Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Friday, October 29, 2010
It doesn't seem to be coming from the typical spots. It's not the heads, the sinks, the drains, the bilge, the garbage, and even the holding tanks don't seem to be any worse than normal. I sniff one end of the boat and it smells like its coming from the other end, then vice versa. Sometimes it even smells like it's coming from outside.
Ugh. How am I supposed to bring ladies aboard when my boat smells like this?
Thursday, October 14, 2010
Sunday, October 10, 2010
The place was pretty awesome: Peacocks and iguanas roaming around the place, great restaurants, huge pools with a swim-up bar, and 24-hour unlimited room service. One interesting note: while iguanas usually only eat fruit, they will try to grab anything you leave by the side of the pool if you aren't paying attention. My buddies and I were quite content to float around in the pool, soaking in the sun while sipping on pina coladas and having tacos delivered whenever we pleased...
Everything was perfect. Except that for some reason we decided to bring chicks with us. Talk about a fucking nuisance. Actually, aside from the nagging, wanting to go shopping/clubbing, and inappropriate emotional outbursts they were fine. Next time, though, we'll make do with the girls that are already in Mexico.
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
More info on the race here.
Monday, September 13, 2010
Well, we will be as soon as I start shooting...
I just received this GoPro HD Hero digital camcorder. This thing captures full 1080p digital video--that's better than real life! It's waterproof to 180 feet and has several mounts for various applications. I picked up a mount for attaching it to the rails and a super stylish head strap for POV shots. Should be pretty awesome.
Now I can show off my my killer sailing skills and I'll even strap this thing on next time I'm working on something interesting so you can see how I do it. I'll be launching a YouTube channel alongside this blog soon, so stay tuned.
Saturday, September 11, 2010
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
One of the threaded parts was the cause of the leak, so I went down to West Marine to pick up a replacement. They didn't have the same part, but they had something called a quick connect fitting that does the same thing, only simpler. Great!--except that my old French boat has things in metric sizes, and West Marine didn't... Oh well.
In the end, the best solution looks to be to seal the leaking threads with a fast-curing permanent adhesive. Problem is, it takes 24 hours to cure, so no running water until tomorrow night!
Update: It worked great! No more leak.
Sunday, August 15, 2010
After hearing rave reviews about them, I decided to install a Froli system in my cabin. It's an adjustable plastic spring system that goes under your current foam mattress or cushion. In addition to the spring support, it also raises the mattress a little and allows air flow underneath. This keeps it a bit cooler, and prevents moisture from building up.Well, I've slept on it for a couple of weeks, and while it certainly isn't an amazing improvement, it is better. I might have to try different adjustments to see how the feeling changes but for now it's a little more comfortable and definitely cooler. Also, it has proven to be sturdy enough to hold up to the extra activities in the bedroom...
We raise the main and kill the engine, and we already start booking. 7 knots and climbing on just the main. Totally pumped and convinced we are going to be the fastest boat out there, we gybe to a better course to unfurl the genoa. As the boom switches sides and the main refills, we hear a loud tearing sound and look up to see the main has ripped itself in half. F*ck!
Anyway, I run forward and brought down the main and stowed the pieces so we could motor back in. Words can't describe how bummed we were to miss out on such a great day for sailing...
Long story short, back in San Diego I go about having a new mainsail built. I knew the old main was going to give out at some point, since it was as old as the boat is, but it was still a bit of a shock to find out how much new sails cost. $3700 for just the main! F*ck my ass, I ought to be in the sail making business.
It's going to be about month before the sail is done, so I have month of not sailing to look forward to. I could go out on just the genoa alone, but we'll see. With this time available, I've decided to look at what jobs I could get jobbed using the time that I would otherwise spend sailing (or drinking):
- find and repair the mysterious fresh water leak
- deep clean the bilge and sump
- install the new sump pump and necessary new plumbing configuration
- fix the separated A/C ducting
- haul out and have the transom repainted and gelcoat repaired
- replace the propeller while the boat is hauled out ($$$$)
- take the clock into a clock maker for troubleshooting (this a pretty low priority, I don't mind that it's always ten after one the clock still looks cool)
Let's see how many I actually get done.
Monday, August 9, 2010
I have to preface this with the unfortunate fact that the primary camera used to document this trip was stolen or possibly just lost during the adventure, so these are the only remaining images. For certain events here this is probably a good thing, however.
The 2010 Southern California Beneteau Rendezvous was in Two Harbors, Catalina and being a Beneteau owner now of course I was going to go. The plan was to depart at around 5:35 am on Thursday morning, meet the rest of the San Diego boats just outside of Point Loma, and all sail up as a group. As I mentioned, the was the plan...
Also part of the plan, I had a short list of pre-underway tasks to complete Wednesday afternoon/evening. These included loading up on provisions (rum, limes, etc), moving some clothes and other non-essential items and tools that were cluttering the main salon, filling the water tanks, and getting a healthy night of sleep.
What happened instead follows:
In my excitement to leave work and get started with the trip, I forgot about the limes and left the two dozen I had purchased during lunch in my office fridge. This would not be discovered until Thursday afternoon midway between San Diego and Catalina.
I did have to go to an office function after work. It was a two-hour no-host cocktail social that was conveniently located within a couple of miles of my marina. No problem. I'll hang out for little while, have a couple of drinks, say hello to everyone, and then get home during daylight hours and knock out those pre-underway tasks. This is not what happened.
Instead I had several [read: more than several] drinks, stayed the rest of the evening, got hammered, harassed all the waitresses, got lost, tried to fight a taxi driver, and eventually made it back to boat by around 3:00 am. No problem.
At 5:15 am I am awakened by Ryan and am informed that it is time to go. Tired, probably still drunk, and not hungover yet (too soon), I hastily make preparations for getting underway. This means I gathered up all the "clutter" mentioned previously, threw them in my dock locker, and threw over all the lines. Let's go.
About 14 hours after we left, partly due to our engine casualty and the fact that whenever the sun broke out we would kill the engine and sail, we arrive in Two Harbors and moor in our assigned spot. Time for a drink!
This post has turned out to be a lot longer than I intended, and that was just the voyage up. I guess I'll have to add a part two to this later.
Friday, July 30, 2010
The sailing and drinking is actually just as frequent, though. I just don't get around to updating computer/blog stuff since I'm either out sailing or drunk! (Note: I'm never both at the same time--this boat was too expensive to wreck it)
I'll be updating some posts in the blog backlog soon. Especially when I get my hands on some new photos. I never carry a camera, so all I end with are photos of myself on the wheel...Which look awesome, of course, but I already have some of those on here.
Oh, and speaking of excuses, if there any typos on this blog it's because my keyboard is rubbish.
Thursday, July 29, 2010
I wasn't actually at a nude beach--well, not recently--but I did have to run to the hardware store to get a larger wood-boring drill bit. On my way out I saw that they had these signs and for some reason decided that I needed one on the boat. Now I have one, and I think it adds a nice touch of character to my already very classy forward head...
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Monday, July 26, 2010
Only thing is, all the most obvious spots are dry. I've check all my faucets (especially the shower I just installed), the water heater, and the pump itself and they aren't leaking. This means it's somewhere hidden and I'm going to have to dig around to find it. Fun.
Friday, July 23, 2010
I have onboard 26-year-old original equipment AM/FM cassette deck, two old, broken bookshelf speakers in the salon, and two old, broken marine speakers in the cockpit. Only two of the speakers work, they sound terrible anyway, and the FM reception (of course I don't own any cassettes) is less than spectacular. This isn't going to do. Everyone that comes on the boat asks if there is any music... Plus, how am I am supposed to have a bunch of hot chicks dancing around my boat without a decent stereo?
Monday, July 19, 2010
I love mojitos, especially when I make them. No lie, mine are probably the best mojitos in the state, at least. but a good mojito requires good, fresh mint. I used to have to buy it pretty often just so I would have fresh mint on hand when the fancy struck me...or my guests.
I shop at the grocery near my office now, since I have to buy groceries more frequently with my small boat fridge. the mint they sell there comes alive and still in a clump of dirt so you know it's fresh. Well, instead of following the printed directions and refrigerating these, I left them out and kept the dirt wet and now they last for weeks. Brilliant.
I'm taking this a step farther, and will be purchasing or building some sort of hanging planter that I can keep outside on the stern rail. Stay tuned.
Thursday, July 15, 2010
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
I purchased a new faucet/shower combo last week with the intention of installing it before the weekend and any guest came aboard. I ended up going out drinking and then having guests aboard anyway instead. If they wanted to take a decent shower, they were going to have to use the marina showers. Whatever.
Now it's Tuesday, and I decided to get cracking. I'm pretty sure I have what I need to get started, so I shut off my water pump, open all the other faucets to release the water pressure, and start pulling the old apart and out. Right away I see the first problem. The brass fittings beneath the old faucet are more than twice as long as the ones on the new faucet/shower. The water supply hoses won't reach. I'm going to need to get some more hose and attach extensions.
Also, it was time to take a break to pick up more beer and some Chinese food. But first, I take another look to see if I will need anything else before this job is done. Good thing, too, because I noticed that the new faucet isn't quite round where it passes through the countertop. I need to pick up a half round file to make the hole the right shape. Now I need to make an extra stop.
Hose, fittings, clamps, beer, and spicy orange chicken in hand I return to the boat to finish knocking this out. Now though, it's dark, and I apparently ought to add new interior lights to my list of projects because these are clearly insufficient for seeing underneath bathroom counters... Son of a bitch! Luckily I do have flashlights onboard. I get everything put together and the moment of truth comes. I turn the water back on and check for leaks, and everything seems to be working quite nicely. Too bad the Chinese sucked. I'm never going to that place again...
Wednesday, July 7, 2010
A little network troubleshooting (something to do with DHCP) and several beers later, voila! All the free internet porn I can ever watch. Now I just need to con one of my buddies into climbing the mast to mount it optimally.
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
What better way to celebrate your nation's independence than to go sailing the day after? I can't think of any, so we did. It was a gorgeous sunny day on the bay and my buddy showed up with a case of beer and a bunch of chicks. Ten minutes later, we made the ugly ones stay behind on the dock and set sail!
Sunday, June 27, 2010
This time, I've re-read key parts of some of my sailing books and I'm pretty sure we're gonna fly this time. Let's go.
After motoring out into the middle of the bay, I point into the wind and we get started. Mainsail up (boy, that electric winch is handy!) . Check. Boom free. Check. turn 90 degrees to wind. Check. Sheet in mainsail until...shit! We're moving! The engine is off and look at that--3 knots. Woo Woo! This is easy...
Stoked, but still a little unsatisfied, we decided to unroll (furl, whatever) the jib and have a go with that thing. I chose a winch, put a couple of [clockwise] turns on it and let Ryan crank away. The jib--genoa, apparently--isn't even all the way unfurled and we're already noticeably accelerating. Nice!
Headsail fully unfurled and sheeted in somewhat appropriately and making nearly 7 knots, we celebrate thoroughly happy with ourselves and with the fact that we are such superb sailors.
Our celebration is short-lived, though, since we quickly run out of water and need to come about before we end up on the rocks. We've never had to do this before, but no problem. I start to turn, he releases the working sheet, and starts hauling in the lazy one. Voila! Now we are sailing the other way. Damn, this sailing thing seems pretty easy.
Saturday, June 26, 2010
I ended up in a marina that was not my first, second, or third choice, but it's in a good location, has decent amenities, gave me a sweet discount, and is very close to an excellent bar (very important). Oh yeah, and they had a liveaboard slip available. (Fun Fact: San Diego only allows 10% of any marina's slips to be liveaboards)
I brought a buddy along to handle lines and we drove down to pick up the boat. The previous owner was there and was understandably pretty sad to see her go as she had owned her for 25 years. The previous owner was also a little concerned with the fact that neither my buddy or I was much of a sailor, but it's my boat now, so let's go.
Getting underway was easy and uneventful, i.e., good, and soon we were out in the bay on our way to my new slip. Since we had plenty of time, we decided that we might as well put the sails up and have a go at actually sailing.
We got the sails up, then looked at each other and asked, "Now what?" We weren't going anywhere, the sails were just flapping, and we certainly weren't heeled over and dipping a rail in the water. After a bit of steering around, the sails finally tightened and we started making some headway--just under a knot. Obviously we were doing something wrong, or at least not doing something right, so we eventually brought down the sails and motored the rest of the way home.
Pulling into my new slip was a little hairy, though. It's accessible enough, being on the end, but it is downwind. I motored past it, turned around, and lined up to enter the slip slowly. Everything is going smoothly until about halfway in we notice that it's getting a little tight. The fenders are getting smashed and by the time we're in there all the way there is about two inches of room on either side of the boat, and we're wedged in tight by the fenders. I'm gonna need a bigger slip...
We'll sort that out later, though, since the boat's definitely not moving and we're still pumped about what awesome sailors we are. Time for a mojito!
Sunday, June 20, 2010
I forgot to mention one other thing. Those marinas are a little pricey. $20 to $30+ per foot per month. Plus, you can add $200 to $500 per month to any of these for "liveaboard fee." On the other side of the spectrum, I found a marina that is only about $5 per foot, but of course it's not nearly as nice and still has a long waiting list. But, just imagine how much extra money I'd have left over to spend on repairs and upgrades!
In the meantime, though, I just need a place to put my boat. I'll go for just about any marina with an opening for now.