What’s up

Time flew by while we were in Alamitos Bay, as we multitasked among a number of activities – one of them being some TLC on Pesto

I had 3 projects planned to do while we stopped there – 2 maintenance and one improvement.

First, a much needed check on the battery bank – Pesto generates, stores and uses a lot of electrical energy, and the battery bank is the core of this system. We have a big bank, with twelve G31 wet cell batteries. From time to time these batteries need to be refilled with water, and eventually electrolyte. I took advantage that everyone else went out one day to tackle this job. Checking and filling up with fluid per se is relatively easy. But accessing the batteries, and removing the cables which block access to the battery caps is what makes the job laborious – in all, I spent a good half day on it, and took advantage to check all the connections, and treat premature corrosion where it appeared:

I had to take the bedroom apart to do this job properly - but it was well worth the effort
I had to take the bedroom apart to do this job properly – but it was well worth the effort

 

The second job is one that I am NOT looking forward to do – one ball valve on the toilet plumbing system is broken and needs to be replaced. I sourced all replacement materials back in Ventura and was planning on doing it in Alamitos. It is a dirty job ! But probably out of mercy, Pesto threw another project at me, which took priority to this one: the propane system broke and the stove stopped functioning the day after Roberta and Luisa arrived. I traced the problem down and found the solenoid valve was broken – or so I believe. I bypassed the valve with a manual one, which brought the system to operational status again, and then toured a number of RV and Marine shops in the Los Angeles area for a replacement … eventually finding it online. The new parts arrived yesterday and I shall soon have it replaced:

The old solenoid .. it looks quite battered, and besides it was not for marine use.
The old solenoid .. it looks quite beaten, and besides it was not for marine use. The new one is – I hope it works !

 

Then we had some folks come aboard to start installing a bimini top to Pesto’s cockpit. Whereas Pesto has a great pilot house, it is still open on the backside and we feel cold and wet during night passages. Conversely, when we got a bit of warm sunshine days in Santa Barbara we also realized the cockpit is quite exposed when the sun is lower at late afternoon – something that will be an issue when we reach warm climates (it will happen some day – I swear !). So we decided to make the investment and take compromises associated to having a fixed bimini and enclosure added to the cockpit. The project is still in the works and I will post more pics when it is finalized in a couple of weeks after we reach San Diego:

We are expecting significant improvement to comfort levels both at sea and at anchor with this new system
We are expecting significant improvement to comfort levels both at sea and at anchor with this new system

 

So all is left is the dirty plumbing job – but now that we came back to Santa Catalina island this project will have to wait.

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