Bought a used inflatable
8 years ago, like new, I have not had much need to use it, so it has been in storage
Also picked up a Nissan
5 horse 2 stroke outboard
to go along with it. Last ran it in 2013.
Am planning a trip up the coast where I am likely to need it, so I better get this gear
out and check it over. Dink had a couple spots needing some glue, quick fix. Nissan
was troublesome. The outflow tube from the integral tank had broken, no easy fix, so new tank. With that, it started right up. No water
coming out- and that impeller was new just 7 years ago!
Put in new impeller. Just a trickle of water
out check port. I look thru the service
manual and don't see a thermostat or anything else that could be a problem Stuck a thin wire up the pee hole a couple of times (cringe) and that seemed to restore a good stream.
Now it revs nicely, goes into gear
well enough to empty the bucket, seems to be cooling
, ready for sea trials. I am wondering if this old Nissan will have enough power to get me up on plane.
Assemble and inflate the dink, careful not to overinflate as it is blazing hot sun today, down to ramp
and launch. Remembered my PFD
, type 4 and whistle.
Launched and it fired right up. I am kind of surprised. Puttered around the no-wake-zone cove a bit, seems to run OK, so I head
for open water. In chop I realize it is still a bit underinflated, but responds wellto throttle and gets up on plane. All seems well. I slow down and check that water is still coming out the check port- all OK.
I get a little more adventurous, trying to get a bit away from the confused motorboat chop in the channel. She running good. I am loving the two stroke power, simplicity and reliability
. Until it just slows down and dies. No catastrophic noise
, no smell, just stopped. I try the pull start cord and cannot get it to turn over at all.
The problem is obvious to me. Even with the new impeller, there was not enough cooling
water (as shown by the earlier dribble from the check port) and now this thing has overheated and seized. I start rowing back. I quickly appreciate that I am much further from the ramp
than I seemed to be just a few minutes ago. The dink is underinflated which makes rowing more of a chore. Fortunately for this imperiled mariner, a powerboater takes pity on me and tows me back to the ramp.
Loaded back in the truck and driving home, I was a bit despondent over the motor's demise, wasted money
on the new tank and my future need to rebuild
it, are parts
even available, how bad is the cylinder bore, etc. I suddenly recall
in the service
manual where is says not to disable the start-in-gear protection mechanism... Doh!
Sure enough, back home, in neutral now, pulls easy and starts right up. When I sort out the cause of its abrupt stoppage, I will stay a little closer to the dock
on my next seatrial.
Lesson learned- do not stop thinking about the problem even when the answer seems obvious.