Monday, August 17, 2015

To be determined

We had a Skype conversation with 5 of the nine grand kids this morning. One is too young to say much more than “Ba”, though she manages to say a lot with just one word. One was jumping wildly around, in and out of the shot like a blur. One told us a train story and showed us presents from his recent birthday. One also showed presents from a not quite as recent birthday. And the oldest didn't say much as she tried to ride herd on her younger siblings. Any day that starts with a Skype visit from grand kids is a good day … no matter what happens later.

Later” was supposed to be finishing up the Bimini project. We are within a day of putting that last, big, summer project to rest. With it done, Kintala will be near ready to go. Just some routine engine maintenance and a rigging inspection will stand between our old Tartan and open water.

The rigging inspection is a quality control tic left over from my aviation days. The rigging was done here two years ago, has seen about 4000 miles of use, and endured a few pretty good tussles with winds in excess of 50 knots. It looks okay to me but the essence of quality control is to have a second, preferably more knowledgeable, person look at the same thing for the sole purpose of finding discrepancies. Since a rig failure is the one kind of equipment malfunction that will stop a sailboat from being a sailboat, a little quality control aloft seems like a good idea. And this is a good place to get one done.

Alas, “later” saw the Bimini project sidetracked by a different kind of equipment failure. Deb's magic box of a Sailrite Machine, the one that stitches big wads of canvas together with a shrug, has stopped stitching. It hums a whirls and does all the things that a sewing machine should do, cloth moves, thread flies, but the result is an ugly line of loops and unfinished knots holding nothing together. The fact that I don't know much about a machine has never stopped me from taking one apart. I can't break it if its already broke and, eventually, the broken part in the sewing machine gave itself away. But it was too late in the day to get parts, even if such parts can be gotten at all. We have bought a couple of parts from Sailrite, parts they know get worn out and are designed to be changed. The bit that broke on ours will not be that hard to change, but it doesn't look like one of those “routine” parts either. Sailrite often has people ship units back that need repaired. Something we likely can't get done before we need to head off.

What happens next is yet to be determined.  

1 comment:

John said...

Follow your Blog religiously as you are where I hope to be in 20 years. At 38 I have a few more years of corporate cash need before the ultimate voyage begins.

There is a place in Baltimore that works on industrial machines of all sizes and types. Tedcoindustries. They did wonders with my Old table Singer 166. I'm on the Eastern Shore of Maryland and they even had a truck driving through my area and for an $8.00 fuel surcharge dropped the machine back off to me. Good luck with the Bimini project. As an Electrical Engineer I thoroughly enjoyed your work on the solar project. Keep up the good work.