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Date:Sat, 3 Sep 2022 02:59:00 GMT

Engine hose

stuff breaks

     On the return sail we burst the hose on the engine that goes from the raw water pump to the heat exchanger. Today I fixed it. We had to find a hose from a 1978 Honda and cut it in half and piece it together with the part of the old hose that is still good. I am looking for a new one from Nanny but I want to be able to sail untill it arrives.
     Today we also cleaned out the bilge and the area around the engine and continued organizing for our first real cruise. I also found that the exhaust elbow is leaking near the braided vibration joint. So Monday I'll pull it off and take it to a welder Tuesday morning. It's always something. I knew this would be failing soon but didn't want it go go right now. Oh Well. delayed once again... It's a boat.
Date:Tue, 6 Sep 2022 00:36:00 GMT


Friends and exhaust

     So the last few days we had friends over. We went to Oriental, to New Bern and just hung out at their hotel. It was a nice break but this evening we are back at it and Sam who's been sick for the last few days pulled out the exhaust elbow so I can take it to a welder in the morning. My elbow is not getting better so he had to do all the work. It was not hard just 8 bolts and it came right out. We had to use a chisel to break the high temprature RTV away but that was no big deal. Hopefully tomorrow or Wednesday it will go back in and we can start sailing again. We've got some drone footage we are going to add soon. Steve
Date:Tue, 8 Sep 2022 12:38:00 GMT

Clean up

Getting organized

     Well this morning the Fan died... Cheap crap. It was a 120v fan from Lowes. anyway.
     We checked in on the Tennessee phone net 3.980 at 5:45 central this morning. We talked to Harrel and the signal was great. I've tried to check in on the normal morning and evening nets but the propogation is poor. Mornings, however are great.
     Yesterday we spent the day cleaning up and stowing food for our first shake down cruise. Amazingly we got everything stowed in lockers except a few cans that we are still need a home. Boats are majic. While putting away the pans under the stove we found about 3 cubic feet of space next the hull under the stove behind the pans! We also found about 12 cubic feet behind the dinette under a drawer. We cleaned up and re-organized the nav station drawers and hauled the last garbage out from our stay at the boat yard. We organized rope and bosun's kit as well as whipping lines and putting away safety gear. Sam cleaned and oiled the cockpit teak. It was a busy day and today we are having friends over so we need to get going early.
     When organizing a boat it takes longer than it seems because you need time to think about where things go. I know it seems easy but it is not. If you don't take your time and go slow you have an incredible mess. Everything needs to be labeled and logged. You'd think it would be hard to loose anything in such a small place but there are so many cubby holes and places to stuff things that if you don't do this you'll never find it again. We have a list of everything on the boat and where it is and before you add or replace anything you check the list. At a certain point if something comes on the boat something else must go off the boat. It's not just a tetris game, it also has to be logical. And the things you need most often need to be accessable easily. It takes disipline to always put things back in their home and to check them off the list when they are used so they can e replaced and put back in the same place. Also everything get's wet. So no cardboard on the boat, No wrapping stuff in padding that will mold or rot. No packing things so tightly that there is no air flow and you might as well buy stock now in ziploc bags. When putting things in open wells you need to be able to distinguish one item from another and so even after putting individual items in ziploc bags you might use walmart bags to keep everything seperate so you can pull out a large bag which contains 3 smaller bags of say, sugar. Not only that but if the smaller bag breaks you want to contain as much of the flower or sugar as possible. A broken bag of flower in the boat would make a horrible mess, especially if it were not found out till it started growing yeast...
     We are waiting on the exhaust elbow. It is supposed to be done today or tomorrow hopefully.
     Here's a shout out to anyone from the TN phone net who heard Harrel announce our web site! 73! Steve
Date:Tue, 9 Sep 2022 01:54:22 GMT

Good Friends

Good Friends and Good Food

     Today we had friends up from Myrtle Beach to hang with us for the day and we ate fruit, chips, pasta salad, tea and lemonade. First thing in the morning our fan shorted out with a puff of smoke. Then after we purchased a new one it went up in smoke too... so I checked the voltage. We had 118v from hot to ground but between the hots we had nothing to speak of. Something was out of phase. I thought that if one leg was not connected of the twin 30 amp circuits that no electricity was flowing but aparently we only had one leg. That means that everything AC oriented was pulling too many amps at low voltage and popping. So after plugging in both plugs everything was fine. UGH...
     Today we had friends up from Myrtle Beach to hang with us for the day and we ate fruit, chips, pasta salad, tea and lemonade. At the end of the day Brad and I decided to work on the standing rigging and tune it up a little bit. We had a couple lines that were rather loose and so we tightened everything up till it was consistent. When we went sailing a few days ago the lewward shrouds were pretty floppy so we first equalized the shrouds, then we added 2 turns to each one. We will see how it looks when we sail next time.
     This evening we checked in on the Tennessee phone net. Propogation was fantastic. Then I went around looking for blown wall warts. Thank heavens our battery charger was ok.
Date:Tue, 9 Sep 2022 01:54:22 GMT

Exhaust Elbow

Fixing the Exhaust elbow

     Today we went to do errands and shopping but on our way home we picked up the new/repaired exhaust elbow. The braided flex joint was completely rotton and leaking so we had a new braid sleeve joint welded on. They did a great job and so Sam and I put it back in. We did a video of it which will show up on youtube eventually. It went mostly without a hitch. Two of the studs on the heat exchanger had damaged threads both on the bolt and the nut making it feel stripped. I got into my box-o-bolts and found two new nuts with fresh threads and they tightened right up. I'll have to remember not to over tighten them. We also put in high temprature exhaust gaskets like used in performance exhaust headers.
The old Rotten Exhaust Elbow
It had become rotton after getting salt water inside before there was a vented loop. I knew it was going to go but I had hoped it would last a little longer. Oh well, we have a new one now.
     Layla spent time in her favorite place... on the floor in the way of everything so we gave her a basket to keep her tail safe.
Cat In A Basket
It's also a cat trap. Anything square resembling a box, even drawn on the ground with a sharpy is a cat trap...
Date:Tue, 13 Sep 2022 02:05:00 GMT

We're Off!

Beaufort NC

     Hi Folks! we motored today from Mathew's point to Beaufort and are at anchor in Taylor Creek. Everything went without a hitch and as expected. It was a long day of motoring but the bildge is dry, Fuel is fine, Boat is fine and it's Hot and Muggy! We left at about noon and arrived around 5pm. There has been much discussion about whether to continue to the Chesapeak or to just spend a few days and go back. I'll let you know. The decision has not been made yet. Laylah spent the day finding small pieces of shade on deck and I spent the day behind the wheel. Wind was out of the south east about 10-15 and temp was around 88 deg and Barometer is 29.82 and rising. Hannah made fried burritoes for dinner and we set in the cockpit in the wind to eat. I tried to fly the Drone to get some footage but it seemed need calibration or something. I had a bunch of error messages. The open deck and cockpit is going to be something get used to. Anyway, for now we're going to bed early! nite nite.
Date:Wed, 14 Sep 2022 02:42:00 GMT

Mercury in Retrograde!

Rowing to shore

     It was a beautiful morning and we woke to silence. After deciding to go to town after a breakfast of oatmeal Sam and I got the dinghy off the deck with our new crane and put the motor on it. We decided to go for a test run and about 2 minutes in the motor quit... we got it started and it quit again... So back to the boat we went to test... a few more test runs tied up under full throttle, in gear and oil was coming out the carburator... I checked the oil level and it was super low and smelled like gas. I put a little oil in and it spit it all out the intake so I guess the Mercury outboard is finally dead.
     So, we all got in the dinghy and rowed to shore against the tide. It was slow going but we made it. I called several local shops and ordered a Honda 5hp and it should be in on Monday.
     So we spent the day in Beaufort shopping and eating. Hannah found a new purse and I found some shoes to replace the 1980 Adidas I had been using 4200 to keep the soles on with. I threw the Adidas in the trash. We went to lunch and did some more shopping and browsing. We had Latte's and Chai for icecream 30 and with a slack tide rowed back to Grace where we put more Boiled linseed oil on the brightwork, read from a book by a local author and now it's time to go to bed. It was a beautiful day!!! We love being and anchor. nite nite
Date:Thu, 15 Sep 2022 00:45:00 GMT


Slack tide

     This morning Hannah made waffels and fresh blueberry syrup made from blueberries we picked a few months back that we had frozen. I have to say life is pretty good!
     Today we waited till slack tide to row ashore. Much easier. Slack tide here is about noon and 6pm. We spent the day in Beaufort walking the streets and talking to people. We met a nice couple of old women with a JW stand and sat and talked to them for about an hour. We went to the Museum and the National park service welcome center. We checked the size of some glasses to see if they would fit in our holders on the wall. We met our neighbor in Russamee. It's a custom wooden cutter ketch from 1972. Mike just finished re-caulking it. I forgot how many feet of caulk he said but it was a LOT. It's a really cool looking boat. It looks like a little old sailing ship. We're always suckers for a wooden boat. He single hands it and has a hard tender and long oars and an ancient old 2 stroke motor that will likely never die, unlike our little 5 horse power Mercury.
     For dinner we had baked beans, Hot dogs, chips, Humus, and Fudge. Sam is still working on cleaning fiberglass and oiling teak. We're up to 4 coats of boiled linseed oil on the toe and rub rails. They're starting to look pretty good. I'm also up to 4 coats on the other deck boxes and hatches. We're just starting the deck edges right next to the toe rails as well. All the teak "outlining" we're going to linseed oil. I'm still deciding on the deck it's self. I really like it wood look but the grey offset by the oiled teak is cool as well. What I don't want is for the teak to get damaged.
     I've been thinking a lot about energy and boat systems. Most people have solar, wind and tons of batteries. They then have propane stoves reverse cycle air and a generator. We on the other hand have a 10kw generator, fewer batteries and an electric stove. It is a single point of failure (the generator) but much simpler and everything starts and ends with diesel rather than adding propane and lithium to the list. Solar and wind are rarely every enough and are very expensive compared to diesel even at current rates. We can use air conditioners and space heaters with the generator. The biggest problem is actually noise. But it's only for a couple hours a day and a wind generator, unless you're getting a really expensive one is very noisey as well. From a purely survival point of view, if you can't get diesel you won't be able to get propane either nor batteries. As long as society exists at all we will have to have some diesel. At some point conversion will become necessary but I think not at this time. The bottom line is I need to keep good care of this generator for now. Would I like to have lithium batteries and solar panels? of course. But at the moment I can't figure out a good way to attach solar panels to this boat as configured. This is a bigger problem than it looks.
Date:Sat, 17 Sep 2022 01:56:00 GMT


New Friends

     Yesterday we met Chris and Kelcey; they have a 1977 Hunter 30. They were anchored near us in Taylor Creek. We gave them our Mercury 3.5 and had them over for the evening after dinner. They might be going south the same time we are so we hope to link up with them again.
     Today after working on the Teak deck I put the linseed oil rag in a bag. I'd been trying to use the same rag several days... Well today it got warm and when I found it the rags were smoking. A few seconds more and they would have burst into flame. So now we have a bucket full of water that we toss the old oily rags into. The deck is starting to look really nice. Tonight we are testing Weiss foods dehydrated pasta and veggies.
Date:Sun, 18 Sep 2022 00:22:00 GMT



     Susan Schmidt came by today and brought an exchange student from Oxford with her. They came over on Kayaks and spent a few minutes with us. She wrote "Landfall along the Chesapeake" which we are currently reading. We hope she comes by again to tell us more stories. We went into town to the farmers market and bought bread and broccoli. Then I rowed over to Russamee to talk to Mike and Becky as I thought I had found a picture of their boat in a book I'm reading. But is was not their boat. They have a beautiful wooden boat. Google Russamee and you'll see all about it. Amazing! Sam and I took a break from teak today to let the oil dry a little bit.
Commodore Cat!
Saturday Evening

Date:Mon, 19 Sep 2022 02:03:00 GMT


Early Rocktoberfest

     Today we put up the awning to hide behind and took showers in the cockpit. The sun heats the black hose really nicely and with minimal time we have warm water for a shower. We used about 5 gallons for all of us.
     This morning Sam and I did more Teak oiling and then in the afternoon after showers we listened to the history of the post office in Beaufort from the park ranger and then went to Back Street Pub for their Octoberfest. It was a lot of fun and we met Kevin and Lesley from Mathews Point as well as Patty and Mike and had a wonderful evening. We had chicken Schnitzle and Bratwurst and Beer. Not me of course... It is well known I don't like beer. I had rum and ginger beer. In the evening we brought mosquitoes back to the boat with us on the dinghy. So I chased them around the boat with a spray bottle of alcohol. It kills them. If you haven't tried it you should. It's almost as much fun as a salt gun to kill flies.
Date:Tues, 20 Sep 2022 02:43:00 GMT

Cape Lookout

A Nice Sail

     Today we stopped at the Beaufort docks for fuel and pump out and headed out to go for a sail. We went on a southerly tack for about an hour then turned port heading about 120 all the way to Cape lookout. Sam got a little ill and had to lay down a couple times but all in all it was a really nice day and we did an average of 5 knots with a peak of 7.3 in 10g14 of wind. The Barometer was 30.10 with partly cloudy skies and about 80deg. In the beginning there was a pretty big thunderstorm building to our starboard but it looked like it would pass south of us. In the end it blew it's self out and we only got a couple drops. We motored into the spit and anchored.
     Hannah made Rice, chicken, and Broccoli for dinner and we sat and ate as the sun went down. It was a beautiful sunset. Shortly after dark the CoastGuard came in and picked up a bouy and looks like they're staying the night here. There are also some Dolphins playing around the boat tonight.
Date:Wed, 21 Sep 2022 00:40:00 GMT

Cape Lookout 2

On the Hook

     All last night the coast guard was on their mooring ball and again this evening. A NOAA research vessel is anchored here as well. Today was a fun day. I flew the drone, We all went swimming, Hannah caught 2 fish but they got off the hook before we could get them netted. Then I caught one that took the hook and snapped the line. Sam and I put up the sun cover. It was 89deg but there was a nice breeze. It's so peaceful here. Oh, We met our neighbors at anchor. They have a Bowman 36. Sweet classic boat! and of course they have a hard dinghy. I'll put up some pictures after dinner. Hannah is making fried burritos.
Diving in!
Wanda Relaxing
Beautiful Sunsets!

Date:Thu, 22 Sep 2022 01:57:00 GMT


Bought a Honda

     Well we motored back to Beaufort from Cape lookout this afternoon and picked up our new Honda 5HP at the dinghy dock from Shackleford Outboards in Beaufort! We took lots of nice drone footage at Cape Lookout and had a wonderful time there. Tonight we are having Spagetti and relaxing back at anchor in our original spot by Green 7. This was our spot 22 years ago and still today :). We were afraid that with the Pirate invasion coming this weekend it would be taken but our two days away did not result in loosing our spot. Time to eat!. Then we had fudge for desert. There was a crane walking the dock by the large 160 foot Sailboat. nearby there was a couple sitting by their boat with a little dog. The two, bird and dog were posteuring. It was very funny. The bird was standing as tall as possible with his head as tall as possible.
Date:Fri, 23 Sep 2022 03:36:00 GMT


Maybe ask before you go swimming...

     So at lunch we were talking to someone about fishing and found out that the deep area of Cape Lookout is where he goes shark fishing... So where we were swimming was directly over his shark fishing hole. Then we found that the video we took of someone elses boat actually has a shark in the footage in the early morning just at sunrise. So perhaps the critter that broke the line and took the entire lure was something larger than we were expecting. Oh MY!!
Date:Fri, 23 Sep 2022 23:36:00 GMT

Back at Mathews Point

Coming Home

     Last night the winds kicked up to 30 knots and the anchor held well on Taylor's Creek. It rocked and rolled a bit but all was fine and we slept peacefully. This morning we decided to head back to Mathew's point and get organized for our trip north. We motored back from 11:30 to 17:30 fighting a headwind and current. We only made about 4 knots average. The trip was uneventfull. Same and Hannah drove some so I didn't steer the entire way. Hannah made Chicken Salad and bread from the Beaufort bakery. For dinner we had beans and rice. Sam finished a video for some friends we met at Cape Lookout and now it's time for bed.
Date:Thu, 29 Sep 2022 02:20:00 GMT

Hydraulic lines

Hydraulic lines and Hurricanes

     Yesterday we finished bleeding the hydraulic steering system after replacing a hose. We found that the hydraulic hoses on this boat are single wall un-reinforced and old. After one ozzing a while ago we have been weeping fluid into the bildge. It might have failed initially as long as last year but it finally got enough oil to get our attention. Sam and I attempted to repair the line by putting self vulcanizing tape around it, then whipping it with stainless braided wire super super tight, and finally putting another layer of self vulcanizing tape on it. Result? Our repair held!... till the hose failed about 2 inches below our repair. So, a new hose. This time with steel re-inforced lines up to 5000 psi. However, we now need to replace all the lines. It took forever to bleed the bubbles out of the lines but we did it. I wanted to make sure that if we had to move the boat due to the storm that we would actually have proper helm control! After removing the line and inspecting it, we found that the line was very nearly broken through and would have failed completely at any moment.
     Today Hurricane IAN made landfall just south of Tampa and the weather is supposed to get bad here in about 24-36 hours. We are finishing putting everything away and cleaning up the deck for bad weather. Today we went to Tristan's boat and made sure she was well tied up and added rope to re-inforce her head and backstays that were completely rotten/gone. I also climbed up Char's mast to fix her wind direction and the pully for her inner forstay halyard.
     We went to see a 1929 93 foot long wooden. It's being repaired nearby. New ribs, new planking etc. Sam and I are going to volunteer to work on her and learn a little bit about wooden boat building/repair. I think it's going to be fun!!! She's amazing!

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