On Sunday we sailed over to Woods Inlet for another few days of R&R. By then I was coming down with a bad cold (which has turned out to be some sort of flu). Getting sick turned out to be the least of our worries...
On Monday I fitted a new fuel lift pump to the engine. This was the last major spare part of the set I bought to fit before departure - the others being starter motor, raw water pump and mixing elbow. The elbow was fitted by Shipstores as described in an earlier post.
After fitting the new pump I turned over the engine with the cylinders "decompressed" and all appeared fine and the pump was pumping fuel. I bled the fuel system to the high pressure pump, then reset the decompression levers and went on deck to start the motor. When I engaged the starter motor there was a very nasty clunk. Not good. I went below and discovered water was leaking from the engine case. Very, very bad.
I removed the fuel lift pump and found its cam-following lever was bent. Only then did I compare the lever with that on the old pump and found the two did not match. Mea Culpa, although you'd hope to be provided with the correct parts by an authorised parts dealer (the parts came from a dealer in Sydney). The morals of the story appear to be:
- never assume a spare part is the correct spare part - examine every aspect in detail; and
- never work on engines while sick!
Yesterday I called Darwin Shipstores and arranged for them to take a look at the engine as soon as we returned from Woods Inlet. We sailed back this afternoon without incident, although the wind was light and the current strong as we came to anchor off Cullen Bay. Hopefully the engine will be looked at tomorrow and if it is really beyond economic repair we'll get a new one on the way ASAP.
All this means there is little hope of our making the start line for Sail Timor Leste. Hopefully we can make the start line for Sail Indonesia. If not we'll just catch up with everyone somewhere in SE Asia!
Always look on the bright side of life! ;)