We have already mentioned the saga of the sail drive parts taking 3 weeks before we got them. Next was the saga of trying to get our Malaysian mechanic to move quickly. He’s very competent at his work, but he just moves at his own speed.
Despite all the challenges, and my increasing stress, we finally got to the haul-out day on Tuesday. The mechanic was supposed to install one sail drive on Monday and the other on Tuesday, but we discovered one of the parts we got from the US was the wrong part. So, he went to another city to have it modified to fit. When he finally arrived around 10 AM on Tuesday (no early starts for this guy), we dropped the two drives in and started putting them together. We then discovered a new problem on the starboard engine. One of the two main engine mounting bolts was broken! And had been for some time. It broke in such a way that it was still sitting straight, so no one realized it until now. We went ahead with the installation, but did not connect the starboard engine to the saildrive for the lift back into the water. So, we would only have one engine to use.
Meanwhile, I installed our propellers which I had cleaned and had antifouling painted on (as shown in the photo above). Our haul-out time was 5:30 PM (high tide), and we just BARELY made that schedule. We got back in the water and I checked for leaks in our thru-hulls. They were all good, and the engines weren’t leaking. I started the port engine, but we had a leak after all! One of the hoses the mechanic put on needed tightening. After fixing that, we got off the lift and backed out. It was a bit tricky maneuvering with only one engine, but we were finally at our slip in the marina. What a huge relief!
Yesterday (Wednesday), the mechanic first attempted to get a local foundry to make a new bolt, but they couldn’t get it done, so they ordered one from Ipoh. It arrived by 2PM, and the mechanic came over and we assembled the starboard engine. Just to keep me from being happy, we found one of the two nuts on the old bolt was worn, so the mechanic had to go get a new nut. We were finally done at about 5:30. With just enough light left, we took Tahina out for a sea trial and the newly repaired engines worked fine. We also ran the commission procedure on the new autopilot and compass which required several turns and maneuvers. That went smoothly as well.
So, as the sun set, Tahina was finally ready. I paid the mechanic after he brought his bill at 8PM. Only a little higher than expected. He actually credited me because I had helped him so much with the installation work.
Today, Thursday, we leave to head north. We have to be in Langkawi quickly because we are leaving the boat there while we leave on next Tuesday for a trip home to the US. After all the stress here, I could really use some good times visiting family and friends and eating lots of good food.