Feb 18 - A bit of sight seeing

We've been keeping busy between work projects. A visit from John & Melinda (sv Mycia) from Maui - we had met many years ago in Port Townsend, Wa! - coincided with some big waves on the north shore. We went by bus, hoping to see an "Eddie" competition. The contest didn't happen, but it was still impressive to experience the huge waves and see the north and east coasts of Oahu.
With all the work projects going on the boat is a shambles, and it's hard for even one person to move around....I've kept my sanity by renting a small condo at the Ilikai for a few weeks. It corresponded with a visit from two friends, Jan & Robin, who have recently retired. So a rendezvous in Hawaii was most welcome! We rented a car to see the 'real Hawaii'--only a half hour drive out of Honolulu. We hiked, explored beaches, and never stopped jawing....a wonderful visit.
The view from our room has a good view of the HYC Friday night race start and finish line, as well as activity off Waikiki. It's whale watching season..the big humpback whales are beautiful to watch.
We were invited to a special Boat Tour of Pearl Harbor by our friends Dave & Sherry. This is not open to the public; you have to be active or retired military. It was a different perspective and presentation of the history of the bombing, and included an interesting tour around Ford Island by launch.
We've continued to meet cruisers...there will be a handful of boats doing the 2011 Pacific Puddle Jump organized by Latitude 38.
....A new Picassa album has been posted, entitled "Around Oahu."

Feb. 13 - New hard bimini

Our new cockpit 'permanent bimini' is getting done. The arch to boom gallows extension has ranked high on our to-do list since getting to Oahu. Finding a welder to do the job at a reasonable price, who was available and could build what we wanted, has been a challenge. We decided to go with 1" aluminum pipe, and will have it sand blasted, primed and powder coated upon completion. As you can see from the picture, it's large: 8' across the back, a bit longer than 8' on the sides, and 10' across the front. The top will have 1/2" expanded PVC bolted to it at the various support pads that were welded to the cross pieces, and aluminum solar rail supports will then be bolted to the PVC. Two 175W solar panels then attach to the rails, which, along with the two panels already mounted, give us a total of 700W of solar power. It's a large project (literally and figuratively) and will serve several purposes. Our old Sunbrella bimini frame goes away, the new solar panels have a place to be mounted, and more rain and sun protection is provided than the old bimini. As in most things aboard, everything is a compromise, and we'll have to adjust to a few inches less headroom and a different look and feel, but, hey, we're cruisers...aren't we all flexible?

Feb 10 - Frigoboat installation

We've been tackling the reefer/freezer installation project with Dan Toye of Electromarine Services (Hilo/Oahu) as head guru. First the 134a refrigerant had to be evacuated from the old system. Then the two large Dole cold plates were removed, along with the associated copper tubing, expansion valves, receiver, accumulator, condenser, on/off valves and pressure cut off switch. I had already removed the old thermostat gauges and modified the teak cutouts for the new electronic ones. So, the only remaining part of the system is the Technautics Cool Blue 12V compressor, as it will still be used to drive the reefer side of the new system. (I'll keep the Tecumseh belt driven compressor temporarily, as it drives the engine pulleys, until I mount the new water maker pump/pulley assembly). The Frigoboat keel cooler for the freezer was installed last week during haul out. After carefully measuring, we bent the two new Frigoboat evaporators (one for each box) per the provided instructions into U - shaped forms to fit the boxes. Each evaporator was then mounted with standoffs. Not too difficult so far, even though the boxes were a bit out of square. A few new holes had to be drilled to accomodate the copper tubing, with everything being led to the area both compressors are. The new Frigoboat water cooled compressor will mount right next to the existing air cooled Technautics compressor. For anyone wondering why this arrangement....the Technautics compressor works fine and saved the expense of purchasing two new Frigoboat systems. There may be some technical issues of mixing the Technautics system with an evaporator plate rather than a cold plate, but we'll see how it all works out and have an adaptation available if there's any problems. We still have to hook up the refrigerant lines and connect all the wiring for both compressors and thermostats. The Frigoboat system comes precharged, but we'll have to add refrigerant to the Technautics side. At that point, all I'll have to do is screw the hinge of the freezer lid back in place...where did I put those screws?...and we'll then turn on the separate breakers to test each side of the box. It'll be good to see how it all works out and have an efficient 12V system.

Feb 5 - Haul Out

We finished up everything we had to do by 2 pm today. As Matt was painting the port side of the hull, I cleaned the MaxProp. We greased it, applied new zincs, and then moved the boat stands so we could get to those areas under the pads to apply bottom paint. After we were all done, we went over some minor holidays that needed touch up, and then packed up, ready for launch Monday. When the travel lift picks us up we'll paint those areas the keel's sitting on, as we left enough paint for that purpose. All in all, it was a good day, and we're ready for Super Bowl Sunday! Infini is looking good!

Feb 4 - Haul Out

Thursday afternoon we motor sailed to Keehi Marine Center where we side tied to the steel trading schooner Machias. We were supposed to be hauled out Friday morning at 10:00, but things didn't go so smoothly for the large wood motor yacht that was hauled at 0730, and we weren't hauled and blocked up until 1:15 in the afternoon. Ordinarily, we wouldn't care about details like this, but we're on the "Weekend Special" here at the yard. Haul out is usually at 0730 Friday, and splash at 0730 Monday, all for a set price. (in our case $495.00) So, any work that needs to be done has to be completed before splash at 0730 Monday. Btw, our lift weight was 42000 pounds, about what I had figured over the W-43 design weight of about 31500 pounds. At any rate, we had the diver clean the bottom two days before haul out, and he did a great job. We didn't need pressure spraying (expensive), and Matt helped me wash and gently prep the bottom (with the black scrubby pad things) in preparation for Hempel bottom paint ($142/G). This is only the second time in our boating history we've used ablative paint, the first being in Panama, where we applied Jotun bottom paint about a year and a half ago. We had always used Petit Trinidad epoxy paint on all our boats, and are finding the durability and application of the commercial ablative paints quite good, and much more reasonably priced than most yacht bottom paints. Matt then taped the water line and applied a coat of paint to the entire water line area on both sides. We then rolled paint down the starboard side and painted the entire rudder, which used up one gallon of paint; by that time it was 4:30 in the afternoon. We then determined where we wanted to place the keel cooler for the Frigoboat freezer unit. Drilling holes in the bottom of one's boat is always a scary proposition, but the one and a half inch hole was placed perfectly. Installing the stud model of the keel cooler took longer than I expected due to it's location inside the boat under one of our storage bin units, but we finally finished the day at 7:30 pm. So, it was a very busy six hours; tomorrow we just have the port side of the boat to paint, the prop to wire brush and paint, touch up under the pads and any holidays we missed, and new shaft and MaxProp zincs to install; we're planning on everything to be completed by the end of the day! After all, the day after will be Super Bowl Sunday, and who wants to be bottom painting?