You don’t mess around with smoke on a boat. Which is where Your Survival Guy found himself last Saturday preparing to bring our boat, Tom Sawyer, back to Newport after a two-week stay on a mooring I keep in Mattapoisett. (You can read here about how my yard went up in smoke).
Turning the engines over, they just wouldn’t catch. I checked the safety kill switch. It was connected. Made sure I wasn’t in gear (Read here about that one from last summer.) Check. Tried the engines again. No go. But this time, I saw smoke rising through the console from down below, along with the smell of burning wires. Never a good sign, especially on a boat with 200 gallons of fuel in the tanks.
I shut everything down. Sat there. And did the smart thing. I took apart the console, disassembled the radar, sonar, three battery connections, satellite radio, like mission control on Apollo 13, working the problem people. Kidding. I didn’t do that. I’m Your Survival Guy, not an electrical engineer. I hailed the launch, and—defeated—talked it over with my dad, driving in my car, back to Newport. Just another day on the water. As one client reminds me, the thing with boats is, everything’s broken, we just don’t know what it is yet.
First thing Monday morning, my dad drove down to the boatyard, talked with his guys about the situation to see if they could come out and look. Because that’s what my dad does, without a moment of hesitation, helping me solve another one of life’s problems. As I’m learning, with a college-aged daughter and high school senior son—you never stop being a parent, no matter how old your children are.
Yesterday, the owner of the boatyard called me and said they looked at it for an hour, something is obviously wrong near the “harness” (a term Your Survival Guy associates with horses), but they don’t have time to look at it until after they haul a harbor full of boats, winterize them, and tuck them away for the winter.
In speaking with Skip, the owner of the boatyard I work with in Newport, and who helped me in buying Tom Sawyer (read about how to buy a boat here.), he suggested we haul, trailer back home, winterize, and do the work over the winter. “Give me his number,” Skip said. “And I’ll coordinate it.”
Action Line: Note to self: It helps to have people you can count on. Period.
Originally posted on Your Survival Guy.