Preparing the Boat for Living Aboard
28 July 2022 | Pension Tiare Nui
William Ennis | Hot and windy
We got the last few wiring tasks completed today, WhooHoo! Can't believe it's finally done.
When we returned this morning, we fussed with our epoxied rudder indicator piece. The epoxy worked, seemingly, so we attached the threaded rod that connects the rudder indicator to the tiller arm and all seemed OK. We simply didn't the time to continue on the dockside commissioning for the autopilot system, but we can begin when we have more time.
The lazarette (a locker in the stern) in which the autopilot sits is now clean and neat with no hanging wires, and we even vacuumed it. We completed the wiring and wire management in the Man Cave, using cable ties to support and manage the many cables and wires that send power and data to and from the many electronics there. We also got the solar panels completely wired and they were cooking today! As a small test, we shut off power from the yard, and they easily kept up with all demand. That second controller is doing a fine job. I'm surprised that it makes such a difference. Much of the difference is 7 more years of solar technology improvement, of course, but not having one panel's temporary lower output not reduce the output of the other panel is the other. One panel was tilted away from sun so could have reduced the output for both panels in our previous setup, but with a controller on both panels, both produce the highest output possible. We could tell the difference.
Conni got the bimini installed after the panels were up. She also started moving things around below decks for our move into the boat next Monday. Oh, yeah...we couldn't get another few days here at the pension, so we'll have to move to the boat and stay in the yard. We know it means cold showers, heat, and much less convenience, but the two weeks we needed for this autopilot consumed as much time as we feared it would. The yard's shower has no hot water and a nighttime bathroom run means climbing up and down the ladder at night: neither of us is a fan of that maneuver.
At day's end, we moved the outboard to its outside mount, clearing an entire bench for sitting. Our 38-year-old fridge has been faithfully working almost the entire two weeks we've been working. We'll have to fill our butane tanks: there's no propane in the South Pacific. As we complete tasks, we'll begin to stow tools and supplies, leaving the boat ready for habitation. We each have a mountain of normal commissioning chores, and we'll begin those tomorrow.
Wish us luck.