Saturday, February 27, 2016

Teak & Cap Rails

This afternoon SAM worked on the stbd cap rails and I tried to whittle a scarf joint for a piece of teak that I wanted to fill with a near perfect plug.  Unfortunately, My little project was not too successful on the scarf but the eyebrow teak plug was successful and so the eyebrow will be ready to install soon.

SAM's old seal removal was successful and with the projected good weather we want to finish the replacement seal and that should do it for the next 5± years or so.

Slowly but surely time marches on and our season  will be drawing to a close.  We have 2 trips to Texas for weddings in April and May.  A visit to our daughter in CT is in the cards too. A busy off season.

One sunny day after another

We have been blessed with a couple weeks of great sunny weather with cool to warm days with cool nights.  Looks like the next 4 days are more of the same. We are getting lots of outside work completed and starting even more.  SAM is working on the cap rails and I am preping the eyebrows for re-assembly.  It is a perfect temperature when in the sun and a little cool in the shade.  When SAM, on the east stbd side gets in the shade it will start to get a bit cool.  At least the wind is low so all is good.  I'll snap a pic and edit this blog a little later this evening.  We are fixing dinner (lunch) and then back to work.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Sunny, cool, very low humidity and rising barometer

SAM was a great help on the boat today as we applied 11' of rub rail where the spring lines have been rubbing the teak cap rail. While doing this we decided to get 2x10' section plus 2x6' section so that the
fenders do not rub the edge of the cap rail. Man, I wish they would have put a mid-ship hawser hole in the original design of the ship.

The rub rail process involved cutting the stainless steel, drilling a few holes in the hard stuff, counter sinking the holes.  We made 2x 24 1/2" strips and 2x 35 1/2" and used a cheap Harbor Freight angle grinder  with a thin cuttoff blade.  We used it to take the burs off and square the ends.  It took longer than we expected.

SAM now is using the free time to go and buy clothes for a Texas wedding in early April..  Again I am left to my own devices to make a reasonable dinner. Bummer.  Woe is me and all that stuff :)

Thursday, February 25, 2016

A new look

I just took the time to re-arrange our look.  You will notice the difference right away if you are a regular viewer and if not I hope you like it.

GCS Today: Windy Sunny, Cool

Today was windy, sunny and about 60°F as the high. The enclosed cockpit is a little too warm so I opened the port side flap to let some wind blow through. Lew of Pink Flamingo stopped by to see how I was because my facebook post of the other day alarmed him. Also received some other calls from friends. I guess from what they say I overstated the case of the stress test. We also received our new documentation for the USCG Documented Ship Registry. We are now free to roam the waterways as we see fit.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Warm, Muggy and El Faro

The morning of rain and moderate temperatures has evolved into a warm to hot afternoon with humidity.  Today was pretty much a wash as far as working on the boat.  I did buy some used stainless steel rub, hollow back rub rail to use on the cap rail to keep chafe down  with the mid-ship cleat spring lines.  I also bought a piece 11' long for $22 at Monkey Fist.  Then went to the hardware and purchased 100 each of #8x3/4" pan heads and oval heads for various projects.

Now I am back at the boat writing blogs, emails and opening hatches to keep the temperature down.  At lunch today on the boat we had leftover chicken sandwiches and watched the inquirery questions on the El Faro sinking.  From the questions asked it seems to me that, while knowledgeable, the boat discipline was pretty relaxed and the lack of checklists  and emergency procedures bordered on incompetence.  The previous Mate answered the question well, I thought.  Being a sea going type I had an interest in the proceedings.

Rain this morning

It started raining last night late.  I awoke, sleepy, knowing I had to do something besides hitting the head.  The drops on the floor of the head informed me that I must close the hatch.  With the hatch closed and other duties performed, I laid back down and was fast asleep in seconds.

When I awoke at 0700 there were rain drops falling off the boom and striking the cabin top.  I dreamed around for a while and tided up from the nights sleep.  Now it is time to go to the "breakfast club", a title by which the morning coffee bunch are known, and make up today's plans.

One thing on the list is to go to Monkey Fist and get some smaller rub rail sections to protect the teak cap rail from the wear that the spring lines are giving her.  I know I have some of these on the boat but I have not found them so far.  Maybe SAM can find them?  Younger eyes see better than these old cataract prone, myopic ones do that is for sure.

Overcast, rainy, barometer is 1014 mb, light winds steady from the ENE.   Gotta go to the club - see you later.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Boat work: Inspiration II

The past 4 days have been very nice and we have been in shorts and T's.  Mostly I have been working on the port side and that is the dock side of the boat - lucky us.  The cap rail has several scarf joints and I re-sealed those plus the port side cap rail has been re-sealed on the deck side with 3M 4000UV.  This work is pretty much done.  The only remaining is to do the same on the stbd side.  We are still contemplating finishing the cap rail with Cetol.

I have some work on the eyebrow to prep it for the first coat of Cetol.  After that we will reinstall the eyebrow.  This should be a couple of days work.  After this we should be able to put on the final 2 coats of Cetol and a coat of glossy.

The remainder of this week looks like it its being taken up with other work and bad weather rolling in.  Our friends from Michigan called and said they would stop by on Tuesday of next week,  The season end is rolling around for us too fast.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Full Day of sun & warm temperatures

We had a full day.  Now I feel sort of sunburned on my face and listening to PBS on the :Mosque of Morgantown" - sort of scary but I guess it was true.  Anyway we went to church this morning and this afternoon we worked on cap-rail teak. The day was sunny and mid-70's with a low East wind.

SAM's sawing Z's over on the setee.  Abby is also stretched our on an other section of of the setee.  The sun is going down and I am glowing.  Bye from Moore.

Friday, February 19, 2016


Gary arrived the other day with his boat and we got him in the water ok.  This morning he arrived at Holland Marine service for a quick two hours and a local tour of boat ramps.  Due to a leak around his retractable keel trunk he decided to cut short his visit and return to Governor Creek boat ramp and beach the boat while we loaded it on the trailer.  It was good to visit him and his overnight on Black Creek was a good one he said. He is now on his way back to Orlando area.

It was a most beautiful day with nice easterly breezes and brilliant sun.  Later in the day, near sundown, we went to have a small glass of wine with our friends on MaƱana.  The temperatures dropped with the sun and we quickly chilled and are now on the boat warming up.

Earlier in the day we did a quick epoxy job on the split wood cap rail near the port chainplate. Tomorrow we hope to more or less finish this detailing by scabing in new pieces of wood that will make it look good.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

A week of nice weather

We have had a week of excellent weather and this looks to continue for a few more days.  The barometer has risen fast and the skies are sunny with temperatures in mid 60's to 70 degrees.

My ham radio friend NW4GT brought his trailerable sailboat up today for a few days.  I helped him rig her and the last I saw of him he was heading up the Black Creek for find a calm anchorage.  The east wind was kicking up the waves to about 1' and making his boat a bear to rig.  Hopefully, the weather cooperates with his endeavours.  I'' snap some pictures later and add them post-facto. 

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Ortega Landing Marina visit

Today we drove north on hwy 17 to buy some wood clamps and other misc materials.  In the end, we spent more that we had expected to spend but left the place in good spirits.  Having completed our Ortega Landing Marina on the Ortega River just off the much larger St. Johns river and on the south side of Jacksonville.
task early we decided to visit

The marina is very nice and has all the buzz words and amenities one would expect at a more upscale marina.You can read about it yourself and while you are at it look it up on Active Captain.  We were suitably impressed and even got a very good deal on an Edson pedestal arm - like free.  The owners were cleaning out very good junk and giving it away.

All shopping is mere minutes walk or bike ride.  We at at Chick-Fil-A for a quick bite before checking dingy prices at West Marine,  Later I took the Admiral to a antiques shop while I rested off the meal.  All-in-all it was a wonderful day of clear skies, warm temperatures and beautiful sites.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Generator Day, et al

Today was start the generator day.  After returning from the "Coffee Cliche" about 1015 hrs I lubricated the start/stop pivot assemble and cleaned the  shaft a bit and greased it and then started the motor and let the generator run and hour to charge up the battery.  Everything turned out fine.

Quest departed this morning bound for Miami and point further.  We are a bit jealous but the fact is our season will be over in less than 6 weeks and there is still plenty to do on the boat.  I would still like to put in larger gauge running up to the windlass and that will be a  job.

However, the punchlist is getting shorter and that is good.  Moore later.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Our Little Corner of Paradise

On a calm day the reflections of masts on the water makes us realize "We Are Living the Dream".

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Happy Valentines Day

The Admiral and Captain Chuck went out for valentines day dinner this evening with our church group. We had a great time with the theme Hee Haw and a home grown country band along with the jokes and a newly married question guess the answer game.

The hours before the 1700 hrs dinner were sunny and moderate wind and the river had several sailboats out and about.  We did two batches of clothes, filled the boat tanks with water, scrape teak. I took my first shower in the forward head and learned a few lessons.  Lesson 1:  Do not bump the single handle lever to hot in a confined space.  Lesson 2: Have a dirty towel ready to dry off everything but better yet have a hand squeegee and use it before the towel.

From the lessons learned, I am going to remove the long handle and put on a custom built much shorter one with more of a golf ball shape and perhaps one made of teak.  The squeegee will make cleanup and dry down much easier and quicker.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Marina Politics - GCS

The marina we are at has told us today we can no longer access their internet, which is very poor I might add, since we were not considered customers.  We told them we considered ourselves
customers since we spend a lot of $$$$.$$ with their tenent maintenance facility but they disagreed and cut our internet off.  However, we could get their measly 1MBPS up and 0.25 MBPS down for $40/month.  OK, so I go to Verizon and activate their 4MBPS up/down. Ok, Captain of Reynolds you made a mistake here since I am a highly trained wireless engineer and offered my services free of charge to expand your system,

End of rant.

Very cool period and many accomplishments.

The weeks seem to fly by here on the boat at GCS.  Since I last wrote  the weather has been cool to cold with the barometer rising and falling in large swings.  We have endured heavy rain too.  We enjoy the fully enclosed cockpit.

The mast top work is done: a new windex wind vane, new RG-213 cable from the masthead to the  nav station below, new LED Steaming light and a few other improvement around the spreaders.  We spent several days tracing cables from the nav station area to the helm sttion in the cockpit.  I added a terminal buss in the instrument pod, pulled a new SeaTalk cable from the autopilot controller to the Depth/Speed/wind instrument pod and installed the new Ritche SS-2000 compass and dimming switch,  While doing all this work I installed pull string in the tubes for any future work I want to do..

When the weather was warm we pulled off the "eyebrow"  so SAM can refinish it and re-seal the screw holes.  When better weather happens we will re-install the eyebrow and re-seal the screw holes.