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Old 05-09-2010
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Originally Posted by BarryL View Post

That is a pretty comprehensive list. My question, is what do you do if some of the items 'fail' the test? Do you back out of the trip, insist that the items be corrected immediately, forget about it and take off, or what? What if the owner tells you he doesn't have an extra impeller, the fire extinguishers are expired, and he can't find the emergency tiller?

You read my mind exactly. I was asking myself the same question.
In fact I would expect that many things on the list would not be officially up to "code".
As SD said depending on the trip each item has to be evaluated as a go no-go.
Even if you decide to take the chance at least if you knew what was on board and where and what was particularly dogey you could mentally prepair yourself. No sense looking for an emergency tiller if their is none for example.
For example take Caleb's stuffing box dripping at rest. I'm going for an 8 hr. boat move. I would take the boat out for a spin around the bay for 20 minutes and see how much was leaking. Check the battery twice, check the alternator, check the bilge pump and check the manual pump.
If it filled up the bilge 5 gallons worth in 20 min, I would probably scrub the mission. If it was only a pint or so I would probably take the chance.

There is an accumulative factor also.
Last Fri I went to help move a boat (Pearson 26) up river from one marina to another only one half mile.
There last time we tried it there were 4 things wrong:
  1. Outboard 25 years old would not idle properly which meant it stalled a lot and had trouble shifting and restarting.
  2. The tide was running two knots down river.
  3. The wind picked up to 20 knot gusts
  4. I had the boat tied off in the slip and had the husband put it in gear as we were checking the motor. The wife got very excited when the engine revved and the boat swung a foot in the slip.

I would probably gone for it with only one of those problems but with all four I scrubbed it for another day even though it was only a 20 minute trip.
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