WildlifeSAIL - Log No: 24

Date: 2003-01-07
Time: 20:00
Location: Le Marin, Martinique
Latitude: 14.2800 N
Longitude: 60.5200 W
COG(true course over ground): docked on Pier No. 6|
Ship's Log(distance sailed, nm): no data
Sail Status: stowed
Weather State: star-filled night
Wind Speed(knots): no data
Sea State(Beaufort): no data
Barometric Pressure(millibar): no data
Water Temperature(C): 27
Air Temperature(C): 26

Text Author: John-Frederick Thye

A defect in the engine block of our one year old Volvo-Penta MD-22 LB diesel engine is delaying the Wildlife catamaran in Le Marin, Martinique, as the crew wait eagerly for the repairs to be completed by a specialized Volvo-Penta mechanic at Mecanique Plaisance.

The engine had begun to consume large amounts of oil, leading us to contact our ship builder, Catana, as well as the engine manufacturer, Volvo-Penta. Pictures in our Photo Gallery show the removal of the engine from Wildlife's aft starboard engine compartment. The engine ways 400 kg or 1000 lb, and we had to design a pulley system over our boom to lift the engine safely out of its compartment.

The removal went well, no scratches or bruises! Tests in the shop showed that our cylinder chambers showed scoff marks from excessive piston friction. The mechanic evaluated it as an engine defect, but could not find the root of the problem. This does seem to be a problem that has occurred before in our engine design's track record.

Our motor is a Volvo-Penta MD-22 LB Diesel of which the original engine block is manufactured in England by Perkins. After over a week of heated negotiations with our engine manufacturer, Volvo-Penta, seems confident that the problem can be repaired, even though the local mechanics were less optimistic. We negotiated with Volvo and Catana for over a week on what best to do, after which time constraints caused us to accept Volvo's recommendation for repair.

Our hopes now lie with the capability of the local mechanics. Flo and I are keeping our fingers crossed.


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