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Date: Mon, 3 Jul 2023 16:56:00 GMT

Rainbows and Unicorns

Wait... didn't I mean rainbows and work?

     Hi all, the 4th is approaching and over the last week or so we've had some really hot but beautiful weather. So here's a couple pictures:
Double rainbow after a storm
Amazing sunset last night

We also have completed the install of the new cylinder head on the engine and are waiting on the exhaust. Here is a picture of the cylinder head just before we started torqing down the headbolts.

Then to top off everything the iCom radio decided to quit so I had to replace it with our spare radio. It is under warranty but it's just one more thing to happen as we try to head north.
iCom back to B&G!
There are some things you just want to have a backup for... a spare radio is always important.
but there is always another sunset! oh my I love this place.
Wide angle sunset from our Dinghy on the way back to the boat

Date: Thu, 6 Jul 2023 13:50:00 GMT

Preparing to sail

As soon as the exhaust is finished.

     We've been spending the last few days preparing the boat for the journey north. It's difficult to maintain the boat in ready to sail mode for long periods when we're just here and anchor so things kinda fell apart. But everything has a home and we're putting everything in it's home and finding new homes for things. We're also updating our inventory planning travel food and meals as well as completing the last few small maintenance tasks.

     We are also spending time with friends and making sure we have everyone's contact information so we can stay in touch. There are so many people we have met here that will be long term friends! This is an amazing harbor and full of some very fine people. I'm not sure there is any where else on the east coast where you can just leave your boat unlocked, leave stuff in your dinghy, or leave it unlocked as well... day in day out In the last months we've been here no one has ever had anything stolen what we are aware of. Everyone polices themselves and the community is amazing.

     For projects Sam is still steadly brushing the teak and polishing the stainless. We are reparing spare pumps, organizing tools, getting fuel and water for the trip and having our bottom cleaned. I'm still having problems with the ships clock. It stops sometimes. I've had it apart a couple of times and can't figure out why it is hanging up. We also cleaned out the refrigerator and hosed it out to defrost it. I moved the temprature sending unit for the thermostat and it appears to be keeping up with the tempratures.

     It's very hot and Surprise lent us an airconditioner. We tried it one day and it works kinda. It's too small but we need to run the generator 24x7 to make it work and I'm not sure we want to do that. Yesterday was the hottest in the nation here with a heat index of 114. It's hot again today and I think we might put it up. It stays about 90deg in the boat and there's usually just enough wind to make it bearable. I'm amazed at the airflow in this boat. The canvas over the boat makes it much more livable but the water temp is 90+ deg so it's hard to keep anything cool. Mom and Sam spend most of the day at the marina.

     Sam is trying to catch up on videos so please be patient we will get them out. We're trying to maintain 1 video a week but that may not be enough.

     Yesterday Monica and Arynn let mom play their piano on their boat. It was lots of fun! We have been investigating how to get our piano on the boat but we havent found a place to store it yet. This is an ongoing project however.
Date: Mon, 24 Jul 2023 23:38:00 GMT

Sticky Bottom

Exhaust still not finished.

     Hi all, So why are we still here? Because this harbor has a sticky bottom. Every time you try to leave something get's in the way. So We've gone back and fourth to Dania beach twice a week for the last 3 weeks with the exhaust. We went back today hopefully for the last round. Sections 1-2-3 are in and complete with the exhaust elbow. The muffler is in and we are waiting on the final weld of the muffler end of section 4. It's a piece of art and US Metal Fabricators in Dania beach has done a wonderful job. But they are not fast.

     Sam and I got the prototype back 2 weeks ago and did a test fitting. So that meant taking everything apart and putting in the exhaust. Then we made sure it fit and marked the last end for changes. We did that at 10pm-3am when it was cool. Then we took pictures and measurements and took it back the next morning. The next week we got it all back but the last piece tack welded with adjustment made. The last piece still didn't fit so we took more measurements and took the last piece back again. A few days later we got it back with changes made in the wrong direction. So we put it back together again measured it and broke the welds on section 4 with a dremmel, ground it all smooth, put it in and placed the last piece in position and marked it with a sharpie. Then today returned to drop it for the final weld and hopefully in a day or two we will have it all done. I an finally see the light at the end of the tunnel with this project.

     I hurt myself during the process grinding down some of section 2 so I was unable to help Sam much with the near final assembly. We have the crossover hoses all cut and in place and the output exhaust hose ready to go as well. Hopefully we can get it all assembled before Friday of this week.

     Two days ago Anamashi took us sailing on their boat and we went snorkeling at the lighthouse reef. Hannah had a wonderful time snorkeling and the water was clear down 15 feet. She swam for over an hour.

     4 days ago the Generator quit working all of a sudden in the morning. That changed the entire day and Sam and I spent the next 8 hours fixing it. Here is the run down. It quit because it overheated. So we started to diagnose the problem. We were outputting plenty of raw water. But we decided to check the heat exchanger. In checking the heat exchanger, which is nearly impossible to reach, I found a broken automotive hose clamp rusted apart. on the input side of the coolant section. Also there was lots of coolant on the floor pan of the generator which we started sopping up. It took me a couple hours to get a new hose clamp on the hose one handed because only one hand would fit. Then we continued to try to figure out what had happend and opened up the input of the raw water side and found quite literally years and 5-6 impellers worth of rubber pieces. Sam suggested flushing it from the other side so we disconnected the anti siphon side of the hose and flushed it with fresh water... even more pieces came out. So we cleaned it all out and sealed it up and refilled the coolant. Then everything worked again... oh my. We were so worried because the generator is so central to everything on this boat.

     Two days ago while grinding off some of the exhaust I cut two of my fingers. This is sooo weird. I've NEVER in my life hurt myself with a power tool but I cut two of my fingers really badly and probably should have had 8 stitches total. I cleaned out everything with a razor, stopped the bleeding put silver into the wounds and superglooed the skin on the top. Then I put a pressure bandage on the wound and splinted it so that it wont open up again. So far no signs of infection and the pain has stopped.

     Last night we spent the evening on Anamashi and today It was He who drove use to Dania beach to drop off the Final piece of the exhaust to be welded.

     It has been very hot and and have been using the air conditioner more now that the generator is working again. When Sam put in the exhaust during thd day on Sunday, we kept the air conditioner running and the ice maker going all day so that we could come in every 1/2 hour or so to cool off. It does not keep the boat cold as it can't keep up but we could come and stand under it for a bit to cool off.

     There will be lots of video on the youtube channel about the work on the generator and the engine/exhaust. The new exhaust actually looks better than the original and instead of brazing with copper this is welded with copper nickle. Sam spent time with a Scotch Bright pad polishing it and it looks wonderful. I know it's a lot to spend and many people feel that what we are doing is not best or cheapest, but I believe it is best for this boat and we are making it better than original with better welding, better materials and improved water flow. The old one lasted 50 years and properly taken care of, I believe that this exhaust will last the life of the boat. It's a piece of art that this Hinckley deserves. As a matter of note, this exhaust if converted to a waterlift would have to lift nearly 7 feet and travel 15 feet to the back of the boat. The exhaust snakes under the floor through bulkheads and lockers where there is no room to do anything else and then rises nearly twice the typical waterlift design height with a huge volume of water to travel 1 1/2 inch diameter for 15 feet. This copper nickle solid exhaust is the best method for this design. I'm not cutting new holes in the hull, I'm not removing or moving exhaust through cabins or cutting new holes in wooden panels. I'm not sending the exhaust through the side of the boat or going out below the water line. And more importantly I'm not testing a new design on a classic boat. I'm not going to have anyone say to me... "what the heck did you do this beautiful old boat!!!??", I'm restoring it.
Date: Thu, 27 Jul 2023 01:31:00 GMT

Exhaust Finished!

We are able to move again!

     Well the big news today folks is that the engine is running and the exhaust is finished. This has been a very long haul but it's finally done. I went with Anamashi to US Metal Fabricators Inc in Dania Beach and picked up the final weld. Overall they did fabulous work! They mirrored the original system and hit it within 1/2 inch on the initial run. We went back for a couple adjustments on piece #4 and now it is all together and working. I tried many places to get it right and no one wanted to do it or wanted to shortcut the design. These people helped me improve things with better water flow but did not change the overall design. Even with increasing the size of the water jacket the rolls and bends were perfect. The welds on the water jacket are absolutely professional and I'm sure when I finally sell this boat the exhaust will continue for another 50 years. After we mounted the final piece (#4) I started the engine and she started right up. I was worried it wasn't producing water and then remembered I hadn't opened the raw water seacock. After I opened it, there was a delay as the exhaust filled with water. Then the water started pouring out. After about 10 min the motor overheated and my heart dropped when the alarm sounded! I turned off the engine, let it cool and opened the coolant cap. The coolant was low. It hadn't run long enough before for the thermostat to open. So I put more coolant in it (about a quart and a half) Then we started it up again. After about 10 minutes it overheated again and the alarm went off...then before I could go turn it off the temp started dropping and stabilized about 130deg. I'm pretty sure it was air pockets that needed to fill with coolant. Then I went to inspect the exhaust and saw blackwater condensation and diesel smoke coming out of the last weld. So, I got a big pipe wrench and after a little vibration it tightened another full rotation and the flow of exhaust gas stopped. Oh My! how wonderful it sounds to have that diesel running properly! It sounds so much better! no diesel rattle and tick tacking. Everything smooth and quiet. We are so excited!

     As I went with the Dinghy to drop Anamashi back at the Tiki and pick up Hannah, Wanda, and Sam the sky started darkening and storms rolled in. I took Mom and Sam back first and then came back for Hannah and the laundry and shopping and we rode back in the cool rain enjoying the nice break from the heat. All the laundry was in plastic bags so it didn't get wet.

     Now we are eating Beans and Rice and relaxing. We will probably celebrate with friends after the storm abates. I'm so glad that we could accomplish this here and that it didn't fail on is in another country or underway. We now have a lot more confidence in the motor and generator both of which are running properly and cleanly now. I will be updating our maintenance list tonight and it's becoming much shorter. I have a spreadsheet with all the work we have done and when how and who etc. This engine and exhaust project was largely done by Sam and he's becoming very good with boat maintenace, even major projects. Time to sign off now and celebrate! Good night all.
Date: Fri, 28 Jul 2023 02:28:00 GMT


More broke stuff!

     This morning I was going through things getting ready to get underway and the engine didn't start! scared me... but it was just a loose wire on the alternator. Then I noticed a raw water leak. It was a loose bolt on the raw water stack in the heat exchanger. Then I started going through the navionics and chart plotters only to find out that the rudder position indicator was not working. I'm betting that a near by lightning strike took out the rudder. So now the autopilot does not work and the sea temprature is showing 125F. That's a little hotter than is likely. Typical pain tolerance is about 106-108 and the water has been 101 which is hot tub temprature.

     We spent the day today cleaning up and clearing the decks. I had two storage bins I purchased for putting engine pieces in and I filled them with trash and took them to the dumpster. I think we're pretty close to sailing but I'm going to need to order a rudder position sensor.

     Tonight we had beans and rice and tortillias for dinner and we had friends over who are helping us with various things. It'll be an early day tomorrow so we are going to bed early.

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