Parallel Projects

One: It’s been a little quiet on Satori lately. On Tuesday I received the granddaddy of deliveries. I couldn’t even get into the front door because of the pile in front of it, blocking the entrance. If only Sailrite had local dealers and I was able to obtain all of the awesome tools and fabrics they offered via mail-order I would have avoided the whole fiasco. On the third day I already had a friend repairing his leech line hem on his 150% genoa in my kitchen.  I did some preliminary research by reading a short book on ‘Canvaswork and Sail Repair‘ by Don Casey. It’s enough to start thinking about how to go from never really having sewed anything on my own with a machine to replacing the dodger. I have some former experience with industrial sewing machines but I’ve never worked with a dozen layers of canvas before. There will be many projects in between before I get to the dodger project to apprentice for something that important. Bags for gear, covers for anything exposed to the elements and whatever I can think of to get to the point of these bigger complex problems. I decided that a 144 pages isn’t nearly enough information. I’m gonna need some sort of bible and a source for very useful information. I  just started reading  ‘Sailmakers Apprentice‘ and after my initial inspection I have decided that this book is the bible on canvas making. It even lists Schattauer Sails Inc. as one of the few companies who has the author’s standard of quality and craftsmanship. It’s great peace of mind that Schattauer will be making the new sails for Satori before I take her on the great voyage. So I will make a bunch of sun covers for things like the tiller, winches, Aries vane gear, outboard, etc. and wait until they have the new sails completed before finishing the sail canvas. So as you can understand, there are big canvas and interior upholstery projects underway.

Sailrite LSZ-1 walking foot
Sailrite LSZ-1 walking foot
Colin hems his leech line back in place
Colin hems his leech line back in place

Two: The brand newly release Garmin 820 GPSMap chartplotter arrived at will-call yesterday.  I can have a very dependable multifunctional display at the helm and have a place to plug in radar. I still need to install it but that shouldn’t take too long. I can also use the BlueChart Mobile and Garmin Helm apps via wifi to view the chartplotter screens and plan routes.

Three: Last weekend I was able to install one of the solar panel frames and yesterday I mounted one of the panels for the first time. Although I love the new solar panel frame, the hinges that connect to the boom gallows frame are too loose and I can imagine that while underway the frame should be solid and not move a bit. I tested some washers inside of the pivot joints and this seems like a way to eliminate the play. I also have the solar charge controller coming tomorrow and with a little bit of planning on how to get the cables down into the engine room and connected to the battery bank should be all that is needed to have the panels running full-time. I opted for the Grape Solar 100 watt rigid frame panels and will add flexible panels to attach to the covers once they are built.

Checking out the solar panel installation.
Checking out the solar panel installation.

Four: Last weekend I had plans on going sailing after installing my tiller pilot. I have been wanting to install this thing for a while but I needed an extension arm and also figure out how to mount it to the boom gallows frame. Well, I did notice that the body of the pilot was preventing it to plug into the clamp I have from the old TillerMaster but while playing around a crucial part went for a swim. I ordered up an extra set of clamps so I could have  a new mount and made the new mount out of spare bar aluminum which looks pretty solid. I still need to wire up the pilot and take it for a spin.

Five: Now that the shower is fully functioning I decided to install a track for a shower curtain that would cover the locker and doors around the shower basin. Now that I have a sewing machine I can custom fit a curtain made of some hydrophobic nylon called Epic. I picked up some many years ago while working for Feathered Friends and have waited for good use for the fabric. I have a perfect use for it now and it solves the issue of when I want to shower inside the boat but don’t want to get anything wet except where I varnished so I can easily towel dry the bathroom after showering.

Six: I think the rebuild kits for both the Whale bilge pump and Jabsco diaphragm pump that was once used as the main water pump have shipped or were supposed to ship. I look forward to rebuilding both the backup water pump and the manual bilge backup to the dual electric pumps. Both are great peace of mind for when the electric pumps fail, which I am sure will given enough time.

Yes there are more projects but most I have not started yet. This is the life of an ambitious boat owner and a glimpse of what it takes to keep finishing projects. One step at a time for each one until they slowly, or sometimes quickly finished. This is the time to focus, when the rains are relentless, the mammals are hibernating and the temperatures rarely reach 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Only when the sun is shining and the winds are blowing perfectly that we really see the fruits of our labors. Sometimes when it’s cold and the boat is warm too. Winter is falling away for Spring, potatoes and kale are just a week or two away from planting. Satori has come together nicely.