Definition of Cruising
01 February 2011
They say that the definition of cruising is " boat repairs in exotic locations". Well I can certainly agree with this definition. Recall my earlier travails with my fuel system which necessitated taking the boat apart and polishing the fuel at Miami? Well, it didn't stop here.
My internet USB aerial packed it up but only after I spend considerable time and expense trying to diagnose it. More recently, my wind generator has stopped working and I'm having a circuit board sent over from Florida which, hopefully, will fix it. It's a shame to waste the power generation of the winds as we always have good winds here.
But, the latest and worst failure was yesterday morning just after Judy woke up and used the bathroom (head). She reports (sheepishly) to me that the head will not pump!
The marine plumbing system, even on a modest cruising boat like ours is almost as complex as the Point Lepreau Nuclear Reactor, with pipes, hoses, valves, diaphragms and various other components. I soon realize what has happened. The medium term effect of the mixture of salt water and human waste in the pipes causes a build up of a calcification which progressively restricts the flow of the waste to the holding tank. This morning was the final straw and the pipe was completely clogged. I have no choice but to remove the toilet and this long hose to remove the calcification. There's no dainty way to do this and I suggest to Judy that she get off the boat. She puts out a call on the net and a neighbouring boater picks her up to go to art class on the beach. I tear the boat half apart in order to remove the offending hose. I then take it along with the disassembled toilet parts over to the woods behind the beach and proceed to remove the calcification. To do so for the long (9 feet) main waste hose, you essentially beat it against the ground to break loose the build up. It gives "now the shit's gonna fly" a new meaning. Anyway, I get everything cleaned up, reinstalled and then clean me and the boat. It took me the better part of the day but I was concerned that I might have a harder time removing the pipes and we would not have plumbing on the boat; on the day before Judy's birthday.
Just another day in the life of a cruiser.....