At 10:30 Friday morning we got off the boat so Mark and the guys who help him at the marina could get the boat in position for removing the generator. It hasn't rained in Pensacola for a long, long time. That morning it poured..but only for a little while. It ended up staying cloudy but dry until late in the day, allowing the forklift portion of the installation to be handled without everyone getting soaked.
We made a video of the forklift procedure removing the generator and I hope to have it posted on YouTube soon. What was amazing to me about the whole thing is that the boat was floating out in the haul-out bay. It was held in position by people standing on each side dock holding lines attached to the bow and the stern. Thankfully the winds were mild, because anything more could have made for some dicey times. The team that worked with Mark has had a lot of experience working together doing just this very operation. It was like watching a conductor at work to see Mark guiding the process. Bottom line: not a mark was made on the boat. Not a drop of oil or fuel. Nada.
Here's the forklift set up and ready to go. Gary would take the driver's seat soon.
Wayne, checking out the new generator as it sat in the dry storage area.
Wayne peeking in the boat window when Mark and the crew were getting the old generator ready to be lifted out.
And, finally, two happy boat owners when the old generator had successfully been removed.
At 3:30 Friday afternoon they announced the new generator had been bolted down and the crew left leaving Mark to complete the install. Mark said it would go quickly from this point on.
Six hours later... he turned the boat back over to us, still not quite finished. He said there were just a lot of things he had to do to customize the fit. At one point Wayne went down to tell him not to worry about trying to get the install done in time for us to leave. We wanted him to take all the time he needed. We'd go to a hotel that evening and wait until tomorrow. But...Mark kept going until he just needed to quit. Mark, Wayne, Lucy, and I were exhausted.
Wayne and I had set up camp in the marina office area where the laundry room and restrooms are located. We pulled a couple of chairs from the bathroom/shower area, got our dog from her crate on the boat, a.k.a., "doggie prison," ordered takeout from the Oar House, and passed away the time from about 5:30 until Mark came in to tell us he was quitting for the night.
There was a bulletin board in front of us and we pretty much memorized the notices on there by the time we left. There were a lot of warnings and guidelines for dealing with the red lionfish, a predator fish that is threatening other species in the area. Apparently they are very tasty...so one memo encouraged consumers to request red lionfish when at local restaurants. *Note to self*
This is a photo of the red lionfish one diver caught in one afternoon off a local wreck. He said there were about 500 more down there.
The next morning Mark was back at work by 9:30 and spent three hours finishing the installation and then giving Wayne detailed information about the use and care of the unit. Given the delays in shipment, Phasor obviously was very concerned about customer satisfaction (for us, yes, and especially for Mark). Not only did they wave the shipping charges, but we received a unit with a higher output, 8 kw instead of 6.5 kw, and an industrial rating, meaning it is has the capability to run non-stop.
We can't say enough about Mark Hyma. We count ourselves lucky to have found him...and doubly lucky to have had him take on our project. He has an innate sense of what to do technically and the aptitude to absorb and recall volumes of information. Mark has a working relationship with Bahia Mar Marina. He takes care of their equipment and in exchange he can use the marina's staff and resources at no cost. For us that meant that the marina's part in Friday's experience (including the forklift and staff) was covered by Mark. When you see the video, you will know that this whole team, Mark and the marina staff, is first rate!
We spent Saturday afternoon cleaning up the boat and a bit more laundry. We ordered pizza from Papa Johns...and watched the local boat parade!