Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Time is Ticking Away...

Now that we’ve owned our boat for quite a while and have been preparing for our trip for what seems like forever, many folks wonder what we still have left to do.  When asked about weekend plans I almost always reply with “working on the boat” – because that’s what we do.  This usually brings a slightly exasperated look and tone while the person asking then says something like “what could you possibly have left to do on that boat???  Isn’t everything perfect by now?”

Being that Brett and I are both “A” types that like things “just so”, there is an endless supply of things to work on.  As any boat owner (or for that manner any home owner) knows, there is always something that can be improved upon!  So I thought it might be interesting to list a couple of the not-so-super-important things we’ve worked on the past couple of weeks to show folks what we’ve been up to….. 
  • Installed 2nd solar panel
  • Swapped out the fittings that were wrong between our tank and our BBQ
  • Installed a new self-tailing winch on the mast (old one wasn’t self-tailing)
  • Installed a new router that will allow our Ray Marine chart plotters to synch with our iPad and computer
  • Fixed connection to the original Wi-Fi that was screwed up when I set up the previous item (thanks for the help Greg!!!!) 
  • Installed some new magnetic door stops for our doors (so they don’t make annoying sounds at sea)
  • Figured out how we’ll mount our anchor(s) in the anchor locker when at sea (but haven’t actually mounted them yet)
  • Added a garden hose outlet on our fresh water connection at the back of the boat. This will allow us to connect a hose so we can wash with fresh water (when we have extra) but was also meant to make sure we can periodically flush our outboard with fresh water – an important maintenance item.
  • Finished varnishing the new battery box our good friend designed for us (up to 9 coats now!) in our aft head. Thanks for the beautiful work you did Craig!
  • Installed a paper towel holder in the galley (really got tired of moving them every time I need to do dishes).
  • Installed some toilet paper holders (weird that they didn’t come with the boat, eh?)
  • Purchased the courtesy flags we’ll need for Mexico and the South Pacific (but we still need to label them so we know which is which!)
  • Bought our quarantine flag (normally raised until you officially check in)
  • Changed the way our swivel connects to the anchor – adding 4 links of chain between them is supposed to be stronger and safer
  • Finished cleaning up the wiring behind our radios (been meaning to do that one for a while!)
  • Installed a new 12V fan in the galley – which I’m pretty sure will be my FAVORITE fan
  • Added an engine shaft ground
  • Installed new motor mounts on the engine (old ones were original and pretty worn out).
  • Converted our aft tank from water to diesel.
  • Added a transfer pump to enable fuel to be pumped between the 3 diesel tanks AND through the fuel filters if there is an issue with dirty fuel – nice!
  • Added a fuel gauge for the aft tank
  • Swapped fittings on the hot water tank to fix a leak
  • Re-sealed the insulation in the engine room where we’d done some previous work
  • Fixed the broken tachometer for the engine that stopped working last month
  • Pulled off the main sail to get it ready for a third reef and running a new track up the main
  • Replaced a broken rope clutch for the main halyard and decided to add two more for the extra halyards 
  • Created and wrote all these blog posts
  • Searched for all our 401K information so we can transfer all 4 of them prior to our departure (found the stuff, but still need to do the paperwork…)
  • And did about 6 hours of research on the medical insurance that we need to acquire prior to departure

Phew!  Guess there’s a reason we feel so busy all the time! Especially since it’s not just doing the projects – it’s the planning and the searching for the right parts.  Then starting the project and realizing you STILL don’t have the right parts and have to go back to the store AGAIN! 

The bonus is that I work for a marine parts distributor – so we get a great deal on all those parts!  Plus I have a husband that is amazingly skilled at doing all this boat work.  We’ve both learned a ton from all these jobs that we’ve completed – big AND small.  But most important of all – we’ve both learned that we are COMPLETELY CAPABLE of figuring things out when needed.  So we both can rest assured that if an emergency comes up far from home – we’ll likely know how to handle it. 

That’s a pretty great feeling.

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