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  #611  
Old 04-28-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

Fuel tank level system:

I am old school when it comes to tank level indication having lived with failed electrical/electronic indication that required draining tank after tank to repair frequent failures and then refilling and recalibrating the instruments. I know the new electronic instruments are much more reliable but my engine burns less than a quart an hour and there is no need to know fuel level on an instantaneous basis. The tank is under the engine and if I did have an electronic instrument it would likely be a PITA to access and repair or replace.

So when I replaced the fuel tank on Talofa Lee I planned for manual tank measurement. The tank is under the engine and the dipstick method of checking requires that the stick be flexible. I have always used a 1/4 inch dowel. However last time I used the dowel it cracked. By good fortune the bottom piece didn't fall into the tank.

This week my wife waved a broken chain-type dog leash at me and asked if I could use it (I am always stashing this and that item that is broken that I may "need" at some point in the future so she frequently checks with me before throwing things out.) She didn't know it but she was waving my low cost foolproof fuel tank level indicating system at me.

That chain is the perfect tool for measuring the tank level. It is flexible. It is heavy so it hangs directly down into the tank. All I needed was something to keep the upper end from falling into the tank and to calibrate it.

The tank was still empty so I filled it with five gallon jerry cans and calibrated the chain at five gallon increments (25 gallons total). I marked the chain at each five gallons and marked the point where the chain meets the top of the fill tube when the first link hits the bottom. I put a plastic cable clamp through the top link to prevent dropping the chain into the tank. I marked the chain increments with tightly wrapped red rescue tape that I had in my tool box.

Here it is:

Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!-img_2876.jpg

I used about eight inches of rescue tape which is about a dollar a foot. The clamp was one of a pack of several different sizes I bought at a big box store a few years ago...perhaps another buck.

I am sure I will be happy with the TLI's accuracy and reliability.
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  #612  
Old 04-28-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rhapsody-NS27 View Post
I didn't know about this. Thanks.
I'll remember this when I move East.
People move East?
Really?
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  #613  
Old 04-28-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

Quote:
Originally Posted by MastUndSchotbruch View Post
Don't know what part of the world you are posting from but the automated radio check on Channel 27, sponsored by Sea Tow, is FAR superior to your method. See http://www.seatow.com/boating-safety...d-radio-checks

Where I am (Upper Chessie), they have at least two stations (Annapolis and Great Oaks Landing) that my 20 year old basic VHF reaches.

OK, OK, I admit it is a stretch to call this a 'project' but it is definitely 'low bucks' (free!). I hope pointing out this service out helps someone. If nothing else, it might reduce the stupid radio checks on Ch16 followed by the inevitable admonishments by USCG.

[Note added in proof: Sorry, I have no idea why sailnet mangles the URL. It looks fine when I submit it and I tried to fix it but SN does its mangling. Just google it...]
I was thinking "hey honey go out in the dingy. Keep rowing I want to test the range. Yes, I know your tired, but I have almost finished my beer, I mean Your not quite far enough.... Let me sail the other way for a while and get a real good test of the range."

Of course this could be part of the reason I am getting divorced!
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  #614  
Old 04-29-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

Paul, I thought you were going to say that you sent her out to the bow, then asked her to face forward to see if the radio worked. Now turn back and face me; yup, still works. One more step backward? (splash)
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  #615  
Old 04-29-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimgo View Post
Paul, I thought you were going to say that you sent her out to the bow, then asked her to face forward to see if the radio worked. Now turn back and face me; yup, still works. One more step backward? (splash)
that was the first wife...
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  #616  
Old 04-29-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ccriders View Post
People move East?
Really?
When I am finally free of the military and get out of Tennessee, I'm looking at moving to VA and maybe have my boat in MD. I'm looking at Marinas between Annapolis and Solomons. Still have a few years before that happens.
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  #617  
Old 04-29-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rhapsody-NS27 View Post
When I am finally free of the military and get out of Tennessee, I'm looking at moving to VA and maybe have my boat in MD. I'm looking at Marinas between Annapolis and Solomons. Still have a few years before that happens.
Can't argue with that. Sailing the Chessapeake is fabulous, just about everything you could want in a home cruising ground.
John
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  #618  
Old 04-29-2013
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Gmimbled force 10 PITA

After way way too many hours of wondering what to do to enclose around my F10 range and after 3 attempts this is the end result.

Long box behind the stove with one long side angled so the stove can swing past it. The lid for the box will be cutting board. On the sides it's plywood with white Formica glued on and then screwed with finish washers to make them easy to remove for stove servicing.
swing up;

swing down;

sitting level with lid off box. (still needs hold downs of some sort)


There is a cutting board for the stove top but I'll make a really nice one someday.
cost less then $25 since it was scrap plywood, Formica
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my current "project"!
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  #619  
Old 04-29-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rhapsody-NS27 View Post
When I am finally free of the military and get out of Tennessee, I'm looking at moving to VA and maybe have my boat in MD. I'm looking at Marinas between Annapolis and Solomons. Still have a few years before that happens.
That is only half way East!

Down
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  #620  
Old 04-30-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

Making new circuit breaker panel box. Adding a couple 12v accessory plugs, a LED power indicator light and a analog battery voltage meter. Got some 1/2" oak at Lowes for about $20, indicator light at Frys for $3, voltage meter for $9. I already had some stain and varnish. A couple small brass hinges and an inside cabinet latch for another $6. Another $20 worth of Becks. So let's see...about $58 total. That should qualify for low bucks. I'll post a pretty picture after it's on the wall. Sorry for the junky picture.

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