As we mentioned in the last article we found out that one of our propellers was not on the shaft.  With one engine having a working propeller we were able to anchor with out too much problem, but for long term cruising we needed to fix it.  At Black Point we had good internet access so after Kris did a ton of research and talked to many Volvo suppliers we came to find out the 2 bladed folding prop that we had, and is shown in the picture is no longer being made.

Our choices were to upgrade to a three bladed folding prop or go with a two bladed fixed, second picture.  The cost lead us to the fixed prop.  Not sure if we would have an issue with two propellers not matching so we went ahead and ordered two of the fixed props.

There is a company in Fort Lauderdale, Watermakers Air, that makes daily trips out to Staniel Cay and will bring out parts when they have room.    We were able to order the parts on Wednesday, and Thursday morning they were in Ft. Lauderdale, and by Thursday afternoon they were in the Bahamas at Staniel Cay, 5 miles north of us.  Dean made a  30 minute trip in the dingy to pick up the part.  Well we did not have enough gas to motor there so paid $35 for 5 gallons of gas.  With that Dean was able to make a fast trip up and back with the new propellers.  Also refilled the gas in case we have any other trips to make.

Now normally to work on the boat you either haul the boat in a boat yard or scuba on the boat.  Another option is to "beach" the boat at close to high tide and when the tide is out you can work on the boat until the next high tide.  This works great with a catamaran as long as you have enough tide and a nice soft sandy beach.  Since we do not have a local boat yard and our snorkeling would not work we decided to "beach" the boat.  We marked out our prime location and moved the boat into position, that sounds easier than it is.  With both bow and stern anchors and a bit of help from the dingy we were in position for the tide to go out.

Putting the new propeller on the empty shaft went quick, 5 minutes or so.  On the second shaft we had to take off the old, a bit of elbow grease and hammer worked well but took a bit more time.  In the end we were able to mount two new fixed propellers on the boat prior to the tide coming back in.  In fact Dean was able to apply some new bottom paint at the water line as well.  The bottom paint comes off as you clean the boat so normally every two years you need to reapply the paint.

In the pictures of our boat, it doesn"t look very far out of the water, but it was, we did not take pictures till we were done with all the work, and by then the tide was coming back in - sorry.

You never know what adventure is ahead of you, but we are happy to have this one behind us, and lots of good lessons learned.




Update: 02/10/12 missing a prop

2 bladed folding prop - bronze

2 bladed fixed prop - alumninum

What a catamaran looks like on a beach - this is
not our catamaran

Our boat on the hard getting some paint

You  can see we are in shallow water - the water is waist high on Derek.  Usually the water is up to the top of the green on the bottom of boat.