Mackay marina is easily the nicest marina visited so far.
It has a very narrow entry with high granite breakwalls ensuring there is minimal chance of storms causing havoc and there are a large number of berths available.
The price to stay in the berths is very nearly the cheapest on the coast and the buildings very well fitted out.


There is the largest boat lift I have ever seen and everything looks new and clean.
On the second day in the marina we hired a courtesy car called the “bomb-a-dore”.
Expecting some rusting heap from the 80’s we were surprised at the 5 year old commodore loaned to us.
We went and did a much needed food shop as while we had much mulloway we needed all the other stuff used in cooking.


As we were doing that Scott organised service kits for the engines and a vacuum pump to remove the old oil from the sumps.
We spent the rest of the day just checking out Mackay, getting to know the place and enjoying the 35 degree weather.
Thursday morning saw Scott changing the fuel filters and diagnosing the source of the engine failure.


The factors causing the problem were as listed:

1. A lack of a functioning vent pipe on the fuel tank.
Which led to the tank creating a large amount of vacuum each time the motors were run.
The cause of the blocked vent was simply corrosion and the solution a 6mm drill.

2. An air leak somewhere in the fuel system.
The cause not determined.

3. The fuel gauge was not responding correctly.
A result of the fuel tank being horribly contorted forcing the sender unit to jam into the corner of the tank.

4. Insufficient fuel reaching the engine(s).
There was so much contraction of the fuel tank that we simply ran out of fuel.
The port engine was able to run because the supply pipe was still able to reach the last 5L of diesel in the tank when the starboard engines supply pipe had run dry.

5. The fuel tank was horribly contorted.
The fuel tank was 210L when fitted but when contorted by vacuum it was barely able to hold 75L of fuel.
The solution was to remove the tank and set it in the sun for a while so the PVC would soften up.
Applying 30L of boiling water to the most contorted section of the tank and then allowing the sun time to do the rest.

Something that at first looked like it was going to cost heaps to rectify ended up costing a few dollars for a new fuel filler pipe which had to be shortened to be removed.
Sometimes a little common sense and mechanical know how and things work out well.

Scott did very well.






Text and photos by Fingers 2015

3 Replies to “Mackay”

  1. Scott, looks like a great adventure. In fact, an adventure of a lifetime. It reminds me of two fellers we knew in Darwin back in the 70s who went from Island to Island delivering stores on a boat called “The Restless”.

    1. we update the site when ever we have a wi-fi connection. There should be new info every few days (we normaly get wi-fi from a local pub….. 2 birds with 1 stone.)

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