Thursday, November 24, 2011

Removing the engine

Several weeks ago I made the decision to remove the engine so, as I had time, I began removing bits and pieces here and there in preparation. I began with the shaft coupling bolts, expecting them to be not just difficult to reach but firmly stuck. It turns out they were barely tight, and although a tad difficult to reach, they came out easily.

I also figured that the prop would be tough to get off the shaft, so I started drenching it in PB Blaster. I also removed the castle nut and about a 1/2" stack of clear plastic shims that had been cut out of sour cream containers (or something similar) to fill the gap between the aft end of the prop hub and the castle nut. A slipshod installation, to be sure.

I whacked the prop with a piece of wood a few days later, and it slid right off the shaft. It was clear that it was a poor fit: the key didn't fit tightly in the slot and had slightly rounded the edges of the keyway. That'll have to be taken care of upon reassembly.

With all the connections to the engine removed, the engine was ready to come out. My cousin has moved to the area for college, so he gave me a hand with that today. We rigged up a 2x4 with some chain and a come-along above the companionway and lifted the engine clear of its mounts, setting it on the cabin floor. From there it was, of course, up to the bridge deck and then over the side. I reinforced the boat shed bows and used them as lifting points for the come-along. Once over the side, the engine was lowered into a wheel barrow and deposited in the garage. Ryan was kind enough to take a few photos of the process - at least part of it.


Sunday, November 20, 2011

Getting things moving

I went to the local Family Farm and Home and picked up four 5"x8' red pine fence posts to use as rollers for the boat. I needed to move it forward a bit to get it under the new boat shed. It worked like a charm. Here are a few pics.

Here's how far it was sticking out of the shed.

Placing the posts with a 4-ton floor jack.

All of the posts placed and the boat resting on them.

My trusty old Land Cruiser acting as the anchor. Using a tow strap and a come-along to move the boat.

Almost there.

Tucked inside.

In all only 5' or so of moving forward. It would have been easy to keep on going, though. The transition from asphalt to gravel drive did require some plywood bases to aid the rolling, but otherwise it was a cinch.

Now to get the cover on.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Picking Up (5 years later!)

It's tough to come back to a project after it has languished. Not so much because it isn't fun getting back to work, but because the inner-cynic does a good job of tempering my enthusiasm. At any rate, I'll be returning to the project as time allows.

The most exciting news at this point is that I've acquired a boat shed. My boys and I got it mostly assembled the other day, and tomorrow we'll finish it up and see what we can do to get the Alberg 30 tucked inside. Currently the boat is hanging about 6' past the rear of the shed, and although I could move the shed to accommodate the boat, doing so would make it very tough to get the cars out of the garage. The plan for tomorrow is to move the boat by rolling it atop round fence posts. We'll see if that works. Once the boat's tucked inside, I'll buy a couple of tarps to cover the shed. It'll be nice to have a structure that doesn't need constant tending during the winter like the old ridge pole and tarp setup.

Recently, I made the decision to remove the Westerbeke diesel to rebuild the beds and, while it is out, allow access to the bilge area. During the re-power - long before I owned the boat - the installer bolted angle iron tabs to the existing engine bed. The installation qualifies as a "quick-n-dirty," the old Atomic 4 beds not sufficiently designed for the narrower Westerbeke. Beyond that, the angle iron tabs aren't properly aligned, so one flexible mount is actually forced off at an angle to meet up with the engine-mounted tab. I've already removed the prop and shaft coupling, so the engine's ready to come out as soon as I rig up a hoist.