Posts Tagged: ‘boat projects’

Cast Iron Canoe: 2017 Edition

May 31, 2017 Posted by Deb

Namekagon River

Namekagon River

A traditional canoe trip that started decades ago and which we’ve been a part of for many years. Our sailing life has kept us away too long, but we made it back this year. Old sailing friends, Forrest and Yvonne on s/v Nazdrowie, who we met in the Dominican Republic in the 1990s introduced us to the group; and it has been a party ever since. This year we picked the Namekagon and Saint Croix rivers over the three-day Memorial Day holiday weekend.

Tent City

Tent City

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We Know How to Fill a Canoe

The weather started out great and stayed better than the forecast for three days. We did have rain and hail, but we built a tarp city and we’re pretty much impervious to bad weather. True to Cast Iron tradition, we had two Dutch ovens, plenty of liquid refreshments, and a wrap-up five-pound bacon fest on the final morning that forced Deb to stay upwind. No injuries to report other than a number of tick bites that sent Deb to the doctor for the anti-Lyme routine.

Tarp City Going Up

Tarp City Going Up

Hail On the River

Hail On the River

We did have a longer than normal 22-mile day due to full campsites that featured a 1.5 mile sprint to beat out another group to 12.3 mile campsite. Unfortunately, Deb and I won the race but missed the campsite sign. The sprint pretty much turned our arms to noodles for the next two days. Oh well.

Land Ho

We look forward to the transition both from the ocean to land in the spring and back to the boat in the fall. With each move, we have a high energy vision of what we’re going to do “this time.” Yeah, right. We seem to forget that the seven-plus days it takes to put the boat away and the exposure to air conditioning and airplane air usually leaves us half dead with colds. This switch was no exception but we did get a couple of days of Casa Grande Palm Creek pickleball in before the bad colds really set in. We motored north in the RV on a three Wal*Mart run with 102-degree fevers. It is now late May and we’re just barely back on our feet again. And hey, it’s cold up here in May.

Wanna Go Outside at 100 Degrees and 100% Humidity?

Wanna Go Outside at 100 Degrees and 100% Humidity?

Plans

Our plans change weekly but our high-energy vision included an extended summer on land with biking, pickleball, a variety of water events, camping, and other north country fun stuff. Now we’re toying with the idea of getting rid of all the mobile stuff including the RV and Neytiri and looking for a home or a townhome. Our future yacht broker is begging us to bring Neytiri back to Florida again and to do so immediately. That ain’t happening but we may get back on the boat early in the fall and sail her back to the U.S.

So … we’re going house hunting at 10:00 tomorrow morning after moving the final leg of our RV trip from Melcher-Dallas, Iow,a to Woodbury, MN. For us, home ownership again is a big and scary change.

Toys Are Out in Iowa

Toys Are Out in Iowa

Celebrating Hayden's Soccer Win with Dorothy, Cindy, and Halle

Celebrating Hayden’s Soccer Win with Dorothy, Cindy, and Halle

Late Entry: The Famous Roatan Yacht Club

We thought it was famous and very nice 22 years ago. We were worried that we weren’t dressed well enough to go into the restaurant. It seemed very British. We had just finished a long ten-day passage from Cartegena, Columbia, somewhere around November, 1995; and we weren’t too presentable. We stored our dinghy there during our last visit four years ago even though it had been closed for new owners and renovations. The carpenters were banging away.

Roatan French Harbor Yacht Club

Roatan French Harbor Yacht Club

Little did we know how far the Yacht Club had fallen. This year, the property has been seized for money laundering and the official government “Stay Out” signs are up. We had to find another dinghy dock to get to town and our Plan B four years ago was the shrimping/fish station. They’ve had a very bad fishing season and we were advised to stay out of that area. So … by word of mouth we found a lady in a small house down from the police station car graveyard with a little dilapidated dock on a shoreline filled with floating garbage. The routine is to hand her 50 Lems (2 bucks) and walk to town.

Only Sign From the Street

Only Sign From the Street

Murder at the Yacht Club: A German Hotel Owner is gunned down at his Business
Nicolai Winter, the German owner of the French Harbour Yacht Club was gunned down at his hotel by a man in this thirties, presumed to be from the mainland.

On March 6, 2007, around 9:30pm, the murderer checked into a room at the hotel and came back to ask for Winter’s assistance in opening the room door. While Winter with three other Yacht Club staff walked towards the room, the assailant pulled out a 9mm gun and shot Winter several times. The assailant then fled the property on foot.
According to Yacht club staff, Winter was alive for some time after the shooting. Bay Islands Voice was notified of the shooting and called Preventiva Police, DGIC and Ambulance in Dixon Cove. No one picked-up the phone. After a visit to the Dixon Cove ambulance station the attendant said “none of the vehicles are working.”
The frontier police and DGIC police arrived at the crime scene 30 and 60 minutes after the shooting, but no immediate search of surrounding area was done and no road blocks were set up. The murderer, presumed by the police to be a contracted killer, was not apprehended.  Winter bought the Yacht Club in 2004 for in excess of one million dollars. The legal future of the Yacht Club is far from certain. According to Honduran law, in absence of a testament, Winter’s closest relatives: his mother, or his sister will inherit the property.
According to Felipe Danzilo, a lawyer involved in the sale of the Yacht Club, Winter did not yet make all the payments on the property. The previous owners of the Yacht Club: Marcel Hauser and Peter Beuth, still hold a mortgage on the Yacht Club.

Within a week of Winter’s death the old owners of the hotel brought the “Pluribus” company owned by Daniel O’Connor, a American business owner from Tegucigalpa, to serve as a “safe keeper” of the Yacht Club business interests. O’Connor made efforts to assure the continuous functioning of the business: that the employees received their salaries, hotel stayed open and he plans on having the Yacht Club’s restaurant open by Semana Santa. “Every business has a value as long as it is running,” said O’Connor.

O’Connor, who has lived in Honduras for 12 years, was shocked by the lack of concern about the murder displayed by local business community and local business leaders. “This is disappointing in a community that prides itself on being tourism oriented,” says O’Connor. “This will bring a negative impact on tourism here.”

Source :  http://www.bayislandsvoice.com/issue-v5-4.htm

Putting Neytiri Away for the Sixth Time

June 16, 2016 Posted by Deb

We’ve decommissioned in St. Martin, Curacao, Guatemala, Georgia, Florida, and now Guatemala again. There’s no escaping the fact that it takes seven to ten days of really fun work like pulling heavy sails down, oiling anchor chain, heads, and other wonderful jobs. We took breaks and hit the pool at NanaJuana often but the happy hours were lonely until the last day there when boats started pouring in for hurricane season. That was nice. We finally did the hike at Hacienda Tijax and our guide said we were the best “old people” she had seen for dealing with the heat and humidity. For us, it was cool in the jungle compared to working on a boat. Once we moved to our final storage location in Cayo Quemado, the air conditioning was stowed and we cooked at 97°F with 87% humidity for the final teardown.

Oiling the Anchor Chain in the Guatemala Heat

Oiling the Anchor Chain in the Guatemala Heat

NanaJuana Pool Time

NanaJuana Pool Time

Swing Bridge at Hacienda Tijax

Swing Bridge at Hacienda Tijax

Found a Spot for a Skinny Dip

Found a Spot for a Skinny Dip

Old People Hikers

Old People Hikers

Saturday Market in Fronteras

Saturday Market in Fronteras

How to Cross the Road

How to Cross the Road

Tucked Away for Another Day

Tucked Away for Another Day

Honduras

Deb pieced together a cab to San Pedro Sula in Honduras followed by a flight to Phoenix via Dallas.

Trip from Rio Dulce to San Pedro Sula in Honduras

Trip from Rio Dulce to San Pedro Sula in Honduras

Breakfast Under Coca-Cola Mountain??

Breakfast Under Coca-Cola Mountain??

We had a two-hour window to switch planes, and we missed by about 12 hours. It’s funny that we made all our sailing deadlines for three months and a little storm over Dallas blew the endgame. We waited until 2:00 a.m. for a crew to show up for our plane; and as they walked up to applause from the crowd, they announced that they had “timed out” and the flight was cancelled. We found a hotel for the night and cancelled our reservations for a car and hotel in Phoenix. They were pretty nice about refunding some of our money. The next day we slept in and did our first UBER ride to the airport. It was $45 for a taxi to the hotel, and we split a $16 dollar fair back to the airport the next day with UBER. Wow!

Casa Grande

Both the town and the RV were right where we left them. The difference was that Palm Creek, where we did the early winter last year, was a ghost town. We found the odd human at the pool from time to time but 119°F for three days kept the few that still lived in the RV park inside. We ran 48 amps of A/C around the clock and the refrigerator pretty much gave up trying. It was nice to be back in the land of big box stores but the ghost town RV Park had us feeling like we late getting out of Dodge. We headed up the hill (8% grade) to Flagstaff and the V10 got a workout. We did not need A/C again until we got out into the flats of New Mexico and Kansas.

An Entire Wall at Palm Creek Labelled Romance

An Entire Wall at Palm Creek Labelled Romance

Lake Afton in Kansas - Almost Home

Lake Afton in Kansas – Almost Home

Propane Fill - Short Hose Workaround

Propane Fill – Short Hose Workaround

Staging in Iowa

We stop for a week or so at the pole barn in Iowa where we store all our summer toys. Oh … and the odd car and van. This year we’re extending the layover to attend a birthday party for the kids of nieces and nephews. It feels like they were kids themselves just a few years ago. Tick Tick.

Our Private Trail Got Popular. Great Western Trail from Martinsdale to Des Moines

Our Private Trail Got Popular. Great Western Trail from Martinsdale to Des Moines

Calorie-Positive Biking at Cummins Tap – Great Western Trail

Calorie-Positive Biking at Cummins Tap – Great Western Trail

Deb Even Took Time Help Out with Bible School

Deb Helped Out with Vacation Bible School

Sunday Pool Day with the Family in Iowa

Sunday Pool Day with the Family in Iowa

Ft. Lauderdale Finals

April 7, 2016 Posted by Deb

The Ft Lauderdale chapter came to an end when we cast off our lines from Seafarer’s Church and headed out the New River. After seven weeks of hard work and hard spending, we finally worked through an eight-page project list and declared ourselves ready for the ocean again. We broke up the boat work with entertaining neighbors, a very entertaining landlord/pastor and wife, two rounds of company, a couple rounds of old friends in the area, and a brief reunion race with my old pylon racing partner at a pylon race in Mulberry, FL.

Home at Sonny's Dock on the New River

Home at Sonny’s Dock on the New River

After the Dania Flea Market with Old Sailing Friends

After the Dania Flea Market with Old Sailing Friends

3-Hour Dinghy Tour Around Ft. Lauderdale with Tom & Kelly

3-Hour Dinghy Tour Around Ft. Lauderdale with Tom & Kelly

New River Floating Tiki Bar

New River Floating Tiki Bar

Barb & Michael's Visit to the Pirate Republic

Barb & Michael’s Visit to the Pirate Republic

Randy & Chuck Pylon Racing Since the Dawn of Time

Randy & Chuck Pylon Racing Since the Dawn of Time

And  the Boring Stuff

The highlights of our Ft. Lauderdale were a seven-week rewiring job on the starboard hull, new life raft, new A/C, new VHF, new RayMarine wind instrument, new port head, new starboard alternator, underwater hull cleaning, a starting battery/house battery paralleling system, a galvanic isolator, a new battery combiner, a new salon table, and much more that we’ve forgotten already. We did much of the work ourselves (except electrical) with the help of three contractors. Two of the contractors were semi-retired geniuses that helped because of their relationship with our landlord/pastor, S0nny.

Genius at Work

Genius at Work

Getting Rid of French Stuff on a French Boat

Getting Rid of French Stuff on a French Boat

New Wind Instrument

New Wind Instrument

Most People iHre Young Guys for This

Most People Hire Young Guys for This

Leaving Ft. Lauderdale at Sunrise - On to Key West

Leaving Ft. Lauderdale at Sunrise – On to Key West

Key West

Our shakedown cruise was an overnight run to Key West starting before rush hour at O’Dark Thirty so we wouldn’t get trapped by the bridges. The boat hadn’t moved since May, 2015; and it’s always a weird feeling getting underway after that much time … and in the dark as well. We had cell phone coverage and made calls and browsed all the way down the coast. Somewhere off Key Largo, we got our official permission to visit Cuba in an e-mail from the good old U.S. Coast Guard, compliments of Petty Officer Wilson. We applied a month earlier and it was getting thin on timing.

There wasn’t much wind until the very end of the run to Key West. Deb started making frequent trips to the head for seasickness. She didn’t take her Stugeron because this was supposed to be a milk run. Late in the trip, the gennaker failed to completely furl because of the tightness of the wrap in high winds. That was not a big deal until we tried to turn into Key West in 23 knots of wind. It started unwinding and flapping badly. Our attempts to dump it on the deck failed and we had to run off downwind (out of the channel) and pull the mess in. About then the trampoline cords started failing so we had added issues of humans falling into the ocean. We recovered the sail and turned back into the channel without hitting the reef but it was close.

We dropped anchor, slept, and set up for what was to be a wait for weather period of R&R while we prepped for Cuba. We were going to get cash, brush up on Spanish, read the guide books, and supply the boat. It turned out the weather window was at noon the next day so none of the above happened except a quick cash run. That early window had consequences that generated another chapter later in Cuba.

Sunsets Pier in Key West

Sunset Pier in Key West

The Story of Two Boats

March 1, 2016 Posted by Deb

homelessIt’s kind of sad. Florida has a lot of homeless people and Ft. Lauderdale has more than its share. The 2015 Census listed over 71,000 Florida school children as homeless and a point in time count found 35,000 adults. Wow.

There’s another layer of folks just above homeless that have something resembling a place to live. In Florida, a boat will do. The first boat story (no names to protect the guilty) is about a small Catalina owned by a guy who motored up the New River five years ago and stayed. As his health declined, so did the boat. He was wheelchair bound when we met him but seemed to be in fairly good spirits. We said goodbye and “see you in a few months” and that’s all we remember about him. Apparently his health declined quickly and, though folks brought him food from time to time, pop tarts aren’t exactly a well rounded diet. The dock owner probably saved his life by calling whoever you call for that kind of thing and they hauled him off his boat in a straight jacket kicking and screaming. He’s been in the hospital ever since.

And then there is the boat. It was sold for $600 to a guy with an almost identical boat in almost identical condition. Hey … they’re everywhere. Anyway, the new owner of two derelict boats tied them together on the same dock, just behind us, and started salvaging his new purchase. This happened in multi-million dollar Ft. Lauderdale New River real estate with mini-mega yachts everywhere. The landlord/dock owner got edgy. The short version is that the landlord said “Sorry, you’re outta here at the end of the month” and it’s another $40 per week to have that other derelict tied up here.

Florida is full of people for which $40 a week is a big deal. The $600 he paid for his other derelict wiped him out and he was selling tools and salvage bits to get by. His solution was to scull the boat out into the New River, drop a couple of anchors, and swim back. He almost did not make it back because he’s a big smoker and drinker and not in very good shape. He also had found about a gallon of rum on the salvage boat and was having trouble walking for the prior few days.

No one gets away with dumping a boat in the New River. A mangrove swamp down the coast, maybe, but not the New River. It has been three weeks, the boat is a hazard to navigation, the cops have been by with bull horns, the neighbors are angry, taking pictures, and hot on the phones. The official word is that the owner was taken away (true), someone bought the boat (true) and took it away (false), and one morning it just showed up out there. There’s no paper trail, the guy in the hospital has been contacted repeatedly but could not ID who he sold it to; and the current owner just sits back and watches the show.BlueCoral

It gets better. The owner of the two derelicts, one aground in the channel, decided it was time to go back to Texas. He advertised his derelict for $600 and a true modern day dreamer showed up and gave him $300 for it. The young guy was a carpenter from Virginia and had been hiking the Appalachian Trail to get over his mother’s death, just like Reese Witherspoon in Wild. With $900 to his name, he decided to become a sailor. The rest of the story is why we don’t need TV out here.LeesBoat

We first saw the dreamer when he dragged his poor, shaking and scared to death, dog below decks, dropped the storm boards in the companionway, and left for lunch. That hurt to watch. The dreamer turned out to be a nice enough guy, brand new to Christ, newly off booze, OK with the dog after that, and completely out of his league with sailing or boats. We all tried to help, us least of all, because we have our own boat issues.

When we returned from a night out with Dave and Gail from Wildest Dream, an intoxicated voice came out of the dark, almost crying. As the former owner and the new owner prepared the boat for two people to sleep, it started dawning on the dreamer that his new purchase was not a perfect boat. We heard there was loud arguing, a falling out, and a lot of talk about getting money back. We had just run into the former owner in the dark, quite shaken by the “event” that we missed. He has a problem thinking that people don’t like him.

The landlord needed the deal to happen and the boat to be gone. He interceded the next morning with a  philosophical session with the dreamer. “You are starting a new life and there are going to be a lot of lessons. Last night you just had lesson one. Don’t get mad at the people who are trying to help you, you’re going to need them.” So … they made up over donuts and have been frantically working together ever since. It got a little dicey when the dreamer touched the mainsail and his hand went right through it.

Final chapter. The outboard was under water for awhile but it did run a little today. The boat has no functioning engine. The dreamer is going to strap the hard dinghy and partially running Evinrude 15 onto the sailboat and tow it north up the Intercoastal Waterway to home with around $200 in his pocket. This epic journey begins tomorrow morning. Their Plan B is to move down the river to docks off a vacant lot and continue to work on the outboard until they are kicked off that dock. There is a fair chance that both of them and their dogs will be gone in the morning and that both boats and all their debris will get dumped on the landlord. Side bets?

Looking out the other side of the boat -- much nicer view

Looking out the other side of the boat — much nicer view

 

 

In Praise of a Hardware Store

April 1, 2015 Posted by Deb

Not just any hardware store, McDonald Hardware in Ft. Lauderdale. As a frequent visitor this year for two months and twenty two years ago for 3 months, I miss the place.McDonaldsHardware

We’re in Marsh Harbour, Abacos, now; and we’re down a sugar scoop shower hose and handle and a primary shower drain pump. Things could get a bit smelly on board so blowing these projects off is not a good plan. A quick dinghy lap of the marinas yielded no pump but our hikes to hardware and the one chandlery got us the last suitable pump in the area at Island Boy Bait and Tackle.IslandBoy

The pump outlets were reversed but … no problem … surely someone stocks the 90-degree elbows for the pump. Nope. Okay, some ¾-inch hose and barbed elbows should work temporarily but, nope, neither in stock at any of three hardware and one marine store. We sailed over to Man of War Cay and Edwins Boatyard and scored the hose and barbed elbows and the project now has all the parts needed. This was the Bahamas three-day version of a 30-minute trip to McDonald Hardware.

The sugar scoop shower saga is also over. Deb had been putting water in a gallon jug and dumping it on herself like the old days (two quarts then). I emptied a shower on starboard that we use for laundry and cases of beer. I found a shower head and scavenged a valve from the boat. I needed half inch hose and barbs. On my last try, I found the last 13 feet of half inch hose on the island but only a 90 degree barb. Rather than cludge this all together, I found a home showerhead with a trigger, hose, and fittings. Of course, by day three there were no fittings that would connect the new hose with flaired fittings to the boat with metric old fashioned fittings. On the fourth day, a hardware store guy found a piece that worked. This was the four day version of a 30 minute trip to McDonald Hardware.

So … who gets to install all this stuff?ShowerPump_Chuck

Escape from Ft Lauderdale

March 14, 2015 Posted by Deb

We said goodbye to friends and paid off the four crews that left footprints and debris all over the boat as well as a few wrap ups that were dumped in our laps like re-plumbing the galley (nice easy metric to US conversion) and mounting the new stove top. All propane and water pressure tests passed which left only provisioning and hiring Ingo to clean the boat from bow to stern (again). We left with four cases of beer and a couple gallons of rum and wine.

DinnerMcDaniels

FtLauderdaleDavidGailParty

FtLauderdaleAnthonyCountertops

FtLauderdaleThaiFood

FtLauderdaleChuckUnderSink

We didn’t have a going away party because we needed to rest up for the trip and we were a bit nervous about heading out without a sea trial on all the new stuff. The famous words of Kurt Russel in Captain Ron, “Don’t worry, if it’s going to happen … It’ll happen out there.” As it turned out, we should have also been a bit concerned about going down the New River in Saturday traffic on a St. Patrick’s Day party weekend. It was a great trip down through the five bridges with only one white knuckle event where we had to come close to grabbing a wall to let a monster cat go upriver.

FtLauderaleDebBridgeBike FtLauderdaleBridgeOpen1 FtLauderdaleBridgeOpen2 FtLauderdaleStPatrickDayParade

We grabbed a weather window that was supposed to be too rough for all but “salty” sailors and found it to be wimpy. That’s great if you don’t like being bounced around but not so great if you have to fight the mighty Gulf Stream. Neytiri performed quite well but we had to motor the final 30 miles into West End and arrived just before midnight. That passage was the only time our former boat, Sanity, outperformed Neytiri. We did the same trip 22 years ago about two hours faster.

The night arrival thing is something we are doing more often and it is not a great idea. Our new spotlight helped us get into West End’s “giant pile of rocks” breakwater and we rousted out a security guard to find a temporary home for the night. We heard that a “soon to be married” couple lost their boat at the entrance just a few weeks before. They went ahead and had the marriage ceremony at West End anyway … good recovery from a bad situation.

Ft. Lauderdale

February 24, 2015 Posted by Deb

A special place for us and we’re still trying to figure out whether “special” means/meant good or bad.  We outfitted and provisioned here in the s…hole of the world, River Bend Marina about 22 years ago, and it hasn’t changed a bit.

Riverbend Where Sanity Was Outfitted

Riverbend Where Sanity Was Outfitted

This time we are in the only marina that had an opening and could handle our size from Jacksonville to Ft. Lauderdale; the expensive Lauderdale Marine Center where all the big boys go. We’re on Dock C where there are a few cruising sailors so we are with instant friends.  Like our old friend Fred said, we specialize in “short term, meaningless relationships.”  That is fun to say but not always true because many of these folks we will run into again, possibly multiple times.

Ft. Lauderdale has a background noise. It is easy to say it is I-95 which is very near. I think it is the giant sucking sound as thousands of marine based companies descend on the boats that get ensnared here. “Marine” means “charge a bunch more.” We came for new standing rigging and to show the boat to potential buyers during the great Miami boat show. As it turns out, the vendors are all pre-occupied with their boat show booths or working on emergency boat show projects and it is a very bad time of year to try and get their attention.

Riggers and the Hatch Guy

Riggers and the Hatch Guy

One good things is friends and family have been able to find us here in Florida. We had stop-by visits from Mark, Deb’s rowing buddy and Bryan and Julie, some favorite cousins.

Old Rowing Buddy

Old Rowing Buddy

Taken on Bryan and Julie's Visit

Taken on Bryan and Julie’s Visit

The Miami Boat Show

Rather than rent a car at around $100 per day (up from mid-20’s prior to the show) and then deal with the parking nightmare in Miami, Deb researched a “planes, trains, and automobiles” route that featured two hikes, a bus, the Florida Tri-Rail, and the Miami Metro Rail. That worked but it was over 2 hours each way. It was an interesting show and we saw three of the five folks we had hoped to run into.

Because we hiked from the Metro and weren’t in a car, no one asked us to pay and we spent the whole day w/o a wrist band. We kind of hid our wrists when we went in and out.

Miami Boat Show

Miami Boat Show

miami-boat-show

Saturday Bahama Planning Sessions

We don’t need much of an excuse to pot luck and we have been getting together with Darrel and Julie from Acapella (20 years ago) and new friends Bryan and Sharon to talk about the Thorny Path (the islands from Florida to St. Martin which are into the wind and current). We talked sailing strategy all of 15 minutes in the last three sessions. That’s about right.

DinnerMcDaniels

Twenty-Two Years

February 15, 2015 Posted by Deb

We have our little fold up bikes and have been biking the same suburban side roads we used 22 years ago to outfit Sanity. West Marine has moved but the Marina Mile is largely as we remembered.  Those that have done time here will remember McDonalds Hardware. We asked how long the current staff had been working at McDonalds and they trotted out a guy who had been there for 16 years. So … there wasn’t a single person in the building who pre-dated us. Gives you kind of a dinosaur feeling. Our friend and crew member on Sanity (Tony Noel) will remember this place.

McDonaldsHardware

So … What are We Doing

February 12, 2015 Posted by Deb

The project list is over two pages but what we are hiring out is the standing rig to Nance and Underwood, the new counter tops and sinks to Interior Design, the rudder shimmy and hatch leaks to Just Catamarans, and the detailing for potential buyers to Warren from South Africa. There is a constant march of contractors on the boat and the decks are turning black.

The work we are not hiring out is impressive probably only to us but the highlights are floor refurbishing, electrical wire clean-up and labeling, refrigerator door remounting, hatch rebedding, head repair (again), varnish, fuel top off, bilge pump repair, engine room vent replacement, cleaning, cleaning, and more cleaning.

Chuck's Ergonomic Office

Chuck’s Ergonomic Office

Amthony, the Surfer Dude, Installing New Countertops

Anthony, the Surfer Dude, Installing New Countertops

No More Broken Stuff

February 1, 2015 Posted by Deb

We will be showing the boat now through the boat show with our friend Alexis at Multihull. That means we will go through the blog and clean out all the stories about broken boat bits. We may clean out some of the downer stories as well. But there is still time for one or two more so here goes.

We’ve had only two good days in 2015 and it is the end of January already. One was today in Ft. Lauderdale.

PirateRepublicDebPirateRepublicChuck

Of course, before we got here, being on the hard and living in a motel with the forever flu was part of the large “bad day” count. But today was warm and we biked to the Pirate Republic for an expensive lunch. Our last lunch in Jacksonville was $6 and today was over $40, but it was a good day. Having that trip from Jacksonville to Ft. Lauderdale behind us was part of the good feeling as well. We had a generally good trip, leaving Jacksonville just after a huge cold front blew through and hoisting our main in 30 kts of wind and bone chilling temps.

SunsetOffshoreJAX FoulWeatherGear_Chuck

We planned for six to seven knots and we started out in the nine and ten knot range with a double reef and one third headsail. The wind was off land so it was fairly smooth. Unfortunately, the wind went to zero to two knots after one day and we looked at another 130 miles of motoring. Not part of the plan. We invested a bunch in engines and props up in Jacksonville so off we went in flat calm.

GoriProp

The word from our weather guru was that a 35 gusting 40 blow would hit us on the second night. Deb found no mention on the internet of any wind until late Monday morning and it turned out that the freebie web sites were right on and our guy was wrong.  We were scheduled to get in at around 7:00 a.m. on Monday so that big blow would do us no good. One of our newly refitted engines overheated during the last night, the wind kicked up slightly but it was on the nose, and we motored on one engine through morning. About 25 miles out, the big wind hit and, of course, it was on the nose instead of coming off land. We finished up at 9:30 a.m. with one engine, no sails, 30 knots of wind on the nose, and rapidly building seas. Oops. Of course, we then had to figure out how to get up the winding, high traffic New River with five bridges and a nasty current. Oh, and did we mention that the wind was howling. We decided that rather than call a tow service and wait for slack tide we would throw some antifreeze in the overheated engine and only use it when we needed to do some fancy maneuvering. That worked and we had a great trip up the New River, our home for over three months with our first boat twenty- two years ago. We were welcomed into Lauderdale Marine Center by friendly line handlers and a large black squall that got everyone soaked to the bone. Oh … and the squall forecast was zero percent from our guru.

LMC