The stuffing box was critical. That needed to be replaced. Fortunately, I'd read up on the process, it was important but not expensive if we could find the hose that needed to be replaced. I had had a good talk with PeteW from pearson365.com who lives in my neighborhood in Phoenix. Pete has owned his boat for almost 20 years, is a professional electrical engineer, and is Kareful. He told me he had a stuffing box hose if I needed one. I called him and took him up on his offer. He overnighted the $20 hose ($79 shipping). THANKS PETE!!! and Jey got the old one off and the metal parts separated and lubed up for the install.
I was expecting the box in the 10 am delivery- it didn't arrive. If this didn't make it, we needed a plan B. We called around town- no one had the exact specification, but there was a Goodyear Rubber distributor in St. Pete (85 miles away) that had a 6-ply marine hose, not the exact part, but pretty close. I drove down and had just paid for the Goodyear hose when Jey called and said the box had arrived in the 4 pm delivery and he was done for the day.
Jey had done the first coat of bottom paint and sent this beautiful picture. Pa Freddy’s Black Bottom.
I now had a spare stuffing box hose (Holy mackeral, stainless steel hose clamps can be EXPENSIVE). Rumor was there was a wonderful Friday night all-you-can eat fish dinner at Gator Cove in Homossassa. The place was packed and I ate while reading up on boat projects online in the pool room. Great food, ambiance different than my usual and I was back to the boat by 9:30.
Again, sleeping on the boat with my wonderful sleeping bag. Again worrying about the boat’s Icky quotient. And the blisters, and the soft spots. Sleep came and went. Finally got out of my warm spot and “commenced to cleanin’ ”.