Posted by: Cap'n Fuzzy | April 27, 2016

Brewing Beer and Wine

As you may have already guessed from previous entries, I am cheap!  One of the most annoying features of living in Canada, apart from long winters and biting insects is the ridiculous cost of alcoholic beverages.  So, we are working on escaping as much of the winter as we can by sailing Hearts Content south for part of the year.  Biting insects are tough to avoid here in the warmer months.  Our strategy is to invest in good screening, plant and/or eat anything that will repel them and bathe frequently in wood smoke.

Not sure if captions will show up with pics so quick explanation.  We have brewed in unusual ways and unusual places, so why not on board the boat?  Above shows our pumpkin wine experience in the Veggie Shed, brewed in the pumpkins you can see hanging in plastic grocery bags from the ceiling..

So, cheap beer and wine!  Many years ago, one of my younger Brothers stayed with us, exchanging his Nephew minding services for room and board.  Now, he was younger but 6-1/2 feet tall and with the capacity for prodigous quantities of beer that I couldn’t afford to pay retail prices for.  A neighbor, Bob, got me started brewing beer and a few years ago, I added wine.  Result?  80% savings still today over commercial products.

My aim has always been to just brew an acceptable quality product for rock bottom prices and as little fuss as possible.  So, over the years I have tried various types of bottles, kegs, wine bags and so on, to reduce the labour to beer quantity ratio.  I just don’t enjoy washing and sanitizing boxes and boxes of bottles.  So, from 60 standard beer bottles, to 24 1 litre plastic growlers to 1 keg, you can see the direction I am heading.  Back in the early brewing days I tried plastic kegs but had all sorts of problems with pressure leaks and running out of CO2 at inconvenient times.

Now, trying to modify the process for cruising on Hearts Content, I am looking at stainless steel kegs, specifically the 5 gal “corny kegs”.  These are recycled soft drink pressure kegs, made by Cornelius or Firestone.  Many home brewers use them with CO2 cartridges or refillable CO2 cylinders to provide the carbonization.  For bottled brew I have always relied on adding a small amount of bottling sugar to restart limited fermentation to provide the natural effervescence.  I have even developed a bit of a taste for the sedimentation this produces in the bottles.  After all, it is pure brewers yeast, for which health food stores charge you good money to purchase as a dietary supplement.

So, keeping true to my cheapness, I plan to eschew the extra complexity and cost of the external CO2, in favour of brewing and carbonizing naturally.  As with bottles, if you use a hydrometer to measure the specific gravity of your brew during the brewing process, there is no guesswork about how much pressure will be created.  I have never had bottles explode, as some home brewers have.  Well, that is not completely true, I did have one glass stubby beer bottle crack around the bottom wear line where the bottles rub each other.  We were out of beer and I decided to accellerate the carbonization process on the batch just bottled by stacking the cases next to our forced air gas furnace!  Fortunately only one bottle was lost.  I’m sure it was mostly due to it being a very old, much reused bottle.

I have been told that that row of little bumps in the glass along the bottom edge of beer bottles are the way that bottlers know how many times it has been refilled.  Anyone know for sure?

My plan is to allocate enough space to store a total of four of the stainless kegs on board Hearts Content.  Two each for wine and beer.  Apparently they can be stored in any orientation.  Not sure about dispensing.  For the rest of the brewing kit I plan to use just two primary type plastic brewing containers, one with a lid.  This allows nesting them together to stow in the quarterberth and strap in place.  All other equipment, like stirring tool, wine and beer kits, sugar, siphon tubing, wine thief etc will fit into the nested primary containers.

So, how far will 12 US gallons of beer and wine take the doughty Hearts Content crew?  Stay tuned.

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Posted by: Cap'n Fuzzy | March 25, 2016

Our NN10 Nesting Dinghy

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Sam assembling Barquita at Lac Des Arcs 2009

I just emailed a couple this morning who are currently sailing in the Solomon Islands. I will post a link to their webpage/blog if I receive their permission. They inquired about the availability of an NN10 Nesting Dinghy through our website at NestingLite.com. I did have a more complete story of how we acquired the business on that site but recently changed it to update our contact info and reflect the fact that we are not in production and in fact, the business is up for sale.

I am also in the process of sending some spare connectors to a couple in Montana that found a used NN10 in a warehouse near Seattle and needed some information on the rigging and sails as the originals were missing.

Every year about this time, people start thinking about cruising sailing, living aboard and we get a bunch of inquiries for dinghies. In February 2009, that was us. We had found Hearts Content, our 37 ft Cherubini Hunter, in Mazatlan and had placed an offer on it when we stumbled onto the NN10 on the web.  By May, 2009, we had purchased both, although they were not destined to meet. HC37, as we refer to the Mazatlan boat, we sold in 2012.  Barquita, our NN10 is tied down on our HC27, a smaller version of the same boat designed by John Cherubini for Hunter.

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Barquita nested on Hearts Content (HC27)

So finally I am starting to think that even if we cannot afford to build NN10s, at least for now, NestingLite could still be a resource for the 130 or so dinghies that are out there, somewhere. One of the big problems that owners of the boats have is tracking us down. The original designer and builder of the NN10 is Barry Niccolls, who managed to produce 120 or so boats, as nearly as we can figure. None of them had an HIN (hull identification number) or any indication on them as to the builder.

It is such a great little boat that it would be a shame for it to disappear completely. With luck we will find a new manufacturer and get them back into production. We have the plugs, moulds and patterns pretty much crated and ready to take anywhere in the world. I would love to work with a new owner/manufacturer to make it happen.

Is there a patron of small boats out there?

Now, for all you owners of NN10s, even if you didn’t know that is what you own, email, phone, message me on Facebook, leave a comment here on the blog.  Pictures would be nice.  There are at least two significantly different versions that were produced over the years from the early ’90s to 2009.

Is your NN10 for sale? By all means list it on your local Craigslist, Kijiji or equivalent online classified ad system, but please send us some pics (jpg is easiest) and your asking price and contact info and I will post on the NestingLite site free. If you have sold one in the past and can find the new owner, ask them to contact us.

I can also assist with information and some accessories like fittings/hardware, rudders, dagger boards, sailing rig parts and specs etc. Sails are tough to do right now. The last set Sam and I cut out on the living room floor in Medicine Hat in 2011 and sewed on the dining and kitchen tables pushed together to make a big enough work surface. Not ideal. If you know of an off-the-shelf dinghy sail that works for main or jib, let us know.

Would love to sell you some logo buttons (see pic) so there is some indication of where it came from and who made it.  If we can work out a reasonable estimate of the production date of your dinghy I might be able to conjure up an HIN.  Have to check with the feds to see if that is kosher after the fact.

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NN10 dinghy connectors with plugs and logo buttons

In the picture note the threaded plastic plugs.  We had those made when we realized that the black connectors do not float.  They are also really hard to see in the water, particularly in the dark.  I thought about a line threaded through all four with a float on it and I may do that at some point to try it.  It seemed fussy to come up with a clean looking way to allow the connectors to spin on the line so we seal a plug in each end leaving an air chamber for flotation and the predominantly white plastic logo button makes them nicely visible, even at night.  So, when you do the late night tap dance and fumble routine, at least you have a chance of recovering them.

Posted by: Cap'n Fuzzy | March 22, 2016

Boat Spares

Active Captain just sent me their weekly note suggesting boat spares for the upcoming season.  See the Blogroll in the right hand margin for links.

Boat Spares – good subject and one comment they made reminded me of Hal Roth, writing in his book, “After 50,000 Miles” about the myriad items they carried on their circumnavigation.  The Active Captain comment was to make sure that your spares actually fit and work.  It is certainly not unknown to get the wrong part from a supplier.  How do you know?  Through hard experience Hal Roth made it his practice to fit spare parts immediately, which is the only way to make sure they fit and function properly.  He then put away the still good parts which were removed as his spares.  When is it easiest to solve the problem of getting the wrong part?

I was thinking about fuel filters the other day and I suspect that the engine start problem that I had the day we hauled out may be crap in the fuel filter or line.  In 2014 I pulled the first inline filter out of HC to find it was half full of crud.  My explanation was that bouncing around on the way up the coast from Knife River in 2013 had agitated all the muck accummulated in the fuel tank since 1979.  Amazing that it was working at all.  At the time I did not have a replacement filter element so I changed the smaller inline filter near the engine and left the other canister empty.

Last year we motored from McKellar Marine, in Thunder Bay, out the river and up to the Prince Arthur’s Landing Marina and then took the boat to Red Rock, with several outings that season, one to Kama Bay with no problems.  Then, the day we hauled the boat, I started with no problem, warmed the engine up, drove it through the pan ice over to the launch ramp and we got it onto the trailer mounted cradle and hauled it out. The boat was on a fairly steep angle, well, at least the angle of the launch ramp and a bit more, coming out of the water. Once it was sitting over in the storage yard area, I tried to start the engine to dry out the water jacket.  It wouldn’t start so I just cranked it with the inlet water line disconnected from the water pump and with the valve open in the side of the engine to drain as much as possible.  I then flipped the decompression lever and spun it over several more times with the hand crank just to make sure I got most of the water out.  We shall see later this spring how well that all worked.

Posted by: Cap'n Fuzzy | March 22, 2016

Is it Spring Yet?

I must be the tantalizing hints that winter is finally coming to an end. The days are noticeably longer, we have officially “sprung forward” to daylight savings time and we have just passed the spring equinox.  For a few days the length of our day and night are similar to equatorial areas of the globe.  I mention it because it was one of those astonishing realizations that still makes me shake my head.  Growing up in a temperate latitude I took for granted that warm weather meant longer days.  Watching old movies like Casablanca or even more modern ones like Romancing the Stone which feature scenes of eating outdoors in the dark, everything lit up festively.  Without any conscious thought my brain made the assumption that they were eating very late at night, as it would have to be in Canada, on a warm summer evening.

When I first went to Singapore and Malaysia it finally struck me that near the equator the transition from day to night is within a few minutes of 6 am or pm and that once the sun has set it gets dark, fast.  In contrast, I lived in the Canadian arctic for several years where a good portion of the year it never fully gets dark, and above 60 degrees, the Arctic Circle, the sun can be above the horizon 24 hours a day for a period depending on how far north you are. The twilight transition during most of the year is much less abrupt and can last for hours.

I much prefer the tropical 12 hr day and night.  Yes it is hot during the day in many tropical areas but as soon as the sun is below the horizon it cools.  It is very pleasant to sit outside in the long evening, having something to eat, perhaps listening to music. Small harbours and marinas are nice because the lights on the docks and the boats reflect across the water. Voices in conversation and music carries across the quiet water.  We spent many tranquil evenings reclining in the cockpit of HC37 at Marina Mazatlan, sipping a last drink before turning in.

Posted by: Cap'n Fuzzy | February 24, 2016

How I Fell in Love…

With Dickinson Diesel stoves, that is!  Digging through photos to find something showing the Bristol in place in HC27.

Isn’t there a song, “One step forward and two steps back…”?? So now the Wayback Machine (from Rocky the Flying Squirrel, not the internet derivation) will take us to an even more distant time, 1977 I believe.

It looks like this will turn into at least one blog post just to briefly tell the story of the voyage of S/V Ungaluk from Vancouver to Tuktoyaktuk, NWT. I really need to track down some of the other crew and recover some pictures. The trip was supposed to be chronicled by National Geographic magazine but something more interesting came up for them so it is a story that has never been told. We travelled from Prince Rupert, BC to Juneau, Alaska along with another boat; so many stories….

But back to just a wee anecdote about how that trip cemented my feelings for simple, reliable heat sources for a warm, dry boat interior and cooking.

The other boat was a wooden hulled, 37 ft displacement cruiser, the name of which I cannot recall. The owners, Dave and Randy, were headed to Alaska and had spent the previous year rebuilding the boat in Seattle with cold weather in mind. The Dickinson stove has a hot water loop! Dave had set up an unpressurized thermal siphon heating system so that even with the stove barely burning on it’s lowest setting, it continuously heated water stored in a relatively small electric hot water tank. The boat had either one or two inboard diesel engines with ac generating capability so that even in hot weather, all 3-4 days of it each year, they could heat water with generated or shore power if they were not running the stove.

Ungaluk, the sailboat I was on, in contrast, seeemed a much more slapdash affair. The boat had spent it’s previous life in Florida, a floating patio for cocktails at the dock. The new owner, Bob McKenzie, grew up and lived in the Canadian Arctic. The west coast was nearly tropical, from his perspective, and I assumed he saw no need for additional heat, even though the plan was to sail it back to the Beaufort Sea and keep it there. The boat had a centre cockpit and the large main cabin aft housed the galley with, yup, a propane RV cooktop, no oven. So no real heat there.

In the forward midsection of the boat there was a laughable little cast iron heater built into the bulkhead in the passageway. It burned charcoal BBQ briquettes. I know this because we purchased a couple of bags of briquettes in Prince Rupert and I burned them in said heater. No heat from this device was detectable more than 3 feet away in any direction. I know that because 4 feet further forward was the entrance to the foc’sle, my own little space in boating heaven, where my perpetually soggy port bunk awaited me each night. No heat there.

Never, ever, under any circumstances, take a down sleeping bag to sea! I grew up on the prairies, camping in the foothills and mountains where the 10 inch annual rainfall verged on desert conditions. I had never been near a rainforest! The average rainfall in Ocean Falls, BC, on the mainland, just north of the north tip of Vancouver Island is something like 200-300cm/yr (**check this**). In a salt air environment, once the down is wet, it takes forever, or at least most of a BC summer to dry it out. At the time new artificial insulation like polyester fibre fill types were just becoming common. Reputedly, it will dry out, even when wet, just from body heat.

So the clincher for me was the absolute cosmic joy of having a hot shower on Dave and Randy’s boat after a week of crawling into a cold, wet nylon covered down filled sleeping bag in the unheated foc’sle of Ungaluk. Warm is good!

Posted by: Cap'n Fuzzy | February 19, 2016

On to Stoves on Boats

HC37 in Mazatlan had an RV style 3 burner propane cooktop. I am adamantly opposed to propane use on boats. We used the stove and it worked without incident but I wanted to remove it from day one and if we had kept the boat I would have.  It deserves longer treatment and I won’t go into it now but gasoline and propane have no place on any boat of mine.  Both, in my opinion, turn any boat, but particularly sailboats, which sit deeper in the water, into bombs waiting to go off.  Every year, way too many boats are destroyed and too many people injured in fuel related explosions and fires.  Call me weird and paranoid but putting a combustible heavier than air gas like propane on a boat, which is essentially a hole in the water, is nuts when there is an acceptable alternative.

So then, to HC27, which came to us with the factory installed alcohol pressure stove.  It also worked and although presumably safer as an alcohol fire can be doused with water, it just doesn’t cut it when you want to produce heat in a reasonable amount of time.  It literally took an hour to boil a kettle of water for coffee.  Also, Sam and I want to live on Hearts Content for extended periods of time.  Sam likes to cook, which includes baking and I like to eat.  Having been on boats on the Canadian and US west coasts, I have always been impressed with diesel stoves.  Same fuel as the engine, inherently less volatile than gasoline or propane, every working fishing boat and tug on the west coast and a large percentage of older pleasure boats had a Dickinson or one of the less well known look-alikes.

We went shopping on Craig’s List for a Dickinson at a price we could afford.  Marine equipment pricing, as for the toilets, is crazy!  We were lucky and found a Bristol, the smallest in the Dickinson line, for $400 and then lucked out and picked up a charcoal burning Magma BBQ for another $20 and had them crated and shipped together by Cratex, the company who crated our NestingLite dinghy moulds.  More on the Magma BBQ later and see if you can find the link in the sidebar for the story of our dinghy building business.  I think the link is there…

Against all odds, the Dickinson stove was an almost perfect fit in the galley cabinet. We did all the cutting with a sabre saw before we left the dock, so the 80 lb stove was at least bolted down to the new shelf before we were under way. On the evening trip over to Tee Harbour we ran a fuel line back to the cockpit locker and set up a plastic bucket with a tightly sealing snap on lid. Jeff’s last minute dash to the Home Depot store had yielded enough brass fittings, plastic tubing, large fender washers, sealant etc to get it plumbed. A section of foil dryer vent (not recommended, please do not do this!) tied out the main hatch for a chimney and we were ready for flamage!  And soot!

Posted by: Cap'n Fuzzy | February 16, 2016

Puppy Potty Issues

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Oscar adjusts the mainsheet traveller line

While we are talking about toilets, puppy potty issues deserve mention.

WARNING! This will be a frank discussion about pet excrement; sensitive readers may wish to bypass this post.

Arguably, the crew member who suffers the most away from land is Oscar. We can tell that he is getting desperate when he starts whining and looking over the cockpit coaming.

When he was small we first tried to train him to use a plastic backed paper “training” pad.  These worked about as well on the boat as they did at home.  Before he learned to ask to go out to the yard by scratching at the door and making various noises to get our attention, he would typically pee on or near the pad and then poop on the floor next to it.  We finally decided that he didn’t like getting his paws wet stepping on to a used pad so it was one use only.  I agree fully with him on this point, not liking to stand barefoot in cold or warm pee!  He also does not poop in the same spot he pees, so if the pee hits the pad the poop is somewhere else.

On the boat we went from the pad to a plastic catchment tray with fake green plastic grass with a perforated plastic screen between the two.  Oscar did like chewing the plastic grass stuff off and scattering it around but if he peed on it, again it was one use only and poop was not happening there.

We tried just a rubber backed doormat, same problem.  So we tried just letting him get desperate and finally let go, then praising him to let him know that it was OK.  The cockpit has scuppers so we can easily dip a bucket of water to rinse it.  The problem is that he is not clear about where it is OK and he will hold his water for unbelievable lengths of time.  We have gone so far as to demonstrate where to pee but to no avail.  On the second day out of Thunder Bay he unleashed a flood at the foot of the companionway in the galley.  I couldn’t believe that much pee came out of a dog his size and we were all miserable that we had put him through such anguish.

This year, I don’t know what to try.  Sam thinks a chunk of actual sod sized to fit into the plastic tray might be close enough to reality that he would figure it out. With appropriate praise and so on.  I’m game, let’s try it!  Other people have apparently trained their dogs to pee and poop right on the fibreglass foredeck.  I would prefer the cockpit sole as it is much safer for the dog while out on the water than skittering around on a slippery fibreglass foredeck without purchase for claws.

Do you have a solution which works for your dog on a boat?  How did you initially convince your dog where it was OK?

Posted by: Cap'n Fuzzy | February 12, 2016

Tee Harbour – First night

 

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The Sleeping Giant – Tee Harbour near foot on right

The aptly named Tee Harbour is only a 3-1/2 hr run from Thunder Bay on Hearts Content at 4-1/2 to 5 knots. It is right at the Southern tip of the Sibley Peninsula or in the local parlance, at the foot of the Sleeping Giant. The narrow stem of the tee points SE and the arms enclose two small bays, one facing SW and the other NE. We were the only boat there and as with our previous visit in 2013, the prevailing winds made the NE facing side the stop of choice. The three mooring buoys that are placed every year were thankfully in place so we had only to slip our dock line through the eye on the top of the buoy and we were set for the night. We fired up the diesel stove, had a late supper and turned in.

Posted by: Cap'n Fuzzy | February 12, 2016

Digression -Toilets on Boats

In my experience, every boat that has a head, has a disheartening history of malfunctions, from minor smell and discomfort to major disasters. Even before we bought our first live-aboard capable boat, HC37 in Mazatlan, I had vowed to move to composting toilets as dragging around large tanks of semi-liquid sewage has always repelled me.  We had the same issues in our motorhome. Our Mazatlan experience certainly did nothing to dispel these feelings.

HC37 was equipped with an electric pump operated marine toilet, a system which I longed to rip out and heave overboard.  When the pump worked, it was supposed to transfer the offending material to a holding tank, which had been relocated from under the seat in the shower compartment, to a flexible bladder type tank under our foc’sle V-berth.  This allowed the aroma, in the semi-tropical heat, to be enjoyed all night and at the same time, wasted the large storage space the tank displaced.

We were fortunate enough to visit a sistership to our Hunter 37, owned by a couple whose blog we had followed in our search to buy HC37.  They had either an Airhead or Nature’s Head, I cannot remember which and it really does not matter as they are very similar.  The space occupied was only that for the toilet itself; no hoses, no pumps, no tanks under the bed. Most importantly, no smell! A simple spray bottle with a water/vinegar mix to spritz the bowl and voila!  A bag of potting soil to remove every few months.  Yes! Every few months!  I was totally convinced and nothing since has altered that view.  Get a composting toilet, for your boat, for your RV, for your camp, and yes, I am working on one for the house!

Back to HC27, our current boat.  It came equipped with a fiendish device optimistically called a porta-potty but which we quickly renamed the porta-stinky.  It consisted of two parts; the top portion which had a reservoir of clean flush water and the seat/lid and the problematic lower sewage storage tank which was supposed to seal to the top.  It may have, when new.  Ask a plumber, seals are not forever!  Then there was the crack in the lower tank which would become evident as it filled.  This seepage would pool around the base and eventually run down into the bilge, with predictable olfactory consequences.  So we chucked it off the boat and bought a Separett privy kit.  I will add links as I figure out how to do that.

Marine composting toilets may be more correctly described as separating and dessicating toilets rather than composting.  Whatever!  Argumentative devotees apparently can come to fisticuffs in the pub about the differences but in practical terms, as long as it works, who cares?  From our point of view the critical factor was cost.  The two commercial “marine” units will set you back from $900-$1200 USD.  For what is essentially a plastic bucket which you poop in, this defies all logic.  Even Separette, the Swedish company who also makes home composting toilet systems, charges similar amounts if you buy their prettier plastic unit.  It is also too large for the space we have in HC27. But!  They sell their privy kit for $135 CAD and we provided our own plastic poop bucket and urine storage container.

The privy kit was a bit of a sales job to get Sam on board, so to speak.  Apparently, for a portion of the population, it matters what colour of plastic you sit on to, err…do your business.  This has never come up as a topic of conversation, let alone of concern, within my male sphere of acquaintance.   However, attuned as I am to the merest frisson of dissatisfaction surfacing in the Admiralty of the Hearts Content marine establishment, I took note when Sam said, ending on a rising note with a slight quiver, “But it’s bright blue!”

Now, I grew up during the 1950’s and ’60s, the period which bestowed upon the world, porcelain conveniences in a variety of pastel colours.  The Separette privy kit is in a whole different league with it’s much more forthright and honest and to my eye, more nautical hue, call it Chesapeake Bay Blue!  The seat and lid is a shade lighter, an inch or more thick and made of styrofoam, which the manufacturer claims warms more quickly in an outdoor privy than the polystyrene of the separating bowl, when you drop your pants and sit.  A worthy concern, in my winter interactions with outdoor privies.

So, I built the cabinet of Baltic birch plywood and mahogany 1×2, a simple box with a hinged lid.  I made the expedient assumption, when designing, cutting and prefinishing the wood pieces, that the space it was going in to was square.  It appeared to be square, moulded as part of the fibreglass liner of the boat.  I assumed it would be close enough that I could do a bit of trimming and get it to work.  You see how these projects, started confidently around such assumptions, can quickly devolve into nightmares.  I admit there was some profanity and it took much more time than predicted but thankfully for everyone, before the day was out we had a working toilet.  Another potential mutiny averted!  Crew morale soared!

All hands were quickly briefed and the new appliance was tested thoroughly.  The initial doubts about odours in a small space were quickly dispelled and replaced with smiles and comments, like, “hey, it works!” and, “you mean all you do is cover it with the peat moss?”

Still to be added to the system is a positive ventilation fan which comes with the pricier non-privy versions and also with the marine units.  There is a mushroom style cabin roof vent in the head now.  I will replace it with a solar vent and run a 2 inch plastic vent hose down through the cabinet behind the head and into the composter box.  It will then draw air continuously from the box and exhaust it out the roof vent.  The small solar panel on top of the vent cowling produces enough charge on a sunny day to power the small, quiet fan all night.  If necessary I can build a small circuit to provide power from the house battery if the built in vent battery does not charge enough on cloudy days.

Trying to find pictures and looks like I could do another retrospective post on our on-board power systems.

Posted by: Cap'n Fuzzy | February 11, 2016

The Red Rock Run

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A retrospective meandering as I catch up to the present by taking another step back to look at the trip from Thunder Bay to Red Rock in June of 2015. Back, back in time, while we get through another winter.

With my knee behaving badly I wasn’t sure I could sail Hearts Content so we left her on the hard as long as possible while I rounded up some help. Cam, my youngest Son, had just graduated in Environmental Engineering at Carleton, in Ottawa, and was waiting for a visa to visit and work in Australia. Our friend, Jeff, who had helped to rig and sail the boat up from Knife River in Minnesota, squeezed some days to come along and of course Oscar made up the balance of the crew. Sadly, Sam had to work. I think she took one look at the boat and the crew and decided she could do without being ganged up on by “the Boys”.

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For a while, at the dock, it didn’t look like there would be room for any of us, at least not inside the boat. Jeff and Brittany dropped by with Jeff’s kit as Cam and I were readying HC at the McKellar Boatworks dock. We had already loaded up with the precut pieces to build the composting toilet cabinet in the head and we were busy dismantling the galley cabinet to install our Dickinson diesel stove. Our clothes, bedding, food etc was piling up on the settees and the quarter berth was crammed. We put the mainsail onto the boom, tied the boat hook and dinghy oars onto the handrails on top of the cabin to get them out of the saloon. Then we fired up the Yanmar diesel, everything seemed normal, so Sam headed out to do some last minute grocery shopping while we motored up to the Marina and tied up at the transient dock.

The rest of the day was a chaotic blend of trying to stow things where we could find them and get close to finishing the installation of both the composting toilet, very important, and getting the stove fired up so we would be able to cook and also provide some heat in the boat.  It was a long winter and cold spring.

Let’s digress to the original toilet and stove on Hearts Content, with brief comments about the toilet on HC37, in Mazatlan.

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