Friday, July 30, 2010

just like assholes

I've been a little slow updating this blog so far, and it seems like it's more fixing and working and less sailing and drinking...
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

Nude Beach this way -->

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...
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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Look at this f*ckin thing!

Almost 5 feet long!

I just saw this guy cruising slowly by as I was walking up to the boat. Good thing he wasn't around when Ryan was under the boat plugging a through-hull with his finger as I changed out that broken seacock valve... Don't tell him.

Monday, July 26, 2010

No conservation here

I think I have a fresh water leak somewhere. I've been getting about an inch of water in the bilge every day, and my fresh water pump kicks on every hour or so. I don't know for sure these are related, but the freshwater system is obviously losing pressure somewhere so it makes sense.
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

Sounds and 13's

Before. Maybe I can sell this to a museum?

One of my favorite things back when I used to live on land (a month ago) was the sound and home theater systems. I can do without the home theater, but I need to do something about this stereo on the boat.
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?

Let's fix this...

Unfortunately, that isn't the cocaine I spilled over the side this morning...

This part was kind of a pain in the ass. The new, much better [and louder] speakers were a couple of inches larger than the old ones. Oh, and oval shaped instead of round. Yes, I could have gotten smaller round shaped ones, but think about the dancing hot chicks.

After masking the surrounding are to prevent scratches, I used a reciprocating saw to cut the larger holes where the old ones were. I taped a garbage bag over the back side of the hole to catch the mess and used a handheld vacuum cleaner to take care of the front. Did I mention that my enormous (that's right, ladies) steering wheel was in the way of everything? Well, I took it off.
What's this round thing for?

Once the holes were cut, it didn't take long to grind them into perfect fits, clean the area, apply the sealant/adhesive, and screw the new speakers in. 125 watts each, b*tch.
Cockpit done

Next was the main cabin. Easy. Step one, throw away old speakers. Step two, rip out old, sh*tty speaker wire. Step three, run new Monster Cable large gauge insulated, shielded wire (i used this for the cockpit, as well). Place new 80 watt speakers.
Salon done

Complete. Now where are those girls at?

After, and you can't even see the terrible job I did of cutting the wood...

Monday, July 19, 2010

Grow your own

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.
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Thursday, July 15, 2010

Gettin' my head straight

My aft head, which is manually pumped, has had a problem for a while. It will flush away water/waste/etc but it won't refill itself with seawater. I did a little research, since I didn't know anything about marine toilets, and I found that it most likely is a bad flapper valve (or top valve gasket, as Jabsco calls it). I bought one for around ten bucks and pulled the toilet pump apart.

I also grabbed some of this stuff. I don't know if it will help, but it certainly can't hurt...

The flapper valve did look pretty bad, so I replaced it and reassembled the pump. The good news is, these toilets are incredibly simple. The bad news is I still wasn't getting any flushing water. I checked the inlet hoses and they're all clear, so it looks like this guy is the culprit. I'm not positive that the through-hull isn't clogged, but with a flashlight I can see that the valve isn't opening when I turn the handle, so apparently I've got a faulty seacock...
Everything else still works fine, ladies

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Shower Overhaul - part one

The existing nasty looking shower

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...
Shiny, new, and more modern looking at least

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Sky High WiFi - part one

So I'm going to need some kind of internet access on the boat, especially since I don't plan to hook up cable for my tv. The marina that I'm in has WiFi and it works decently well, but it's hard to get a signal from inside the boat...

I've searched around and found what I hope to be a perfect solution. It's called a Bullet M2 HP, made by Ubiquiti Networks. I don't know exactly what it is, but if you give it an antenna it can pick up WiFi for miles, apparently.

So, around a hundred bucks later and a week later, I have one of those Bullets, something called a PoE injector, and a foot-long omnidirectional all-weather antenna. Let's go.

Maybe thirty minutes and a beer later, I've got the antenna attached to the Bullet, the Bullet connected via ethernet to the PoE injector, which is connected to both my laptop and a 12 volt power drop I scavenged from the old chart table lamp (it was blocked by my gps chartplotter anyway). Go internet!

Or not. I thought I would be all set. I didn't electrocute myself, everything looked right, and I had followed the [sparse] instructions that were printed on the bullet's box..


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

5 of July

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!

We're not gay, I promise

As we passed Point Loma and headed out to sea my buddy, who happens to be a rocking musician, grabbed my ukulele and within moments figured out how to play some of his best songs on it. Fucking great day. I love America!

Identities protected in case their boyfriends see the blog...