Week ending 27 July 2008

If Knot Y Knot
Patricia Day
Sat 26 Jul 2008 19:04

Week Ending 27 July, 2008


I finished taking the trim off the sail and 10.00 went to the Book/DVD Swap at the marina next door. 

Then it was back to the boat to make the base for my key lime pie, I could not make the filling as I had no lime juice.

Off to Dominoes and bought some lime juice from the supermarket on the way.

Back to the boat and made the filling for the pie and went for a cup of tea with Jim while I left it to set in the fridge.  I was feeling pretty ill and was told I could take paracetamol and Ibuprofen with the antibiotics, I took the lot and it did get me through the evening rather than crawl away into a hole.

We had a Pot Luck BBQ here tonight, hence the pie to take.  I was the only one who went in the pool.

I helped Bob get off the pontoon as he is going out to anchor.


Monday, July 21, 2008

I did wake up at 6, not feeling too bad.  I was working by 6.30 and spent 4 hours in project management.  I phoned the electricians and they sent a man over to check out where to put the batteries.  These weigh 65 pounds each and I really need to put them with the others, so that is 65lbs x 5 on one side of the boat, now I have to balance the other side, it can really only be heavy tools.

I phoned the paint people and ordered the antifoul, the girl still had an envelope on her desk with my boat name on it containing the invoice and the change from last year.  It is a long walk and I could not face it last year or this, because again they delivered the paint and I paid the driver; keep the change.

I also asked a technician about using the watermaker in freshwater and it should be ok.

Then I went in search of sail tape or someone to repair the sail.  Third attempt lucky.  They would send a truck to pick up the sails, I would have both checked and get an estimate tomorrow. 

Then I went into the riggers to see about getting mast steps, but had to run out as I saw the sail truck leave to deliver a sail and I had to get back to the boat before they got there.  I told the security girl on the gate and Calvin knows perfectly well where I am, but they sent the truck in completely the wrong direction.  I phoned the office and she phoned the guys, they were on the phone being told where I was just as they drew up next to me.  I tossed the sails over the side, with the bags.  I cannot get the sails folded small enough to get them in the bag, but they come back as tiny packages.  Something to do with having clear floor space to roll them up and people to sit on them as they roll.  Even if I could find the space there would be too much grit to try it.

The genoa was taking up the cockpit and now I have all this lovely space.

Time to visit Jim for a cup of tea and see what he has been up to in the last 4 months.  It is nice to see someone else who has been working their socks off and nothing much visible to show for it.

I left Jim looking at his engine, this is a good start, he just has to fit it in his boat.

I decided to tackle the cockpit locker.  I have a special battery box to contain the new batteries and this has to be fixed to the floor.  I took everything out and decided what had to be done before the batteries arrive. 

I moved the watermaker switch to somewhere more accessible, this only required a longer piece of wire with a spade terminal, rather like the one on the end of my 12v extension cable.  The red cable was longer than the black one and this equaled them up nicely, I will just have to put a new terminal on the red cable later.  When I had finished I flicked the switch just to check it moved, but the watermaker started.  Oops, I didn’t know it was live.  That is what happens when you wire several things into one switch on the panel, I had the swith on for the fan indoors.

Lots of penetrating oil and tweaking later and time to put everything back in the locker.  Only light stuff was going back in.  I now have 5 buckets.  The only things I have left out  are two anchors, I will have to stow these at the bow (pointy end) somehow; but it is 6pm and so that is another days task.


Tuesday, 22 July

I started the day by visiting Jim, armed with a pair of tweezers and a foot complete with metal splinter.  I had dug some of it out, but it needed someone who could see what they were doing.  A pair of reading specs, a magnifying glass and some degree of pain later, hopefully it was all out.

I needed to go across to Crews Inn, but rather than walk I decided to use the dinghy.  I took it out of its bag, got the footpump and inflated it.  I attached eyes to the transom in preparation for my lifting harness.  I really need one in the floor at the front, but that is not a good idea in an inflatable dinghy.

I dropped it from the boat to the path, having to wait for a guy who chose right there to stop and have a phone conversation, oblivious to what might come down on his head.  I declined the offer of a tractor (?) presumably a trolley and pulled the dinghy over my back and set off.  There were men on a boat in the next yard telling me to ‘get help, get help’.  I staggered to the dock, launched the dinghy and they then changed it to ‘next time, get help.’  I got the oars and the tool box that I use as a seat and set off across the water.  I had been wearing a white vest, which was dirty, so I took a clean white top with me to put on, but that too was soon dirty.  Climbing up dinghy docks is not easy at low tide. 

I went into YSATT office to add my name to the list of complaints about the dogs, then went to the electronics firm to progress my autopilot problem.

I rowed back and went to Budget and asked about mast steps, I thought 20 would do.  I checked how fast they could be delivered from St Maarten and that the riggers could fit them.

Back at the boat I did manage to make one of the two remaining backing plates for the winches, the shape was not round by the time the boat contours had been taken into account and it was unreasonably difficult.  I have yet to adapt the metal plate to go with it.  I could not face making the last one today.


Wednesday, July 23, 2008

I ran to Budget and waited for them to open and was trying to get a price for the steps, when the rigger passed by and asked how many I was getting.  35 feet at 18” apart, I said 20.  We measured my leg and I can only step up 1’, so I need 35.  I would come back in the afternoon, because a group of us were going into Port of Spain to go shopping. 

I only bought 2 DVDs, a blueberry and pomegranate smoothie and a donut; but at least it proves I don’t need much.  I did want to go down Charlotte St, but a local man told us not to go, it is not like it used to be – and it always used to be dodgy.  I would have gone, but I had 3000TT in my unzipped pockets that I had in case I had to pay for the mast steps.  They boys did not want to go, so we gave up. 

On the maxi trip in we had seen graffiti against our kind on walls – ‘yauthies go home’.  Variations on this, none of them spelt correctly, but we got the gist. 

I went and paid for my sails, they are all done, including the complete restitching of the genoa sacrificial strip.  At least that is something finished.  I have left them there until I am a bit more ready for them.

I took the wheel and the autopilot off, but then put it back together, I will wait for the man who is coming to look at it tomorrow afternoon.  I got a phone call to say my solar panel would be available for collection in an hour and a half.  I was too excited to start anything, so went over to see Jim.

By 5pm I was the proud owner of a solar panel, 5’ x 2’, I only have the sprayhood to attach it to, I just have to work out how.


Thursday, 24 July

I took 3 white flares round to Tropical as Mariposa are collecting out of date flares for safe disposal, these expired in 2001, but 2 of them still looked perfect. 

I sat under the canopy by the pool and had a quick look at a local paper.  Port of Spain used to run at 1 murder a day, so it should be up to 225, but it was 299.  One 25 year old man opened his door carrying his 5 month old baby and both of them were killed.  

I was being picked up at 10 to go to the supermarket, I thought it was about time I stocked up.  I did spend considerable time by the cash machine and on the phone to the bank, once again they had protected my money from me.
I did not get back until after 1 and it took several hours to put the shopping away.  I will have to go again before I launch, but it is a good start.

I didn’t get much further, the electrician is arriving at 8.30 tomorrow and the electronics man could not make it today so he is due just before lunch.  I need the electricity off for the first guy and on for the second one; all my planning has been shot through, we shall just have to see how it goes.

I headed for the pool and Penny, crewing on a classic ketch going to Rio de Janiero, was cutting hair.  I had done mine, but had been told that the back was not straight.  Penny very kindly did what she could.

The pool had a Spanish corner, a French corner, a British corner and two local lads at the steps, not bad for a 12’ pool.


Friday, 25 July

The electrician arrived at 8.30 and the two new batteries were soon installed in my lovely box.  Then he drilled the hole in the coaming for the solar panel cable to go through, I had a cable gland left over from my old autopilot. 

The Raymarine dealer arrived, it was a bit of a squeeze, and checked out the autopilot and went back to his office and wrote an e-mail to the people who had fitted it, so now we wait for the next instalment.

I had a spare inverter and was going to keep the original indoors and put the spare direct onto the batteries in the locker.  I started to smoke before we switched it on, so abandoned that idea and threw it away and moved the old one; hopefully this will run my sewing machine.

The regulator has had its adjusting plastic screw anhilalated and we are not sure where it is set, so I am trying to run the batteries down and see if they charge back up tomorrow.  I really did not want to buy a new regulator this year.

I have not fixed the solar panel, so it is tied down by 4 pieces of string, no strong winds are forecast.  I have enough cable to tie it to the side guardrails if anything untoward happens to the sprayhood.

A good days work and finished before 3.  I then set off to find the fittings I need to attach the solar panel to the sprayhood.  I had no luck and am modifying my design for the nth time.  I do not want to make unnecessary holes in the sprayhood and will treat it as work in progress for a while yet.

I did get the electrician to drop off an empty cable drum and I found another on in the bin by Budget.  These will be my steps so that I can reach the waterline.  I really should start the hull this weekend.

It has been very hot today, no rain and so the pool was warmer than it has been, I like it that way.


Saturday, July 26, 2008

I had such high hopes for today.  By 8am I had taped up my waterline, about 4 inches higher than previously.  I used up one of the laundry tokens I had left over from when I hauled out, towel, bedding and really dirty stuff.  I did some hand washing of nice clothes, but left those to soak.

Mike came by and we helped Jim launch his dinghy.  It was going to rain but I had an hour or so, time to pop to Budget for a few bits.  Unfortunately Budget did not have what I wanted and I set off for Peakes, and it started to rain.  It was torrential, a tropical wave passing.  As I was wet I carried on to the bank, but the 2 ATMs had been tampered with and had taken themselves out of service.  By now I would have given a drowned rat a run for its money and I would have won.

Back at the boat I hung out the unrinsed washing, it might as well rinse in the rain.

I started on the solar panel installation and the first brilliant idea did not work, so on to the second.  I could not get my drill to go through the thick poles.  I gave up after trying lots of drill bits, hopefully it is just the battery being low.

I borrowed a scaffold end, they are very heavy and A shaped so I can climb up one side and move it along.  I had bought a cleaner that I thought was what I wanted, it was on offer so I have 4 bottles, but I think it is washing up liquid and not cleaner, so I won’t be buying any more washing up liquid this year.

I washed the hull down, it was not brilliant, but I have to polish it anyway and it made me feel like I had achieved something that had to be done before I launch.

I went for a cup of tea with Jim and then for a quick swim and a shower.


Sunday, 27 July 2008

It is Zoe’s birthday today, Happy Birthday, Zoe.

I am planning either to sand the bottom  or polish the top of the hull before dominoes, but this is weather dependent.  If it rains first thing then I shall continue trying to drill the holes in the alumninium tubing, which should be easy, but we shall have to see if tomorrow gives me a break.

As it is Sunday in the UK I shall send this now.