DelayNice, steady winds, would have been great for sailing
05/26/2012, Writing this from the Apple store waiting for our appointment to get the os updated on the ipad
I'm sorry to report that we had a problem using the gin pole mast raising and lowering system yesterday and wound up bending some parts enough so that this weekend's sailing trip had to be canceled. On the bright side, nobody got hurt and we should be able to repair the damage and have Boker Tov ready for the next trip scheduled not too far off.
The Wing Gets NamedKeith, hot but nice
05/24/2012, In-Laws Driveway
The refit is coming together. Late this afternoon after our day jobs we wired-up and secured the second battery. It appears to be working in series with the existing battery as well as in isolation. All the lights on the sailboat are working as they should and she is ready for night time cruising and adventuring. Afterwards we put on the new lettering. Boker Tov means Good Morning in Hebrew. The name is symbolic in a few ways. Celia's Maternal Grandparents on her Grandmother's side had a motorboat by the same name on Lake George in upstate New York. Now, another generation is keeping up the tradition, but in a different place and in a different way. For me personally, the name represents the next chapter in my cruising life. Back to the sailboat tomorrow morning at 7:00 a.m. to finalize a few things, then the mast is coming down and Boker Tov will be readied for her next fitting-out trip, a two nighter, scheduled to depart early Saturday morning. Stay tuned.
Waking up early to work on the sailboat before it gets too hotCool in the early morning, then getting hot. Very hot.
Refit UpdateCool and comfortable until 8:00 a.m., then hot
The wheels of sailboat refitting can turn ever so slowly, but things are happening in preparation for the next sailing trip. Here a list of things have gotten done since our return from vacation last week:
Vespa Excursion in RomeKeith, warm
Just returned from a two week family vacation to Europe with Sarah and Celia. This photo was towards the end of the trip. Sarah and Celia went to browse the boutiques and I rented this scooter and went exploring. It was quite scary at first as the traffic is fierce and apparently chaotic in Rome, but when I realized that motorcycles are expected to weave in and out of traffic, especially at intersections, it became a lot more enjoyable. I didn't want it to end. The weather was fantastic and the wind felt wonderful as I sped through the busy streets, often getting lost and then driving by ancient sites that I never would have found purposely.
Back to Boat WorkKeith, Hot
04/22/2012, In-Law's Side Driveway
This is a fuse for the running lights on our 1987 Catalina 25 electrical panel. We were told the back of the electrical panel was damaged when we stowed a bumper in the cockpit locker improperly, but I think it was this. That broken plastic part must keep it from popping out until the fuse blows. I hope they still sell these at Catalina Direct. We were scheduled to work on the sailboat yesterday morning from 9 until noon but wound up going until almost 3 in the afternoon, including lunch. Refitting a sailboat is very time-consuming. Every little thing seems to take an excruciatingly long time. By the time we were through for the day it was approaching 100 degrees outside and I was exhausted. Of course, this is nothing like the scope of the refit on Tropical Dreamer and we aren't in Oriental in June when it is as humid as it is hot. That makes this boat work look tame. Nevertheless, I felt gratified at our progress. I learn things about the sailboat when I work on it. For example, yesterday was a good lesson in turnbuckles. We removed the bent T-bolts from two of the three port shrouds and measured them. One is 5/8 inch wide and 3.5 inches long and the other is 1/4 inch wide and 3 inches long. Catalina Direct says all of the side stay T-bolts should be 5/16 inch, so our rigging must not be original. Each of our side shrouds is a different diameter. The center side stays on our Catalina 25 use 1/2 inch bolts and correspondingly larger turnbuckles. Between the three turnbuckles, it kind of averages out to 5/16, so I suppose its ok. I'm going to try to find replacements for those two bent T-bolts and if I can find them, and if they work in the existing turnbuckles, the rigging should be in good order. We also removed the Hillerange alcohol stove and prepared it for modification to Triangia self contained alcohol burners. We removed the old little solar panel from the deck, mocked-up the new, larger panel, cut an opening in the control panel for the charge controller, and figured out that the existing 22 gauge wire has to be re-wired with thicker wire like 12 or 14 gauge. In the process we removed the old car stereo and speakers and a number of other unnecessary electrical fixtures and associated wire. We purchased stainless steel hardware for the new solar installation at Lowes. We verified the size of the existing battery and from that we know that we can get a nearly identical second battery at Costco. I tried the cigarette lighter and found that it does not work so I will have to replace or repair the existing one or hard wire a small inverter to the battery or other power supply. I identified that the space for the dinghy on the foredeck is so small that it may be hard to find one that will fit in that space. There may be no choice but to tow the dingy, but this compromises the sailing capabilities and is really not adequate for crossings and deteriorating weather. I measured the lifelines at the cockpit for covers. Picked up a bearing buddy grease gun for the for trailer wheels. Long time readers of the Sailblog will recall a minor emergency which resulted when the trailer wheel fell off and nearly toppled Singmeaway off its trailer after the bearings overheated on the way back from San Carlos. Sarah asked if the boat will be finished by the time of our Memorial Day trip. I wasn't entirely sure. It is safe right now for any sort of Arizona lake trip, but I'd like to have all of the in-progress improvements completed before summer cruising in the ocean.
Standing Rigging ImprovementKeith
Went over to pick up the baby yesterday afternoon after work and took this picture. After we put up the mast I discovered that two of the T bolts attaching the shrouds to the deck were slightly bent, one more than the other. There are three mast stays on each side of the sailboat and each has a different sized T bolt. The largest is in the center, the forward stay is the next most thick, and aft shroud the least so. I've got to find two T bolts and be somewhat confident they will fit before we take down the mast, though I think I can replace one at a time without risk. I'm hoping Catalina direct sells the bolts that fit the existing turnbuckles. I inspected every part of the standing rigging when I prepared the mast for raising and while we were raising it. It appears, to my untrained eye, to be in good condition. Aside from a large cotter pin missing at one of the spreaders the hardware appears intact and without significant wear, other than the two
04/09/2012, My in-laws driveway
This photo shows the block and tactical gear, or at least the forward-most part of it, that allowed two people to get the mast up yesterday afternoon while the sailboat was atop its trailer at my in-laws home. I wasn't really prepared to do a mast-up trial run, but in preparation for installing the new solar system, we wanted to clear the decks and leave ourselves more open access to the cabin. The Catalina 25 standard rig mast is really too heavy for two men older than 40 to lift without risk of injury. Our Wing came with a gin pole and block & tackle set up that allows the mast to be raised with relative ease. I believe it is possible for me to get the mast up or down completely by myself, if necessary. It was slow going at first and we kind of had to figure things out as we went along, but once we re-routed the line through the second pulley (rather than bypassing it and going straight through the cam cleat, as shown in the photograph) and astern to the big #16 self-tailing winch (the same winch I used to free the anchor from the tree at the bottom of the lake in the earlier post), we had more than enough power to raise the mast safely and without further trouble or hesitation. I think the entire mast raising or lowering can be done in less an hour, possibly as little as a half an hour.
Ducks at Sabino DamKeith, Spring
04/05/2012, Lower Sabino Canyon
Lately I work out in the early mornings. It is light enough and warm enough at 6:15 a.m. these days to hike at Sabino Canyon and I've covered pretty much all the Sabino Canyon trails that I can get to in a two hour hike. This morning I took a trail that led me though the riparian area along Sabino Dam, where I found ducks. You may be able to make out the saguaros in the background. Later, when I returned home, Sarah and I ordered the new solar system for the Catalina 25 Wing. 60 watt panel and 10 amp charge controller this morning. Still have to order wire and connectors and any mounting hardware. Slowly but surely I am getting the sailboat ready for safe and comfortable cruising.
Here's a Link to a Video Of The Return Cruise On Our Last Sailing Trip04/02/2012, Lake Pleasant
Singer Family Adventures
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