A Change of Course
Finally, it has all come together! I had ordered the adapters to connect my new FLIR camera cable to both the MFD and the camera itself. To run the cable I had to cut the Raynet ends off of it, and then install RJ45 cable ends. I ordered waterproof adapters to convert back to the Raynet ends and they worked out beautifully. My friend Brian installed the RJ45 ends and helped me get it all together. After a few minutes of fiddling around with the controls, the picture popped up on the screen looking great. I have not used it at night yet but I do practice with it during the day to get used to it. The camera can spin around 360 degrees, zoom out and tilt up and down. It has a surveillance mode that allows the camera to swivel back and forth looking for objects in the path of the boat. The torturous trip of the starboard exhaust manifold also came to an end. I watched it as it crawled across our country to various repair facilities. One to rebuild it and the other to ceramic coat it. I did try and expedite the shipping, only to find it had shipped just hours before I tried to change the method of shipping. It was a fight to the end, however. It arrived at the shipping company on a Friday afternoon, maybe 6 miles from my home. I thought it would be delivered on Saturday, but I found out they do not deliver on weekends, except during the holidays. I did get a notification that the package would be delivered Monday, by the end of the day. We usually get those deliveries by 3 pm, so I had my tools ready to go and my wife volunteered to go with me Monday evening to install the elbow. Tracking information told me it was loaded on the truck at 4:15 am, and out for delivery at 9:07 am. Almost here! By 3:30 pm I had all the tools in the truck and we were ready to go! By 5:30 pm I was a little anxious. At 8: pm I checked the status, it said loaded on the truck! What? I started trying to figure out what was going on. Reading the customer service page I saw that deliveries could go until 9 pm. At 8:57 pm the doorbell rang, and the wayward exhaust elbow finally returned! We would get a good sleep and install it on Tuesday. Opening the box that night to inspect the elbow, it looked beautiful. Any gear-head would love it, plus it was fixed for about one third the price of a new one and should last longer. Out we went Tuesday morning to install the elbow. I used a straight edge to check mating surfaces of both the turbo and the elbow. It appeared the one spot on the turbo, by a bolt hole was a little high. I borrowed a portable grinder from one of the techs and in a few minutes had it ground down and level, perfect for putting it all together. After that, it was just a slow methodical process to make sure it went together correctly with no missing steps. In less than two hours I test ran the engine looking for any leaks and found nary a one. We were back in business! Since getting her back together we have had a few nice trips around the Peconic Bay Shelter Island area, just enjoying being out on the water. And now comes the change of course. Since both my wife and I are retired, we would like to do a part of what is called the Great Loop. The part we are interested in doing is some of the Great Lakes, the Erie Canal and the Hudson River. We just put an offer in on a boat located on Lake Erie by Huron Ohio. It would be perfect to start the trip up there and then work our way back east. My wife has a cousin that has a summer cottage on Lake Ontario, by Sackets Harbor. Our current plan would be to winter the boat this year in Huron Ohio, and next June start the trip to Sackets Harbor. We would keep it there over the summer and visit the Thousand Island area. At the end of the summer, we would cruise over to Oswego and enter the NYS Canal System, heading for the Hudson River and finally back to Mattituck. At the present time, the logistics of the endeavor are giving me a headache. So much to think about and plan. So many things have to come together at the right time. One step at a time though. First, the offer has to be accepted. Then we have to look at the boat, a marine survey for insurance purposes, etc, etc. Then we have to sell our current boat. I have worked so hard on it over the years improving her and maintaining her, I know every inch of the boat. All the new electronics I just installed. It will be hard to say goodbye to her. But I feel she is just too small for a trip like this. So we will see what comes of this. Either way, we will still be out on the water enjoying all that goes with that. It could be one heck of an adventure. I’ll keep you posted!