Getting a hard bimini
06 January 2012 | Kemah Texas USA
The solar panels have become an issue. We were going to mount them towards the aft end of Seanna, using our wind generator and antenna towers as supports. We had a welder lined up to do the fabrication and his estimate was "under $500". Well when we brought the final dimensions to him, the price jumped up to a minimum of $1000. Not only was this out of our budget, but it would have looked bad on Seanna. So, we are building a hard Bimini. We found some 4 x 8 sheets of seaboard for a very reasonable price. The seaboard should be in on Monday, so if the weather holds out, we should have a hard Bimini next week, complete with mounted solar panels, outdoor speakers, and a dome light for the cockpit. I might even be able to mount the fishing poles under the hard top. We are also going to incorporate a "gutter" into the top so we can catch rainwater. Our welder doubling his bid may be a blessing in disguise.
Other small projects on Seanna seem to be going fairly smoothly. Nothing ever goes as fast or easy as first thought. The Houston Boat Show starts today and we should order our liferaft there. We talked to Triad Marine the other day and they said they would be at the show and would be offering free freight as part of their show specials. That will save us about a $100.
Our steering has been really hard when we steer hard to starboard. I didn't know what was causing it, but knew we had to figure it out. Well yesterday when Robyn was down in the lazarette again hooking up the new SSB antenna lead in wire, I decided to turn the wheel and maybe, just maybe she would see what the problem was. As I was turning the wheel, she saw where there was some sort of threaded rod just hanging from the steering quadrant and is would drop down and bind up the steering. I think it was from a previous autopilot, so we removed the rod and man does that wheel turn easy. Another awesome job by the "Bilge Rat" (Robyn).
We Skyped our friend Sammy last night, Sammy is always entertaining, and it is good to be able to Skype friends and family. We also have plans to have lunch with Tom next Monday or Tuesday. Tom is going to be sailing to Isla Mujerus about the same time as us, so we will catch up and check on each others progress during lunch. Tom sails a valiant 42, so if we leave at the same time, there is no way we can keep up. But he should be in Isla when we get there and maybe he can show us the ropes upon our arrival. Our friend Larry G is still planning on doing the passage with us, and he will be coming to the marina Saturday to spend a couple of weeks on his boat. That should give us time to figure out the logistics of how he will get him to Seaana, how we will get rid of him in Isla. I think his wife Lisa will be flying in to Isla to meet him. Our week or so on Isla should be a lot of fun before taking offs towards Honduras.
Until next time...