Went down to the club today, and out to Blue Opal, with a few goals in mind:

  • document her data network,
  • get the lift pump for the Webasto to prime,
  • put a screw in next to the radio to stop the melamine from falling down,
  • and start documenting the power looms.

I was successful on the first three goals, and never got around to the fourth.

The melamine thing was due to the weight of the radio; the end of the material where the radio is mounted wasn’t bonded to the wood above it in any way, so the radio’s weight was causing it to sag. A quick fiddle yesterday showed me that there’s a block of wood right behind the corner of the melamine (it might not be melamine, but it looks like it – the white trim). Returned today with a drill and a countersink bit, and 5 minutes later the radio end of the trim doesn’t sag under the weight of the radio any more.

The Webasto hasn’t worked since I got on board in Conwy. At the time of the survey, it was noted to work, but only blew cold air. Dad found that the fuse holder had fallen to pieces when he was working with the wiring looms, so we replaced the cylindrical glass fuse with a blade fuse and holder over the Regatta weekend. This got us back to a cold air state, but nothing more than that. I was going to trace the power to the lift pump today, and try and toggle it a few times to get the fuel to move towards the heater, but decided to try a different approach first.

I toggled the heater unit on and off a few times over the period of about 15 minutes, and all of a sudden I heard a whining/growling from the stern, and a cloud of diesel smoke wafted upwards. Since the engine wasn’t turned on (and it doesn’t let off smoke), it could only be the Webasto! A hand over the vent confirmed that I was getting not-outside-temperature air, so huzzah, I  have a working heating system. Shut it all down, and turned it back on a few hours later, and there’s no smoke, but there’s plenty of heat.

The data network is in another post, though I’ll note here that I now need a lot of printed sticky labels, so that I can tag all of the sheathed wiring. The SeaTalk cabling is obvious, but when there’s 4 black cables coming out of a hole, it helps to have a label that provides guidance as to where it goes and what’s at the other end.

All of this was done alongside the club pontoon. I had wanted to run shore power to top up my batteries, but unfortunately my shore power cable is too short, and I couldn’t find any extensions in the boathouse. However, I did end up giving 3 or 4 tours of Blue Opal whilst alongside – she draws quite a few looks from other sailors 🙂 While showing someone around, I noticed that one of the turnbuckles for the deck collar (or deck tie down, I’m not quite sure where the other end is – it vanishes up past the mast-deck interface) was rather loose; popped out the split pins and put two turns on the turnbuckle to match the tension of the other side.

View from the cockpit
Ship’s Log – things work!
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