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Old 24-08-2010, 12:36   #16
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Location: Panama City, Panama
Boat: Islander Freeport 41' Ketch
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I wish you great joy with your boat! Do you have any pictures?

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Old 24-08-2010, 13:04   #17
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Boat: St. Francis 43 Brisa
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PS.. If anyone finds a girl that fixes things... don't let anyone else know.... kinna like my best friends girlfriend.... but she used to be mine......

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Old 24-08-2010, 13:43   #18
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Originally Posted by Red Mantis View Post
and then fixing the mistakes I made when I was fixing things the first time.
Very true

I have completed a number of jobs then decided it wasn't good enough and gone back to do it again properly.

My top tip, buy a really good set of quality screwdrivers and look after them.

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Old 24-08-2010, 14:47   #19
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Location: USA
Boat: FL12 12 ft rowboat
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Everyone's skill level at fixing things is different. As a teen I decided I wanted to be an engineer which meant I had to learn how things work, I can fix almost anything, (and have. I am currently putting a new axle on my boat trailer)) but sometimes it is just easier to let someone else do it and pay the cost. I have fixed darn near everything on cars except transmissions. I won't touch a transmission although I know how they work.

On the other hand some people cannot fix anything mechanical or electrical. My son is an example. If you give him a tool he is most likely to hurt himself. But, he is a brilliant paramedic and has worked on ambulance services, for fire departments and hospital emegergency rooms. He can fix humans which is pretty damn difficult. He actually teaches doctors to do what he does ( I mean he teaches classes at the U of MD)

So what I am saying is give it a shot. But if it looks beyond your skill levels, let someone who knows what they are doing fix it. That way it will get done right (you hope anyway) and you won't be constantly worried about it.

The comment on maintenance is right. When i was a technician in my younger days for the USCG, we had a regular maintenance schedule for all our equipment. It ran a lot better and lasted a lot longer if you did the PMs (preventive maintenance). Learn to at least do the PMs, nmost of which is simple, like changing the engien oil and filters regularly, and everything on your boat will be a lot happier.
"Dont tell me I can't, tell me how I can"
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Old 24-08-2010, 15:39   #20
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Location: Nova Scotia, Canada
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I have always been comfortable with tools (father was a plumber / pipefitter and always had lots of tools around, which us kids usually used for purposes other than what they were desined for).
My brother, however, was born a mechanic (and picked that profession).
As kids we would both owrk on our snowmobiles, and later cars. I am decent with tools, but he was born to wor on things.
After I woudl strip a bolt that was hard t otake out (head now mangled) he could still take it out. Just had a knack.

Besides courses, try to spend time with someone who is known to be good at working on theor boat or car. Buy some beer. Ask the guy questions. Notice the way they hit the wrench or ratchet to loosen tight bolts without stripping them.

And definitely read as many "used if you can fund them" boat / engine / electrial system books as you can.

Definitely learn to bleed your fuel system, change filters, oil, impellers, etc.

There may not be a mechanic handy when you need one.

Just this morning I went to start my motorbike (1600 cc engine takes some cranking power) Noticed smoke while starting it. Took of seat to see where it was coming from. The negative battery connection was a bit loose and had some oil / dirt on it, which was smoking with the current draw. My fault for not doing better maintenance and having them spotless. But, still feels good to be able to know why it was smoking, be able to clean / sand the connections in less than 5 minutes, and have the bike then start without the smoke.

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