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Egmont on Your Face, or, departure is fast approaching

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  • Skip Gundlach
    Before I start, I want to remind those only peripherally engaged in this enterprise that, should it become tiresome, or the few responses from friends and
    Message 1 of 2 , Jun 22, 2007
      Before I start, I want to remind those only peripherally engaged in this enterprise that, should it become tiresome, or the few responses from friends and family overwhelm your limited computer resources, and you wish to become anonymous to The Flying Pig Log, there's an unsubscribe button at the bottom of the page.  Sending a message to the group pleading for eviction won't get it :{)) - but that button (well, link) will instantly cut the line between this log list and you.  On with our story...
       
      Well, we're still at it.  We've done all but a very little of our refit and rehab ourselves.  However, in the interests of getting it absolutely right, we've engaged professionals to do our engine room and drive-train related work.  I could do it myself, but not only do I want to make sure I don't mess up, they have the specialized tools and know-how which will make the job go faster and - very importantly - they do this all day long, and have, for many years, and will get it right, where I might be guessing (and surely would take longer).
       
      So, in for a dime, in for a dollar.  Where we were previously doing nearly all of it ourselves, we therefore engaged other pros to do other of our miscellany, and, suddenly, the departure date looms closer.  What will we do!?
       
      Leave, of course!
       
      In the meantime, as to the title, we did a sea trial while waiting for some fabrication related to the drive train.  As some of you know, we did our first sea trial by taking a dozen relatives and friends on a 12 hour cruise to the Gulf of Mexico, stopping to swim at Egmont Key, on Memorial Day weekend. Last weekend, we retraced that route, but alone.  We spent the weekend at our prior swim stop, and basically kicked back for the entire time we were there.  Of course, the purpose of a sea trial isn't to relax - it's to prove out systems and try to break stuff.
       
      The way down was nearly entirely still, so we motored, gently, so as to not introduce any more water than absolutely necessary from our otherwise dripless bearing which keeps the drive shaft lubricated with sea water.  (The engine and drive train project is centered on being able to get the proper bearing for the shaft so as to minimize vibration, which is present without it, and which vibration produces water from the poor seal induced by that vibration - as it was during the trip.)  Once we got under the bridge, however, the wind picked right up, and we shut off the engine and sailed beautifully and uneventfully to our anchorage off the National Bird Sanctuary. 
       
      Of course, Lydia was in heaven with all the birds, as the pictures in the sea trial gallery (http://tinyurl.com/2zox4q) reflect.  However, our brand new dinghy, which we'd previously tested under oars, with which we were thoroughly disgusted (recall that this is coming from a prior 3-time national collegiate champion rower, so take it with a grain of salt) as to their total wimpiness (I could break them if I applied myself, let alone how poorly they were designed for the task), had a recently serviced outboard which took forever to start.  Once started, it acted like it was running on only one of the 4 cylinders.  More sea trialing of that item remains for future work.  However, it was able to continue stumbling along enough to get us to shore (and back!), and some pix of the boat at anchor.
       
      Oh, yah...  At anchor.  It was supposed to have been calm, that night - but instead it shifted direction to dead onshore, from a long fetch (open water allowing waves to build), at 20 knots (strong wind) all night long.  Our marvelous craft merely nodded to the seas as they approached, even allowing some of the larger ones to board over the bow, and our 55 pound Delta anchor held us fast to the sandy bottom.  We slept soundly, and "in" - not getting up until nearly 11 - with no concerns for dragging anchor or our security.
       
      We followed up our shoreside exploration and water exercises (one of the things I most look forward to on our time approaching is the ability to use the hookah [a pump-supplied underwater breathing device] rig to do some of my physical therapy, having had marvelous results in the few times I had in a pool) with an enchanting sail home.
       
      We had a false start when the raw water pump (the thing that pushes sea water through the exhaust system to cool it) leaked, but I dug into my spares and tool bin and swapped it out for another in short order. 
       
      The sail home was magical.   You can see the pix in the gallery, but it was a perfect spinnaker run under a zephyr all the way through - by that time, at full dark - the Skyway Bridge and up to past the turn in the channel.  Encounters with freighters (thankful they were downwind, we were, so as to not suffer the wind shadow they'd make) were of no moment and our USCG training let us communicate with those behemoths with aplomb (what's a plomb look like?  It looks like the mike Skip and Lydia used calmly talking to a real big boat and not worrying about its path).  Round about 3 hours into dark, there was a strong smell of rain in the air, and visible lightning off in the distance.
       
      So, we snuffed and stowed the spinnaker, and went on the 110 genoa jib (slightly larger than a jib which would fit between the forward part of the boat and the mast) alone, the better to quickly kill it (the main is a bit of work - Strong Track, a slippery track to ease raising and lowering mainsails, is in our future!) in the event of a thunderstorm or squall reaching us.  Sure enough, the wind piped up - but only to 6-8 knots, as it turned out (we could have left the spinnaker up), and we never got the rain, let alone the expected high winds - and we made 4-5 knots on a beam reach all the way up to our turn into Salt Creek, where we went downwind to our last turn. So, the sea trial on the newly stitched genoa, given to us by a fellow Morgan 46'er (Thank you, wherever you are!!) who had refitted his boat with new sails, was a great success.  It's different than our previous one, a 135 (35% bigger than just fitting in the space between the mast and the front of the boat), so we're still learning its nuances, but it's much heavier, and suited to high winds.
       
      When we first got the boat, Lydia was sure we'd never use the spinnaker - but now, she wants it up all the time.  As we have it so it's pretty easy to deploy and stow, we'll use it in lighter air, and the 110 in heavy air.  What a great combination...
       
      Work continues - we took that weekend because we could, while we await the fabrication of the intermediate bearing bracket.  In the course of realigning the engine after we reinstalled the propellor and straightened (it wasn't bent, after all) drive shaft, we discovered how awful the supports were, in total.  We're pulling up (not removing - just lifting) the engine and replacing not only the motor mounts but their brackets as well.  That will preclude much out-of-the slip excitement, other than in our dink (dinghy).  However, it's going right along, and we're sure it will be done right, and done soon.  Pictures of the motor mount and intermediate bearing portion of our interior refit begin at http://tinyurl.com/2mabgd, in case you're interested.  Once that's finished, we'll aggressively seatrial the motor and, once we're satisfied that it's not going to give us problems, we'll leave.  As I write, the diesel guy is finishing the last of the motor mounts, and then we'll align the engine.  Soooonnn :{))
       
      This (the replacement of mounts and brackets) is another example of our exposing something which is about to (or, at least, gives indication it might) die and our preemptive euthenasia and replacement while we're in comfortable circumstance (as opposed to, say, a failure on the way up a tricky channel).  While we wait, we attend to little things which would be nice to have finished, rather than we have to have finished, and Lydia was finally settling into the cruiser mode, being a little more relaxed about what gets done on any given day.  However, now that the engine and bearing work is well under way, the pressure's returning, as that's the only thing actually preventing our departure, the other stuff being just "it would be nice to ..." stuff.
       
      Thus, back to the dime and dollar bit, we've also had someone who's even more of a perfectionist and geek than I (I know, that's impossible to believe, but you'd have to meet Art) do our toe rail replacement.  You can't tell that it was ever something else.  We also had - by two very industrious Mexicans - all the old finish removed, as it wanted to peel up anywhere it was dinged, on every bit of topsides teak other than the cap rail around the cockpit which Lydia anguished over for weeks earlier this spring. We've gone to the lightest color olive oil available.  It looks so great, we'll do the swim platform, which we'd originally expected to leave raw, in the same fashion.  As the thirsty teak (it's been dry for 30 years) keeps drinking, we'll keep applying more. When it stops, if we have leftovers, we'll use it for cooking, keeping only a bottle for the later, occasional, touchups.
       
      So, we've been in the water right at 4 weeks.  We've fit our ShadeTree awnings - see the exterior part of the refit gallery - and removed them (we're putting them back up today), in order to get accustomed to how they work. We'll put them up any time we're going to be someplace for a day (vs night).  We seatrialed our new dink both under oar (they suck very badly) and motor (it sucks, currently, too, including my attempts at changing fuel, so it has to go off to get properly serviced, again, as we have too many things to do to mess with that at the moment), and have an extensive list of small projects, on which we're getting help. 
       
      We're also replacing every bit of rope (running rigging, as it's called) associated with controlling any of the sail-related items.  We'll have new webbing jack lines - the things you clip into on the other end of the line which is connected to your harness - to keep us from going behind the boat if we should ever try to go overboard unintentionally; Lydia will sew those, which will replace the rusting stainless steel current jack lines, when she finishes with the interior cushion covers.
       
      I'll go up the mast for the stuff which requires attention up there.  Little things, like replacing light bulbs, a fixture and a loudspeaker, both of which blew off during the storm, installing spreader boots (things which help not tear sails when they touch metal parts, high up) and the like. 
       
      My redo of the wifi (the way a laptop usually gets on the internet) system is one of the not-so minor chores - changing out the parts so that I not only have a VoIP (internet telephone) in a regular handset, but unlike the current setup, which is direct cable to the NIC (single computer, with no Vonage, our internet telephone provider, only, with that), we and any others aboard will have wifi lan card access (use a router, just like at home, but the signal to it comes from up the mast rather than the cable or phone company) to our internet signal and our home phone will ring (and we'll have dial tone) just like at home. For the moment, we're having that forwarded to our cell phone, recently acquired, so the same number works.  However, I'll be replacing the electronics at the top of the mast along with the other current electronics in the boat, enabling all that interconnectivity.
       
      Many other little things remain, as shown, but already finished are the complete rebonding of the parts on the inside of the boat which came loose during the wreck, complete repair of the hull and rudder, replacement of the water heater plus any electronics and electrical items which suffered in the wreck in the engine room, redoing (removing and fabricating new structure) any rot we've encountered along the way, redoing some of the aft head plumbing to make it work better, and troubleshooting things left over from our prior sea trials.
       
      One of the blessings not mentioned in the prior posting seems to have been that in doing the engine room portion of the rebonding of parts which had come loose, we had to remove the floor system.  In removing and, in the course of replacing, the battery bank, and along the way completely burnishing all the connections on it as well as redoing some of the end point connections and cables, it appears that our radar now will happily come alive even with a very low apparent battery voltage (due to lots of electrical and electronic stuff running at the same time).  Before, it would not light unless we were on shore power (like at home) or with the engine running to provide a charging boost.  That was one of the leftovers from the prior sea trials...
       
      So, we're rapidly tying up the loose ends. Tuning the rig (making sure the mast is straight and all the wires holding it in place are tight to the right degree) will be the last major project, and then we're outta here.
       
      We'll post again as we're getting ready to leave.  I'm reactivating the seatrial list, for any who'd like to accompany us on our excursions.  If you're within easy distance of St. Petersburg and aren't already on our "sea trial" list (the notice I sent out when we were doing our prior trials), please drop me a note directly, not to the list (mail skipgundlach@..., don't reply to this) and I'll add you if you'd like to go.  Likewise, if you'd like to reach me personally as opposed to posting a note to the entire group, please send it to me directly. Replies to this message go to the entire group...
       
      Stay tuned as our Flying Pig approaches the runway again, shortly to be aloft and off to the US East Coast!
       
      L8R
       
      Skip
       
      Morgan 461 #2    
      SV Flying Pig  KI4MPC
      See our galleries at
      www.justpickone.org/skip/gallery !
      Follow us at
      http://groups.google.com/group/flyingpiglog and/or
      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/TheFlyingPigLog
       
       "You are never given a wish without also being given the power to make it come true. You may have to work for it however."
      (and)
      "There is no such thing as a problem without a gift for you in its hands.  You seek problems because you need their gifts."
      (Richard Bach, in The Reluctant Messiah)
    • 'bella
      well good on ya Pig! fly north and bring skip and lydia to the chessie and new adventures! ... -- communicate with a toddler? I d rather take my chances with a
      Message 2 of 2 , Jun 23, 2007
        well good on ya Pig!
        fly north and bring skip and lydia to the chessie and new adventures!

         
        On 6/22/07, Skip Gundlach <skipgundlach@...> wrote:

        Before I start, I want to remind those only peripherally engaged in this enterprise that, should it become tiresome, or the few responses from friends and family overwhelm your limited computer resources, and you wish to become anonymous to The Flying Pig Log, there's an unsubscribe button at the bottom of the page.  Sending a message to the group pleading for eviction won't get it :{)) - but that button (well, link) will instantly cut the line between this log list and you.  On with our story...
         
        Well, we're still at it.  We've done all but a very little of our refit and rehab ourselves.  However, in the interests of getting it absolutely right, we've engaged professionals to do our engine room and drive-train related work.  I could do it myself, but not only do I want to make sure I don't mess up, they have the specialized tools and know-how which will make the job go faster and - very importantly - they do this all day long, and have, for many years, and will get it right, where I might be guessing (and surely would take longer).
         
        So, in for a dime, in for a dollar.  Where we were previously doing nearly all of it ourselves, we therefore engaged other pros to do other of our miscellany, and, suddenly, the departure date looms closer.  What will we do!?
         
        Leave, of course!
         
        In the meantime, as to the title, we did a sea trial while waiting for some fabrication related to the drive train.  As some of you know, we did our first sea trial by taking a dozen relatives and friends on a 12 hour cruise to the Gulf of Mexico, stopping to swim at Egmont Key, on Memorial Day weekend. Last weekend, we retraced that route, but alone.  We spent the weekend at our prior swim stop, and basically kicked back for the entire time we were there.  Of course, the purpose of a sea trial isn't to relax - it's to prove out systems and try to break stuff.
         
        The way down was nearly entirely still, so we motored, gently, so as to not introduce any more water than absolutely necessary from our otherwise dripless bearing which keeps the drive shaft lubricated with sea water.  (The engine and drive train project is centered on being able to get the proper bearing for the shaft so as to minimize vibration, which is present without it, and which vibration produces water from the poor seal induced by that vibration - as it was during the trip.)  Once we got under the bridge, however, the wind picked right up, and we shut off the engine and sailed beautifully and uneventfully to our anchorage off the National Bird Sanctuary. 
         
        Of course, Lydia was in heaven with all the birds, as the pictures in the sea trial gallery ( http://tinyurl.com/2zox4q) reflect.  However, our brand new dinghy, which we'd previously tested under oars, with which we were thoroughly disgusted (recall that this is coming from a prior 3-time national collegiate champion rower, so take it with a grain of salt) as to their total wimpiness (I could break them if I applied myself, let alone how poorly they were designed for the task), had a recently serviced outboard which took forever to start.  Once started, it acted like it was running on only one of the 4 cylinders.  More sea trialing of that item remains for future work.  However, it was able to continue stumbling along enough to get us to shore (and back!), and some pix of the boat at anchor.
         
        Oh, yah...  At anchor.  It was supposed to have been calm, that night - but instead it shifted direction to dead onshore, from a long fetch (open water allowing waves to build), at 20 knots (strong wind) all night long.  Our marvelous craft merely nodded to the seas as they approached, even allowing some of the larger ones to board over the bow, and our 55 pound Delta anchor held us fast to the sandy bottom.  We slept soundly, and "in" - not getting up until nearly 11 - with no concerns for dragging anchor or our security.
         
        We followed up our shoreside exploration and water exercises (one of the things I most look forward to on our time approaching is the ability to use the hookah [a pump-supplied underwater breathing device] rig to do some of my physical therapy, having had marvelous results in the few times I had in a pool) with an enchanting sail home.
         
        We had a false start when the raw water pump (the thing that pushes sea water through the exhaust system to cool it) leaked, but I dug into my spares and tool bin and swapped it out for another in short order. 
         
        The sail home was magical.   You can see the pix in the gallery, but it was a perfect spinnaker run under a zephyr all the way through - by that time, at full dark - the Skyway Bridge and up to past the turn in the channel.  Encounters with freighters (thankful they were downwind, we were, so as to not suffer the wind shadow they'd make) were of no moment and our USCG training let us communicate with those behemoths with aplomb (what's a plomb look like?  It looks like the mike Skip and Lydia used calmly talking to a real big boat and not worrying about its path).  Round about 3 hours into dark, there was a strong smell of rain in the air, and visible lightning off in the distance.
         
        So, we snuffed and stowed the spinnaker, and went on the 110 genoa jib (slightly larger than a jib which would fit between the forward part of the boat and the mast) alone, the better to quickly kill it (the main is a bit of work - Strong Track, a slippery track to ease raising and lowering mainsails, is in our future!) in the event of a thunderstorm or squall reaching us.  Sure enough, the wind piped up - but only to 6-8 knots, as it turned out (we could have left the spinnaker up), and we never got the rain, let alone the expected high winds - and we made 4-5 knots on a beam reach all the way up to our turn into Salt Creek, where we went downwind to our last turn. So, the sea trial on the newly stitched genoa, given to us by a fellow Morgan 46'er (Thank you, wherever you are!!) who had refitted his boat with new sails, was a great success.  It's different than our previous one, a 135 (35% bigger than just fitting in the space between the mast and the front of the boat), so we're still learning its nuances, but it's much heavier, and suited to high winds.
         
        When we first got the boat, Lydia was sure we'd never use the spinnaker - but now, she wants it up all the time.  As we have it so it's pretty easy to deploy and stow, we'll use it in lighter air, and the 110 in heavy air.  What a great combination...
         
        Work continues - we took that weekend because we could, while we await the fabrication of the intermediate bearing bracket.  In the course of realigning the engine after we reinstalled the propellor and straightened (it wasn't bent, after all) drive shaft, we discovered how awful the supports were, in total.  We're pulling up (not removing - just lifting) the engine and replacing not only the motor mounts but their brackets as well.  That will preclude much out-of-the slip excitement, other than in our dink (dinghy).  However, it's going right along, and we're sure it will be done right, and done soon.  Pictures of the motor mount and intermediate bearing portion of our interior refit begin at http://tinyurl.com/2mabgd, in case you're interested.  Once that's finished, we'll aggressively seatrial the motor and, once we're satisfied that it's not going to give us problems, we'll leave.  As I write, the diesel guy is finishing the last of the motor mounts, and then we'll align the engine.  Soooonnn :{))
         
        This (the replacement of mounts and brackets) is another example of our exposing something which is about to (or, at least, gives indication it might) die and our preemptive euthenasia and replacement while we're in comfortable circumstance (as opposed to, say, a failure on the way up a tricky channel).  While we wait, we attend to little things which would be nice to have finished, rather than we have to have finished, and Lydia was finally settling into the cruiser mode, being a little more relaxed about what gets done on any given day.  However, now that the engine and bearing work is well under way, the pressure's returning, as that's the only thing actually preventing our departure, the other stuff being just "it would be nice to ..." stuff.
         
        Thus, back to the dime and dollar bit, we've also had someone who's even more of a perfectionist and geek than I (I know, that's impossible to believe, but you'd have to meet Art) do our toe rail replacement.  You can't tell that it was ever something else.  We also had - by two very industrious Mexicans - all the old finish removed, as it wanted to peel up anywhere it was dinged, on every bit of topsides teak other than the cap rail around the cockpit which Lydia anguished over for weeks earlier this spring. We've gone to the lightest color olive oil available.  It looks so great, we'll do the swim platform, which we'd originally expected to leave raw, in the same fashion.  As the thirsty teak (it's been dry for 30 years) keeps drinking, we'll keep applying more. When it stops, if we have leftovers, we'll use it for cooking, keeping only a bottle for the later, occasional, touchups.
         
        So, we've been in the water right at 4 weeks.  We've fit our ShadeTree awnings - see the exterior part of the refit gallery - and removed them (we're putting them back up today), in order to get accustomed to how they work. We'll put them up any time we're going to be someplace for a day (vs night).  We seatrialed our new dink both under oar (they suck very badly) and motor (it sucks, currently, too, including my attempts at changing fuel, so it has to go off to get properly serviced, again, as we have too many things to do to mess with that at the moment), and have an extensive list of small projects, on which we're getting help. 
         
        We're also replacing every bit of rope (running rigging, as it's called) associated with controlling any of the sail-related items.  We'll have new webbing jack lines - the things you clip into on the other end of the line which is connected to your harness - to keep us from going behind the boat if we should ever try to go overboard unintentionally; Lydia will sew those, which will replace the rusting stainless steel current jack lines, when she finishes with the interior cushion covers.
         
        I'll go up the mast for the stuff which requires attention up there.  Little things, like replacing light bulbs, a fixture and a loudspeaker, both of which blew off during the storm, installing spreader boots (things which help not tear sails when they touch metal parts, high up) and the like. 
         
        My redo of the wifi (the way a laptop usually gets on the internet) system is one of the not-so minor chores - changing out the parts so that I not only have a VoIP (internet telephone) in a regular handset, but unlike the current setup, which is direct cable to the NIC (single computer, with no Vonage, our internet telephone provider, only, with that), we and any others aboard will have wifi lan card access (use a router, just like at home, but the signal to it comes from up the mast rather than the cable or phone company) to our internet signal and our home phone will ring (and we'll have dial tone) just like at home. For the moment, we're having that forwarded to our cell phone, recently acquired, so the same number works.  However, I'll be replacing the electronics at the top of the mast along with the other current electronics in the boat, enabling all that interconnectivity.
         
        Many other little things remain, as shown, but already finished are the complete rebonding of the parts on the inside of the boat which came loose during the wreck, complete repair of the hull and rudder, replacement of the water heater plus any electronics and electrical items which suffered in the wreck in the engine room, redoing (removing and fabricating new structure) any rot we've encountered along the way, redoing some of the aft head plumbing to make it work better, and troubleshooting things left over from our prior sea trials.
         
        One of the blessings not mentioned in the prior posting seems to have been that in doing the engine room portion of the rebonding of parts which had come loose, we had to remove the floor system.  In removing and, in the course of replacing, the battery bank, and along the way completely burnishing all the connections on it as well as redoing some of the end point connections and cables, it appears that our radar now will happily come alive even with a very low apparent battery voltage (due to lots of electrical and electronic stuff running at the same time).  Before, it would not light unless we were on shore power (like at home) or with the engine running to provide a charging boost.  That was one of the leftovers from the prior sea trials...
         
        So, we're rapidly tying up the loose ends. Tuning the rig (making sure the mast is straight and all the wires holding it in place are tight to the right degree) will be the last major project, and then we're outta here.
         
        We'll post again as we're getting ready to leave.  I'm reactivating the seatrial list, for any who'd like to accompany us on our excursions.  If you're within easy distance of St. Petersburg and aren't already on our "sea trial" list (the notice I sent out when we were doing our prior trials), please drop me a note directly, not to the list (mail skipgundlach@..., don't reply to this) and I'll add you if you'd like to go.  Likewise, if you'd like to reach me personally as opposed to posting a note to the entire group, please send it to me directly. Replies to this message go to the entire group...
         
        Stay tuned as our Flying Pig approaches the runway again, shortly to be aloft and off to the US East Coast!
         
        L8R
         
        Skip
         
        Morgan 461 #2    
        SV Flying Pig  KI4MPC
        See our galleries at
        www.justpickone.org/skip/gallery !
        Follow us at
        http://groups.google.com/group/flyingpiglog and/or
        http://groups.yahoo.com/group/TheFlyingPigLog
         
         "You are never given a wish without also being given the power to make it come true. You may have to work for it however."
        (and)
        "There is no such thing as a problem without a gift for you in its hands.  You seek problems because you need their gifts."
        (Richard Bach, in The Reluctant Messiah)




        --
        communicate with a toddler? I'd rather take my chances with a puppy on a new white carpet. - Erma Bombek
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