Monday, January 23, 2017

Cruising around

Without a car, simple things like picking a scuba tank become a real chore and a real issue for your back. That time, I found a solution, cruising around with the dinghy (and testing the new Honda 2.5hp 4 strokes), I went very close from the scuba shop, at the other side of the marina.
Pretty fun actually, even if I cannot plane the dinghy anymore.
(The previous 9HP 2 Strokes was way more powerful but... capricious... And heavy)


With this new ladder (WIP),
it is way easier to go back on the boatr.

Getting ready to scuba .. explore the deep.....
... of the boat's bottom.

Unrelated but I am still amazed of what you can polish on a boat.

Before / After
The bad news is that with one tank and one hour and half of scrubbing, I only did 1/3 of the boat. I am actually really scrubbing the bottom, not just a simple clean. Takes a lot of efforts.....

For the fun, a quick video.

Still dreaming about that cat.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Relentless Forward Progress

For the curious, this is the title of an ultra-marathoner guide. How-to.
Based on the title (did not read yet) it seems that perseverance is key.
Well, in that case, I am playing at the ultra-cruiser nowadays.

Alright, because it has been a good 2 weeks, a special super long super boring list of the fixes/work on this damn boat.

Before the sunset.

Second time I redo the water pump gasket.

Third time I redo the tank inspection plate.

Fourth, or fifth time the transmission oil drain gasket

Those cloth pins, all stainless, are amazing.

We found a bit of time for a sea trial for the "fix" for the engine.
Sailing was nice, motoring was NOT nice. Fix did not work at all.

Finally fixing the toilets cover (Two years ago ?)

CWR Hawaii. Paradise of the rigger. More later.

Liferaft service. Getting ready for the next trip ?

All good. I feel lighter of 1300$.

Molly's Art to decorate the cabin

Removing the life lines, the boat feel naked.

Paradise of the metal worker. More later.

Garmin GNX wireless was a failure. Up to the mast, Back to the factory.
We are going wired. Ouch. More work to come.


During. The sell a kit 'DYI lifelines'.
Time consuming but saving big bucks. (Rigger estimate 1000$).

After. No coating. Cheaper, and less subject to rust.
Little rough on the palm though.

To run one cable I had to pull put 150' chain and my old tackle ground.
150' pounds !

That's how I like it !

Just in case you thought the aft was better.

Windlass cables, across all boat. Awg2, Big & heavy, 100A.
Tooling for crimping is Hammer style.

Hard to see, but that's the solenoid of the windlass.
Had to pull one battery out. Dealing with awg2 cables is not easy.


After. We broke that two years ago. It was time.
Those first weeks on Oahu, I have mixed feelings. The arrangement of not working too much on the boat, training as possible and work normally makes it way easier. Downside, the work on the boat go slower. O surprising.
I was fearing the moment to finish the electrical work on the windlass but so far I am 80% in, and it seems to go very well. "Professional Installer Only". Well, I guess I am a pro.
Disclaimer : Did not try it yet :)
The engine is still my biggest problem. Unreliable at best,  we could not really work on it because I need it to go to the haul-out next week for the bottom paint. Really annoying.
I don't talk about the electronic. Back to Garmin, Jeez. 50 ft mast ? Really ? just good for a dinghy IMHO.
But the other stuff - Double solar panel, the ladder, the various gaskets, the windlass, progress is good.

Next week will be key. Windlass. Bottom Paint and Yard.
If I hit that, only the engine will be on 'Major' issue list.

Oh yeah, nowadays, I dream of more space, less work. Just need 500K$.

Seawind 1600. Comfortable. Fast. Expansive.

Sacrilege ?

Monday, January 9, 2017

Ala Wai Chilling

 As typical for this time of the year, there is the Aloha Gym Fest, and to support our troops, we bring the guns, and the boat to Oahu for a few days.
With the engine slowly dying, and a windy marina it was a stressfull early morning.
Actually it has been quite a while since I sailed Traces, and I was up for a a busy morning, between winds shifting, fuel leaks and other enjoyments.

This was not the Vendee Globe, but quite sport for me. Wind direction was way more on the beam that you would expect, there was a lot of North in those NE Trades. Was there any E at all ?

A bit rough in Kaiwi Channel, 
even with "only" 20 knots of wind,
and 9 feets of swell 

Well, sailing the islands is always the same. Not enough wind. Too much wind. and always on the nose. Which convinced me that I really need this engine fixed :)

Arriving at night at Ala Wai, it was easy-peasy, glassy enough that the engine did not cry too much. 1000 rpm is the max I can expect at this point, and that ain't much.
I have unlimited Tow with BoatUS, just in case, and it has been a while since I used them.
No concern to get towed time to time. 
That's part of the sport. 

Chilling in glassy Ala Wai Harbor

Already working on some projects the day of the arrival. 
Bimini extension was not finished.
Dusted of my Boat Land ride. Cruise it,  baby.

I setup a few rules for this stay on Oahu.
I usually try to do too much, between the normal day of work, the boat and the rest.
I always start saying I am gonna hold a month and break down after few weeks, tired and upset.
This time, life balance will take precedence.
Few rules I am gonna try to enforce
   - Train every day like at home.
   - Work in good conditions - I just signed off for a full month at a coworking place that is awesome.
   - One Boat project at a time, time permitting - mostly late afternoon.
   - Take the time to do the groceries, and shop around
   - Go on some surfing trips during the week end that time.

For that, the actual projects I want to be tackled are actually few :
   - Emergency items (Fuel & Transmission leaks, etc...)
   - Bottom paint at the end of month
   - Windlass electrical
   - 2nd Solar Panel setup
   - Safety for the liferaft
   - Engine Fuel Pump

The rest can wait.
That's the theory.
Let's see how that hold up.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Holidays, Boat work style

It is true that once you live already on a paradisiac island, you are less tempted to go elsewhere for vacation. First, it is expensive :)
Second, you have a boat, and a plan for that boat, and that require quite a bit of time investment. And money investment (but not the kind that -sometime- pay back).

Anyway, I have been lucky to be able to dock the boat for the holidays, and that meant a lot of projects.

2/0 AWG Cable for the windlass. Big and heavy.
35'. All across the boat.

Some idiot actually did wire the macerator backward.
It was pumping the sea water inside the tank. Was it me ?

Genoa is back in place. Painted and blue colored.

Windlass engine.

Windlass itself. Looks nice.

Painted electrical box.
Noce, but not as nice as I wanted. That will do it.
Panels. Second and third epoxy layers.

laying down the glass cloth.

Boat Electronics - new style. Cheap tablet.

Fixing the windvane. This time, Loctite the hell of that screw.
Sanding the epoxy, I had another attack of skin allergy.
The picture does not show how bad it looked. And how itchy it was.

Time to see if my darling's magical lotion is as magic as she claims.
Disclaimer : the time to type this post seems to be enough to actually calm the irritation.
Those last days I am getting ready to bring the boat to Oahu for further boat work.
For a change.
It has been a while I did not sail, and I actually really look toward it.
Surprisingly, the main issue might be the wind.
This week has been extremely quiet.
Maybe too quiet.

But I am in a good mood, and I am willing to try to sail without wind.
(The engine got .. issues)
It is all a question of patience. And work.