1st tow after HG/engine work...

IdahoDoug

 
 
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Well, the engine work appears successful at this point as over the weekend I towed the boat and there were several difficult hills where it was really working hard and no leaks. In fact, due to the low Fall water level it was the trickiest and steepest paved ramp I've ever been on, plus the boat trailer wheels dropped off the end of the paved ramp into a huge hole. On retrieval, I let the truck idle up to full operating temperature before heaving the boat/trailer out of that hole. The timing advance has definitely improved the broad mid range power. Starts faster too, which I suspect is again the throttle body cleaning.

It was a spectacular day with our plan to go up the St Joe river at the south end of Lake Coeur d'Alene to see the colors on the trees. This is the highest navigable waterway in the world, with an altitude of 2128 feet. Glass smooth, tree lined, 200 yards wide with mostly pristine woods on both sides the entire way and flanked by mountains. We nosed up on a mud bank for a picnic before continuing all the way up to the little town of St. Maries under windless blue skies.

We stayed a little too long and came back down the river (20 miles each way) at twilight. I'm a conservative boater and this is something I wouldn't do in the summer when there would be other boats once in a while if you got in trouble but this was downright desolate and the cold air was flowing down off the surrounding mountains. After a bit I was relaxed as the 454's deep steady hum reassured me. Everyone aboard (my wife and two kids, another family of 4 and my bro in law) fell silent as we began to appreciate the uniquness of what we were seeing.

The Western sky was a huge range of yellows, reds and deep purples and the tops of the mountains were just kissed by sunlight. Beavers were beginning their nightly chores and I carefully dodged around their V wakes while the kids pointed and laughed. We saw dozens of blue herons standing stoically on shore, and Vs of Canadian Geese flew overhead. At one point, we came around a curve into a floating armada of tens of thousands of small loon-like birds and they parted like water as I cut the throttle.

Arriving at the ramp in complete darkness, the boat's navigation lights lit up the tiny ramp and dock area well enough for us to move about. Took me several tries to get the trailer positioned right and watching it plunge off the end of the concrete again made me nervous as now I'd be needing enough power to lift 6000lbs up a foot in a foot of forward travel. No need to worry as it majestically, if awkwardly popped up over the cement lip. Unfortunately, the boat was badly crooked and 3 successive attempts wouldn't straighten it - one hole was much deeper than the other and the trailer kept lifting the boat one side at a time.

I had to pull it out that way, and then the rig had to sit in the roadway for a half hour while my 4yo son used the bathroom in the little bar since the steep land meant a narrow road and no shoulders. My 7yo daughter and I toured the bar's ample collection of stuffed wildlife including a 9 foot polar bear. I caught a glimpse of the 80 out the window, flashers clicking away brightly (I have halogens in the blinkers) and looking like she was just made to work and haul loads like this under any condition. Warmed my heart.

Later that night, after I dropped the family off I went to a local lake's boat ramp to straighten the boat out before parking it at the house around 11pm. Another adventure brought to my family and I courtesy of the Cruiser.

DougM
 

Brentbba

Former Golfer
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Wow - sounds like a beautiful time. Glad the cruiser performed as it should also!
 

flintknapper

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Agreed.

Arya Ebrahimi said:
You have a way with words my friend. :cheers:


I've noticed this as well. Doug, not only "has a way with words", but is very observant too, has a deep appreciation for the outdoors, and an innate ability to enjoy "the moment".

Who needs pics, when its been perfectly described. I can see all in my head as I read the words. Beautiful!



Good for you Doug!!!!!!!!!
 

Altaf

 
 
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Feb 20, 2004
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DC area
Nice job on the head gasket. I see you wasted no time getting the Cruiser working again. Wish I had your motor skills!
 

Scamper

 
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I clearly misread the title of this thread :doh: I was prepared for a tale of woe about how the truck lay lame along the road after some new malady afflicted it. Glad to know I was wrong :D

Very nice description Doug. Makes me wish I was there, but then your words were the next best thing; I could see from your words what you saw. Thanks.

Tom
 

IdahoDoug

 
 
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Tim,

My piston tops just had a uniform thin coating of black carbon, and i just wiped them off. Haven't heard any light load pinging even with the timing advanced a few degrees.

DougM
 

Riley

 
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Jun 20, 2003
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Fort Langley, BC
The fall certainly is a special time of year. I get a kick out of people who think the outdoors is closed after labor day when in fact it's just getting warmed up.

Nice writing Doug.
 

IdahoDoug

 
 
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Here's a picture of our two friends, taken by my bro in law at 50mph or so:
 
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