Friday, December 2, 2016

Productive Friday

Wrapping up a rather productive week of boatwork, I had a pretty ambitious list put together and got most of it done (plus a few extras not on the list). We got the first coat of varnish on the cockpit caprail as well as the companionway hatch (which we sanded and coated with five coats of Epifanes Rapid Clear several weeks ago before rainy weather and boatyard worker traffic intervened). Dawn will get a second coat on tomorrow after I fly to Atlanta; then it's supposed to rain on Sunday and Monday so we won't get on subsequent coats till later next week. After that I spent time clearing unused cabling out from behind the nav station, electrical panel, and port settee. In some cases I left lengths of wires to be used as pilot lines through inaccessible passages, but overall the rats nest is quite a bit more manageable now and will be even better once the new NMEA2k network is in and all the old NMEA0183 stuff is ripped out.

I mounted the dedicated GPS antenna for our Vesper AIS transponder on our davit/solar arch, and fished its cable down through the arch, through the propane locker, down behind the aft bulkhead, under our bed, and under the aft cabin cabinets. This took a while but ended up being fairly painless. We recently removed a cockpit spotlight from the arch; its power cable will be used for our WiriePro wifi antenna/booster/router when it arrives next week, but in the meantime we were able to use it to get two pilot lines down through the arch. One pilot line pulled the power cable back through and the other ran the GPS cable. From there it was pretty easy, just a lot of snipping zipties and fastening new ones. I'll finish installing the Vesper next week, but this was the most labor-intensive task.


During the day we got our new Frigidaire 900W/0.9 cu ft microwave from; it replaces the old White-Westinghouse that the lightning fried. The new one is slightly smaller. I tried it using our inverter and it works fine...though our power monitor recorded a battery-draining 110 amp draw! Won't use that off of shore power too often, but it's nice to have for reheating underway or avoiding heating up the cabin in the tropics by using the stove. More excitingly, we also got our new Doyle mainsail today! Can't wait to see it and even more to sail with it. Just need a mast to put it on, at this point!


This afternoon we lowered our Yamaha Enduro 15 outboard to the ground using the crane, and I did most of the required annual and semi-annual maintenance. It's in really good shape; two years ago Mark and Judy had it professionally refurbished, and it still looks like new. I wasn't able to pull the spark plugs though; my deep socket set only goes up to 19mm and the spark plug appears to be 20mm or possibly 13/16". Good to find that out here!


We finished up at 5pm, a bit later than usual, and headed home to get Piper his beach run, albeit in the dark. He didn't care, he still ran his little heart out. Lately he and I have been playing fetch in the water with his favorite floatie stick; I've been coaxing him to chase it further and further out, and he's becoming quite the salty swimmer dog. He's even managed to accidentally doggie-surf a few breakers! We stayed on terra firma tonight, though, as it was likely too dark for him to see the stick in the water.

Dawn and I were originally supposed to go out tonight in downtown Charleston with Canadian cruisers Dan and Isabelle, but they had to cancel when she had to unexpectedly fly back to Canada today. We'll reschedule for another week. Instead Dawn and I decided to stay a little closer to home this week, and had dinner at Poe's Tavern in nearby Sullivan's Island. Cool place with great food.

Tomorrow I head to Atlanta around 11am; I'm working the 7:10pm flight to London-Heathrow. I have a 29 hour overnight there and get back late Monday. Dawn will be varnishing Saturday, taking Sunday off, and then doing a whole lot of shopping on Monday (West Marine, Lowes, Autozone, the local Yamaha dealer, etc). Meanwhile I'll do some remote shopping in London on and Amazon while planning out our next week of boat work.

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