I am making progress with the linkage simulator. I now have a guess as to how to write the code for the sliding connectors. Waiting a while before trying to write code sometimes lets it work itself out in the back of my head somehow.

The boat didn’t work well for an overnight trip. First the problem then the real problem:

The problem was that the boat has a leak. Apparently, my brother couldn’t figure out where it was coming from or never bothered to try. he never took it out overnight so it makes sense to ignore it. Well, in light of the actual problem, ignoring it was not such a good thing. We camped and left the boat pumping itself out every 1/2 hour until morning when the battery was dead. Some young guy (boy I feel old saying that) was generous enough to give us a jump. Some other jerk said he didn’t even know where his battery was located but he really just didn’t want to help. We got back OK after the jump start and had a nice ride in the process. The lake was pretty in the morning.

Now the real problem. The leak is in the boot that covers the U-joints for the outdrive. Online, I find that this is fairly serious. So serious that it can not only destroy the U-joints but it can also destroy the bearings and require that the engine be removed to get things apart and maybe even require a new outdrive. The document I found online says that the special tools to fix all of this cost over $2k so someone who already has that stuff needs to do the work. If this costs more than a few hundred dollars, I’m not sure who will pay for it. I know that I can’t!

I was surprised at how exact the symptoms were described online. The noise I heard when going straight and turning, and the water in the boat, were described perfectly on the outdrives.com site.