Monday, October 27, 2014

Deck Leak!

Deck leaks are the bane of boats.  TJ on The Retirement Project once remarked that he had difficulty seeing why a boat deck should leak more than a house roof.  Well, first of all, boat decks are virtually flat, and everyone knows that it is not trivial to keep water from finding its way thru a flat roof.  Next, boat decks have hundreds of penetrations - screws mounting fittings, trim, geegaws, etc.  Each and every screw is a potential leak point.  Each one.  And an amazing amount of water can come thru the tiniest of holes.

For years, Eolian's decks have been leak-free.  But this fall with the onset of the winter rains, water started running down the port side of the cabin.  This isn't my first rodeo tho.  I immediately pulled out my trusty blue tape and hastily constructed an exotic guttering system (the Mayans would have been amazed!) to direct the water into a catch basin.  This was a temporary measure, of course, to prevent damage while the search for the source of the leak went on.

The first measure was to replace the nearby fixed port.  Indeed there was evidence of past leakage around it, but apparently this was not the source of the current leak.  I am not at all unhappy, tho, to have replace the fixed port with an opening one - it was something that I had wanted to do for a long time, and for which I was only looking for an excuse.  But it was not the problem.

In an effort to stop the leak first and diagnose later, I applied tape to everything that looked the slightest bit sketchy on deck in the vicinity of the leak (the replaced port is just in the frame at the top center).

Hallelujah!  The last storm (20-30 kt winds and heavy rain) did not produce a drop inside.  So, one of those pieces of tape is covering the leak.  Which one?

I didn't try to find out.  Instead, I masked off each area and applied several coats of varnish to seal the trim to the deck.

Now we'll see.

It is supposed to rain tonite (of course).


Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Blogger Blog

I had a real treat yesterday.

In this world, this life, connections with other people are some of the most important things we have... maybe the most important.  And yesterday, one of those connections got a lot stronger.

It seems that Rick and Ruth Bailey, of s/v Cay of Sea and the Middle Bay Sailing blog had made a cross-country drive to deliver a 7 foot antique clock to their son on Whidbey Island.  Rick contacted me, and we arranged to meet for lunch at Dad's in Anacortes.

What wonderful folks they are!  As you would undoubtedly guess, the conversation ranged over boat topics...  lots of boat topics.  And if you knew the correct pronunciation of Cay:
 A cay (/ˈkiː/ or /ˈkeɪ/), also spelled caye or key, is a small, low-elevation, sandy island on the surface of a coral reef.
then you would not be surprised to know that music was covered too.  Tho I must confess that the right brain simulator I run in my left brain (my actual right brain is a shriveled up raisin) doesn't hold a candle to either of these folks, who both have huge glowing right brains, Rick in music and Ruth in art (Rick often features Ruth's work on Middle Bay Sailing).  I knew that I wasn't going to attempt to play when Rick picked up my guitar and ran thru the opening riff from 'Blackbird', flawlessly.  Oh my.

It was a wonderful visit.  And firming up these tenuous connections we have with each other over the Internet with actual personal contact is too a wonderful thing.  I only wish that it was possible to do more of it.

Thanks for visiting Rick & Ruth!


Monday, October 20, 2014

Time Passes

In 1980 when our kids were just toddlers, I took a picture of this intriguing tree in Washington Park in Anacortes.  It was the occasion of our second trip to the San Juan Islands, and our very first ever boat charter (a Newport 28).


We had occasion to be at Washington Park again this fall, and I was surprised to see that the tree was still there.  But sadly, the intervening 34 years have not been kind to it - tho still in place, it is sagging downward, and it has died.


One other thing is apparent in these two pictures...  the technology of photography has changed dramatically over those years.  The first picture was taken as a 35 mm Kodachrome slide.  The second was a snapshot taken on my iPhone.  Clearly 35 mm format slide film with a 250 mm zoom lens beats the pants off of an iPhone, digitally zoomed out to the max.  Nevertheless, I'll probably never go back to toting around a big heavy camera bag full of expensive lenses.  The convenience of having the camera in my pocket wherever I go is for me an overwhelming advantage.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Micro-forecast iPhone App

An area like Puget Sound and the San Juans has many micro-climates. No "one size fits all" forecast is going to do a decent job. What you need is a micro forecast - one suited to just where you are.

It's not free, but for less than the cost of that last latte you bought, you can have it!  The app is called "Dark Sky" - search for it on your app store.

So you can see what it does, here's a look at some of the screens.  First, the current forecast for your location, for the next 60 minutes:

Next hour
Swiping to the next screen (see the dots at the bottom?) gives you a little longer range look:

Next day
One more swipe gives you a look at the next seven days.  Here I've touched Saturday and so it is being shown in greater detail:

Next week
Finally, for a graphic view, you get a look at the radar loop. 

This view is shrinkable to show the whole world, or you can zoom in to show your location in great detail.  In the zoomed-out view, the time scale changes to days instead of hours, and you will get a couple of days to the future of the 'now' point - that is, a predicted radar loop.  It can also show a loop on temperature, but I find that less interesting.

Now tell me that you wouldn't find this handy on board!
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