phone calls from all over. The common denominator is that we talked about the weather and food. That makes me hungry and start planning to cook. Cuddily suggested we go to Sysco in Pocomoke to see what wine selection they had there and also [...]

25 May 2024 | Somers Cove, Crisfield, MD

Cap'n Granpa

The Memorial Day weekend was coming up and it is a big deal in Crisfield as well as most of the rest of the Chesapeake. It is the traditional beginning of the summer season. All the boats are launched or commissioned, lots of activity in the marina, motors started up for the first time in a long time, [...]

21 May 2024 | Somers Cove, Crisfield, MD

Cap'n Overboard

The awful jobs get done last. The Atomic Four was waiting for me to pull off the cylinder head, but there was an emergency job, sort of, the mainsail cover was torn and exposing the sail to U/V, very bad.

Starting the Atom

04 August 2020 | Bodkin Inlet, MD
Cap'n Andy | Tropical Storm
Ken of Moyer Marine sent me an email requesting another photo of the divot the manifold stud took out of the engine block. The one I had already sent was taken at an angle so that he could see the way the block gave up a divot just like a golf divot. He later got back to me after conferring with Don Moyer and said in their opinion this engine was toast, done. This wasn’t really a shock but it knocked me down a bit. I had been hoping on repairing the engine that was described in Boat Angel ad as: “Runs but is unreliable.”.
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We discussed purchasing a short block or a running engine they had on hand that they would not warranty. I also had an offer of an engine from Radio Bill who had taken an Atomic Four out of his Trident and left it in his garage in upstate NY. I decided to keep working on the engine at hand.
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Cornelia Marie was in her cockpit with a SCUBA tank. She was preparing to dive to clean her propeller. When we had gone out a while ago to get water at the marina, her boat went backwards in reverse as well as forward. The marine growth on the propeller made it that way. I stuck around to keep an eye on her while she dove. It is not wise to SCUBA dive alone. I was able to lower the tank to her in the water. It only took a few minutes for her to scrape away the growth, then I hauled the tank back into the cockpit and she showered to rinse off the Bodkin Blight.
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I returned to the Atomic Four and tried to extract the remnant valve stem from inside the valve guide. I had broken the valve, snapped it, while trying to pull it out. It was seized up as well as two other exhaust valves, but it was the first one I tried to remove. After snapping it I didn’t break any of the others. When I spoke to Ken at Moyer Marine about it, he said it’s just about impossible to get the valve stem out through the top. He didn’t tell me of any other way. It was probably another issue to help him declare the engine was done for.
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When I snapped the valve I had to first hammer it down into the block onto its valve seat so that the valve spring compressor could compress enough spring to remove the keepers or collets that hold the spring to the valve. After removing them I had to bring the valve up again and I couldn’t budge it. I hit the starter for a second and that did it. The cam pushed the valve up about a quarter inch. I then put a wrench in between the tappet and the valve stem and hit the starter again. It came up another quarter inch. I then tried to pry it up with a couple of screw drivers and it snapped. I was applying a great deal of pressure to it. It would not budge. Then I continued on to do the rest of the valves. Now I am back to figure out how to get the valve stem out.
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I found a machine screw that was just the right length to push the stem up another quarter inch. I put it in place and hit the starter. I then looked all over for something else that would be the right length for the next quarter inch. Nothing. I took a lunch break and pondered my situation. Was it even worth doing any of this on a condemned engine. Then I got an idea. I used the angle grinder with a cut off wheel to cut a thin bolt (1/8“?) to the length needed. I used an old piece of solder to stick up the valve guide and bend it where it touched the tappet to find the right length. Cut it a little long and then trim it to exact fit. Hit the starter. Cut another one. It took about 8 tries to get the stem out of the guide. Even when it only had another 1/4“ to go, I still could not pull it out with vice grips. The cam did all the work, pushing the valve stem up. I risked breaking the camshaft, but it was all I could think of.
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I was feeling better about the engine now. I would ignore or rather, take Moyer’s advice into consideration, and keep on working on the engine. I ordered parts. I even ordered the new Moyer Marine valve springs. The whole order was just a bit over 100 bucks. Cheap fun. My plan for the busted stud and hole in the engine block was to install a 1/2“ diameter insert that had 3/8“ female threads inside. The hole for the stud was between two manifold ports near #1 intake valve and there was not much room there for anything bigger than 1/2“. Ken at Moyer had said there was probably some undiscovered problem that we needed to get to, and that doing this repair was the definition of being crazy, doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. Previous owner’s Husband had replaced head gasket and freed stuck valves several times. It looked like this last episode was more extensive than any of the other ones he reported, and he did write excellent reports. The engine seemed to seize its exhaust valves about once a month starting in 2018. It sounded like only one or two valves would be stuck, but now 3 were stuck at the same time and a stud had come out of the block.
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I ordered glazing vinyl 11/32“ Channel Depth 9/32“ Metal opening for 3/16“ Glass - 100' roll from dkhardware.com in Florida. This channel is used on Catalina windows. I started working on the leaky windows by attempting to remove the smallest forward starboard window. I already have the Dow/Corning 795 sealant to rebed the glass and butyl tape to rebed the window into the cabin side. The procedure is to remove the screws from the interior aluminum frame, then pop the window out of the cabin without sending it over the side into the Bodkin. The window wouldn’t budge at all, but I was just getting started. This might be the worst of the windows in this boat, the previous owner had placed a plastic trough under the window and there were obvious stains indicating it was leaking. All the windows and the cabin top are covered with tarps, but this one window is about half out from under the tarp and it leaked like a firehose during a thunderstorm.
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Cornelia Marie thought she could move her boat to Baltimore over the weekend, but somehow her heart wasn’t into it. She moped around, then brightened up when I suggested we get out of the cloudy rainy boat life at the dock and head down to Crisfield again, this time with no work plans. Off we went. I was concerned that a lot of parts, etc., that I had ordered had already been delivered to the house and no one was there to put things inside. Anyone could just grab stuff and go. And that happens a lot in Crisfield.
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The weather cleared up as we drove South. When we got there all the boxes of parts, Canadian meds, important letters, nothing had been taken. I had an engine manual for the Atomic Four and all the parts I needed to attempt repair. I read the manual. I tried to fly the drone but its batteries were not fully charged even though the charger said so. I fiddled with the TV antenna and got some stations from Salisbury, MD. We went out and had flounder at Cap'n Tyler’s on the water. We relaxed.
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We ate well, too well. There was nothing to do. Walk to the marina and get a contract application. $58/foot for an annual slip. That’s about what I’m paying at the dock in Pasadena. Crisfield has a swimming pool. Let’s get that boat down here right away. We walked to the post office and later took Nori the Wonder Dog to run on the beach, chasing other dogs.
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We decided to start the skiff’s Suzuki 25 HP engine. It looked at first like it was the same engine that I had put on Kaimu, but this one is a vee engine, carburetted, and Kaimu’s is inline twin, fuel injected, also has electric start and tilt. The vee engine was pull start and it didn’t start. We had fresh fuel, I confirmed spark at the spark plugs, it seemed very hard to pull it to turn over. The interlock that prevents starting when in gear needed adjustment. Throttle cable clamps were loose. I removed the top of the air box and sprayed starting fluid into the carburettor and the engine started just about at the time we were ready to quit. We had it running in a tub of water and the little “pisser” that indicates water flow wasn’t flowing, so we stopped the engine and cleaned it out and after several cleanings the water flow indicator was flowing. Mud dauber wasps love to fill the indicator port, so it’s more likely that had happened rather than impeller failure.
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Eve, CM’s artist friend plied us with hard spritzers while we talked and the dogs played. Later we went back to the house with a new box of wine and case of spritzers, hard. CM made sausage and peppers. I had a snack of pickled herring on rolls that had to be a week and a half old, but no mold.
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The next morning we packed up and headed back to the Bodkin. We arrived with contractors beginning another job on the dockmaster’s house. CM went off to work very soon, we had arrived late. I ended up on the cell phone with a couple of friends who were concerned about the hurricane coming up the coast.
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The forecast was for 25-35 knot winds and 3 inches of rain. The actual wind speed was hard to determine because our docks are sheltered by a bluff when the wind comes from the North. That the portlights on the Catalina leaked was more than confirmed, I was dumping a gallon pail about every 20 minutes and that was from one small window. The rest were covered with tarps but still dripped. This probably means that the jib tracks and handrails on the cabin top need to be rebedded.
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I began working on the engine. Drilled out the broken stud hole with 3/8“ drill, then followed that with a 7/16“ drill to prepare the hole for the 1/2“ tap. The recommended drill for the 1/2“ tap is 27/64“ which is 1/64“ smaller than 7/16“. I tapped the hole with blue tape marking the tap, indicating the tap has reached the opposite wall of the water jacket. It looked like there would be enough metal to hold the 1/2“ insert. The manifold studs are only torqued to 25 ft.lbs.
I mixed up high heat JB Weld and slathered it on the insert threads. I also slathered it on the 3/8“ threads of the stud, the threads that go into the insert. I threaded the stud into the insert then threaded the insert into the block. The area around the stud had lost some material when the old stud pulled out so I put some JB Weld there so that the gasket would have something to seal against. The JB Weld will take 8 hours to set up, but it’s better to give it more time.
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I used some old marine gasoline in a plastic tray to clean the valves, keepers, and the collars that hold the valve springs. I had purchased 7 new valve springs from Moyer Marine and knew that previous owners had replaced an exhaust valve and had purchased one (1) new valve spring, so I expected to find that new valve spring amongst the springs taken out of the engine, but no! They were all the standard springs that are about 1/4“ shorter than the newer more powerful springs. Later I found the longer spring, it either hadn’t been installed in the engine, or maybe it was used, did not do the job, and was removed. I cleaned up the valves by putting them in the cordless drill and using a shop knife to scrape the carbon off while the valve was spinning. Kind of like a lathe.
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The photo was taken by one of my spies and is the current state of the Breezeway at the boatyard in St. Marys.
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