09 September 2014

just add water

Sometimes I wonder,
will there ever be a hobby that doesn't start out as a project?
Then I realize that is what makes it fun.
Of course it doesn't seem like it while sweating away,
the reward at the end is far greater.
The last boat entry described the pieces to the puzzle.
Basically a long shaft outboard,
with the pre-72 whaler curved short shaft transom.
I spent gobs of time researching online.
There were many overpriced brackets I could copy,
but that isn't the style of boating I was raised on.
One of my earlier memories was my Dad building a wood and fiberglass skiff in the garage.
About the time when I got the itch...
That boat - Thumper - is still around,
owned by a family friend Bud with a similar project addiction.
Back in the kid sailing days,
we got a stripped sabot hull,
and with the help of Earl Elms,
rigged it up just like a bigger boat.
Can ya see I'm trying to place blame here?
That's how hot rodding is.
The cool thing about boats,
is you realize there is no perfect design.
Just like cars,
bolt-on stuff rarely works out of the box.
The fun is making an idea real,
and testing it's performance.
Ok excuse the ramble...
Where are we now.
This was the test mock-up of the mount.
Basically it's a rigid jack-plate.
Surprising how strong a couple little tacks are.
One thing I've learned to enjoy is stick welding,
especially stainless steel.
Glad I know how to do this,
cause buying this woulda been a bit pricey.
I missed taking pics of the install.
Jakob helped out,
and we had 5200 glue on our hands.
As you can see,
this is not only a riser but an extension,
which is popular on trailer boats.
The internet rule is an inch for every hull foot,
which probably just sounds good.
The idea is to give the propellor clean water,
away from the turbulence of the hull.
another rule is the farther away from the transom,
the higher the engine can be mounted,
allowing less drag and more speed.
Typically the cavitation plate is inline with the hull bottom.
All theory really,
it was time to test it out.
The next day the kids and I got a late start.
The engine bumped over,
and I was reminded this was a craigslist special.
We were dripping in the hot sun,
stuck on the trailer.
No pics of the kids,
we were all too salty.
Pull-start not fun at the moment.
Back home I tore into the carburetor.
Yeah this is a simple one carburetor model.
A little dirt in the bowl,
however the main thing I found was the tuning was way off.
Hard to see the pilot screw on top of the intake.
It was screwed all the way in,
basically suffocating the system at idle.
This is one of the side benefits,
as there really is no better way of learning.
Not to say I didn't think of ditching that boat at the launch ramp for a split second!
The next day I was antsy to test out the boat.
After a couple hard starts and idle adjustments,
the old gas burnt away,
and the engine seemed to want to run.
I can't imagine this with the 50 hp merc,
the 30 hp suzuki scoots right along.
I went solo,
cause it was a crapshoot.
A bummer to not share the view.
On one side was an awesome sunset,
on the other a mysterious lightning cloud,
next to the last super moon.
There's definitely room for improvement.
A tiller extension and trim adjustment would help,
as it's a wheelie machine.
That could change with riders though.
Now I wish the bricks went all the way back!
No good working in the mud...

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