Saturday, April 30, 2016

Anchor rant.............................................

Anchors..... let the bun fight begin. Is there anyone out there with a CQR anchor still hanging off their bow roller? If so its time to put it in the same box as your plastic sextant, Radio Direction Finder and your Kapok lifejacket. If your boat drags and hits me, we can work things out, $hit happens. If, however, you were using a CQR or some other antique POS the conversation will be different.  I can even live with the Delta and Bruce, even though they are somewhat outdated.  There is a whole slew of new generation anchors out there that are so far ahead of their predecessors that it is ridiculous.  My favorites are the Rocna and Manson, and I have no objection to the other variants of the design.  My recent experience with the Spade anchor was outstanding.  It set fast and held solid, sort of what you need in an anchor. 

The owner had initially bought the aluminum version (shown above) in order to save weight (26lbs and opposed to 44lbs).  I bitched and moaned until he swapped it out for the galvanized steel version. I can see no reason to have the aluminum version unless its for some piece of Tupperware that never leaves the bay.  Also, their sizing chart tends towards light production boats, so I would move up a size or two.

My backup anchor is, as always, the biggest Fortress I can stow onboard.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Cap-Rail final-final-final decision....

And the winner is......................... IPE

Family Name for Ipe Lumber: Tabebuia of family Bignoniaceae

The old sealant (origin unknown) was pretty shot.  Some 5200 had been squirted in at some stage to little avail.

This made getting the old rail off pretty easy, once the screws were removed.


This was a useful tool to remove the bolts holding the genoa track, if they are the old slotted type.


I had a local wood-shop use the old cap-rail as a template and make me a new one, including screw holes. 

 Ipe is hard to bend, but it will bend slightly.

After much research I will use Teakdecking Systems FE-180A to bond the Ipe to the fiberglass.

Full install won't take place until I return from Europe in late July

Friday, March 11, 2016

Alpenglow LED conversion...shamless theft of a good idea...

Thanks to John for the inspiration (I couldn't find a comment button on your blog to ask permission, so I will just beg forgiveness);

I had planned to do this for some time but it was on the nice to do list.  Then one of the ballasts began to give out.  I have a spare ballast but the installation was above my pay grade.

John's article is excellent so I won't repeat it here.  Suffice to say that I took the "non-soldering" route with components from  My solution was more expensive but any failed components can simply be popped out and replaced.  Unit cost of the LED upgrade is approx $30.  Labor, as usual, is about $0.01 per hour.  Power usage should be approx .3 amps on white and .25amps on red.

I really like the Alpenglow company and I have no doubt that their upgrade would be better quality, but hey, I'm a sailor.  I would certainly recommend their new LED fittings as an initial installation.

Original Alpenglow

Alpenglow converted to LED (3000k Warm white and red);

LED on left (only one power setting), original on right, low power.

LED on left (only one power setting), original on right, high power;

Red LED;

4" LED strips;



Saturday, March 5, 2016

Sliding companionway hatch.....finally!

Aft sliding companionway hatch design finally completed and ready to be bolted down. The forward cross bar will obviously be removed. I know it's not to everyone's taste but it ties in with my no teak on deck concept. Existing forward hatch shown for comparison. That will also be replaced with a sliding Perspex hatch.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Carpentry, Nautical Flea Markets and Clowns

I haven't been totally idle since I escaped the medics last year. Greg the carpenter has started on the aft bunk and aft heads. I manned a stand at the Pompano flea market and took many of my failed projects to sell. Tragically I seem to have come back with more stuff than I took up. I do think that my $1 boat buck Cruising Chute is a winner. This was its first time out of its bag in 20+ years. Finally, as we have all come to learn to our cost, there are many clowns working in the boat business. Marge from my marina, however, at least is an actual clown and does excellent upholstery on the side.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Ceilings painted - again.....

We have had a sort of monsoon in South Florida for the last month.  I had a painter lined up for the deck but it was a no go.  I let him loose below decks and he did a great job, except for the dust.

I must admit I now prefer Interlux paint for this work instead of Pettit I had used in the aft cabin on the previous occasion.


Monday, August 17, 2015

Airhead is in.....and I am well pleased

Final install of the Airhead Composting toilet.