Thursday, January 22, 2015

More Boat Work

As our launch date to the Bahamas rapidly approaches, we find ourselves in the midst of some much needed boat projects. These are a few things that really need doing, because they are just a mere pain in the butt to do here, but they would be a royal pain the the butt to do later in the remote Bahamas. So we are, of course, doing everything at once. The place is a bit of a mess, but not too bad. The first project involves both engine alternators. It seems that a former owner of this boat allowed a dripping seawater pump to fling corrosive saltwater onto the alternator brackets. This saltwater is very corrosive, and caused the mounting bolts for both alternators to rust and make it IMPOSSIBLE to move the alternator to tighten the belts up. I am near certain that saltwater is a key ingredient in Lock-Tight. Luckily, they both sorta worked OK, but the belts were too loose, and eventually they would need replacing. One of the bolts in question happily donated its head when I attacked it with my impact wrench, displaying it's desire to remain tucked into its hole like a scared decapitated rabbit. The only course of action was to remove the part of the motor mount the damn thing was broken off into, and then have the bolt removed at a shop. Once this was done, the parts were cleaned and repainted like new, and will soon be back on the engines, haven't got that done yet.
Next on the list, the pesky wind instrument. This thing crapped out after a very close call with a trillion volts of lightning that JUST missed our mast on the move from Jax to Key West some months ago. So, it was no real surprise that it turns out that the spinny thing atop the mast is cooked like a fried egg. It LOOKS OK, but doesn't work. Much like all the people begging for money at traffic lights here in Miami. Seriously, they wait for the cars to stop, and then they pop out, limping and hunched over, going from car to car, peering at you with hopeful sorrow in their eyes. I reached for some money one day, and the light suddenly changes to green! The guy quickly straightens up, and sprints back toward the intersection, to be ready for the next performance. Unbelievable. Get a job, come on. Anyway, a new spinny thing for the mast is now here, sitting patiently in it's box, completely unaware of it's soon to be precarious position that is directly in the path of the next electrical storm. Don't tell it, it doesn't need to know yet. Also, there is something on the boat that works just fine, but just looks like hell. No, not me. I am talking about the windlass, the thing that dutifully pulls that heavy anchor and chain up off the bottom for us. Ours is made by a company called Lighthouse Windlass, and they now have the beast. It was shipped out this week, all 105 pounds of windlass and crate, so that they can turn this ugly duckling into a swan. The windlass was still working, but the poor thing was on it's last leg. The motor housing was rusted and cracking. Any day now it was going to stop completely, and then, there we would be. Stuck to the bottom. Have to get a broker to list her where she sits I suppose. Well, we were not going to let that happen, so out the thing came, and one hernia later, it is in California. They are going to fix it up good as new, and send it back. Awesome.
Also on the list for the next month... Finish the watermaker install, fix some wiring here and there, and grease my winch. Not wench, winch.