Tuesday, January 27, 2015


One of the staples I carry on board when cruising is various forms of pasta. I enjoy an occasional meal of pasta usually with my own homemade sauce. Problem with cooking pasta on board is the instructions say to start out with a big pot of boiling water. Something like four or five quarts. Water on board is precious commodity especially if you don't have a water maker. So is the fuel needed to boil the water. I came across this video which allows one to make pasta using only a little bit of water and fuel compared to doing according to the instructions on the box. Looks like a great technique to use on the boat:

Wednesday, January 14, 2015


I've had  a Morningstar PS-15 ProStar 15 Solar Charge Controller  on board for over ten years. It's operated without a single problem in all the time. Once installed it has some nice features and protections. One is to use it's 15 amp output terminals to power electronics on board without running wires back to the already crowded main breaker panel.

I originally used this output to feed a single cigarette lighter type socket by the boats companion way to power the ENGEL refrigeration system.

It worked well but, I have been wanting to wire up some other devices to the Morningstar's output. So last year I took a little time to make this happen. I bought a two terminal barrier strip and installed it on a nearby bulkhead. Rewired the cigarette lighter socket to it.

I also ran a wire (white wire) to a new distribution panel which I will show in an upcoming post.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015


I'm currently on a cruise in the Spanish Virgins on a 43 foot Catamaran. Though I am not responsible for any repairs on the boat. I still find the need to make repairs on some of the items I have bought along. Namely the wrist band on my dive watch. I found that it had a crack across it almost all the way through. It made losing the watch a good possibility at some point. So I asked the owner Capt. Bill for some electrical tape and wrapped it around damaged area and it has been holding up quite well for six days now.

Sent from on board BIANKA

Saturday, January 10, 2015


Speaking of Jamie Hyneman and mythbusting. For a few years I had been thinking about starting a charter business with BIANKA. I still had an occasional freelance working gig on land from time to time that helped pay the bills. It was still a little too lucrative to walk away from and also help pay for health insurance which is kind of important. I started to look at the economics of doing some day sail and sunset charters. Including extra costs for insurance, dockage etc... Unfortunately,  my freelance gig sometimes required I work during part of the summer. Which is prime time for operating a sailing charter business. In  the end I decided the economics did not quite work for me. Plus, I really kind of like not having a schedule and enjoy the freedom to head out on a cruise whenever I wanted. I came across this video of Jamie Hyneman of the MYTHBUSTERS TV show. I was surprised to learn he at one point in his life did buy a sailboat and became a charter boat Captain doing day sails in the Virgin Islands. He describes the experience and why he longer has a desire to do it anymore:

Tuesday, January 06, 2015


Speaking of converting electric outboards I came across this video of Jamie Hyneman of the Mythbusters TV show. He also converted an outboard to electric and also discussed some of the economics of doing so. It reminds me I still have my old gas Honda BP 2 outboard that got drowned during Hurricane Sandy sitting in the garage. If I get ambitious and get the time I might just consider converting it to electric at some point. Though my Electric Paddle outboard pretty much suits my all my needs in a much lighter package.