Saturday, April 28, 2012

Sunny Day

Today was a nice day so I did some work at the boat.

First thing I did was to replace the battery switch. It went pretty good. One cable seemed to be slightly short so it was difficult to reach the connection. Because of how the cables were connected, it ended up being mounted upside down. It still seems to work fine as it is.

The other day, I bought a couple batteries from Sams Club, both marine AGM. One was a Group 31 replacing the 31 I took off for the house battery. The starting battery I got is a Group 34 replacing a Group 24. The old battery box was broken so I replaced that too.

Here's the house battery.

The battery fit well in the battery box I found.

I mounted the strap to tie it down just inside the compartment.

Everything went together quite well. Here everything is strapped down nicely. With the space inside this compartment, I could probably add a second battery but I'll just stick with one right now.

I started taking things back to the boat to empty out the house. I took the cusions, sails and a few other things.

Another thing I was working on is figuring out the electric bilge pump. I thought the cable had slipped off. I lifted the wood the pump was mounted on to check and saw that the output was broken off and still in the hose. I'm thinking to order a new bilge pump. Then, I can put a more flexible hose on the end so it will not break again. The hose heading to the through-hull is very stiff.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Rainy Day

Today was a bit rainy so not much work was done at the boat. Even with lightning flashing around the area, I still setup my metal ladder and visited the boat for a moment. Probably a good thing I did. I found a screw used for one of the hand rails above had drops coming down. I will need to reseal that screw and probably should do all of them while I'm at it.

Here, you can see the drop showing up the the discoloration of the wood nearby. The drops were pretty steady and this part of the handrail was not covered by the tarp currently on top.

Good news is the gaskets on the portholes are working nicely. Here, you can see the water collecting at the bottom. I used a flashlight to find water dripping and everything was dry.

It was nice to see the wood that I scrapped the old varnish off of. Some of the grain showed up dark and I think some of it was from the grey areas. I'm pretty sure I scrapped off the varnish pretty well too. Still, seeing how some of the grain shows up is nice. I am looking forward to getting some fresh varnish on it.

Something else I noticed on the boat is a thru-hole item. I had to look it up and found that it is a transducer used for depth, Airmar P319. I thought it was odd that the cord was still coiled up so I assume that it was a fairly recent upgrade/addition from a previous owner. I looked at the compartment where the cable would be routed and saw a plastic housing that might have held an old transducer. This other one had the cable routed toward the stern. So, another project, take the old plastic housing and cable out and route the cable for the mounted transducer. Oh and I found out the cable connects to the Garmin 546S.

Lastly, I got a new battery switch in the mail today. The case was slightly deeper than the old one so I had to go to the store for longer screws. I'll update how that looks in another post.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Yanmar 2GM

Taking a look at the engine, it physically looks pretty good. I'll eventually need to learn engines and engine repair, just in case. Here's a few pictures of how everything looks.

I happened to find a maintenance book from a previous owner. There is some good logs of when oil was checked/replaced, when things like filters and belts were replaced and engine hours of when work was done and other maintenance along the way. It'll be good reference to see what might need to be worked on once I get to this point.

UPDATE 27 April 2012

Additional pictures around the engine.

This is the water pump. I plan to check the impeller to see its condition.

A couple filters.

Back side of the instrument panel.

Looking for the starboard quarter berth access panel. Not the easiest place to get to the oil dipstick. There isn't much room to move around.

Overall the engine looks to be in good condition. there are a few places where the hoses are at, like to the impeller that shows water has corroded a little bit of the parts. Also the shaft, where just before it goes through the hull to the propeller is also showing signs of corrosion.

Battery Switch

Looks like I might have an additional project. This time involving electricity, or maybe just the cables.

While working on using jumper cables to power the boat from my truck, the knob for the battery switch came loose. I tried using a screw driver to get the knob off so I could see if there was a way to tighten it but the screw didn't move. I actually ended up stripping the head of the screw. So now, I have a switch that seems to be stuck in the Battery 1 position and the knob itself moves freely.

The knob isn't supposed to be pointed in this direction.

UPDATE: 26 April 2012

Probably a good thing the knob on this broke while I'm working on it and not while out cruising around somewhere. I took the switch off to get a closer look at it.

The backside was pretty well cracked.

To me, it didn't look good. I think these things are supposed to be sealed from weather to keep from getting corroded. I took a screwdriver to get into one of the cracks and pried it open.

As you can see here, the contacts look ok and the grease is still free flowing. The only thing is the two posts on either side from the center.

These two posts were clean broken from the knob on the other end.

If these posts were still holding on, I would not have been able to separate the two halves very easily. A replacement battery switch should be arriving soon then I can update again the new install.

Bilge Pump

Did a little bit of work at the boat today. Recently, I took a look at the bilge to see how it looked. I saw there was some nasty looking water down there. The last few trips, I put some fresh water down there to build up enough for the bilge pump to take care of.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

More Rigging

Today I pulled the standing rigging off Rhapsody. Many of the cables are showing rust and a connector for the jib furling line is cracked/broken.

Thursday, April 12, 2012


When I woke up this morning, I was planning to stay home to do some yard work and clean up around the house. That changed when the mail came. I got some material for the porthole gaskets. So, since I was happy to receive something for the boat, I changed my mind and went to the boat instead of staying at the house.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

More like Scraping

I started to work on cleaning up the exterior wood today. This project is going to take some time to do.


I was looking over the rigging and thinking about whether to use it or not. Looking it over, I see there is some rust by the swage terminals. On the line that the roller furling is on, there is a connector that has a crack. Right now, I'm thinking to replace all the standing rigging. Not only because of the rust but also not knowing how old it is, it's likely due for a change anyway. It would be good to replace for peace of mind.


In some of these next pictures, you'll see that Rhapsody is in need of some work on the wood pieces on the exterior. The varnish, or what ever was on it before, has dried up and is flaking off. Hopefully, it'll be fairly easy to sand off. I don't have access to power at the boat so stripping with heat gun is out of the question. There is plenty of work to do.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012


There are two batteries on Rhapsody. Battery 1 is the house battery. It's used to power lights and electronics. Battery 2 is the starter battery which is used for starting the engine.


I was looking at the lighting to see what I got. Looks like some 12 volt Halogen bulbs with two different connectors.


Cleaning up after the bees wasn't too bad. I ended using hot soapy water and a kitchen sponge with a green scrubber. I did most of the inside yesterday and today I did the last little bit including the battery compartment the bees used to setup their honeycomb. The battery itself was dead so I took that to a local Walmart to dispose of.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Cusion Cleaning.

I stopped by Rhapsody for a short time today. All I did was take all the cusions out and brought them to the house. Because of the bees I mentioned in the last post, a few parts of the cusion covers are sticky and in need of general cleaning anyway. As I write this post, there are some cusion covers in the washer. the foam for all the cusions look to be in fairly good condition.

Now the tricky part is to try getting all the foam back into the covers.


There is quite a bit of cleaning up in Rhapsody. The biggest mess at the moment was due to some bees. While the previous owner had the boat stored in Arizona, it became infested with some bees that setup a honeycomb in the starter battery compartment. There are other places where the surface is sticky from the wax the bees left behind.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Cleaning Day!

I went to visit Rhapsody today. I wanted to clear things out so I am able to clean up the inside, I'll explain more in a later post.

(Warning: Lots of Pictures)

Thursday, April 5, 2012


In preparation for working on Rhapsody, I ordered some supplies that looked to be useful. Some things came in today

So far, I have:

Things to do

I went to Rhapsody today to take a look at a couple things. The weather folks have been calling for thunderstorms for the past couple weeks and it's been sun shine and clear skies the whole time, until today. Today is overcast so storms might be more likely. I decided to get a tarp to cover the cabin top of Rhapsody as there are a couple things that need to be addressed soon.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Traveling To New Home

Here's a picture of the truck with the boat ready to tow back home with me.

Everything rides very nicely. It was going well until I was on the road for about 20 minutes then something happened. The trailer and truck were shaking pretty badly, I looked in the rear-view mirror to the sight of what looked like pieces of rubber flying about. My first thought was, "Great! I blew a tire". Well, a tire didn't blow but it did cause a bit of an issue.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

New Boat Owner!

Here it is! My first sailboat.

1981 Nor'sea 27 Hull #170 named Rhapsody.