When your Yanmar stops peeing…

Large swell. Blue sky. Light wind. Warm temperatures. A beautiful day to be on the water.

A number of boats had been holed up in Ensenada waiting for a weather window to start the journey to Cabo. My plans weren’t so exciting, but then again I didn’t have all the preparation either, so it should be no surprise that after a tasty breakfast at Alfonso’s I was the first to buzz out of the marina.

Clearing the breakwater it was obvious there had been strong storms earlier in the week by all the debris – logs, plastic dolls, buckets. You name it and you could find it floating along. Lots of dodging finally got me past the junk and into open waters. Unfortunately time sped by too quickly and after watching five sailboats head out to the south (including my sister-boat Jolly Dogs) I had to get back to the marina.

I had motored out of the marina on the starboard engine so I fired up my port engine for the return trip. She rumbled to life without complaint. In gear and motoring into the harbor I went to check the seawater exhaust. No aqua. Shit. Really? This was the engine I had replaced the raw water pump 18 months ago. Blerg. Boats always break, some day I will learn and accept that without being so surprised and irritated.

Down below I go, check the raw water filter which looks good. Bleed the exhaust muffler. Nothing. Maybe a plastic bag got sucked up against the sail drive. Try backing up to clear it. Nope. Back to the slip with the starboard engine I guess…

After getting tied up, I pull out the tools and check if the water is blocked by the heat exchanger. Nope. Put on a mask and try to see if there is a bag wrapped around the saildrive but the water in the marina is still too murky from the storms. So I try sucking on the hose feeding the water pump. Nope. Unscrew the filter. It looked clear but I give it a good cleaning anyway. Still nada. Pull off the hose from the saildrive and suck. Wonderful tasty seawater. Yuck. Take off the filter so I can spin it up and see inside.

Huh, something looks stuck in there.

Grab a small screw driver to try to unjam the plug. But it doesn’t want to give. Next up a pair of pliers. These do the trick and out comes a little friend.

Poor guy never had a chance

Looks like somehow a small minnow was sucked up and couldn’t make the 90 degree bend in the raw water filter. Sucks to be him. Obstruction cleared, I put the hoses and filter back together. Fired up the engine and success, we have a port engine that happily pees into the marina. Whew. Glad it wasn’t anything more serious.

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