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Old 24-07-2022, 17:21   #1
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Can one take an endeavor 32 out the Erie with an atomic gas motor

My endeavor 32 has an atomic 4 gas motor. Can I get through the Erie cannal with that? I realize it's not a great saltwater motor but it's what I have. If I like the cruising I'll give the boat away and buy something else. Plan is to get it past possible ice on the ICW next summer, then next fall continue to Florida. I want to see if I like the lifestyle.
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Old 24-07-2022, 17:39   #2
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pirate Re: Can one take an endeavor 32 out the Erie with an atomic gas motor

If you have felt its safe where you are, it'll be just as safe anywhere else.
Just keep the fuel line etc leak proof and don't smoke while your refuelling..
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Old 24-07-2022, 18:00   #3
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Re: Can one take an endeavor 32 out the Erie with an atomic gas motor

It appears your question addresses the suitability of the Atomic 4 motor for motoring some 350 miles, which I think is the length of the Erie Canal.

I don't think it matters what waters are transited in that distance. The question is whether the motor will run for the time required to motor 350 miles at say, 5 knots. Call 5 knots equal to 6MPH. Then 350 Miles will take about 60 hours, or five long, long days!

Can YOU do five long, long days?

I am pretty sure that an Atomic 4 in good shape can handle it, provided you don't push too hard. Watch you temperature gauge constantly. Saltwater has nothing to do with it. I would be very surprised if your motor is not freshwater cooled and that freshwater/antifreeze coolant is not in turn cooled by the water the boat floats in - fresh or salt - via a heat exchanger. If the coolant temperature rises find out why. If necessary shut down and let the beast cool off. Let the beast run at what she's comfortable with, maybe about 1,800RPM and accept that RPM governs - you go at whatever speed through the water that RPM produces.

I don't remember the fuel consumption of the Atomic 4 anymore. Look it up on google. Know your tankage, and using that and the fuel consumption rate to work out how far you can go on 3/4 of a tank. Find out before leaving if there are fuel stops along the canal with a distance between them that you can make on 3/4 tank. You might have to augment your range by carrying spare fuel in 5 gallon cans on deck.

Having transited the canal you still have to get down the Hudson, don't you? But if Pete Seeger could sail on the Hudson in Clearwater just as people sailed on the Hudson in days of yore, probably you can too.

It's a pretty simple logistical exercise.

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Old 24-07-2022, 18:15   #4
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Re: Can one take an endeavor 32 out the Erie with an atomic gas motor

No problem, you'll have to drop the mast and carry it on deck. Lots of sailboats do this trip. Most sailboats re-step their mast at Hop'O'Nose Marina in Catskill on the Hudson.

You'll enter the canal through the Black Rock lock at Tonawanda (to avoid Niagara River current.

The trip is a pure joy. We have been over the entire canal system since May 20th, have stopped at every single town and spent a total of $48 on docking. We will head down the Hudson towards Bahamas at end of August.

This article on our website is a little outdated (will update soon) but it will give you an idea of the trip.
Cruising New York State Canal System, Erie, Cayuga, Seneca

PS. I've heard of fresh water cooled Atomic 4's but have never seen one in the hundreds of Atomic equipped boats I've surveyed.
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Old 24-07-2022, 18:15   #5
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Re: Can one take an endeavor 32 out the Erie with an atomic gas motor

What is your concern? That it is a gas engine or that it isn't reliable?

I spent around 20 years sailing with a friend on his boat with an Atomic 4 cruising the Pacific NW. The boat was kept on Lake Washington, so we had to motor down the ship canal every time to get to the Sound. We had to stop and maneuver waiting for bridges and negotiate the Hiram Chittendam locks every trip. Summer time quite often is light or no wind so could spend a lot of a trip motoring, sometimes up to Lund and Desolation Sound B.C., about 250 miles. There are narrow passages with lots of current in this area and we didn't worry about the engine failing.

He did normal maintenance on the engine and so it was very reliable, especially since he put in the electronic ignition. The engine coolant was freshwater with a heat exchanger, to me it looked home made.

Every engine start was preceded by turning on the blower, and we went the extra step of sniffing the air coming out of the bilge.

It uses more fuel than a diesel, but was much quieter than the diesel in my boat.

The trip to Hawaii and back didn't really tax the engine as it was only run to charge the batteries.

95% of the boats registered in the U.S. are powerboats, and a lot of those are gas powered.
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Old 24-07-2022, 18:58   #6
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Re: Can one take an endeavor 32 out the Erie with an atomic gas motor

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Originally Posted by Pontoonrob View Post
My endeavor 32 has an atomic 4 gas motor. Can I get through the Erie cannal with that?

Depends on the condition of the engine, its electrical system, and its fuel system (tank, lines, filler, vent). If it's well maintained and in great shape, you're good.
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Old 25-07-2022, 08:46   #7
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Re: Can one take an endeavor 32 out the Erie with an atomic gas motor

There is no restriction on type of motor for the Erie Canal. The only issue is the condition of the motor. That you or your mechanic can answer.

One advantage to gasoline vs a diesel is gas is more readily available on the canal.

Plan on a week to 10 days to transit the entire canal from Tonawanda to Waterford. Do subscribe to the Canal authority's Notice to Mariners as maintenance on the canal often restricts travel in places.

We use Riverview Marina in Catskill to step and unstep our mast. It is the first marina on the creek. There is also a DIY crane in Castleton on Hudson at the yacht club for the more adventurous.
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Old 25-07-2022, 09:10   #8
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Re: Can one take an endeavor 32 out the Erie with an atomic gas motor

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Originally Posted by Pontoonrob View Post
My endeavor 32 has an atomic 4 gas motor. Can I get through the Erie cannal with that? I realize it's not a great saltwater motor but it's what I have. If I like the cruising I'll give the boat away and buy something else. Plan is to get it past possible ice on the ICW next summer, then next fall continue to Florida. I want to see if I like the lifestyle.

That engine is ideal for the Erie Canal. You are speed restricted to 6mph and diesel engines don't like to run unloaded. You hear a lot on noise about the risk with gasoline engines, usually quoted by folks who run propane utilities on the boat. Go figure. My A4 runs somewhat less than 1gal/hr under normal conditions and gasoline is generally more available on the raging Erie. Plan to spend a lot of time exploring the villages along the way...us upstater's love to eat well.
(Oh and visit Moyer Marine and fit electric ignition and a new impeller, possibly an electric fuel pump just as prevention from maintenance charges along the way).
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Old 25-07-2022, 09:33   #9
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Re: Can one take an endeavor 32 out the Erie with an atomic gas motor

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Originally Posted by Pontoonrob View Post
My endeavor 32 has an atomic 4 gas motor. Can I get through the Erie cannal with that? I realize it's not a great saltwater motor but it's what I have. If I like the cruising I'll give the boat away and buy something else. Plan is to get it past possible ice on the ICW next summer, then next fall continue to Florida. I want to see if I like the lifestyle.
yes, an Atomic 4 is capable of making the trip.
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Old 25-07-2022, 09:58   #10
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Re: Can one take an endeavor 32 out the Erie with an atomic gas motor

Your plan sounds workable to me. An Atomic Four is certainly capable of what you describe. My only reservation is your statement that you plan "to give the boat away" if this first stage goes well. That raises the question of the condition of your Atomic Four. Only you can answert that one.
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Old 25-07-2022, 12:07   #11
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Re: Can one take an endeavor 32 out the Erie with an atomic gas motor

My advice to people with older boats that they want to travel some distance with is to closely examine the complete fuel system.
That includes, and especially, the fuel tank. If you have an Atomic 4, your boat is likely built in the 1970's.
The fuel tank, probably mild steel, has likely never been closely inspected or cleaned, it likely has a deep collection of rust flakes and sludge on the bottom.
Day sailing in your local area in mild conditions will likely not stir up the collected gunk on the bottom of the tank.
When you begin travelling some distance it is more likely you will be in rougher conditions at some point that will stir up all that gunk and clog things up and kill the engine.
The engine might be ready to run, but if it cannot get clean fuel it will not.
Clean the tank, even if that means removing it.
Replace the fuel hoses.
Think about adding a T inline with a outboard engine fuel fitting and carry an outboard engine fuel tank and hose that can couple to it for an emergency fuel supply.
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Old 25-07-2022, 12:31   #12
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Re: Can one take an endeavor 32 out the Erie with an atomic gas motor

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It appears your question addresses the suitability of the Atomic 4 motor for motoring some 350 miles, which I think is the length of the Erie Canal.

I don't think it matters what waters are transited in that distance. The question is whether the motor will run for the time required to motor 350 miles at say, 5 knots. Call 5 knots equal to 6MPH. Then 350 Miles will take about 60 hours, or five long, long days!

Can YOU do five long, long days?

I am pretty sure that an Atomic 4 in good shape can handle it, provided you don't push too hard. Watch you temperature gauge constantly. Saltwater has nothing to do with it. I would be very surprised if your motor is not freshwater cooled and that freshwater/antifreeze coolant is not in turn cooled by the water the boat floats in - fresh or salt - via a heat exchanger. If the coolant temperature rises find out why. If necessary shut down and let the beast cool off. Let the beast run at what she's comfortable with, maybe about 1,800RPM and accept that RPM governs - you go at whatever speed through the water that RPM produces.

I don't remember the fuel consumption of the Atomic 4 anymore. Look it up on google. Know your tankage, and using that and the fuel consumption rate to work out how far you can go on 3/4 of a tank. Find out before leaving if there are fuel stops along the canal with a distance between them that you can make on 3/4 tank. You might have to augment your range by carrying spare fuel in 5 gallon cans on deck.

Having transited the canal you still have to get down the Hudson, don't you? But if Pete Seeger could sail on the Hudson in Clearwater just as people sailed on the Hudson in days of yore, probably you can too.

It's a pretty simple logistical exercise.

TrentePieds
You won't be fighting any significant currents, so as long as the motor is in good running condition, it's a complete non-issue. Going on about coolant temp is a red herring as the OP didn't indicate any operational issues with the motor.

Range isn't a big deal as there are plenty of places to get fuel and there is no reason to try and do it in 5 days. There are plentiful and cheap places to stop all along the route. Not that I would recommend it but I'm betting you could do it never filling the gas tank above 1/4...and never come close to running out before the next fuel stop.

When we do it again, we are likely going to set aside at least 2 months...not because we couldn't do it faster but because it's such a fun trip.

As boatpoker indicated, you will have to pull the mast and either strap it on deck or have it transported. There are places at either end which can help with that.

Now if the motor is not in good operating condition, that is a big problem. With the mast down, it's all motoring and you need to be able to maneuver thru around 30-40 locks along with tying up each night. If you can't rely on the motor or your handling skills, it's going to be tough.
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Old 25-07-2022, 13:39   #13
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Re: Can one take an endeavor 32 out the Erie with an atomic gas motor

Quote:
Originally Posted by TrentePieds View Post
It appears your question addresses the suitability of the Atomic 4 motor for motoring some 350 miles, which I think is the length of the Erie Canal.

I don't think it matters what waters are transited in that distance. The question is whether the motor will run for the time required to motor 350 miles at say, 5 knots. Call 5 knots equal to 6MPH. Then 350 Miles will take about 60 hours, or five long, long days!

Can YOU do five long, long days?

I am pretty sure that an Atomic 4 in good shape can handle it, provided you don't push too hard. Watch you temperature gauge constantly. Saltwater has nothing to do with it. I would be very surprised if your motor is not freshwater cooled and that freshwater/antifreeze coolant is not in turn cooled by the water the boat floats in - fresh or salt - via a heat exchanger. If the coolant temperature rises find out why. If necessary shut down and let the beast cool off. Let the beast run at what she's comfortable with, maybe about 1,800RPM and accept that RPM governs - you go at whatever speed through the water that RPM produces.

I don't remember the fuel consumption of the Atomic 4 anymore. Look it up on google. Know your tankage, and using that and the fuel consumption rate to work out how far you can go on 3/4 of a tank. Find out before leaving if there are fuel stops along the canal with a distance between them that you can make on 3/4 tank. You might have to augment your range by carrying spare fuel in 5 gallon cans on deck.

Having transited the canal you still have to get down the Hudson, don't you? But if Pete Seeger could sail on the Hudson in Clearwater just as people sailed on the Hudson in days of yore, probably you can too.

It's a pretty simple logistical exercise.

TrentePieds
Could you be reading something into the question. The OP mentions nothing about time constraints, no reason it would need to be five long, long days ? It could be five weeks if he chooses.
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Old 25-07-2022, 13:58   #14
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Re: Can one take an endeavor 32 out the Erie with an atomic gas motor

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Could you be reading something into the question. The OP mentions nothing about time constraints, no reason it would need to be five long, long days ? It could be five weeks if he chooses.
5 Days is impossible. 38 locks between Tonawanda and Waterford with locks operating between 0700 and 1700hrs (except early and late in the season when they are opened longer hours) is not doable.

Why would anyone want to rush through this beautiful system. We have been in this system since May 20th and still have not seen everything there is to see.
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Old 25-07-2022, 14:01   #15
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Re: Can one take an endeavor 32 out the Erie with an atomic gas motor

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Could you be reading something into the question. The OP mentions nothing about time constraints, no reason it would need to be five long, long days ? It could be five weeks if he chooses.
Five days to do the entire length of the Erie Canal is an excessively optimistic estimate. Most of the locks on the are only open from 0700 to 1700 and there are 34 of them. The canal is from the first lock in Waterford to the last lock in Lockport is a bit over 320 miles. To complete the canal in 5 days it would be necessary to cover about 70 miles a day and clear an average of 7 locks a day.

The best we did last year was 13 locks in one day on the far eastern end of the canal where the locks are pretty close together and we had a 1 to 2 knot favorable current and no traffic. Five of the locks were the Waterford Flight, 160 feet in elevation lost in 2 miles.
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