Casco Bay Bound
Early this morning, Joe and I got a ride from Jeff Fetterer, our Office Manager, to Great Bay Marine in Newington, NH, where the boat was docked. We warmed up the boat and headed off down river and out to the mouth of PortsmouthHarbor. Once outside Portsmouth, we revved up the engine, but she wouldn’t go any faster than 1900 RPM. Baffled, we both checked the engine for any obvious issues. She sounded fine, but we still couldn’t get the speed we wanted and knew she could do. The throttle would advance halfway as the engine roared, but when we went beyond half throttle, it wouldn’t go any faster. One concern was whether we might be causing any harm to the boat by running it with this issue, and another was a looming storm coming up the coast with dark clouds approaching on the horizon. Quickly, Joe called our master mechanic, John Pride, who works with Bill Hartley, our engine surveyor. John is known to be one of the best diesel mechanics in Maine. Surprisingly, John answered his cell phone, and we told him our dilemma. John said he would call us right back. So now what? Do we sit here in the middle of the ocean and just wait for John to call back? About ten minutes later, which seamed like an eternity, Joe’s phone rang. It was John. He was pretty sure our problem was an issue with the blower diaphragm or fuel air sensor. John said we’d be ok bringing it back to Portland and we wouldn’t do any damage. We were relieved to hear the news and headed for our destination. We got in to South Portland just as the sun was setting. The sky had a beautiful orange glow as we passed between Ram Island Light and Portland Headlight. We docked at Breakwater Marina feeling pretty good about our maiden voyage in what was soon to become the new Casco Baykeeper vessel.