So often aboard my expensive little hole in the water I scratch my head and say to myself "self, now aint that odd."
Well, the other day was just one of those times. I consider myself pretty good at keeping an eye on things and maintaining my boat in good order, so it was with a little surprise that I went to check the ATF fluid and could not find the dipstick in its usual location, e.g in the fill hole.
To my surprise the dipstick was lying under the prop shaft and showed a bit of corrosion as though it had been there awhile. The trans was dry of fluid (at least low enough to not register with the dipstick in). This is the point where I say "self, now aint that odd."
I check the trans fluid every third or fourth trip out, and fortunately typically only motor a few hundred yards before the puffy white things are out and the motor is off. I know the prop still rotates and I am hopeful that the fluid was merely low and not dry, and that sailing with the trans in neutral doesn't spin the gears. In any event I topped off the fluid, ran through forward and reverse, pulled in and out of the slip a few times, and all appears well. Still, for the life of me can't figure out how the dipstick got to be out in the first place. I rarely have to add any fluid so typically I never let go of the stick. I pull it out once to wipe it, then reinsert to get a reading then tighten it in place to finish.
Man, gettin' old is tough! Gonna have to ask the Admiral to help me keep an eye on the dipstick, would hate to lose another one.