Sorry about no blog yesterday. Just didn’t feel like we did anything worth writing about. But, longtime (and probably even short-time) readers know that that seldom slows me down. Here’s what we did yesterday:
I had planned to raise the mainsail at the dock. Last time we used it we had trouble getting the boom high enough to clear the gallows. Not sure what was up with that as it was too dark to see the top of the mast very well. I suspect I had some kind of fouling up there that prevented the main from reaching the top of the mast but I wanted to find out for sure. Well, the best laid plans…
Unlike the rest of our stay in SB so far, yesterday was down right windy. There are a whole long line of flags along the breakwater and I tried to use them to judge the wind speed. According to “The Complete Sailor” by David Seidman, if the flags were snapping, the wind was between 22 and 27 knots. If the flags were extended, the wind was between 28 and 33 knots. Well, the flags were snapping some of the time and extended some of the time so the winds should have been between 22 and 33 knots. So why couldn’t I get any reading higher than 16.6 knots on my handheld Kestrel wind gauge? Granted, the flags were a little further off the ground than I was but could 10′ or so make that much difference? Anyway, it was way too windy (and coming at us from astern) to raise the main.
So, being the industrious fellow that I am, I turned to other pursuits. First, I fired up the engine to get the oil nice and warm so I could change it. While it was warming up, I helped Lulu get the Portabote dinghy off the boat and semi-assembled. She’s been itching to clean up the inside ever since we folded it back up the last time.
Oil changing went smooth as silk. After I went on about what a great tool the drill pump was for changing oil, it naturally failed me when we were in Ft. Bragg. While there I bought a piston pump to use instead.
I don’t want to jinx the deal by saying it so I won’t tell you that it worked great and left no mess whatsoever. I also used it to drain the oil in the transmission. After adding new oil to both the engine and the tranny, I laid down new oil absorbent pads under both and also built a little tent out of the pads to put over the transmission to catch the oil it’s flinging. This should help keep the bilge clean and give me some kind of handle as to how much oil the leaky seal is losing.
After Lulu got done cleaning the dinghy, she wanted to attack a couple of long oil/dirt scars we picked up when docking at the check-in dock here. Rather than put the Portabote the rest of the way together and then try to squeeze it between our boat and the one next to us, we decided to inflate (for the very first time) our Sevylor Fiji 2-man kayak.
Since the kayak didn’t come with an air pump, I had bought a Coleman foot pump at Ace Hardware in Silverton before we left. There are 3 different inflation fittings on the kayak and the Coleman attachments fit 2 of them. Naturally. Lulu checked at West Marine but it didn’t look like what they had would be of much help. So, I burrowed down into one of the lockers and came up with a hose that made a perfect bushing. With that kind of luck, I really should have bought a lottery card.
So, while she was working on the stains, using baby oil as recommended by our friend, Rod, I started filing the diesel tank from our jerry jugs. I like to do this if I can because it cycles the fuel in the jugs, it means I don’t have to stop at the fuel dock, and I’m much more likely to be able to fill the tank without overflowing it. We’ve had overflows the last 2 times at the fuel docks necessitating quick action with paper towels and absorbent pads to avoid a messy and costly spill into the water. I believe I also waxed on about how good the drill pump worked for transferring fuel. yeah, until the last time I tried it when it wouldn’t work at all. That time I also tried a shaker siphon:
Ultimately I ended up using the ol’ tried and true mouth siphon, which, although it worked, left something to be desired aesthetically. BTW, diesel tastes better than gas. Anyway, I vowed then that I was going to come up with something else. And I did. I bought one of those priming bulbs that are used on outboard motors:
Added some hose to each end and voilá. A few pumps to get the siphon started and then just sit back and watch the jerry jug empty. The restricted orifice size means that it takes longer but the fact that it takes longer means the fuel doesn’t foam up and want to leak out the vent. Hopefully I haven’t jinxed this setup by praising it.
Once our jobs were done, we went up to Brophy Bros. and treated ourselves to an overpriced Corona. We had dinner onboard: green salad, steamed broccoli & carrots, and a couple of Nathan’s hot dogs. Nathan’s are the best. Started watching season 1 of Mad Men which we got from the Newport (OR) Public Library and we’re also re-watching Deadwood which we got from Lucas.
And that’s what happened yesterday.