28 April 2022

Le temps qui passe

It's funny, but at the end of every day, I inevitably feel like the time has passed without me getting anything done. But when I sit down to write this blog, and list the tasks we finished, I find we got a lot done. However, as thrilling as these jobs are to talk about, it's currently late at night after a long day, so I'm just going to just bullet-list the day. I'm bushed!

First, we did something we've wanted to do for a long time, which is to confirm the size of each of our 4 water tanks. After rinsing out the anti-freeze, all 4 tanks were empty, so it was a great time to do this. We  did this by using a simple water-flow meter meant for gardening. Perhaps not surprisingly, our measurements did confirm, pretty closely, the figures we inherited from previous owners. So that's good. It also gave us some confidence in the inexpensive flow meter we used. We plan to use it to track the amount of water we put into our tanks, and to use another, slightly more sophisticated flow meter to track the water pumped out of the tanks. More on that later. BTW, our 4 built-in tanks hold 105 gallons.

Simple water meter, but pretty accurate!

Once the tanks were full, we tested all the work we did in the galley fresh water system. There was just one leak: one of the under-sink filter canisters was loose. I like to hand-tighten theses canisters, so they don't get stuck, but in this case, it needed another half-turn with the wrench.

Helena then prepped the bottom for painting. For this, she uses a purple 3M Scotch-Brite pad, which takes off just a bit of paint, without making a lot of dust. Many boat yards don't even allow sanding anymore, and let's face it, sanding bottom paint isn't the healthiest thing you can do. Using a wet scrubbing pad does the job without making any dust. Highly recommended.

Use the purple ones!

Meanwhile, I dug our Jordan Series Drogue out of a completely inaccessible locker in our fo'c'sle. We'd been storing it there because we'd never use it coastal sailing between the Bahamas and Maine, but if we ever are going to use it, it will be on a transatlantic passage. I had to completely empty one side of the fo'c'sle to reach the locker -- a job that took over an hour while on the hard. It confirmed my notion that it would be effectively impossible to get it out at sea, especially rough seas. It's now stowed in a much more accessible part of the fo'c'sle. 

I also opened up the sail kit for our new dingy, just to see what was in the box, and to retrieve the assembly instructions. Glad I did, because the instructions were missing (they are included in the instructions for building the boat itself, which I don't have at the moment.) A quick phone call to Chesapeake Light Craft (just down the road in Annapolis) and I received a copy of the instruction by email. Perfect.

We no longer try to replace parts in our manual toilet pump. It's much easier, and not much more expensive, to simply replace the whole pump assembly. Helena started this process today by removing the old pump, and I installed the new one.

Just replace the whole darn pump assembly!

Helena also started recharging all the many, many devices we have on the boat that have rechargeable batteries. They had been in storage all winter, and most needed a topping up. We have a long checklist of these devices so that we don't forget any. It's a pain, but it sure beats carrying a hundred pounds of disposable batteries!

While she did that, I investigated the remnants of the old saltwater water system. Petronella used to have a saltwater pump in the galley, like many blue water boats of the 60s and 70s, but at some point, someone disconnected it. No idea why, but I want to reconnect it. I made a plan of how to do so, which I will get into in much more detail when I actually go to install it.

So, not a bad day. Onwards!

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