Thursday, April 30, 2015


I've given up any hope of selling the Honda BF2 Four Stroke outboard that had been on BIANKA since I bought the boat in 1995. Over two years ago it went to the bottom of the harbor during Hurricane Sandy when the dingy flipped, It had been taking up space in the garage for over two years since I salvaged it of the bottom.  I tinkered with it but, found at a minimum it would need a new

Monday, April 27, 2015


Having spent some time removing, re-bedding and refinishing BIANKA's handrails back in 2011. It was time to do a little touch up. Like most painting and varnishing projects prepping the area takes longer than the actual brush work. So in keeping with my desire to use what you have and recycling things wherever possible I cam up with what I thought would be a cunning plan to prep the area around the handrails. I'd use a patterned piece to used shrink wrap to fit under the handrails to catch any drips. I could also reuse the patterned shrink wrap in the future too. So I cut a long strip of recycled shrink wrap and laid it over the handrail:

Friday, April 24, 2015


The brutal winter is finally behind us and I've been spending more and more days on the boat. The electric propulsion system requires so little maintenance that I can concentrate on other areas that need a little more attention. Things like touching up some of the bright work. Such as putting fresh coat of CETOL on the grab rails. As I poke around I keep finding little things that I forgot were on board. For example I went into the storage locker to get some paint brushes for the touch up work and I came upon this:

It's a can of some red spray paint. This was bought and last used years ago to

Wednesday, April 22, 2015


I am still amazed at how I have been able to reduce my carbon footprint by converting BIANKA to electric propulsion eight years ago. This was further reduced  with demise of the 2 horsepower Honda BF2 outboard because of hurricane Sandy. It is no longer on the boat and is going to the recycler. It's replacement an Electric Paddle is an electric outboard. Both of these upgrades have made things easier on board and also helped keep the boat and earth a little cleaner. In a way everyday is Earth Day on board these days.  

Friday, April 17, 2015


The brutal winter may have taken it's toll on one of the meters of my home built Helm instrumentation panel. I noticed also noticed a lot of condensation inside the plastic face of the panel even though I had a weep hole in the bottom of the case. I'll remove the panel and check on the wiring and replace the meter if it does not come back to life.


I went back on board a few days later and discovered the meter that I thought had failed during the winter was now working. So it looks like I might be able to take it off the TODO list.

Saturday, April 11, 2015


Having a boat with electric propulsion has some added benefits thanks to some of the on board power systems I use. One is the Honda 2000i generator which  I use for battery charging at anchor and also when electro-sailing when the wind dies. The second is the 10 kilowatt AGM battery bank it's self. Thanks to the AMES 48 volt 1500 watt sine wave inverter I can tap into it and use 120 volt tools and devices like the Zojirushi bread maker. Though some of these are not necessary it enhances the cruising experience and helps maintain the boat. Another item I recently added on board is a DBTech Multi-Purpose Pressurized Steam Cleaner. Again not a necessary item but, it helps clean and sterilizes with it's steam. Often a lot easier than with other methods. I've used a steam cleaner on board before a few years ago when I started the process of converting BIANKA's now unused fuel tank into wash down water tank. Back then I used the heavily advertise Scunci Steam cleaner. It work well in cleaning the grime from the decades of use in the old fuel tank. I also used it at home. But, unfortunately it did not last. Rather than buy a new one I decided to see if the cheaper steam cleaner from DB Tech would do the job and save a few bucks in the process. So far it has.  First let's look at what comes with the DB Tech steam cleaner:

Monday, April 06, 2015


One can't help but, notice little things that signify that the sailing season is coming. Some signs come from from nature like the disappearance of certain birds that have been wintering in the harbor. Some are man made signals. Like Robbie the boatyard manager prepping his Lobster Boat for launch. He'll be launching it soon to help make room for the  launching the other boats in the boatyard. It's a good sign.

Wednesday, April 01, 2015


I read a book about the islands
Far away in a coral sea.
All we need is a friendly sailboat,
A good wind, and we're running free.
Let me take you where the trade winds blow
And the sun is always shining.
And I'll stay with you until you change your mind.
Winter still seems to be having a bit of a grip here on the Isle of Long despite it being officially spring. So I have not visited the boat in two weeks. But, the cold and snow have had me thinking of some of the warmer climes I've been in. Sometimes in the form of songs playing in my head. One that kept popping into my memory over the years is a song called TRADEWINDS by Mark-Almond. It is the perfect song to add to my  SanDisk Sansa MP3 Player. Unfortunately,  the song and the album from which it is on has never been available on Amazon or ITunes as a download. I'm tired of waiting. So yesterday I finally ordered a used LP record copy off of EBAY that I will try and convert it for use in my "Songs for Sailing" list on the Sandisk.  Give it a listen: