The Underway Engine Room Check: Why You Need It

I saw a great example recently of why you need to be diligent about the hourly (or whatever regular schedule you set) engine room check while cruising offshore.  As you know from some earlier posts, Jeffrey and Karen Siegel, owners of ActiveCaptain, aboard their DeFever 53 aCappella, are headed south for the winter and recently made an overnight passage off the North Carolina coast.  They’re experienced offshore cruisers and they keep to an hourly engine room check during the day when both are in the pilothouse, and on shift changes at night.

Well, Jeff noticed a tiny leak during one of his checks and monitored it diligently over the next couple of checks.  His ultimate discovery should put the fear of Poseidon in you.

Have a look at his video of the episode.


You can follow the Siegel’s trip aboard aCappellaat their blogsite TakingPaws.

Copyright © 2009 OceanLines LLC

Posted by Tom

Tom Tripp is the owner of OceanLines LLC, the publisher of OceanLines and founder of Marine Science Today. He is an award-winning marine journalist, science writer and long-time public communications specialist. His PR career and much of his writing stems from the fact that he loves to explain stuff. It all began when he and his brother Mark threw all of Mom's tomatoes at the back wall of the house. . .


Another reason to only use ABA 3-16 clamps. Not Ideal or chinese junk. Will sink your boat to save a few bucks

Jeffrey Siegel

Rush – good point. Those clamps were original with the boat. I’m using AWAB ones myself now whenever I replace any. I’ve learned…

Jeff, your video is wonderful~esp. the part where your dog helps you hold down the paper towel~cute and good timing too! One thing I have to add is that although putting temp probe on the wet exhaust elbow may not help w/drip (I’m not clear on location where you noticed drip), but whenever one sees a rise in temp, there’s warning of poss. equip. failure. Here’s a post on the pro’s of temp monitoring & failure prediction: Its good you two are vigilant on watches. Here’s to many ‘happy waves’ & hope to see more of your videos!