Greetings all. My last weekend at the boat brought some promising progress. Since the fuel in the tanks is suspected to be the root of my problems, I have been tuning the engines out of a jug in the cockpit. Sunday, both motors ran at the same time for the first time in months!!! This came after confirmation that the compression on the port side is in good shape (ranges from 160 to 175 on all 8).
In a previous post, I noted that the idle screws had little effect on the motor, even at idle. I ran out of time to try them after valves were checked and adjusted and compression was confirmed. I still haven't confirmed the vacuum, but do have access to a guage. I will try this if the condition persists.
The end result is that the port engine sounds beautiful. When I bought the boat, it would lay a film on the water. Now there is nothing. No smoke and no smell. The water flows out in volume without rythm or pulse.
By contrast, the starboard has a clear beat. The water flows out of the base of the pipe, but also splatters out around the edges from 9:00 to 3:00 with the beat of the motor. This motor now has all of the parts applied to the port: wires, plugs, coil, edelbrock carb, fuel pump, blood, sweat, tears... I'll be confirming compression, valves, timing (again). Based on all indications, the motors will be starting at the touch of a switch before long.
This brings me back to the root of my troubles, bad gas. This boat has been around the marina for a while. By most accounts, it hasn't gone more than a few miles in 7-10 years. I have tried a few products in the fuel, and tried to chase it away with more fresh gas. It took 50 gallons in each tank to top them off. Now, I am sure that the old gas must go. My problem is finding where to take it, or who can take it away. Does anyone know of a good resource/reference for finding this type of service?