Monday, October 26
Boat, Plumbing, Projects

Project 1: Fresh Water Plumbing

The current system is old and needs updating. The flexible clear lines are more brown than clear. The water smells and needs to run a minute or two after not being used for a few hours to clear the bad odor. The water manifold from the tanks is showing rust. The one positive point is that the water does improve after a few minutes, which hopefully means the tanks are in decent shape. Primary goal: Drinkable water from the tanks Other Goals, in no particular order: Good water pressureClean water delivery, remove smells and occasional rust/sludgeCreate a common fill for all tanks that goes through a set of filters before water enters the tanks.Build in failsafes to stop potential leaksUpdate fixtures for aesthetic reasons DON’T PANiC carries 200 gallons of water in four stainles...
Boat, Maintenance, Storms

Leaks found

Florida afternoon thunder storms have been rolling through pretty regularly this year. It has helped me discover a few leaks and provided a nice spray down for the boat. It has also reminded me that you always need to be prepared when at anchor. The winds that have come through with these afternoon storms hit over 35kn and hit quickly. Best be prepared with a well-set anchor or ready to pick up and move quickly if things go bad. This has been something I prepared for early in my refit, my 85lb Mantus Anchor is good, in theory, for up to hurricane force winds for my boat size and weight...I just hope I never really have to test how hot holds in a hurricane. Easily, one port leaked, needs to be re-bedded. Two chain plates, already known, leaked. I had already suspected the leaks so wa...
Hurricane, Isaias, Review, Storms, Weather Service

Review: Predict Wind

I’ve been using the free version of Predict Wind for a while but had not used it to track yet to track significant weather events. I was considering to eventually subscribe to it when I started permanently cruising. I used it recently to monitor Hurricane Isaias, the accuracy was very disappointing. Predict wind offers two public models, GFS and ECMWF and offers two proprietary models based on GFS and ECMWF. Using it to follow Hurricane Isaias the GFS and ECMWF models were as expected, they each had their own forecasts, but were relatively accurate in their own. The two Predict Wind models had the storm crossing the state of Florida and entering the Gulf of Mexico. At the same time, I was also monitoring the spaghetti models and none of which had the storm crossing the state. Even as t...
Hurricane Isaias
Hurricane, Isaias, Storms

Hurricane Isaias

Lucky Hurricane Isaias turned out be been a non-event for my location in Florida. There wasn’t even any rain, just wind. The winds only reached 30 knots in my area and nicely rocked the boat which made for nice sleeping, While I had already experienced higher winds previously, it was a great learning experience on how the boat behaved in sustained stronger than normal winds. Luckily, I had just received new dock lines and used them them to prep for the storm. I did learn is that I needed some additional longer lines to use in storm situations. I still have another 240ft from the spool I ordered so I can make adjustments to the lines available. Rather than turn the rest of the line into some longer warps I will turn them in to extra 50ft lines to use as extra lines to use in case of future...
Boat, It Broke, Maintenance

….and Wait to Repair

Well it looks like the boat will not be moving for a while now. This past weekend I replaced the transmission fluid, hoping that might help resolve the shifting issue, as it was a bit low. Plus it needed to be changed as part of the break-in period maintenance. It did not fix the issue, the transmission shifts fine into reverse, but will no longer go into forward at all. It is still under warranty. So for this and some other issues I contacted the installer to repair the issues. They are booked out til the 3rd week in July already, so it will be some time before the boat moves again. In the mean time I work on some interior projects. On a better note, the outboard did not get any damage from the quick dunk it took. It needed routine maintenance anyways and a small oil leak was ...
Boat, It Broke, Journies

It’s a boat…Care and Repair

This past weekend I went up to St Augustine, Florida for the weekend with my Dad to do some sailing in and out of the inlet. The first day I motored north on the ICW to get to St. Augustine and picked up a mooring at the St Augustine municipal marina. The mooring was on the north side of the Bridge of Lions, near the bridge. Next time, and I would recommend anyone that requests a mooring, not have it near the bridge, it was a bit noisy on the weekend, not too bad to make me want to request a move, but in the future I will request something a bit farther away. This being my first cruise on DON’T PANiC some issues came to light. First it was discovered that the engine alternator is not charging the batteries while running. Lucky, I had brought my portable generator to run the AC at night...
Happy Towel Day
Holidays

Happy Towel Day

Towel Day is an annual celebration on the 25th of May, as a tribute to the late author Douglas Adams (1952-2001). On that day, fans around the universe carry a towel in his honour. From Adams' The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: A towel, it says, is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have. Partly it has great practical value. You can wrap it around you for warmth as you bound across the cold moons of Jaglan Beta; you can lie on it on the brilliant marble-sanded beaches of Santraginus V, inhaling the heady sea vapours; you can sleep under it beneath the stars which shine so redly on the desert world of Kakrafoon; use it to sail a miniraft down the slow heavy River Moth; wet it for use in hand-to-hand-combat; wrap it round your he...
DON’T PANiC finally shows off her name
Boat, Solvents

DON’T PANiC finally shows off her name

I finally finished putting the name one the boat. The old vinyl name was a pain to get off at first. Goo Gone does not work on Vinyl adhesive, so forget about tying to use it. A neighbor boat recommended two options, Kleen Strip and Interlux 202. Both did work, but the Interlux worked better. The Kleen Strip worked almost as well, but took more effort to scrub. Interlux cleaned the adhesive off with a bit less effort. I ended up using the Interlux more, but if I had to do it again I would use Kleen Strip, it's a bit less toxic and is dual use, if you have an alcohol stove. Getting the new name on the boat was pretty simple, I could have done without the boats on the ICW making all the waves. That probably doubled the time it took. But in the end I got it done and there is room left ove...
It Broke

And the water pump breaks…

Well I am learning that things do break at the worst possible time on a boat. Last night the water pump decided to quite right in the middle of a shower. It’s leaking and not priming. So, I’m in the boat running around naked covered in soap trying to get a bit more life out of it, no such luck. I end up rising off with cold drinking water and screaming like a girl splashing myself with cold water. By the way, no I do not have curtains on the port lights yet, so I may have been providing entertainment to my neighbors…no one said anything the next day. The broken pump is old and discontinued but there lucky there is a newer version that is an in-place replacement for it, so I won’t need to make any modifications to install it. It ended up being a nice improvement from the older pump. I w...
New Bottom job
Maintenance, Paint

New Bottom job

Yes, what DON’T PANiC heard was true. A new bottom job was in her future. I took advantage the haul out and had the bottom repainted with Pettit Ultima SR-60 in green. The previous owners had used the same paint, the bottom paint in the previous pictures was almost three years old and still preventing hard growth so I decided to stick with the same paint. Some questioned my color choice since the canvas is blue, but I will slowly change over to a green color scheme as upgrades occur. Showing off her frontSlinged with new paintNice view of the rear