The engine represents a large portion of the value of a sailboat. A new one professionally installed costs as much as a small car. If you’re buying a used boat, therefore, it will pay you to get a good mechanic to survey the engine.
A well-equipped mechanic can use a heat sensor to check for blocked water passages, a bad thermostat, and other cooling problems. A compression test will uncover bad rings or worn cylinders. Smoke, steam, and water coming from the exhaust all tell their own stories to the expert and an electrical test will determine the state of the batteries and the amount of charge from the alternator.
A good mechanic will check the fuel filters for signs of water and algae in the fuel tank. Engine alignment, the condition of hoses,
the color of the engine oil, the amount of corrosion, the condition of the engine mounts--all these things should be checked. It’s money well spent.
It’s a sure bet, though, that not every mechanic has all the equipment needed for a thorough survey. Make sure yours has.
Today’s ThoughtThe bad workmen, who form the majority of the operatives in many branches of industry, are decidedly of the opinion that bad workmen ought to receive the same wages as good.
-- John Stuart Mill, On Liberty
Tailpiece“Why the tears?”
“Oh, Johnny, the dog ate your supper.”
“There, there, my dear. I’ll buy you a new dog first thing tomorrow”
(Drop by every Monday, Wednesday, Friday for a new Mainly about Boats column.)