Clean Up Time

We spent part of last weekend at the boat cleaning and fixing, and I’m going to go over Friday afternoon to meet a guy who will examine the fixed fire extinguishing system in the engine room.

It’s basically a fire extinguisher-looking bottle filled with Halon or one of the newer environmentally friendly Halon substitutes. Its the red bottle against the bulkhead in this photo.

In case of an engine room fire, a heat-sensitive valve will open and allow the contents of the bottle to fill the engine room with Halon, which removes the oxygen part of the fire triangle, thus snuffing the fire. Because these are diesel engines, another important step has to be taken in addition to releasing the Halon, which is the shutting down of the engines.

If the diesels aren’t stopped when the Halon is released, it will just get sucked through the engine, spit out the exhaust, and the engines will keep drawing fresh air in from outside, allowing the fire to flare up again.

So, there’s an electric solenoid that shuts off the fuel flow when the Halon is released. This means that you’re dead in the water, but at least the fire should be out. It’s much easier to get the boat moving again if it isn’t in flames.

Assuming it is all functioning properly, he’ll put a tag on the bottle to show that it has been inspected. That will check off another line on the things to do list.

I found where to send the EPIRB to get its battery replaced and have it generally refurbished, and today I found a place in Port Canaveral that will open, test and repack the liferaft. Slowly, slowly, things are starting to get done.

Still haven’t gotten any closer to identifying the cause of the coolant loss, but I guess we’ll just have to run it and look carefully to see if we can find out where its going.

We’ll spend part of the weekend continuing to clean the staterooms and heads, and I’ll start working on a couple of the electronic items that need attention. The televisions in the boat are all older analog types, and the previous owner installed the analog/digital converter boxes, but I think we’ll be looking for a new home for those and start with a single new flat-screen in the salon. I don’t think the previous owner was big into entertainment systems, since there is a really whiz-bang videocassette player in the salon, but no DVD player. That will be an addition pretty quickly.

One thing that is pretty neat is the built-in wet bar in the salon. It has a system that has a series of buttons. Push one button, and Scotch comes out of the tap. Push another button for bourbon, etc. I think you can load five or six different liquor bottles under there and program the buttons accordingly. Neither Janet nor I drink liquor, except on very rare occasions, so while its pretty nifty, it won’t really be all that useful for us. As an amenity during a charter however, it might be nice so we’ll keep it. For us, a cold six-pack of Michelob or Corona in the fridge will suffice.

We’ll start testing galley equipment like the dishwasher and trash compactor to see what works and what doesn’t, and I want to run all the A/C units and check them out before summer gets here. In the engine room, I’m going to replace the two 30″ single-tube tube fluorescent fixtures with two 48″ twin-tube units. I want lots of light when I’m working in there.

That’s inside. Outside, we still need to give her a good bath, and I want to borrow a trailer from someone to bring the dinghy home and go through it, service the outboard, and generally make sure it is ready for use.

I’m going to install some blue LED lights to replace the standard white incandescent courtesy lights in the cockpit and on the side-decks. I’ve seen these on other boats and they really look nice.

Seems like every time I think about it, I add something to the list, but I’m sure it will start to seem more manageable after we’ve had a few more weekends on it.

Over the Christmas / New Years period, we plan to take her out of the marina and stay a couple nights somewhere at anchor, just because we can. That will be fun.


About TwoCaptains

The TwoCaptains are Jim and Janet, both US Coast Guard licensed boat captains home-ported in Daytona Beach. We recently sold our 1990 Ocean Yachts 56' CPMY "Magic Carpet", and now we're in the hunt for a replacement.
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