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After securing our kayaks on our new racks yesterday, we raised anchor and began heading east towards the BVI. Our first order of business was to acquire internet as our guest Julie had a couple of real estate deals that she was tending to. Before we headed south, we had met with Barry Payant of ALGLink. Barry offers BVI based internet using Digicel towers and we had received good reviews of his service from our friend Steve on Alternate Latitude. After receiving the details of what he provides, we had planned to get hooked up once we made it back to the Virgins. Now that we are here, we just had to meet with him to make it happen.

Sunday morning slacklining on Honeymoon Beach.

With a few emails to coordinate the details, we made plans to meet with Barry in West End Tortola, the port where we would be clearing the boat into the BVI. After grabbing a mooring ball in the bay, Rebecca and I planned to jump in the dinghy and quickly run to the customs office to complete the formalities before picking up Barry on the other side of the bay. Of course, some times quickly just doesn’t happen. After lowering the dinghy and climbing aboard, I was disappointed to find that the engine would not start when I turned the key. The lights on the console would illuminate but nothing would happen at the engine. It was obvious to me that it was an electrical issue so I set about trying to troubleshoot it.

Rebecca brought me my multimeter and I first checked the battery voltage. All was well there. I looked for loose wires between the battery and the engine. None to be found. I removed the cowling and looked for any obvious signs of trouble on the engine. Still I came away with nothing. I even removed a number of internal fuses and checked their continuity. All were good. At this point I was kind of stuck so I did what many people hate to do, I checked the manual.

As I only have the Owner’s Manual for the engine and not a true Service Manual, I did not have high hopes that I would find anything of use. As I read through the troubleshooting checklist and got to number 5 (I had already checked 1-4) a light bulb went off in my head: make sure the engine is in neutral. Doh! When we brought Michael and Julie back to the boat the night before, Julie had stumbled a bit in the tender and when I caught her from falling, my knee had inadvertently bumped the shifter. As soon as I read that line in the manual I remembered that happening. When I jumped back in the dinghy I found that, sure enough, the shifter was a couple of milliliters out of neutral. Sigh. I am not embarrassed to admit all this but that is only because I was the one who figured it out. If I had called for help and found out that that was the problem, I think I would have quit right then!

Anyway… once the engine was purring like normal, Rebecca and I completed our check in duties and then zipped off with Michael and Julie to rendezvous with Barry. Barry is definitely a pro and after bringing him back to the boat, he had his system installed and running within minutes. First impressions: it is fast! We have a service plan which gives us 50 gigs of data and we can connect up to 20 devices to our wireless router. Our guests will have no problem sharing all their exciting pics with their friends back home and of course, we’ll have no problem updating this blog, other than finding the time to do it that is.

18 Comments

  1. Mike….Do you have a web site to this product

  2. I’m in a diesel technology class right now and I have learned that all great diesel mechanics always read the manual first.
    🙂 glade to see it was such an easy fix.

  3. I sympathise about the engine. Plus all the other similar silly slips that we all do.
    🙁
    🙂

    Mike

  4. One of my former bosses called me into his office because his printer wasn’t working. After a little trouble shooting I discovered his problem. No Ink!

  5. One of the things I love about the folks on One Love….

    Love it that you are honest enough to tell stories on and about yourself! Those are the best learning experiences. We can all see ourselves doing it too.

  6. I have vivid memories of nearly ending up on the rocks because I had left the fuel valve closed after changing a filter. It seems there was just enough in the lines to get me from slip to between the jetties. Both engines quit about 15 seconds apart, yup, I’d left both valves shut.

    Can you anchor very fast?

    Yup, it can be that simple.

  7. Been there done that……..just two weeks ago actually. Went to start the main engine, you described it perfectly, wires check, batteries check, got the meter out, start button check, but then the meter went whack and I realized the 9V battery plug thingy in it needed to be replaced and re-soldered. So before I went out on that mission I emailed the PO and asked what he thought. After I came back, Vicky soldered on the new plug and the multi-meter was fixed good as new. I read my email from the PO which said…must not be in neutral and sure enough, I felt the idiot halo big and bold, shiny bright above my head!

  8. I’ve done that several times after power-loading my boat on it’s trailer and turning off the ignition without remembering to take the engine out of gear. I got home to do the fresh water flush and the engine wouldn’t start. The first time I did it, it took quite a while to troubleshoot.

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