Monday, May 6, 2013

A tiny addendum

Because the fuel tank repair caused two of the "footman's loops" that were used to retain our batteries to be removed (they were both right where the round cutouts had to be), they had to be replaced.  Before we could leave the dock.

The old footman's loops were plated steel - the moisture in the bilge had turned them into garbage.  So the first order of business was to get new ones...  new stainless ones.  West Marine sells them, for $6.49 each.  We have eight battery positions; we need 16 of these little fittings.  Woo boy.

So off to the internet for a quick reality check.  And in today's world, with everything at your (and Google's) fingertips, the real trick is knowing what to search for.   You have to know what your gizmo is called, and probably at least one alternate name.  Its really hard if you don't have this as a starting point.

As it happens, I recognized these as the fittings that were used on carriages as anchors for strapping to hold down the luggage, thus the name.  A look on eBay found them for $1.15 each in lots of 10.  So I bought 2 lots, for a total of $23 plus $3 shipping.  And I have spares.

Now another problem appears...  If I mount them on the bulkhead below the cover plates, they will be below the tops of the batteries.  They certainly would wear or punch a hole in the battery sidewalls as vibration took its toll. 

So I once again hit the internet, this time to an old familiar place:  Online Metals. I ordered a square foot of 3/4 inch "cutting board" (HDPE), and sawed off a couple of strips a little thicker than the footman's loops were tall.  With suitable counterbored screw holes and screws, these were mounted on either side of the footman's loops, providing a large, relatively soft riding surface for the batteries.

Standoffs installed

Batteries strapped down

Now the project is really, truly over.



Anonymous said...

These "little" projects take a long time to wrap up, don't they? Quite a coup to find those footman loops at that price. WM never hesitates to push profit-taking to the very edge.

Deb said...

OK so even I have to admit that you have the longest single project I've ever heard of. Two years?? I think our running best is the V-drive project at 8 months.

S/V Kintala

Robert Salnick said...

A true project manager would have wastefully gotten this done in 3 weeks.

It takes skill and patience to be able to stretch out a project this long...

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