Last minute work in San Diego
24 October 2008 | San Diego
Having installed the new autopilot yesterday, we took the boat out on the bay to calibrate the autopilot. This took about an hour.
Back at the dock, I installed a backup engine starting switch right at the engine. We had some instances where the engine wouldn't start, but putting a screwdriver across the solenoid terminals got it going. The new switch replaces the screwdriver.
That being done, I investigated a freshwater leak that was draining a large amount of our fresh water supply into the bilge. This was keeping both the bilge pump and the water pressure pump working more than they should. I found the source: a pinhole leak in the side of the pressure reservoir. Water was squirting out in a steady stream.
I made a trip to West Marine and got a new pressure reservoir, and installed it. Problem solved.
While at West Marine, I purchased a bilge pump and a water pressure pump, and another head rebuild kit, just to carry with us as spares. If we don't use them, we can always return them later. Finding those parts in Mexico would be very difficult.
Meanwhile, John laid out the anchor chain on the dock in preparation for painting marks on it every 20 ft. John also installed the brackets for the dinghy wheels on the dinghy.
I spoke to Jonah, our rigger, on the phone today, for his advice. I found 73 feet of Vectra 5/16 line at 10 cents a foot. Normally it sells for 3 bucks a foot. I was asking Jonah what we could use it for. He said, not too much, but for the price: go for it. The stuff is amazing, with a breaking strength of 11,000 pounds.
Jonah reminded me that, in an earlier blog post, I understated how much rigging work we had done. We replaced all the standing rigging, and most of the running rigging, changing stretchy lines and worn out blocks where it counts. I especially love the new low stretch jib sheets, so much better than huge 3/4 inch sheets that came with the boat. The old ones were so big they pinched in the turning blocks. The new ones are even color coordinated with the boat!