Friday, March 27, 2020

BETTER LATE THAN NEVER


Bianka has only one sail but it is 540 square feet. it's rather large and unwieldy.  When I took
it off the boat last fall I just bundled it together and put it in the garage thinking that I would fold
it when I got the time on the lawn.   Well, the days came and went and I never did fold it last fall.
So when the COVID-19 pandemic struck and people including me were pretty much
quarantined at home.  It seemed like a good time to lay the sail out on the lawn and get it done.

I thought it was going to be more difficult doing it alone but, it was pretty easy.



Now I just have to wait until the boat is launched to get it where it belongs. On the mast.

Friday, February 21, 2020

WINTER MAINTENANCE WITH WD-40


It's a nice windless sunny winter's day about 45 degrees Fahrenheit which makes it an
excellent day to head down to the Boatyard and check on BIANKA. No wind makes for
a pleasant day to do a boat check even if it is still winter.
But, even before I climb into the cockpit I needed to do some maintenance at ground level.Toward the end of last season the combination lock I used on the dinghy dock fell into the water for about a week. I rinsed it and initially sprayed WD-40 into it at that time and it continued to work. Over the winter the remaining salt inside had started to ooze out of the lock and was starting to corrode it and make it difficult turn to the right combination


So I reached for the WD-40 and sprayed the lock.


 With some help from an old toothbrush I managed to remove the salt cake residue from the lock. Soon it was almost as good as new and the lock mechanism worked smoothly..




Since I had the can of WD-40 out it was also time to  lubricant the folding joints of the ladder I
use to climb  aboard BIANKA over the winter.

A few sprays of WD-40 on a warm winters day may seem like simple maintenance but, makes for a big improvement in metal items exposed to  the environment over the winter.

Wednesday, January 01, 2020

HAPPY NEW YEAR 2020

Went down to the boatyard for a  boat check and to charge up the batteries. The New Year begins with no snow but BIANKA seems to be nestled in behind snowbanks of shrink wrap anyhow.

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

HIGH TIME TO GET TO SEA




“Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul; whenever I find myself involuntarily pausing before coffin warehouses, and bringing up the rear of every funeral I meet; and especially whenever my hypos get such an upper hand of me, that it requires a strong moral principle to prevent me from deliberately stepping into the street, and methodically knocking people's hats off - then, I account it high time to get to sea as soon as I can.”
― Herman Melville, Moby-Dick

Sounds like a good idea! My passage has been booked.

Thursday, November 28, 2019

A THANKSGIVING TO REMEMBER


BIANKA is high and dry today having been pulled for the winter. But, years ago when I was living on board in New York she would often be in the water until December. One year when i was alone I thought it might be nice to have Thanksgiving on board by myself. I was not about to cook a hole Turkey for myself but, I thought buying a whole meal from a local Boston Market take out store would be perfect for a Thanksgiving dinner in BIANKA's cozy cabin. I got all the fixings I might have even had some cider on board.  As I was heating up the meal and the cabin began to fill with a wonderful aroma of turkey and gravy etc... the propane ran out. Unfortunately, the meal had not been entirely cooked. Beng Thanksgiving there was no way I could get the propane tank refilled either.  Enter Black Friday to save the day. Because some stores were getting a jump on Christmas sales they were open on this holiday. I jumped in the car and picked up a small Coleman stove and a one pound can of Propane. I headed back to the boat and finished cooking my Thanksgiving feast. It was a Thanksgiving to remember.

Friday, November 22, 2019

READYING FOR WINTER

One nice thing about having electric propulsion and not the diesel is how it streamlines winter storage.  The only major thing I need to do is winterize the water systems on board. Once that is done I only need to do a few minor things to secure the boat for the winter. One of the things is to tape over the cockpit hatches using painter's tape.
 This helps keep rain and snow from working their way down below and into the bilge. I don't plan on going into the lockers until Spring but if I do the tape is easily removed and replaced.

I also tape over the instrument displays in the cockpit with the same tape to protect the displays from the winter sun.
These last two  items pretty much complete my winterization  routine.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

PLASTIC IN THE OCEAN BEGINS IN THE RIVERS




I don't see a lot of plastics when I'm sailing BIANKA in my local waters of Long Island
Sound. When I do I always make an attempt to try and pick it up. But, there are
parts of the world where floating Plastic is much more of a problem. It’s good to see that
some inventive thinkers are working to not only cleanup the floating plastics in the
Ocean but also at the source namely some of the worlds rivers.

Meet the INTERCEPTOR:


Saturday, November 02, 2019

END OF THE SEASON





 It's the end of another season and BIANKA is safely on land in the boatyard.  I spent much more time on board this summer and have plans to do the same for next year.  I had a successful test of some new systems on board. Including a new, more powerful generator and 48 volt power supply to be used when electric sailing. I’ll be posting about these new additions and other ideas here on the blog as I’ll have more time in the off season for posting.

Thursday, October 10, 2019

NOR'EASTER SEASON


 I was reminded by Facebook that 5 years ago BIANKA Was at the dock ready to be pulled for the season. 


This year BIANKA it's still at the mooring.

I was hoping to get one more small cruise in before the season ends.  However, the weather forecast for this week shows the first Nor'easter developing off the coast. Gale conditions are expected. A good sign that it's time to pull the boat for the season.  Something that I'll be considering for next week. 

Saturday, October 05, 2019

TIME OF THE SEASON: Still enjoying a little taste of Summer

I enjoyed taking BIANKA last weekend to Port Jefferson to enjoy the summer like weather. But, I did notice that some of the trees along shore began to have a little tinge of colors that signal that it is now officially Fall.

Fast forward to this past Wednesday. Temperature rose to near 90 degrees Fahrenheit. I decided it might be best to spend the day on the boat and at least enjoy a cool breeze. With some trepidation I decided to take a swim and clean the bottom of the dingy. Expecting a cool shock as I jumped in I was surprised at how comfortable the temperature still was. Seems summer is still lingering just below the surface and I stayed in for over a half hour.