Saturday, January 26, 2013

Install the Fridge

Installing the new fridge.  Eric and Elias help, in full protective work gear.

Change the transmission fluid.  Change the impeller.  Talk to the mechanic about the coolant leak.

Find the manual for the transmission online.  Read the manual for the transmission and decide that synthetic transmission fluid would have been better.  Change the transmission fluid again.

Plumb an overflow hose to the not-to-be-trusted anti-siphon valve above the engine.  Plumb a hose to the petcock that drains the muffler.  Heatshrink the chafed spot on the positive cable to the starter motor.  Put hose over the heatshrink on the positive cable to the starter motor to stop the chafe.

Decide that changing the head gasket is not the way to fix the coolant leak on the engine.  Decide that nobody knows how to fix the coolant leak on the engine.  Plumb in an collector tank to catch the leaking coolant on the engine.

Take the old batteries out.  Make a shelf for the new batteries.  Install the new batteries.  Block the new batteries so they will stay in place even if the boat is upside-down.  Make new battery cables.  Wire in the new battery monitor.  Wire in the new fuse block.

Install the new wind generator.  Realize that the fancy regulator that you ordered for the new wind generator will not work.  Install the regulator that came standard with the wind generator.  Install the diversion load for the new wind generator.

Replace the bearings in the old wind generator.  Put the wind generator back up on the pole.  When the hub on the old wind generator starts to wobble, take it down from the pole.  Order a new hub.  Find a spacer in the container of nuts and bearings left over from stripping down the old wind generator.  Decide that the spacer should have gone between the two bearings, even though it isn't on the exploded diagram in the manual.  Wonder if leaving out the spacer has something to do with ruining the old hub. Wonder if you can strip down the wind generator again, but this time with the body still on the pole and the wiring left in place.

Replace the main halyard.  Find out that the new halyard won't stick in the jam cleat, even though it is in the specified size range.  Put the old halyard back up the mast.  Order a second new halyard.

Have the fridge mechanic come down to capture the refrigerant from the old fridge.  Rip out the old fridge.  Install the new fridge.  Run the new wire and put in a new breaker.  Take out the old shelves in the fridge.  Fill the new holding tank with anti-freeze.  Make the hole in the bulkhead bigger with a hole saw.  Drill a hole in the bottom of the fridge and epoxy in a pipe and valve to make a drain.  Run the copper tubes through the bulkhead and maneuver the holding tank into the fridge.  Screw the holding tank at the top of the fridge cabinet.  Wonder if you tore the rotator cuff in your shoulder.

Plumb in the pump that draws drinking water from the tank to cool off the refrigerant in the new fridge. Realize that the pump needs to be below the water tank; move it.  Screw down the new fridge unit.  Connect the copper pipes.  Follow the directions' exhortation to move "quickly and surely" to minimize the loss of coolant.  Fill the gap around the copper pipes with expansion foam.  Reinstall the fridge shelves.  Turn on the fridge.  Put the galley back together.


When my parents told us, a few months ago, that they were going to rent a Queensland beach house for six weeks beginning in late January, we were a bit crestfallen.  We knew that we would be in the throes of preparing the boat for the trip to New Zealand, and imagined that it would be too hard for us to get away to see them.

But then, a few weeks ago, Alisa had a realization - "Why woudln't we visit your parents if they're coming all the way from the States?" she asked.  We bought tickets.

And now, with the trip to Queensland a day away, we're so glad to be going.  Besides the joy of seeing family, I've realized that if we were staying here for another week I'd just be flogging myself every day, trying to get boat jobs done.  And I could use a break.


  1. Just in time for all the rain.

  2. I am EXHAUSTED from reading that list of boat jobs. Did you really do all that? So damn impressive. Take a novel to Queensland if you dare...then again, perhaps short stories. Hope you all have a wonderful few days with your parents, rain or shine. We're in Oz now, off to NZ (by air) any minute, and will keep a close watch on the Galactic adventure from that side of the Tasman.

    1. Hey Enki - Funny how it's the things that you don't list that take up so much time - all the getting tools and parts out and putting them away and making little improvements or fixes to the boat. Will be good to go sailing, for sure!

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