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The ship's blog for SV Nelleke out of Shelburne, NS
We are beginning to run madly off in all directions....
06/20/2012, Shelburne NS

Work at the job in town is becoming increasingly busy and this week we are entertaining the Provincial Government Caucus, including the Premier, Ministers and all the other MLAs. I happen to have known the Premier and some of the other MLAs and staff from a previous life about 25 years ago so it will be interesting to see if any of them remember me.

Late last week there was an announcement that the big paper mill in Liverpool, a neighbouring town about 50 kilometers down the road is closing for good after nearly 100 years of operation. I imagine that all the guys that are out and on their pensions are thanking their lucky stars that they were able to finish their careers while the mill was still in business while the younger ones are wondering what hit them. I guess the writing has been on the wall for the newsprint industry as more and more of our communication is changing over to electronic means. I guess to I am wondering why they can't convert the mill to coated paper for books and magazines or to making toilet paper or paper towels or paper plates or whatever. That's what one of the other major firms in Atlantic Canada has done. Irving Paper has a plant that buys up all of the excess pulp from their pulp mills and uses it to make other paper product such as the ones that I have just named. The plants are still in business and the family is making the moola. Why can't the local plant to something similar?

In Shelburne we are hoping that the government will be making some good news announcements while they are down here such as some business coming to town or funding for the Marine Terminal or some such. We have our fingers crossed. I intend to attend the meet-and-greet tonight at the Osprey Arts Centre hopefully to hear such news or at least to talk to them and ask a question or two.

I have found someone to do some of the stainless here in town so I will be getting them to work on the bow roller extension so I can put the Bruce anchor out there. That'll be another of the boat tasks done and complete. He is also going to supply me with some channel rod to support the cabin ceiling under the mizzen mast pulpit so it looks like I will be able to get that done over the next week.

Unfortunately the weather forecast for this weekend is not a good one so we are not going to be able to get away for an overnighter to McNutts as I had hoped, but we are most definitely planning for the Shelburne to Lockport Canada Day Race. We are still looking for crew so if anyone is interested....

Hiatus on the Hard 2011-?
Now we are getting down to it
06/18/2012, Shelburne NS

The real stuff for Nelleke, I mean. The first thing that I will be working on is the initial phase of the mast step for the mizzen. I plan to jack up the mast in place by slackening off the shrouds and supporting the mast with some 2x6 boards under two conveniently placed winches on the mizzen with a scissor jack for about ½" or until the cabin ceiling reassumes the correct shape. Not that it was on the verge of caving in but I wanted to make shire that it never could. Then I will 520 and screw into place three small beams across the cabin ceiling from one side to the other to add additional support and to spread the load over a larger area. I figure that this should take a couple of evenings to accomplish. Then I will remove the jack and retune the rigging and we should be good to go. I am particularly interested in getting this done prior to the Canada Day Weekend which is from Jun 29th to 2nd July. The yacht club runs a race from Shelburne to Lockport the community just down the road towards Halifax with the yachts arriving in time to take part in their Canada Day festivities before coming back home in a more sedate fashion. I am looking for a couple of folks to be crew if anyone is interested. The party in Lockport will consist of a small town fair, street parades and dances as well as whatever taking place aboard the various yachts. Should be a good time.

I am also going to be manufacturing an adjustable platform for the secondary alternator that I am experimenting with running off the spinning propeller shaft on the boat and while I am doing that I am hoping that Barb will feel comfortable with her new knee to get going on the bright work topsides. I am still looking for someone with some welding experience to build an extension on my bow roller that will allow me to have the secondary anchor off the bow instead of being stowed on deck as it is now. That will make it a lot easier to use and hence more likely as we are all basically lazy. For those of you who may be unaware Nelleke carries three anchors: a CQR as primary and a Bruce secondary forward and a Danforth on the stern rails in case we need to anchor from the bow and stern someday.

I have a list as long as my arm of additional stuff that I want to do ranging from hooking up all the equipment so that they can talk NMEA protocol to each other to making an office out of the middle cabin. I guess the two things that I definitely want to get done this summer is a new support for the instrument pod on the mizzen and dingy lift points on our tender. Our friend Mike from WIndshadow gave us some special non rotting extremely hard take no prisoners wood that I will be making it out of so I had better get on with it.

Hiatus on the Hard 2011-?
It has now been conclusively proven.......
06/15/2012, Shelburne NS

.......that yours truly needs to grow a brain.

Yesterday I broke down and had a mechanic out to help me trace the problem with the wiring for the instruments aboard Nelleke. The boat has two sets of water temperature and oil pressure display meters, one set at the helm in the cockpit and the other at the inside steering station. I had the duplicate set below tied to a switch so I could turn them off when not using the engine while the ones in the cockpit are switched by the ignition key. Well, late last season I replaced the switch panel that had the on-off switch for the inside set and forgot which wires I had used for the meters and what they hooked up to. No matter what I tried I couldn't find a combination of wires that either hooked up to the hot side or to ground would work. As I said, in desperation I finally called in a mechanic. Together we traced wires backward and forward and finally after about a half an hour he found two wires that had ring connectors crimped onto the ends of them that were carefully duct taped so as to be kept together but not having the contacts touching. "Hey!" says the mechanic, "How 'bout if we just touch these together and you start the engine to see what happens?" I agreed; we did; and gloriorsky, they were the two wires that we had been looking for. Only then did I remember that the two wires that I took off had ring connectors on them.

Arrrrrrgh! How dumb could I have been?! I guess the problem was not only that I needed to recharge my brain, but also that having been away from the boat for ¾ of a year I have tended to be less in tune with stiff aboard.

Live and learn, I guess.

Now the meters are running properly, but not only that - he also got my warning buzzer working which I had never connected before. Now, like everyone else, when we turn the key to on we get that whine until the engine turns over and builds up the oil pressure. It is a much more satisfying feeling to know that if for some reason the pressure drops or the water temperature goes too high we will get a warning buzz to let us know soon enough to be able to shut the engine down to prevent too much damage.

Just in time for us to take out the three prospective doctors that we are trying to entice into moving to our town. The plan is for us to go out on a two and a half hour cruise and show them what great times that they could be having. I hope that it works. We could certainly use a couple of new GPs.

After making the repairs we went to see an opera in concert at the local arts centre as a reward. The production was of Mozart's Magic Flute which I had been in many years ago so it was fun to watch some younger performers do their thing. The coloratura soprano, Jessica Chung, was very good indeed, and it was really nice to see an artist who was vocally superb and easy on the eyes at the same time. In addition, the baritone playing Papagano, a young black man from BC, I believe that his name was Jesse Welsh, was really quite excellent. He had the pipes for the part plus an outstanding stage presence. The staging was interesting in a positive sense as they eliminated a lot of to droning choral and recitation bits in favour of a narrator to move the story line along and concentrated on the arias, trios, quartets etc that are the really memorable parts of the opera. There was still a two hour performance that was well worth the time and price of the ticket and it certainly brought back memories.

Hiatus on the Hard 2011-?
06/18/2012 | Duane Ising
That musthave been frustrating and then came the "duh" moment. I have been there, Mike.

All the best to you and Barb.
06/18/2012 | Michael and Barbara Turney
You ain't kiddin' my friend. Frustrating doesn't begin to describe it. And don't forget you have to slap yourself on the forehead with the Du-oh statement.

I see on your blog that you are underway again. I hope your trials are behind you. When you get to Sandy Hook don't forget to take in the Nudie Beach.......

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Notes from Nelleke's Log
Who: Mike, Barb, and Periwinkle
Port: SHYC, Shelburne, Nova Scotia and RNSYS Halifax
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