I had a very, very blonde moment one morning. I was checking and emptying my strainers. I had shut the through-hull, which allows water to come into the engine to keep it cool. In my blonde moment, I forgot to shut the through-hull. I started the engine and within a few minutes it overheated. I turned the engine off, and shut the through hull, hoping I had not done any damage. It appeared everything was alright. After about 8 hours of heading down the river, my engine didn't sound right and I had black smoke coming into the cabin from the engine compartment. My temperature gauge was at a normal level. I pulled to the side of the river and dropped my anchor. I also noticed the rug next to the engine compartment was wet... and there was black everywhere. I called my son, Dean, who suggested it was the exhaust. I then called our Towboat captain, John, from Southport. I explained there was a hole in the muffler. He gave me suggestions on how to patch it. I was able to head downstream to a marina, about 16 miles further down river. The closest repair facility was about 136 miles down river. The duct tape and hose clamps kept the exhaust out of the cabin until I could make the repairs.
|Hole in muffler, probably weakened when the engine overheated.|
Sometimes, we stay in places we don't expect and we meet awesome people along the way. This is another one of those times. Tall Timbers is one of my favorite stops on this loop. The little town, Havana, is within walking distance from the marina. I was able to ride my bike to the hardware store. Bob wanted to be there when I left, so he could make sure my exhaust was working correctly. I left Wednesday around lunchtime, after cleaning up my boat. I had black smudges everywhere, from my engine work. As I headed down the river, I checked the engine compartment a couple times, and everything appears to be working well.
Everyone talks about the Asian Carp. I have been fortunate so far,not to have them flying into my boat. I see them jump every once in a while. There are also pontoon boats, who take people out to shoot the carp with spear-gun bows. I have also heard they are "good eat'n".
|The engines stir up the Asian Carp, which jump. Then the guys on the back shoot at them.|
|The Mighty Mississippi|