I have decided to replace the old Volvo with a new engine. The Volvo has done good service since the boat was new. Last summer it took the boat up and down the West Coast, running for 100+ hours (there was little wind). However, on two occasions the heat alarm went off when we pushed it a bit too hard but when we slowed down a little it was okay again. The boat itself is as good as new, with a new engine we can have a reliable boat for many years still. The old engine can still do a good job in another boat, on shorter trips. It will be replaced by a new Beta 35.
Read the story from bottom up.
First sail this year
Tuesday morning, 21. April, I took the boat to town. With the new engine it took me 1 hr 20 min, about 20 minutes shorter than before. Wednesday afternoon there was a nice NW breeze. I had the most wonderful sail home in the sun. Fantastic to look over the sea on to the low mountains, still with snow on. And to feel the wind take hold and push the boat forward. Most of the time the boat went close to hull speed, between six and seven knots.
Mast is back on
We hoisted the mast back on with the truck’s crane. With the good help from Janis and Benjamin it was an easy job.
All in all I probably have spent around 160 hours on the job, in the boat, plus hours I have not counted for planning and head scratching.
Eventually, Monday 20th of April, the big truck came, with driver Linda, and safely put Vestavind back where she belongs. It was tight and the job took about three hours, but everything went well. The engine started at first go and the new propeller also worked fine. More testing will be carried out later. Thanks to Jostein and Benjamin for good help!
I had planned to launch Friday 17. April and had agreed with the transport company, but the car was stuck with a contract with Statoil and could not come. Hope to have it done next week, Thursday 23. at the latest. She is ready, just waiting for the sea! The propeller is interesting, it adjusts automatically to load and speed. Will be exiting to test it!
Today, April 4, I removed the canvas. A beautiful day, lunch on the foredeck. What remains now is fitting some through the hull connections, fitting the propeller, washing and polishing, and antifouling. Expected launch is 17. April.
Engine is running
Big day! Engine started on the first attempt! And 1st April is tomorrow!
The stern drive
I continued today, Saturday 14, with connecting the gearbox flange to the propeller shaft. I have fitted a Sigmadrive flexible joint, which allows for 3 degrees misalignment. Not cheap, but I hope it will live up to the expected reduction of noise and wear! The seal is an oil lubricated unit from Sleipner, Norway. I had to extend the stern drive to make room for the Autoprop. Local mechanic Christoffer lathed the extention from a piece of stainless steel. Work in progress!
Great day! Engine onboard!
Friday 13. We lifted the new engine into the boat. We were a good team. Nils David in the excavator doing the lifting job, Janis taking pictures from high and low, and myself looking worriedly on from the ground. The whole operation took only about half an hour. Now comes connecting the electricals, fuel lines and water. But first to align the engine correctly to the propeller shaft. Here are some pictures.
The new engine is waiting in the garage, ready to be installed. It’s a Beta 35, based on a Kubota engine. A little bigger than the old Volvo, four cylinders and a lower rpm, so should give quieter service.
To make the installation easier, I made a wooden template for the engine. Then I pulled a string through the whole for the axle, to see exactly where the engine should be. The front mountings fit right in the old bolt holes, but because the new engine is longer than the old one, I have to make adjustments for the rear mountings. And I have to put shims under the mountings.
The old engine
The old engine is a Volvo Penta 2003, 3 cylinders, 28 hp. Fresh water cooled. These are good engines, and this one has served well for many years. But now it is going to be retired and give up its place for young and fresh powers.
December 22, 2014
We took the boat on shore. I had planned to put it next to the garage to have tools and equipment nearby. We just made it!