Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Loading Up!

When I bought Annie she came with a 4x9 enclosed trailer full of boat parts, tools, a wide assortment of chemicals, and a lizard or two. Over the course of the last two years in refitting Annie I have emptied the trailer of old parts, added others, and used a few of the chemicals... the lizards deserted me long ago.

Some of the stuff in the trailer was not useful, some was. So, for the last two days I have been taking everything out of the trailer, tossing what wasn't useful and loading the car with what was. The trailer is now empty and up for sale, the car, (which was packed), is now empty and everything has been moved aboard.

Everything from hurricane straps to a transmission to extra anchors to alternators to motor mounts. Amazingly, I was able to locate and secure a place for everything I loaded aboard. (Of course at this point Annie's V-Berth is more of a storage room than anything else).

Fair seas and God bless.

Friday, April 22, 2016

New Split Backstay Legs...

Annie has a single backstay that splits into two smaller legs and they attach to the stainless steel boomkin/monitor windvane apparatus. The tiller bracket on my rudder was at times hitting both legs of the smaller backstays when the rudder was turned too far... causing damage. The damage was such, the starboard leg was worn enough to cause a catastrophic failure had it given way at sea.

I ordered two new backstay legs from Bud Taplin at Westsail Parts Company and installed them this morning.

Once installed, I also installed two PVC conduits to protect the new backstay legs from future damage. I will also be careful not to allow the rudder to be turned too far causing contact.

My new departure date for Carrabelle, Florida is June 1st.  That's 39 days, 14 hours!  There's still 25 things on the moving punch list that have to completed before I cast off lines.

Fair seas and God bless.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Back to Work!

For those of you that didn't know, I have been battling the worst head-cold in the history of mankind for the last four weeks. Last week, just when I thought I was getting better, the head-cold shifted into a whole new gear and turned into an upper respiratory infection, (according to the VA and a number of chest x-rays).

Needless to say, I've not been doing much in regard to boatwork. The blog is my witness that I was able to work on projects during the HEAD-cold part of this four week battle, but when this monster moved into my chest, it shut me down for the last week. Today, after three days of medication and thousands of milligrams of Vitamin C, I have forced myself to resume work.

My punch list for the move to Carrabelle, Florida consists of 29 items as of now, (it shrinks and grows from day to day). One of those items was brackets or some way to raise and adjust my solar panels while unplugged from the dock.

Very early on in my ownership of Annie, I purchased two "Boat Hatch Window Adjusters" from Amazon for my sky-view hatch. The sky-view hatch was a little too beefy for the "Boat Hatch Window Adjusters" so I set them aside thinking I could find a use for them later on...

Wallah... I did!

Amazon's "Boat Hatch Window Adjuster"

Here's what I started with...
(nothing to hold the panels up or adjust them...)

Here's how it worked out...

I can even adjust to catch rays on the opposite side of the boat!

Normal configuration

Another little pesky job that just sat there mocking me during my battle with the uber-cold was the finishing of the cowl vent covers... Done!

The list now reads 27 items...
The clock reads 57 days, 19 hours, ans 59 minutes...


Fair seas and God bless.

Thursday, April 14, 2016


Annie has two diesel fuel tanks: starboard and port. Each tank holds approximately 35 gallons of diesel fuel. The starboard tank has a deck-fill but the port tank did not. Access to the port tank was granted by opening the lazarette and then removing a bronze 1.5 inch plug. The opening to the tank was actually tucked well under the fixed deck and beyond the hinge of the lazarette hatch. You could get a pump handle in there to fill the tank but it wasn't easy. Actually... IT WAS A PAIN!

Easy solution; add a deck-fill.

This job should have been quick and easy but a miscalculation on my part made complicated the job, (I hate it when that happens). Despite my precision gaze and engineering optical skills, I did not drill the hole for the deck-fill fitting directly over the tank opening... I was off about a half inch, maybe three quarters of an inch. This mistake complicated a should-be easy job into a difficult one. The misalignment of the hole to the tank opening required a hose that had a degree of flexibility... fuel tank hoses are rigid and don't bend well... especially when they are only eight inches long. Fortunately, I was able to locate a hose that possessed the needed flexibility and was tough enough to pour diesel fuel through.

The deck was actually thicker than my hole saw. The balsa wood core was very dry and firm, (that's a good thing).

I had to order a hose fitting from Amazon, none of the local hardware stores carried a fitting that would work, (add three days to the job).

In the end, the deck-fill was completed in four days instead of the anticipated one hour. Everything takes longer on a boat!

And of course, Fuji thought about me as he waited at my office in the A/C.

Fair seas and God bless.

Monday, April 11, 2016

Extra Fuel and a Tiller Swap

In preparing for my sail to Carrabelle, Florida on or about mid June, I decided I needed to carry some extra diesel. Most likely I will motor across the state through Lake Okeechobee and a series of canals for a total distance of approximately 150 miles. I have no idea how much my Yanmar 56 HP diesel engine will consume on such a long motoring, so, better to be safe than sorry. My boat holds 45 gallons of diesel and with four 5 gallon jugs, I'll have 65 gallons total... my neighbor says that's more than enough.

I installed a Red Oak slat to secure the 5 gallon jugs to... debating the need for varnish or not.

Then, I changed out my small tiller, (one given to me by a friend when my original tiller died from wood rot), for a Westsail tiller given to me by a another friend when he bought a new one, (thanks Denis). I had to do a little repair work on it which impeded the visual aesthetics with epoxy filler, so white paint took care of that. (Perhaps I should just buy a new one all varnished and pretty but $400 with shipping just hurts too much).

The diesel mechanic is coming tomorrow, (raw water pump leaking and a good once over). The main sail coming off for repair, (restitching at the clew). Then driving a friend to Ft. Pierce to store his car while he continues sailing to Bermuda and beyond.

Busy... Busy... BUSY!

Fair seas and God bless.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

The Deck Be Done!

For all intents and purposes, the deck be done. I still have a couple of spots to touch up tomorrow, but the deck project is complete. Needless to say, and easily seen by the three posts covering this project, it was a little more involved than I anticipated. I hope the paint is durable so I don't have to do this again for a long time.

Fair seas and God bless.