Three Quarter Time…

After the Storm Sunset...

Tonight’s After-the-Storm Sunset…

Hi Everyone!  I hope you all are enjoying a fine Indian Summer with hints of Autumn, depending on where you are.  Stay warm and comfy, and thanks for reading!

The title of this post means alot right now.  I’ve started a number of the chores on my list of repairs, upgrades and maintenance, and have actually finished few.  A bunch have been completed right up to the point that I found I needed that elusive knibbling pin, torsion fortenator or other essential piece of gear that either is on order, I can’t find, or I dropped in the drink.  I’ve stated it before: don’t EVER drop your knibbling pin overboard!!  In my case, it was that stinkin’ shackle for the headsail furler…

CSI, La Paz…

The caprail has been lovingly varnished and looks beautiful, except for one inexplicable blemish.  Can’t quite figure out what caused it.  The tiller is done, and all gear put back on for the windvane and autopilot.  I have replaced the termite-ravaged piece of my companionway turtle, and prepped it for varnish.  Just needs a quick roughing up with 220 grit, as does the existing varnish adjacent to it.  My head/shower sump pump gave up the ghost, and I replaced it with a new one, properly installed and anchored like I should’ve done last year…  I’ve re-built the manual bilge pump, except for the I-bolt on the main rubber flange that has frozen and corroded.  Why aluminum articulating parts that will live in seawater…  The replacement bolt is now a heavy duty plastic and should arrive in about 10 days.  Since that pump is out of service, I tried switching the new sump pump to bilge pump service with the original Y-valve, and of course, I heard a loud CRACK.  Heavy sigh.  I replaced that with a newer, should-be-better model, and then took apart the old one.  It had run out of lube (silicone grease), and I hadn’t thought to re-lube it.  It’s put back together, re-lubed, and waiting in the spares locker.

The best part of all this?  My electronics epiphany!  With the help of Tom from Eagle and Rob from Shindig, I’ve finally seen the light, and it’s a pretty dang bright one!  I’ve been struggling to understand how and why with all of my charging equipment and really modest (so I thought) need, why were my batteries discharging so quickly and failing to take a full charge during recovery.  Tom loaned me a clamp-on AC/DC meter so I could check the amperage load coming in and going out on all my electrical appliances.   My two solar panels were giving me more than 10 amps in the afternoon, good sun, and not 100 degrees.  My wind generator was giving me 9 amps at 10-12 knots of breeze.  Nice!  Well, the wind don’t blow all the time, and the sun don’t shine all the time, but I was still pretty pleased.  As I moved the meter through my electronics, I finally got it on the refrigeration’s positive wire.  Switched the refer on, and the meter showed only 6 amps of a load.  Dang it, and I thought that would be my mystery.  Well, about 90 seconds later, the compressor cycled again to 14.5 amps, and held.  Wow.  That was my mystery, in black and white (or digital grey…).  I can’t wait for the new refer system that brags of a 3-4 amp start up and a 2 amp cycle.  It’ll be interesting to see if it lives up to the advertising, but anything (almost) is better than 14.5.  It’s no longer such a magical mystery to see where all of my juice has been going.  It feels good to know…  Needless to say, a clamp-on meter will soon be part of my permanent inventory…  I’ll be adding a freezer section to the existing icebox, so I should be able to actually freeze food intentionally, too.  As all of this unfolds, I’ll take some photos and update with some real time facts.  Should be a fun, though costly, experiment…

Take care, Everyone, and there’ll be more very soon!

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