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Saturday, July 31, 2010

Success!! I got my wiring squared away...

Hurray! S/V Blondie-Dog now has her wiring squared away... Wiring the boat was more involved than I had anticipated since all the wiring on-board seemed to be spliced in every imaginable way and wrapped up in spools of electrical tape.

After putting in a full day and then some trying to figure all the wiring out, I finally relented and called the first marine electrician listed on the Marina's approved vendor's list. It was pointless by then to keep banging my head trying to get that wiring properly connected without some direction from someone who knew what they were doing.

Soon enough I had someone out onto the boat from Bo'Sun Marine to check out what I was having to contend with... before long he was pointing out even more superfluous wiring that needed to be removed and explaining ground connections and such and how to test a circuit...

Thirty minutes later after a crash course in basic marine electrical wiring I was diligently grounding my ground wires, replacing excessively spliced wiring, attaching my wire connectors, and testing my circuits with my circuit tester. I proceeded to tightly wrap up my connections with electrical tape and lastly to screw the electrical panel back into place.

It was an effort that took me another four hours or so but the satisfaction of seeing my running lights, cabin lights and deck lights all work and having done the repair work myself, made for a joyous occasion... one that was later rewarded with a few cold ones at City Tavern in downtown Fort Myers.

The twenty-dollar fee for the wiring tutorial was indeed well worth it. I'm just gonna to have to shoot Bo'Sun Marine an email that I got my wiring all squared away and that I won't be incurring any $60 an hour labor charges to fix my wiring. Okay... I'll leave that last part about labor charges out of my email.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

RJ's Bar & Grill... just south of Clearwater Beach...

One early evening I settled into a bar stool for a cold one and some grub... On the menu were inexpensive burgers and fries along with 10once draft beers which went for but a buck a piece. So that's what I ordered so that I wouldn't burn another hole in my wallet.

Scattered throughout the bar were but a few patrons sipping on a beverage while looking up at the flat screen featuring FOX Fabrication News Network bullsh*t when in strolls this scrawny chick who then proceeds to sit alongside of me.

Before long we're both commenting on how hot it is outside and whatnot when the emaciated chick places her dinner order along with a glass of merlot. She proceeds to tell me that she will die if she doesn't eat. Somehow I'm now thinking that she literally means it, and I believe her, that's how bones and skin she looks.

Soon after, the most succulent plate of prime rib, twice baked potatoes, and steamed brocoli is placed before her and she proceeds to devour every morsel of that mouth watering juicy steak and then wash it down with yet a second glass of merlot all the while explaining that she will be competing in triathlon event in Pensacola in another three weeks. I then suggest that she better verify whether the event will indeed be held because of the film of oil on the surface of the water. After a moment of confusion, she says "oh".

Somehow the conversation now shifts gears and suddenly I'm being subjected to hearing all about her business travels throughout Paris, and London, and Prague, and Milan and who knows where else throughout Europe. I'm getting heavily scoreboarded but what the heck... it's a bar.

It then occurs to me that the burger that I ate awhile back somehow isn't really agreeing with me when to my astonishment, the scrawny chick casually and expectantly asks me "Will you buy me another glass of wine?" After a momentary WTF moment on my part I emphatically respond, "What? Are you broke? Did you run out of money? I was hoping you'd buy me dinner."

Hell no am I buying you a glass of wine and hell no am I going home with you and hell no did I believe any of your bullsh*t. I've got you figured out.

She soon turns her attention to this old, chain-smoking, emaciated geezer seated down the bar and I later observe them leaving the bar together not that it mattered any to me.

Arrggg... still not ready to set sail.

Whoever thought that wiring a sailboat could be so problematic? I've got so many wires coming and going that I can't figure out which way is up. I've enlisted to have someone come on out to the boat to see if I'm overlooking a simple fix.

I've had a random thought to simply purchase solar powered running lights. Surely someone has already thought of it... simply clip on the running lights to the bow pulpit and clip on a light to the stern. That should comply with safety regulations while underway at in the evenings. What the heck... I seldom ever sailed at night while previously living aboard my Morgan 35'.

I'm missing a decent bimini. The sun at mid-day can be brutal. At least I salvaged all of my white long sleeve dress shirts from the storage unit back in Dallas. Long sleeve shirts are a must while sailing in the brutal sun. I'm quite certain that none of these shirts will ever see the light of day within the confines of an office cubicle again.

Dinner last evening, not that anyone gives a flip, was a package of cream sauce noodles with a tin of salmon mixed in. The package of noodles called for some butter and milk which of course was nowhere to be found onboard, but the olive oil made for a decent substitute. This meal was a winner... I'll stock up on some more tins of salmon and packages of cream sauce noodles.

My evening consisted of downing a few cold ones at a local neighborhood bar and yearning for the companionship of a certain exceedingly attractive patron who happened to be with her boyfriend yet nevertheless kept checking me out. Damned she was hot.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Spaghetti onboard the boat!

Spaghetti.. and I'm not talking about pasta either. I'm talking about 12gauge wiring all intertwined and slithering together throughout the boat in one endless moment of confusion and ecstacy... I'm talking about wiring spliced up in more than one place with multiple connections not knowing where the next jolt of current is coming from.

One way to dispel any and all apprehension one may have of a vessel, is to slowly and purposefully carress each component and then methodically disassemble each part piece by piece and then rythmically work it all back together again while ensuring that everything performs as intended... and so it happened this morning after a good pot of strong coffee, that I took a large screwdriver with a wide tip and unscrewed the electrical panel. Behind this panel was a tight-fitting box with all the wiring of the boat coming together in one complicated mass of confusion.

I worked up one hell of a sweat trying to sort out all the wiring. The one big climactic moment of completion will have to wait a few more days until after I purchase and install a new electrical panel box and start working it again.

Quite possibly I haven't sorted out the wiring yet because I've got something other on the brain.