Cruising, etc…

We’ve been here in Shelter Bay Marina for about a month now. Some things are going well and some frustrating as; to be almost politically correct, Hades. My mom has come and gone and has three blogs written, one of them soon to be posted. Since her flight home we’ve been working on the boat most every day, mostly mornings.

We work on Elysium primarily in the mornings.  When we work on any project we seem to open a good many lockers, parts and tools are out everywhere, and counters covered with the things we are working on and the tools we need. The boat is literally a mess. We try to time it so that around noonish or soon there after we begin the clean up, pick up routine. We either put things back in their place or hide them in the engine room the things that we know we will immediately need the following day. Then we find we’re able to live in a relatively clean or should I say not messy home. It is after all, paradise.

The Aquagen is apart and back together as much as possible. The new heat exchanger is in and all plumbed.  I have to wait till

New Heat Exchanger

New Heat Exchanger

we get the Centek Aqualift Muffler replaced and need two parts to complete the exhaust system and finish that side. The high pressure (HP)  pump seals have been replaced and it’s put back together.  Dan at

Watermaker Pump Rebuild

Watermaker Pump Rebuild

Aquamarine was helpful as I couldn’t see that one piece from the pump housing still came apart till we called him on a Sat; twice, and I finally got the idea. The rebuild then went slowly and smoothly. That was one day I worked 6 hours on the project and we actually put the pump  in the second day. On our list is to now buy a spare so when I need to do this again I can replace it easily and then do the rebuild at a more convenient time. Also the bracket that held the alternator on has been replaced with a SS one and the bracket that holds the Alternator to the top of the high pressure pump housing is going back to Aquamarine to be beefed up! I will say while there have been some issues with the generator setup; Dan at Aquamarine has been always helpful in either assisting me in fixing a part or in repairing / replacing a part.  Calling on Saturday was wonderful and he even answered the phone the second time with “Hello Dave”! 🙂

And now since we have a window AC unit the boat is dried out some and I can get the floorboards up. A 9 month rainy season is hell on a boat.  I’ve trimmed off about 3 mm off one or two sides and now we’re revarnishing the sides. Hopefully  they will never be able to swell up enough to lock into place. Some items we store in the bilge we do need.

Mr. Gasket

Mr. Gasket

We replaced a broken fuel pump. This pump was made and sold to be good for diesel and although it maybe was, the plastic hose piece wasn’t good for even 3 years.  Never again a Mr. Gasket fuel pump!

We’ve tried to contract some with Lyman Morse Panama  but 2 of the 3 things we wanted them to do were an outrageous bid. We paid last year to have the boat waxed, the SS polished, and the teak scuffed up with a scotch brite pad  – $240 including tip and marina fee. This year the same work was quoted at approx $1,200.00.  Even W/ broke out laughing when she heard that price.  The Cove stripe just under the cap rail on the aft of the boat was quoted at appox $550.00 and we signed on for that to be done using Awlgrip and actually changing color a bit!


Perkins Part Needed

We traveled to the big city; Panama City, and spent a few days of  RnR. Oh, we can’t just hang out so we  did run some errands. We stayed at the Milan where before we’ve had a comfortable time. The internet worked about 80% of the time but we did accomplish a great deal. We found Bronze Wool, 30 weight oil, and Pet Safe Antifreeze which we hadn’t found in Panama before. We attempted to get the injector for the generator rebuilt and were unable to find the parts here. We attempted to find a Perkins Marine engine part and that too was a bust. But we suffered our trials well by eating out with some other cruising friends in the old city, and enjoying a night at our favorite steak place; Martin Fierro.  W/ and I made it to one of the two Chiropractors in Panama and so we were moving freely.

However as our Spanish is only good enough to order meals, ask for the bill, and find a restroom, we were calling and dealing with the Doctor.  She unfortunately had a child get sick and had her staff call her patients. Since her staff didn’t have our number or know we were going to show up we arrived at 5:00 the rain by cab. We paid off the cab and entered to find that Dr. Lillia wasn’t there and our cab had left. We paid our bill and walked a short way in the rain to find a taxi.  Now we are in rush hour and there is a steady rain while we stand under an eve from a restaurant on the main throughway.  After we signaled about 20 taxi’s (all had fares) one finally stopped. As we’re gringo’s we want to make sure all the expenses are up front, thus W/  asked about the  fare back to the Milan.  Again she almost fell down laughing; the driver wanted $20 to travel the same distance we had just paid $5 for and the same distance we’ve now walked 3 times in less than an hour. Because we’re adventurers and because we like to walk;  we choose to walk in the steady drizzle, hiding under every overhang we could find.

An hour later we arrived at our hotel, wet and relieved.  We showered; changed, rested and then walked to Martin Fierro where W/ and I  split a HUGE Filet, shared a bottle of wine, gorged on salad with baked potato, shared dessert (I had one spoonful … almost) and then strolled back to our room.

The following day we took it slow and easy, we ordered boat gear that was going to be shipped to my moms in New Port Richey, we played some games, watched the TV and met Teddy our Taxi driver at Albrook Mall in the afternoon.  There we had a leisurely trip back to our home; Elysium, in Shelter Bay Marina.

Go Slow
Sail Far
Stay Long


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