Thursday, January 30, 2014

Wintering Over

 A little snow and ice as a result of the freak winter snowstorm here in New Bern.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Drinking the water

Water Heater Element
This is the water heater element I (actually Maury, he was the one that climbed into the engine compartment and got it loose) removed from the hot water heater. It was covered with scale from the various ports where I have filled up the water tanks. Consequently the scale was causing it to short out and blow the circuit breaker for the shore power.

Since it is not an easy fix we went all the way replacing not only the heater element but also the thermostat, circuit breaker and high pressure relief valve. Total cost was about $114. I then discovered that I could have purchased most of the pasts at Lowes Home Improvement for about half the cost of purchasing them online at a marine store.

For those of you who are appalled that we actually use the water that comes out of the tanks I suggest you do not look at the heater element in your hot water heater at home. If you live in an area of hard water chances are that your element looks every bit as bad.

Fair winds and following seas.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Joy oh Joy. Beautiful North Carolina

... Winter Storm Warning in effect from 10 am Tuesday to 4 PM EST

The National Weather Service in Newport/Morehead City has issued
a Winter Storm Warning for all of eastern North Carolina... which
is in effect from 10 am Tuesday to 4 PM EST Wednesday.

* Accumulations... snow accumulation of 4 to 8 inches with locally
higher amounts. Some minor ice accretion or sleet may occur
along coastal sections.

* Timing... Tuesday morning through Wednesday. The heaviest
snowfall will occur Tuesday night.

* Impacts... driving will become very hazardous... especially
Tuesday night when the heaviest snow is expected.

* Winds... north 10 to 15 mph with gusts up to 25 mph.

* Temperatures... remaining steady in the 20s.

* Wind chill... as low as 8 above.

Precautionary/preparedness actions...

A Winter Storm Warning for heavy snow means severe winter weather
conditions are expected or occurring. Significant amounts of snow
are forecast that will make travel dangerous. Only travel in an
emergency. If you must travel... keep an extra flashlight...
food... and water in your vehicle in case of an emergency. Never
use a generator indoors. Gas grills, generators, and Camp stoves
create deadly Carbon monoxide fumes that will build up when used
in your home.

Friday, January 24, 2014

The water falls below 40 F

Its been very cold here in New Bern. At the moment it is about 10 F. I have two 15,000 watt heaters, the 9000 BTU propane heater,  and two burners on the stove operating. I am bundled up. XO is sitting on the heated mattress pad in the forward stateroom (where the two 15,000 watt heaters are operating. All of this is trying to overcome not only the low temperature but also the fact that the heat is being wicked away into the water around the boat. I am bundled up with several layers of clothing. The worst part is my hands. It is just cold enough, and my blood pressure is low enough that my hands are tingling from the cold. The forecast for the next few days is not much relief. Cruising at its finest.

Fair winds and following seas.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Nice Set - VHF Radios

Standard Horizon HX100
Yesterday I received my twin set of Standard Horizon VHF Radios from Defender Industries - (Click here for Defender web page) and installed the charger. They are only 2.5 Watt units (the HX150 are 5 Watt units) but the price was right - $89.99 for the pair. I know from experience that the 2.5 Watt power difference is unimportant to me. I only use a handheld when approaching a bridge or dock. That usage is normally line of sight.

I did not know that Standard Horizon is a Yaesu brand. Yaesu is a very respected Ham radio manufacturer. My previous handhelds were Icoms and I felt they failed far to quickly. They were also considerably more expensive. We will see how these do - they are submersible and floating. Always good for the dingy rides.

I was sent a couple of risque Aussie ads by a friend in the UK over the past few weeks. It made me think how our friends from down under would advertise such a bargain. I imagined the print ad: a well endowed young thing in a bikini with the caption "Nice Set." I am clearly getting old.

Fair winds and following seas.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

These paws are not made for snow!

XO The Wonder Cat is cold. It is 27 degrees outside and the heater(s) in the boat are barely keeping up. That is to say that I have 3,000 BTU running in the forward stateroom and it is the only room that feels warm.

XO was sitting at the top of the companionway crying and meowing to go outside. The sun is out and he knows (in his kitty brain) that it is warm in the sun. So I let him go. He hit the snow in the cockpit, jumped up on to the deck, and then on to my shoulder. Total elapsed time - 3 seconds.


It is 24F. My chart plotter tells me that this is the coldest it has been. A little snow and freezing rain last night. We bounced around as the winds were in the 20 to 25 knot range. Sint Maarten, why am I not there?

Fair winds and following seas.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Oh Great - It's Snowing

Wonderful. Here I am at the dock in North Carolina and it is snowing. Where is global warming when you need it?

Fair winds and following seas.

It is always something

Angle Bracket to support Solar Panels
This morning I was working on a bracket to tie the solar panel system to the radar pole to provide more rigid support. The job went well. This means I did not have to go to the store nor did I drop anything in the water. Victory! While climbing up I noticed that the bracket for the hailing speaker had broken. Fortunately I was able to contact FourJay Industries and a new bracket is on the way. Of course it is a small plastic part so the shipping will be twice the cost of the part. In addition Dayton Ohio is in the middle of a big snow storm so who knows when it will actually get shipped. The people were very nice and helpful. That always makes me smile.

Fair winds and following seas.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Is it Obamacare?

I have been fighting a kidney stone for a couple of months. Prior to January 1st I was able to get an appointment with my urologist in a couple of days. After my surgery on Jan 10th I ended up rescheduling the follow up appointment. The reschedule went from January 17th to February 7th. Today I had to postpone the appointment again. The next available date - February 27th. Is this a consequence of Obamacare? I honestly don't know and of course the office isn't volunteering an information.

Fair winds and following seas.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

XO Thinks he is a Raccoon

I have been wondering why XO's water bowl always has a little bit dirty. Yesterday I discovered why. After using his box he walked over to his water bowl. He dipped each fore paw in the water then wiped them on the mat that I keep under his food dish. He must think he is a raccoon.

Fair winds and following seas.