Friday, August 31, 2018

Saving Our Back With A Motor Hoist!


When thinking of the reality of living on our boat full-time and having to lift our dinghy motor on and off Nirvana's stern, it sounded like a PITA .. and our back! When we looked up Garhauer's motor hoist, we figured the price was well worth the convenience of easily lifting "Mr. T" off/on our boat. We know that cruising will sometimes be exhausting, and that there will be times we'll feel lazy. A hoist will make it less likely that we'll take the lazy way out and neglect our motor.

Garhauer has a great reputation, and we weren't disappointed when we received our engine hoist. It looked to be of good quality, and it was pretty easy to install. The first step was installing the "ball" and backing plate on our stern, which would hold the stainless steel tube. Ken used butyl tape for the installation, and the hardest part was having Ken squeeze into our rear lazarette to install the backing plate. I knew I'd get him to do yoga one way or another!


Once the "ball" had set, Ken simply attached the two pieces of stainless steel tubing, secured the black sleeve over the joint, then placed the stainless steel tube with collapsible arm on to the ball. He then attached the tube to our rail with the hardware provided, and that was pretty much it! The hoist also came with 60 ft of line, so we were set.


The big question was, "How the heck are we gonna get "Mr. T" to our boat?! The motor had been sitting on a saw horse in our storage shed, and I managed to help Ken lift it into the back of our truck. After a trip to our daughter's garage for some TLC on our motor (post soon), we then lifted "Mr. T" back into the truck and drove to our marina. As we drove to the marina, thoughts of carrying "Mr. T" upright through the parking lot, past the condos, and down our dock with Ken had me a little worried. "Mr. T" is just under 50 lbs. and I wasn't sure I'd be able to carry it too far.


As luck would have it, a sailing neighbor on our dock pulled into the parking lot right after we had parked and were working on getting "Mr. T" out of the truck. I can't tell ya how relieved I was when he offered to help Ken carry the motor to our boat! I grabbed my phone and snapped a quick photo (blurry, I know) before they disappeared. The boating community is always ready to lend a hand!


In no time, "Mr. T" was perched on our motor mount with no mishaps. The next step was to bring our dinghy out of storage and hope it still held air! 

 With the hoist installed and a harness on the motor (yellow strap in 1st photo is gone), we had no doubt that the money spent on this was well spent. Not only will it make handling our motor easier, but it will also be helpful in lifting water, fuel, and other heavy items onto the boat. My back is already feeling better!

Hasta luego .. until then. Mid-Life Cruising!

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