Kaimusailing

s/v Kaimu Wharram Catamaran

Vessel Name: Kaimu
Vessel Make/Model: Wharram Custom
Hailing Port: Norwalk, CT
Crew: Andy and the Kaimu Crew
About: Sailors in the Baltimore, Annapolis, DC area.
17 May 2018 | st marys, ga
13 May 2018 | st marys, ga
08 May 2018 | st marys, ga
06 May 2018 | st marys, ga
03 May 2018 | st marys, ga
01 May 2018 | st marys, ga
23 April 2018 | st marys, ga
19 April 2018 | st marys, ga
15 April 2018 | st marys, ga
14 April 2018 | st marys, ga
05 April 2018 | st marys, ga
04 April 2018 | st marys, ga
31 March 2018 | st marys, ga
29 March 2018 | st marys, ga
25 March 2018 | st marys, ga
24 March 2018 | st marys, ga
23 March 2018 | st marys, ga
23 March 2018 | st marys, ga
19 March 2018 | st marys, ga
17 March 2018 | st marys, ga
Recent Blog Posts
17 May 2018 | st marys, ga

dAISy meets U-Blox

The idea was to make the most of the difficult weather pattern coming in, tropical depression maybe, thunderstorms predicted for every day. This has happened before here, and we sit around with our work areas covered from the rain, no way to get any work done. But I have some inside work to do, so [...]

13 May 2018 | st marys, ga

dAISy Test

I noticed I was more active and anticipating the work day with more of a positive attitude. “Attitude is Everything, Dammit”. I’m not sure why I feel this way, maybe it is getting past the big bottom repair/repainting stage, or maybe it is the ETL, estimated time to launch. June 28.

08 May 2018 | st marys, ga

Patriotic

The red ablative bottom paint was very thick but mixed up easily in a few minutes. The top edge of the red paint formed a boot strip with the top edge of the blue hard bottom paint above it (3 inches). The edge was masked off first with Fine Line masking tape, then the masking was widened with cheap [...]

06 May 2018 | st marys, ga

Lava in Puna

We will allow the recent bottom paint to dry out for a day or two and do other things in the meantime. RG-58/U coaxial cable is coming in to make the collinear antenna for the AIS and maybe there will be enough to make two antennae. Another project is the small switch panel for the pilothouse which [...]

03 May 2018 | st marys, ga

Blue Complete

Let me draw your attention to a You Tube video by Graham Hancock:

01 May 2018 | st marys, ga

Blue Paint and Hokule'a

The fairing of the hull bottoms was going along quite well. I started with doing 1/3 of a hull side in one afternoon’s work, so a complete hull would take a week. We had rain, delays. I then did 2/3 of a hull side in a day, then completed that hull side the next day, and did 1/2 the other side the [...]

dAISy meets U-Blox

17 May 2018 | st marys, ga
Capn Andy/hot, humid, thunderstorms
The idea was to make the most of the difficult weather pattern coming in, tropical depression maybe, thunderstorms predicted for every day. This has happened before here, and we sit around with our work areas covered from the rain, no way to get any work done. But I have some inside work to do, so I made the best of it. I had to install the new switch panel in the pilothouse, that work could be done inside out of the rain.
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The pilothouse was a mess, a repository of numerous tool boxes, the electrical box that had maybe 1/4 of the electrical tools and supplies in it. The catch all box that Richard and Gill left me when they launched their boat. It was full of useful tools. Maybe too heavy for them.
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I had a tool box full of plier type of tools, crimpers, scissors, channel-lock pliers, pliers, sheet metal cutting scissors, e-ring pliers of several types, and the vice-grips that get lost. A box of ratchet sockets, handles, bits and sockets, and some drivers for phillips head screws or torx head. Other boxes had handle tools, like screwdrivers and allen wrenches. Sometimes it is difficult to know which box to stow a tool. There is also a box of sailing hardware, blocks and snatchblocks, cleats, rope clutches.
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I moved stuff around in the pilothouse and looked for access to the beam trough that ran across the front of it. The beam trough had wires in it, some of them old, some new. They came into the starboard hull through the aperture where the #3 beam came in I removed some of the old wires, corroded coaxial that had served for the old VHF radio and the old Smart Radio AIS receiver. The new RG213 coax from the mast antenna feed took their place.
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I ran wires from the terminal block near the mast step. It was mounted on an I-beam above the new fuel tank. The old wires were removed and the brass or bronze surfaces were brightened up with the Black & Decker Dremel-like tool and a little grinding bit. I ran red wires from an old spool of wire and a black wire, straight aft to the helm station, then abruptly to starboard, following the #3 beam, into the pilothouse, threading through large eyelets in the beam cover and the top of the counter, in a corner, near where the beam entered the hull.
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The SSB radio was there and it was wired both to power and a KISS ground. This ground is a device that makes it simple to provide a ground plane for your SSB radio It mainly provides a counterpoint to enable the radio to radiate its signal from the antenna.
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The SSB radio had an antenna tuner which would work with the radio and make adjustments to the electronic characteristics of the antenna path to maximize power transfer from the radio to the antenna. It would also work in reverse, correctly matched, the antenna and radio would be highly tuned for that frequency. I remembered testing this all out a long while ago and it worked OK. Now I replaced the antenna lead from the tuner, which had been tested on a long piece of wire, and put it on an HF wire antenna lead that went up out of the pilothouse, following the path of the solar panel wiring, then was clamped to the shroud that I had isolated electrically with dyneema wrappings.
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The radio, when turned on, sounded like nothing but static. This was bad. I spent a lot of time searching for anything on those radio bands, frequencies going up to 30 MHz. I then spent some time looking for internet information about what frequencies I could find a reliable signal at. Probably the most reliable is at WWV, an AM signal. Also I wanted to hear the overseas weather forecast by NOAA. These are transmitted from New Orleans and from the Chesapeake. All I got was static.
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I wondered why the radio had so much static, when I had tested it about a year ago it sounded fine. I began turning off circuits to see if some device was causing the static. There was no change. The solar charge controller could be causing static. In that case the noise will go away at night. At some point I turned the inverter off to see if that was the culprit and the noise was greatly reduced. I need to see how clean the signal is at night.
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I began assembling the stanchion and GPS arm that will support the new switch panel and gauges. Holes were drilled in the pilothouse counter and the bottom of the switch panel box and the stanchion was screwed down on the counter. The box was screwed to a 3" diameter fitting that would normally hold a GPS device, the fitting is like a flat donut and is threaded in the center to thread onto the arm. It was impossible to feed wire up through the bottom of the stanchion and into the GPS arm. I tried various stiff wires and nothing would follow the path without jamming somewhere. Then I got an idea that worked like a charm, I had a ball of light twine, I brought the vacuum cleaner into the pilothouse and positioned the hose under the counter and started sucking air through the stanchion and GPS arm. The twine quickly ran through into the vacuum hose, now I had a pull line to pull wiring through.
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The next day the rain stopped for a while and I added a second coat of hard antifouling to the spots on the keel bottoms that had been hidden by the blocking. Then I unpacked some items that had arrived by USPS but had been sitting in the boatyard's mailbox until today. One item was a jib hank that was put on the jib luff in place of a hank that had lost its piston. Another item was my renewed passport, good for another 10 years. Thirdly a USB hub arrived. This was my solution for the problem of only one USB port on the Getac B300X nav computer.
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I brought the AIS antenna and receiver down to the woodshop along with a USB puck. The USB puck is sold as "G-mouse" and appears in the lsusb terminal window as U-blox. Both the AIS receiver and the U-blox GPS are categorized as ACM devices in Ubuntu. I plugged the USB hub into the laptop and plugged the receiver and GPS into the hub. I rebooted the laptop so that the devices would be recognized. I was able to get one or the other to work in OpenCPN and had to do a little more research to find the terminal commands that would help identify them. The command lsusb gives a list of USB devices. the command ls /dev/ttyACM* gives a list of ACM devices. The command cat /dev/ttyACM1 gives the output of ACM1. The output data of GPS and AIS are easy to differentiate. The image shows AIS output from the dAISy receiver at ACM0. The GPS data is at 4800 baud and the AIS at 38.4kbaud. These parameters are entered in OpenCPN's tool tab, in the connections tab, and then the NMEA debug window can be opened to see what data is coming in.
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By trial and error I found that the two devices had some sort of conflict coming into the Getac's USB port. While discussing this problem with another yardbird I got the idea to try this out on the backup nav computer which is a Panasonic CF-C1 which has plenty of USB ports. This time the two devices came through fine. OpenCPN showed Kaimu's position in the boatyard and also showed buoy 16 and the sea buoy as AIS targets. When I tried the USB hub with the CF-C1 they continued working fine. Hmmm. Back on the Getac still a problem. Then I discovered the Getac had a second USB port. This port is a SATA/USB port, so it didn't look like a USB port when I first looked at it, but when I tried it, it worked. Using both ports worked fine.
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The image is a screen shot of terminal mode in Ubuntu and the commands to identify and look at data from the AIS receiver. When I selected the ACM device I didn't know which one it represented, so the data stream identifies it and the correct baud rate can be entered in the connections tab in OpenCPN.

dAISy Test

13 May 2018 | st marys, ga
Capn Andy/Hot Summer Begins
I noticed I was more active and anticipating the work day with more of a positive attitude. “Attitude is Everything, Dammit”. I’m not sure why I feel this way, maybe it is getting past the big bottom repair/repainting stage, or maybe it is the ETL, estimated time to launch. June 28.
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I wrote it down on the calendar, each day I can look at a decreasing number, and a number not too scary now, 51 days to launch. But later I suspect it will be 4 days to launch and I will be in a bind.
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The “warm spring” that sailblogs requests I enter in the weather column, is now more like hot summer. And hot summer is next month, in June. So, any work accomplished now is a piece of cake compared to work performed in 95 to 105 degrees and high humidity, in summer.
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I’ve factored nearly everything into my estimated launch date, such as not being able to do much when it gets so hot. The job list has not yet been organized, I have been just doing whichever job seemed most important. Now the jobs will become more numerous and require more planning, especially if they carry into June. Such as the old staysail which will become the new self tending jib. It suffered greatly when the staysail stay parted and it was dragged aboard in 35 knot winds. It has been stowed in its bag ever since. I will have to run it up again soon to see if it is OK, otherwise it has to go to the sailmaker for repair. And come back before we relaunch. There are a lot of things like that, things that have a sequence and timing that cannot be overlooked with 50 days left to launch. But I haven’t made the appropriate list or sorted things out yet. So, probably, one of the most important jobs to do is to find out what are the most important jobs to do.
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Doc the boat chopper purchased Trillium, the C&C 24 sloop, from me and I made a couple trips out to the boat to remove my stuff. I have mixed feelings about selling off a boat that I love to sail so much, but it isn’t practical to have two boats, you can only sail one at a time. The outrigger canoe is different, that can be taken on board the catamaran and brought along on the voyage.
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I had tried to make the collinear antenna, but my soldering irons are old and useless. I bought a new one for ten bucks at walmart and assembled the antenna complete with a BNC connector on the end of the feed wire. I had never made a collinear antenna before, it is a lot more work than the simple 1/4 wave coaxial dipoles I have made in the past. The tested performance of the collinear antenna makes it more desirable, higher gain.
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I ran the old staysail up the inner forestay and it looks usable, some fraying at the foot of the sail. One jib hank has lost its piston. Otherwise it looks good to go.
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I tested the collinear antenna with the dAISy AIS receiver and the Getac B300X laptop down at the woodshop which is close to the water. I wanted to catch the Cumberland Island ferry which is actually visible from our docks as it leaves the waterfront at St. Marys and trundles down the St. Marys River East to Cumberland Island. I never got a peep out of the ferry, but the dAISy and the antenna picked up the St. Marys Entrance sea buoy, 15 miles away, and Red 16, which is another buoy equipped with an AIS transmitter. I experimented, not believing I was picking up the sea buoy, after all it is not line of sight, but in a line with the boatyard and local environs, then across Point Peter and the end of Cumberland Island. I disconnected the antenna and the AIS icon disappeared from the sea buoy, reconnected and it returned after a few moments.
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It was obvious the ferry wasn’t sending out an AIS signal, which they are mandated to do as a commercial vessel. Did someone forget to turn it on? It would be a shame to get run over by a ferry we didn’t believe was there.
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We have had very fine weather and progress has been good, but the forecast is changing to the summer pattern of SE winds, humidity, and thunderstorms. I tried extended forecasts from Passageweather.com and windy.com and it looks like it will continue as far out as they project, around 10 days. It seems early for this type of weather and work will be uncomfortable when it is even possible.
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I have a few small but time consuming jobs up on deck, extending the mast wiring to the pilothouse, adding latches to the two forward hatches over the bow storage spaces, relocating hatch hinges on the replacement hatch (an old hatch from one of the forward bunks) to match the existing hinges on the starboard rear storage compartment, which will later get a manual head that pumps directly overboard.
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The new deck plate that has been sitting in place but not bolted down was bolted down, but it wasn’t easy. My procedure was to mark the bolt holes directly with a Sharpie pen right through the eyelets for the bolts in the deck structure. Then I drilled these holes for 1/4-20 bolts, then took calipers and measured the little 4 sided boss on the underside of the carriage bolt heads and found .3“ would be large enough to allow the bolt heads to lie flat on the deck plate and allow epoxy to saturate the wood around the bolt, then fill the remaining gap with thickened epoxy, allow to set, and then bolt the thing down on deck. I used masking tape to mask off the bolt threads so they didn’t get filled with epoxy and also made the masking serve as a sort of bolt hanger to keep the bolts from dropping out of the holes. The epoxy was applied with the deck plate upside down and the bolts drawn up as much as possible to seal off the oversized bolt holes. It all worked out very well and I checked from time to time to see if the epoxy was getting lost, it wasn’t, and the next day I removed all the tape and brought the deck plate back up on deck and tried to fit it.
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The bolts didn’t line up with the eyelets, which was hard to believe, but I kept working at it and got them jammed into the eyelets by levering or pulling them with a length of stainless wire. They all ended up where they needed to be and nylok nuts were used to cinch the deck plate down tight.
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The image is from windy.com and it is their forecast for next Wednesday. Notice the SE flow coming up the Florida coast and also what looks like an intense low pressure system off the coast of Alabama. The hurricane season starts next month and I hope it doesn’t start early.

Patriotic

08 May 2018 | st marys, ga
Capn Andy/Warm Spring
The red ablative bottom paint was very thick but mixed up easily in a few minutes. The top edge of the red paint formed a boot strip with the top edge of the blue hard bottom paint above it (3 inches). The edge was masked off first with Fine Line masking tape, then the masking was widened with cheap wide masking tape. The Fine Line is about 8 bucks a roll and is about 3/4 inch wide. The cheap stuff from the dollar store is 1 1/2 inches wide and a buck a roll.
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I tried to stay out of the sun which has become much hotter these past few days, by painting on the right side of the hulls (West) in the morning and then on the left side (East) in the afternoon. This way I could get a coat of paint on both sides of both hulls in a day. It takes about an hour to paint one side of one hull. The first day I painted all the hull sides with one coat, then was able to get a second coat on the starboard sides even though the sun was on that side at the end of the day. There is a 4 hour minimum recoat time with this paint, so it was very late in the day and the sun was low in the sky and not abusively hot.
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I wanted to get the same amount done the next day, but the way it worked out there wasn’t enough time to put a third coat on the West or port sides of the hulls. When they are painted that job will be done, hurray. Next we will have to move the blocking that supports the hulls to repair, restore, and paint the small areas obscured by the blocks.
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I tried to shoot a video from the drone using the supplied gimbal. It’s not a motorized gimbal, just a plastic bracket that holds the camera. Even with my smoothest flying the video was very jumpy. I will have to get a powered gimbal or a drone with a built in gimbal to do aerial video.
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The next day I painted the last two hull sides with the ablative red, done. Col. Johnson hung around while I painted and kept me amused with his stories. I had the little roller with some paint left and gave it to him to touch up a spot on his steel sailboat.
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I could grab lunch and do a little shopping or vice versa and ended up with the afternoon heating up. The little project of the switch panel in the pilothouse stood there waiting. Doc the boat chopper had given me an old stanchion and base that were pretty well chewed up by a collision, probably another hurricane damage. Ken, Komputer Ken, gave me an Edson GPS mounting arm when I started talking about mounting the pilothouse switch panel so that it could rotate and be seen in the pilothouse or through one of the pilothouse portlights out on deck. I didn’t think I could use it, but it would fit the stanchion. The portlight was about 15 inches above the pilothouse console or map table, whatever it was, so I had envisioned a box mounted on a hinge.
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I could find no instructions on how to install the GPS arm on the Edson site, but on You Tube I found a dealer who unpacked the arm from its blister pack and showed how it went together. What was really neat was that the arm was designed to be mounted on an existing stainless steel tube without dismantling the tube. The arm was also stainless steel, an intricate design that clamped around a plastic insert and it would hold itself on the stainless tube, plus it had a path within it to run wiring into the bottom of a GPS, but in our case it would be the switch box and gauges.
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We would need room to run the depthsounder transducer cable, plus and minus 12 V DC, and switched outputs for the anchor light, steaming light, running lights, a total of 7 or more large wires. The stanchion base had to be drilled out which was done with angle grinder discs and the dremel tool. The base and stanchion needed to be realigned using the boatyard’s hydraulic press. Finally I ended up pressing the stanchion into the base when it wouldn’t fit by hammering it or any other means. The press is very powerful.
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The coaxial cable came in, RG58/U, more precisely, Belden 8420. RG58 comes in many varieties, some with stranded center core and some with aluminum shielding. For our collinear antenna we will need the specific Belden type. Some other brands might be acceptable, but the Belden 8420 is the right stuff. It would be very difficult to solder aluminum braid shielding, and stranded center core will not fit the clamp style BNC connectors.
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I was tempted to start working on the antenna, but that is a job that should be left for a rainy day, it can be done inside. We had a big outside job waiting, so I began on that.
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The bottoms were done except for the 4 spots where the wooden blocks that support the boat prevented access to refinish them. Now the blocks have to be moved to new locations to allow that access and to do that we need to lift the hull a little bit, remove and relocated one of the sets of blocks, lower onto the blocks, and continue around to the 4 corners of the boat and move them all, one corner at a time.
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How to lift one end of one hull? The boatyard has a mechanical jack, about 5 feet long, that has a large handle that spins around, slowly extending or retracting the jack. Kaimu’s crossbeams are now 7 feet off the ground due to our reblocking the hulls higher so that we could work on the bottoms of the keels. To make up the 2 feet of difference between the top of the jack and the bottom of the crossbeams, large 6“X6“ balks of wood were used. These same balks of wood are used to build the blocking that holds up the hulls. Each pile of blocks has 8 blocks set up 2 on top of 2, then an even larger block, maybe a 6“X18“X48“ on top of the pile and some wood wedges to match the angle of the hulls at that point. I had lots of wooden wedges left over from cutting scarf joints back when 2 replacement crossbeams were made.
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The jack is very heavy so I put a line to it and ran the line up to the main halyard to a winch on the mast, and I could lift the top of the jack, then position it on a large wooden block, then fill in the gap between the top of the jack and the bottom of the crossbeam. I would lift near the inboard gunwale of the hull at the crossbeam that is furthest toward the ends of the hulls.
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When the jack was jacked and the old pile of wooden blocks was now loose, I would move that pile to the new location, exposing the keel that had been obscured by the blocks. The new block location was located further toward the end of the boat and right under the same crossbeam I was lifting with the jack. The wooden pile was recreated, plus some addition blocks to fill in the gap (the keel is lower toward the middle and higher toward the ends), and wedges to fill the last bit of gap and match the curvature of the keel.
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Then to each corner of the boat in turn until the boat was now supported in 4 new places and the old places were accessible to be refinished. It took about 3 o4 4 hours to do this work, strenuous, but I rested when I felt it was time for a rest. This is the hockey method of working in the heat of the Georgia swamp. Work for a few minutes, then rest until you feel ready to do it again.
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Speaking of hockey, the Washington Capitols, our home team back up in Maryland, finally made it past the Penguins in the playoffs after several years of getting defeated. The hockey method works.
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The image is of the red bottom paint and the resultant red, white, and blue boat, patriotic.

Lava in Puna

06 May 2018 | st marys, ga
Capn Andy/Warm Spring
We will allow the recent bottom paint to dry out for a day or two and do other things in the meantime. RG-58/U coaxial cable is coming in to make the collinear antenna for the AIS and maybe there will be enough to make two antennae. Another project is the small switch panel for the pilothouse which will have the switches for the nav lights, deck light, anchor light, steaming light, plus a switch that turns on the depth and fuel gauges, both gauges will be mounted with the panel in a box which will be hinged so that it can be turned for viewing from outside the pilothouse from on deck, and in its normal position viewable within the pilothouse.
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I have flown the drone and no longer worry about wind affecting the flight. I still crash it and now the crashes are more spectacular, and the drone still functions. Propellers have to be replaced regularly. They are soft plastic and deform when the drone crashes upside down on the hard gravel of the boatyard. Flimsy things. Collisions with other objects also ruin the propeller blades and eventually the flight performance is affected. The whine of the powerful electric motors is replaced by a buzzing of unbalanced propellers. The drone will no longer perform properly, it struggles, replace the propellers. The propellers are cheap, two sets for around six bucks, but slow shipment from Inner China. Weeks.
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While I was flying a couple weeks ago and hanging back, fearing another crash in the North River Marsh, I began to experiment with banked turns. This is done by using the right stick on the controller to tilt the drone one way or another, and pushing the left stick in that same direction. This way, the drone will tilt left and rotate counterclockwise or tilt right and rotate clockwise. With some forward tilt the drone will go into a banked turn. After a while it becomes automatic, clockwise and anticlockwise turns, and then you can work on altitude control. Then flying the drone began to simplify itself. There were moments when I would lose control, be clueless how to recover, and usually have a bad crash. Then I would make a mental note to either do something or not do something and the next time I would get past the difficulty and then find a new one further on.
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I began to experiment with gliding downwards on a sloping flight and corkscrewing upwards in a spiral. What about corkscrewing downwards? The old time aviators call this “augering in”. It is that death spiral spin out of control until the craft crashes. When I tried it, I crashed. Not because I lost control, in this case I lost view of the drone when it was about 15 feet off the ground, it was behind a boat in the boatyard, so I cut the power and then went to see what had happened to the drone. It was sitting on its landing gear and ready to go, so I flew it out of the corner it was in. Other accidents happened while trying to make a wide turn and then hitting something in the way. I learned that altitude is your friend, go up and go over. But, altitude is where the winds are stronger and the drone can get blown away before the pilot can bring it back. Fortunately the drone I am using has powerful motors and seems to have enough power to fight ordinary winds. 20 knots of wind would be ridiculous to fight against with this toy.
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When someone was asking me about the drone I replied “therapy”.
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It is like sailing, in a way, we begin to leave the dry ground of earth and instead of heading out to sea we are heading up into the air. Freedom.
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I was glad to have a day without epoxy or paint. I began to organize the small switch panel for the pilothouse. My plan was to make a box that would hold the small switch panel and two gauges. After I stripped the panel of its wiring, it had been removed from a boat by cutting the wires and removing the panel with all its wiring still attached, lots of stubby wires screwed down to a couple of buss bars and all the switch contacts. The panel had 5 switches plus a master switch, a 30 amp breaker. After removing all the wiring and the buss bars I found I could mount the gauges in the panel itself, then just make a simple box that the panel attached as a face.
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I cut out the 2 1/.8 “ holes for the gauges after marking their positions with the switches in place, then removing them for the cutting. I luckily found 4 pieces of 3/8“ plywood in the woodshop, offcuts from someone else’s project. Two of the pieces exactly matched the long edges of the switch panel and were the right depth to allow room for the gauges. The other two pieces just needed to be cut to length. Then the box was screwed together and a small piece of 5 mm plywood was cut for the back of the box. That was nailed on. The switch panel, which was now bare of anything attached to it, was scraped of any switch labels and sanded. Then the box and the bare panel were given a coat of white Rustoleum.
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Later I tested the blue antifouling paint to see if it was dry enough to mask with tape. I put tape on it in an obscure spot, then tore it off and the paint did not come off with it. It’s ready. Then I took the first can of red ablative antifouling and stirred it up. It was not badly settled and soon was a smooth mixture.
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Another Graham Hancock video on You Tube:
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lzTRGECqgGY
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This one is more earthy, you could say.
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The news from the Big Island of Hawaii is volcanic. In a subdivision near Pahoa, the town my parents relocated to about 40 years ago, fissures steaming hot sulphuric gases opened up and then lava began spurting out. The area was evacuated and the scene appeared to settle down when another outpouring occurred and the reports are 160 foot fountains of lava. I began monitoring the eruption at Hawaii Volcano Observatory Kilauea (HVO). The image is from their lava maps showing lower Puna. My older brother lives in the development at the top of the map, Paradise Park, and my younger brother has a building lot at the right of the map at Kapoho.

Blue Complete

03 May 2018 | st marys, ga
Capn Andy/Warm Spring
Let me draw your attention to a You Tube video by Graham Hancock:
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OZhSun9_SYs
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It is a bit long, but you can watch some of it, bookmark the address, and come back to it later. Hancock is very entertaining and even if he might be wrong, he has certainly put together an interesting scenario.
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I am tattooed with blue. Right now there are two coats of blue antifouling on all the hull sides except inboard starboard which only has one, but my plan is to rectify that tomorrow and put another coat on that side, then put another coat on all the other sides, and then return to the inboard starboard and hit it with a final coat, making 3 coats on all the hull sides. Then we will get out our red ablative antifouling and work with it. By the end of the week the antifouling should be done. We then have to shift the blocking that supports the hulls so that the areas hidden by the blocking can be addressed. They need the whole 9, repairs to divots made by the jetty's rocks, glass over any unglassed areas or repairs, fairing, and 3 coats of hard paint followed by 3 coats of ablative paint. That will complete the work on the underbody.
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Now it is a day later and there are 3 coats of blue on the bottoms of both hulls. I put a second coat on the inboard side of the starboard hull, then a third coat on the outboard side, a third coat on the inboard side of the port hull, then a break for lunch and to allow the sun to pass over to the starboard side. Now the outboard side of the port hull got its third coat and then the inboard side of the starboard hull got its third coat, its second coat of the day. Done, all the blue is done. The masking tapes were removed and the boat seems transformed just by having the hull bottoms all one color.
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The image is a photo of the port quarter with its second coat of blue, masking tapes still in place.

Blue Paint and Hokule'a

01 May 2018 | st marys, ga
Capn Andy/Warm Spring
The fairing of the hull bottoms was going along quite well. I started with doing 1/3 of a hull side in one afternoon’s work, so a complete hull would take a week. We had rain, delays. I then did 2/3 of a hull side in a day, then completed that hull side the next day, and did 1/2 the other side the day after that. So, now we are just 1/2 a hull side away from finishing up applying fairing mixture. The keel bottoms have to be done, but they add up to about 1/2 a hull side in total.
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Then the sanding process, and then antifouling paint. I purchased another gallon of hard paint from Defender Marine. They had given me a $75 gift certificate in lieu of matching a very low price on ablative bottom paint when I had purchased 3 gallons. So, I will have 3 gallons of hard paint and 3 gallons of ablative. The hard paint goes on first, blue, and painted up 3 inches higher than the waterline. Then the ablative paint, red, goes on up even with the water line. That will leave a bootstripe of blue hard bottom paint 3 inches wide.
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I also ordered a power pack to jump start the engine if the battery should fail. It also has a compressor and an AC power outlet.
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Now it has been a few days and the job of fairing the hull sides is done, only the keel bottoms remain. We’ll be applying bottom paint this week at some point. My hope to have the bottoms done by the end of April is almost coming true.
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A 10 amp-hour 12 volt brick battery came in to power the electric bosun’s chair, plus a second 12 volt winch arrived from Pilot Automotive. More things were put on order, UHF/BNC adapters and coaxial cable. The cable will be used to build a couple collinear VHF antennae and also to provide the link from the VHF radio in the pilothouse to the whip antenna on the mast. The coax coming down the mast ends right about amidships, so about 10-15 feet has to be made up. The mast cable is a UHF connector, also called PL-259. The VHF radios are using the corresponding female connector on the chassis, but the dAISy AIS receiver has a BNC connector. The scheme is to use both the DIY collinear antenna and the masthead whip on either the radio or the AIS receiver, so we need adapters to convert from PL-259 to BNC and vice versa. The collinear antenna will work on the VHF radio with a BNC to PL-259 adapter. Out at sea the higher masthead antenna will provide greater range for AIS targets while the VHF radio would not be useful to contact anyone because of its limited range. Near shore the VHF would use the masthead whip for communications and weather reports that are broadcast using powerful shore based stations. The AIS would then be using the collinear antenna and give up some of its range.
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The bottoms of the keels went so fast that I had almost a whole day to fill with odds and ends. I stirred up the two gallons of hard bottom paint that had been sitting for so long, and that took a while. I shopped and got wide masking tape and more water, as I was almost out. The wide masking tape was cheap and had already proved to be not good for making a sharp edge between paints, but it will be used along with narrow Fine Line tape which does make a sharp edge. I was told that the wide tape from Dollar Tree, at a dollar a roll, was no good. I tested it out and it seemed to work fine. The rolls are short, so I got 4 to do the 4 hull sides. Longer tapes from the more expensive stores cost out a bit more than this cheap tape, like 4 or 5 dollars for 55 yards. The cheap tape was 58 feet. I bought it because it was the first wide tape I ran into while shopping. The auto parts store only had narrow tape.
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I still had time to get more things done, so I hoisted the gas tank up into position and bolted its 14 bolts to secure it. This took about 2 hours of hard labor and I was finished about 6:30 in the evening.
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I found that all my activity got me up early the next morning. I was still sore and achy. I didn’t want to start work so early, but I ended up doing it anyway. First the port hull was brushed off to remove sanding dust, then it was sanded again when I found some areas that needed to be scuffed up for a coat of epoxy as primer.
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Then I brushed it off again and wiped down the waterline area so that the masking tape would stick. I followed the marks for the bootstripe with the Fine Line tape all the way around the hull and rudder, then added the wide masking tape from the dollar store to make the masking wider. Then I began applying epoxy on the inboard side of the hull from the bow to amidships and all the way down on the bottom of the keel. The sun was beating down on the other side of the boat and I saved that for later when the sun moves over. I only primed from the bow to amidships because I wanted the primer to be fresh and not completely hardened when I started painting.
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When I began painting it was with a large paint roller and the work went along very quickly. Soon I had painted all the primed area. I then primed from amidships back to the rudder and part way around the rudder, there was extra epoxy. I painted down almost completing the inboard side of the rudder, then decided to take a break and have some food. Leftover red coleslaw.
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Then I decided to prime the whole outboard side of the hull, below the bootstripe, because now the sun had put it in the shade. I primed and primed. Then I used the same small foam rollers that had worked so well on other paints to paint the bottom paint. Although I had envisioned painting two coats on the port hull, I gave up after I got to the bow and now had one coat of blue hard antifouling on it. It was around 6 o’clock and that was it for the day.
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The order from Defender Marine came in, two solar showers, one all-the-bells-and-whistles boost charger/compressor/power pack, and another gallon of Pettit Unepoxy Plus hard bottom paint, blue.
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My Hawaiian brother, younger, sent news that the voyaging canoe Hokule’a had left Hilo on the Big Island for a visit on the lee side, the Kona side. Then news came that they had damaged the canoe, but not so bad as to be able to make repairs in Honolulu at Sand Island where the photos of Hawai’iloa were taken. The image is from Sam Low.
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