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Old 16-06-2016, 08:36   #1
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Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: waiting out the 2017 Hurricane Season in Ft Pierce FL
Boat: Morgan 462 ketch
Posts: 72
Diesel mechanics for cruisers

I've been moving in my ketch from New Orleans around Florida's gulf and Atlantic Coasts for over 2 months now as part of the larger voyage home to Lake St Clair on the Great Lakes. Odissea is a "new to me" 1979 Morgan 462. She was in good shape and stood a good survey when I bought her but 2 months of almost daily wind on the nose has turned her into a trawler with coincident engine and system issues based on hard usage and an owner less than experienced with the boat. I've had three major occurances that required significant service to the engine/generator. In each case I've been blessed with the availability of honest, skilled and competent diesel mechanics. I want to list them here for the benefit of those who may find themselves in need in the ports in which they operate.

We've all heard of the flimflam artists and outright thieves that populate the harbour front preying on cruisers... This is a tribute to the other half of the profession. The honest hardworking folks that provide great value for money and who respond with dignity, skill and passion to the emergencies associated with the cruising lifestyle.

1) Cleveland Diesel in Tarpon Springs. Resolved a thorny and subtle suction side fuel pump issue for me that was causing air locks in the fuel line resulting in unpredicted shutdowns. Great folks, responded very guickly with a very knowledgeable technician at very reasonable prices.

2) Sun Power Diesel in Dania Beach. Fuel starvation issue resolved by failed ball valve. Plus a generator problem. When I first heard their hourly rate I was taken aback but in the end they proved very economical. They brought three guys onto the boat and were gone in a matter of hours. Each one was a subject matter expert on either the Onan or the Perkins and brought tools and parts specific to the engine and the problem as I had described it to them over the phone. Very professional. Excellent value for money.

3) Firstmate Yacht services in St Augustine. Oil cooler hose failure. These guys are the best. Had them remove and replace both hoses. While they were there I also had them clean the bilges of oil lost during the break, which they accomplished in good order. While there one of the guys, whose forte is AC, diagnosed my less than well performing refrigeration as having a charge issue and returned with his gauges to resolve the problem. Great folks to work with at very reasonable rates. They really do go the extra mile without being asked!
My mind is writing cheques my body can't cash!
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