We're getting Red Ranger ready for the summer. This means a thorough cleaning. It also means answering the questions like "What's this?" and "Why do we have it?"
It also means looking at the work done (and not done) over the winter.
First. The duck.
Yes. That's a duck.
She appears to have taken up nesting on our afterdeck.
Being a duck, she left us gifts.
As in eggs.
What are we supposed to do?
I guess we could eat them.
How long have they been laying on the deck?
What if they have ducklings?
Too many eww factors for us.
We chucked them into the creek. The fish (and crabs) will any anything.
Then there's this.
That's CA standing in the port-size lazarette. The locker really is about 5 feet deep. Handy for stowing a lot of large, heavy things.
The original boat design was for this locker to be shallower and there's room for a 75-gallon fuel tank down at the bottom. Our previous owner declined that tank. (Unwisely, it turns out.)
Here's what's at the bottom of the locker.
Those are Cindy Ann's feet. In about a foot of water.
This is a known problem with winter storage. If Red Ranger isn't floating, rainwater doesn't drain properly through the cockpit. Instead, it runs over the hinge of the lazarette and collects down there. (Sigh.)
Of course, everything in there was soaked.
Here's the work that got done.
This is wonderful. Starting with the new chart-plotter.
That's a B&G plotter in a big pod thing attached to the arch on the binnacle. It's showing our location in the marina.
Here are the new instrument displays.
The two on the left are sort of generic B&G display devices.
The one on the right is the new autopilot control. It can drive the hydraulic steering pumps to keep course on long passages.
The old chart-plotter was easy to install at the nav station (pictures to follow later.)
We also have an AIS class B transponder. You can see us (when everything's turned on)
Here's the link: Red Ranger.
The device is wired directly to the batteries (for safety reasons) and is almost always on. It draws about 0.4 A to run, so there's a cost, but we have big solar panels and it seems manageable.
The boat's unplugged from shore power during the week. We'll see what the battery state is like when we get back.
Also. We now have a WiFi base station that allows a mobile device (iPad for example) to repeat the displays of the chart plotter. This is too cool.
We're re-working the red sail covers. We've made some changes we don't like and we'll make some more changes that might work out better. Photos to follow.
The soaked stuff involved some spare parts we don't need. So we (finally) threw them away. Lived on the boat for two years. Never really noticed that we had no earthly use for the parts. Most of the things were small and we never really worried about them. But we're cleaning everything.
And the question "What's this?" and "Why do we have it?" are profound. We were surprised that we could continued to throw things away. We thought we'd pared life down to the minimal essentials. But we still had things we didn't really need.