What a busy week. It started when Jim kindly presented me with a new T-Shirt to mark my enrolment into the NBA world. I shall wear it proudly in San Francisco.
I also got to help Jim and Marty haul out the University of Vancouver’s fishing research vessel. It was going up on ‘the ways’, and as I should be doing the same, anytime in the last three weeks 🙁 I was able to get a feel for what was involved. This ship takes students out to do surveys on fish stocks, and other things I expect. Marty is a professor from the Uni and it was funny seeing him crawling under the boat applying antifoul, not the usual university research type of work.
Next up, while varnishing and chatting to Graeme about diving on the hull, I mentioned I had decided to do a scuba course in Mexico when we get there. Graeme, who dives but has just given up, offered to sell me his kit for a very decent price. I popped up to his house later that day, he has amazing views over the bay and strait, and we struck a deal. I am now the new owner of a lot of scuba gear I have no idea how to connect together and use. Hopefully it will all come clear in a few months time. Also the boat will be more stable now with the ballast weights for the diving belt, which must weight at least a ton.
The weather hasn’t been great this week, a bit cooler and overcast mostly. We had very strong winds for a few days but the rain we had has been welcome. A fire started over on the main island by the highway and could have got nasty, but the services got it under control.
One morning it was so grim I decided I could only do indoor jobs, so next on the list was to service the head (Toilet). It wasn’t faulty, but it has worked without attention for over two years, so to try to repeat that success, I thought I should clean out the pipes, which block up with calcium, and replace all the rubber seals and valves.
Last week I had delivered the template and old bow platform to Greg, a local carpenter to see if he could fabricate a new piece for me, by joining together 4 planks of cedar. I was amazed when he turned up less than 24 hours later with a basic platform, less the cutouts. He wanted to test it for size, and after spending an hour here trimming it to fit into the steel bow frame, he left to cut out the holes and reinforce it at the front.
Greg returned the next day with the cut-outs done, and a very smart looking platform.
I have decided to varnish this as it will protect the cedar in its exposed location at the bow. Above you can see it already looking golden with just one 50% varnish/ 50% thinner coat. It’s going to look great. I need to transfer the rollers from the old platform across this week.
It took a while and a few phone calls, but eventually Tom from the Ways was able to collect my new Furuno radar from Port Hardy over on the big Island.
Radar units don’t come with a mounting bracket, probably because you have a different one, depending if it’s going on a sailboat mast, a rear pole or a cabin top. Consequently you have to fork out a few hundred pounds for the bracket. I had a bracket for the old radar that was fitted to my mast and was very strong. To remove it and then poke a load more holes in my mast, beside weakening the mast, and being dangerous to attempt while swinging in a harness meant I would build an adapter of sorts to make the new radar fit the old mount. I was easily able to bring the old mount down with the old radar scanner and I made a sketch below of how I might join the old and new.
I was able to get Ken at Tarkanan to slice me off two lengths of aluminum which I then shaped and drilled to fit the old bracket.
The whole affair bolted together far better than I had imagined as is very strong.
A word of caution, if you want to use your feet instead of a vice for holding the metal still while you drill, I suggest you wear strong shoes. I noticed that socks on their own are no match for a spinning drill that skids off the metal into your foot. Fortunately my foot escaped unscarred, but now wants autonomy and independence from the rest of my body, in particular my brain. I just so happened to have a spare sock from the last laundry trip that I can now put to good use.
I’m posting this earlier than usual as I’m suffering from a bit of a cold and don’t feel up to climbing the mast, which is the next job, so I’m staying in catching up on paperwork!