Thursday, December 22, 2011

Happy Holidays From Silhouette!

It's been quiet on the blog front for awhile. We are still in San Diego working on boat projects, enjoying the (mostly) sunny weather, and spending the holidays with Kirsten's family. Kirsten can't remember when the last time she spent both Thanksgiving and Christmas with her family was -- probably in high school!

Last Sunday, we took some time out to enjoy San Diego's 40th annual Parade of Lights. The parade theme was Back to the Future, and many of the boats not displaying traditional Christmas themes were sporting disco themes. One boat even had a disco ball, and several crews could be spotted disco dancing on deck:  "Do a little dance, make a little love, get down tonight!" One crew from our marina, from the boat Green Flash, rocked flared bell bottoms, psychedelic mini-dresses, and huge Afro wigs.

Boat projects completed so far in San Diego:
  • Reconfigured the solar panel array and added a third 85 watt solar panel. We recycled stainless tubing from the old wind generator and solar panel mounts into the new arrangement.
  • Remounted the three 8D batteries into battery boxes, improved the way they are secured, and added an isolator and a new inverter.
  • Reinstalled the water maker (properly, this time--its original installation was very poorly done), flushed the membranes and replaced the hoses. It produces 6.5 gallons of water an hour.
  • Installed a new holding plate and compressor for the refrigerator. The new unit maintains the box temperature plus/minus 1 degree F of the set-point and consumes far less power.
  • Made curtains for the 14 ports.
  • Applied another coat of varnish to the hatch boards.
  • Replaced the leaky freshwater faucet in the galley sink, added a seawater tap and pump, and replaced the hoses for all galley water taps. 
  • Purchased an outboard for the dinghy and added a small tackle on the radar arch to facilitate transferring it from the inflatable to the storage bracket on the stern of the boat. 
  • Cut off the top of the forward water tank (aft two-thirds of the tank), cleaned and measured the tank, and ordered a new polypropylene tank to sit inside the old tank. We decided against trying to repair the old tank because nearly all Cabo Ricos of this vintage have had problems with leaky forward water tanks. If we repaired the tank, the flexing of the boat as it moves would probably just recreate the same problem. Installation of the new water tank is pending and will involve fiber-glassing in supports on the interior of the old tank to support the new slightly smaller tank.
  • Cut out drawer supports under the V-berth to create a larger storage space and cut an access lid to the storage space in the plywood under the V-berth. Also cut an access lid in the forward third of the old water tank to create an additional storage space there. 
  • Replaced flexible hose that supplies propane to the galley stove.
  • The project list is growing shorter by the day. Life is good.
From the crew of Silhouette to family and friends near and far, we wish you a peaceful and joyous holiday season!