Lefkas Marina engine issues

Rob and Jacky Black
Thu 10 Oct 2013 11:30
38 47.2 N 20 43.9 E
Lefkas Marina Sunday 22nd –Tuesday 24th September
We had a good night at anchor but needed to get back to Lefkas town to meet up with the technical manager of Sailand with whom we had arranged a meeting on Monday morning to discuss the engine service we need. We had planned to arrive off the town quay around mid-day to try and secure a place on this popular mooring. However things did not go quite according to plan. On the way through the canal at about 1045 the engine stopped and wouldn’t re start. It couldn’t have happened in a worse place – the narrowest part of the canal and it was particularly busy at this time as there were loads of charter boats and flotilla boats heading south for the start of their holidays!
We anchored and put up the anchor ball then Jacky went below to change the primary fuel filter and check out the pipes for blockages. However after some 45 minutes we still couldn’t get the engine to start. Rob spent this time on the deck calling to people that we were broken down as some seemed totally unaware of what was going on! Eventually we accepted a tow from a friendly Dutch chap on his Najad 46 and he eventually left us upwind of the fuel berth in the marina so we were able to drift onto it with the help of the bowthrust. Jacky spent another hour trying to get the engine to start to no avail so we called the engineers from Sailand who were with us in 20 minutes (despite it being a Sunday lunchtime!) After a couple of hours they got the engine to start and said that the main tank had been empty but suspected there were other issues. We agreed that they should come back in the morning to examine the tanks and get to the bottom of the problems.
Meanwhile Jacky had been off visiting our friends Brian and Gerry Dandridge who had arrived earlier from the UK and were on their boat on another pontoon. It was lovely to see them after 8 months - they are great friends who live near us and we have raced and cruised with them in our club CCRC for over 30 years.
Monday morning saw us up early to strip out the back cabin so the engineer could access the main fuel tanks. They spent a couple of hours removing the fuel and then cleaning both tanks as well as checking all the fuel lines and filters. They discovered evidence of fuel bug in the bottom of the main tank and small bits of black debris (we think this was bits of stickaflex used to reseal the small tank back in 2006 when we also had a case of fuel bug) in the second tank. The engine was then run to test all was OK and then we were able to move to a space in the marina. Having decided to get several technical jobs done in this marina as well as the sails serviced and repaired we decided that it might be worth staying here rather than taking the boat back to Mesalongi for the winter. To cut a long story short we took out an annual contract with a good price if we stayed in the water. This then solved the issue of where we would leave the boat next summer for our trip home in late July/August as well.
Having set up dates for the sails to be removed and the engine service to be carried out as well as the holding tank removal and replacement we were free to set off for some more sailing. We decided to head for Nidri which we had heard about from friends as being a good place to spend a few days and celebrate Jacky’s birthday.