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So far it isn't. Blew out the supply line, cleaned the check vlv/gasket assembly- it's a Groco HF, pretty easy to work with. Still won't draw water in. Going to gravity prime it tomorrow and see what happens. Last season it would lose prime now and again, I chalked it up to air getting into the supply line when heeled over. Cycling the seacock always fixed it, but not now. It's not recirc-ing bowl water through the rim, so the piston seal is still ok. Eh, it's prolly due for an overhaul anyway.
Besides, I found the raw water pump shaft seal is leaking by also- so I gots bigger fish to fry right now.
 

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Head & waterpump optest sat- ready in all respects to get the season underway!
Which slip are you in? I’m 60 inside the T head
 

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I haven’t posted in a while as I needed to take a break from forums during the early months of the pandemic. We have been sailing though – almost every weekend since May as there haven’t been other weekend obligations to keep us away from the boat. Several of those weekends we’ve taken slips at transient marinas, both to beat the heat with pools and A/C and because anchoring out, ironically, is a bit less appealing to us in these times. To explain that, with two little kids aboard it’s almost essential to everyone’s sanity to be able to go ashore from the anchored boat for at least a couple of hours. With things closed or with us not feeling ready to go back to some of the things that are open, going ashore becomes somewhat more complicated. The kids are still too little for us to feel comfortable to have them swim off the anchored boat, so that’s not an option for keeping them occupied.

The marinas have been a mixed bag when it comes to social distancing and mask wearing, both among staff and slipholders. There was one standout where everybody seemed to be doing well with everything, but generally it’s been disappointing to the point where we’re reconsidering how many more marina stays we want to do for the rest of the season.

I did see a press release stating the Baltimore City dockmaster’s office will not be staffed this summer and therefore tying up at the city finger piers, west wall, and piers 3, 4, & 5 will be free. Of course, there is not much reason to go there right now and probably at least a few good reasons to avoid the area.
 

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"I've always assumed (without any data) that the elimination of mercury has made float switches less reliable. When my prior float switch went bad (would turn on, but often would not shut off), I found an identical replacement (with Mercury) that was in leftover stock.

So in addition to information about better bilge pumps, I'd love to hear from someone who knows about how float switches are designed and who has the best ones."

A year prior to selling my boat, I purchased an electronic bilge pump switch. Most of the time, it worked like a charm, but after a few months, it would not shut off. It turns out that the electrodes that triggered the pump switch had to be kept fairly clean of bilge crud, especially oil that dripped from the engine, despite the fact it was just a tiny amount. To combat this, I had to put a tablespoon of Dawn Dish Detergent in the bilge, then flush the bilge with fresh water and allow it to pump out the cruddy water. After than, the switch worked like brand new.

Most bilge pump switches have a hermetically sealed micro switch. The switches are pretty much intended for low voltage use and the latching contacts tend to carbon up after multiple uses with a heavy-duty bilge pump. The old mercury switches could handle the higher amperage loads and multiple usage with ease. When you looked inside the switch housing all you saw was a small, mercury-filled tube with 2 contacts at one end. When the float tilted the tube into position, the mercury provided the conductor between the two contacts. No carbon possible because the tube was evacuated and no visible sparks that I could see. Those switches lasted forever, but were banned by the EPA because of possible (but not probable) contamination from leakage into the environment.

I think I paid about $100 for the electronic switch and it only drew a few milliamps when in the standby mode.

Gary
 

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snip:

The marinas have been a mixed bag when it comes to social distancing and mask wearing, both among staff and slipholders. There was one standout where everybody seemed to be doing well with everything, but generally it’s been disappointing to the point where we’re reconsidering how many more marina stays we want to do for the rest of the season.
snip:
We've had some similar experiences. We've already used the boat more this year than we got to last year as I spent as much time as possible visiting my mother (turned 103 today)in SC. Since we can't visit her, and there aren't the usual other alternatives, most weekends have been on the boat.

However, we've leaned more towards anchoring out, and only going for one night stints when we might have gone longer if going ashore and enjoying the attractions were an option. We did go ashore in Annapolis and it appeared to be the most crowded I have ever seen it. The actual number of people in town may have been less than typical, but it seemed packed because they were all outside on the streets. I wasn't at all comfortable being around that many people, masked or not, so we did a quick lap, picked up an extra bag of ice and headed right back to the boat.

We may try a transient slip eventually, but I sort of balk at the expense when most shoreside attractions are not particularly attractive for me right now, even if they happen to be open.
 

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Two weeks ago my wife and I and our nine year old granddaughter went in search of jelly free waters and ended up near the ocean at Cape Charles and Kiptopeke. We took an overnight slip at the town harbor. There was really no mask wearing but plenty of social distancing in the marina. Marina staff did not wear masks but did keep distant. They guys helping in the slips did not handle things like shore power cords or water hoses. At the fuel dock the attendant handed me the nozzle and took my credit card and that was as close to contact that we got. I felt ok since everything was outdoors.

We ate at the Shanty and they seemed to be following rules about masking and table distancing. No one was allowed in without a mask.

We went to the beach to watch the sunset and found again mostly groups of people distant from other groups. The hardest thing is keeping kids apart from each other, but they are beginning to get it. Seems to depend on the parents.

We anchored behind the ships at Kiptopeke and used the south beach which was less crowded. There were larger groups here but still isolated from each other. Seemed to be a lot of immigrant families out fishing and crabbing. It was easy to distance ourselves from everyone else.

Back at our home marina we spent a good bit of time being the only users in the pool.

This weekend I'm taking both of my nine year old grandkids to the bay. It's going to be hot so afternoons will probably be spent at the pool but we'll anchor out at night.

I think its a little easier to self distance down on the Rappahannock as the population is less dense than up north.
 

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Sounds like you had a good time. We’ve eaten at the Shanty. Good simple seafood which I like.,Also ate at the Irish Pub in the old bank.

sounds like you try to distance which is good. We found on our trip to Potomac at the end of May distancing but not in Solomons. In fact it was scary with people yelling at others to putmasks on and them yelling back it’s an abridgment of their rights. We got out of there.
 

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"We found on our trip to Potomac at the end of May distancing but not in Solomons. In fact it was scary with people yelling at others to putmasks on and them yelling back it’s an abridgment of their rights. We got out of there."

Obviously, those idiots have never read the Constitution or the Bill Of Rights. In reality, they have no right to infect another person, and they can be charged criminally for intentionally doing so.

Gary :cool:
 

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Need a little help on the Chesapeake...

Hi guys, of course as luck would have it, I just got to the Chesapeake and life takes a left turn. I am currently in California taking care of my elderly parents, and need help moving my catamaran from Baltimore to somewhere with ample storage on the hard until spring.

I know there is a licensed Captain on this thread that I can hire? Also where do you know of a catamaran haul out and storage that you like (cheaper is better)?

Thank you in advance,

Don
 

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Dave Skolnick of Auspiciousworks.com is a seasoned delivery skipper whom I've crewed with several times.
 

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I would also recommend Dave. Methodical, Experienced, Attention to detail, safety first.
 

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You may be referring to me, since my merchant mariner credential is in my signature. I am credentialed, but I do not currently practice professionally. It's not something you can dabble at ethically. You either go all-in and buy the professional liability insurance, professional grade towing coverage, document your boat with coastwise endorsement (if you do crewed charters on your own boat), etc. or you don't practice. There is a significant fixed cost that comes with being a professional captain that makes it unprofitable to be a "weekender".

I also know Dave Skolnick. He's a real pro, and I'd strongly advise you hire him if he's available. He will check out your boat closely to make sure it's safe, and I advise that you follow his advice in so doing. Sounds like you'll have a short trip (assuming you're looking to stay in the Chesapeake), so seaworthiness won't be as tricky as if you were doing an ocean passage.
 

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You may be referring to me, since my merchant mariner credential is in my signature. I am credentialed, but I do not currently practice professionally. It's not something you can dabble at ethically. You either go all-in and buy the professional liability insurance, professional grade towing coverage, document your boat with coastwise endorsement (if you do crewed charters on your own boat), etc. or you don't practice. There is a significant fixed cost that comes with being a professional captain that makes it unprofitable to be a "weekender".

I also know Dave Skolnick. He's a real pro, and I'd strongly advise you hire him if he's available. He will check out your boat closely to make sure it's safe, and I advise that you follow his advice in so doing. Sounds like you'll have a short trip (assuming you're looking to stay in the Chesapeake), so seaworthiness won't be as tricky as if you were doing an ocean passage.
Many on here have certified credentials
Few put them in their monikers

credentials does not mean any real time experience other than what the credential requires which is minimal it means you pass certain waypoints and tests to get the certification or ability to charge money to be a captain

even fewer actually run a business as a certified captain

anyone you decide to choose ask for recommendations and a list of the last 10 jobs
 

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No kidding. I was responding to this:
I know there is a licensed Captain on this thread...
I didn't see it in others' signatures on this thread, so I surmised that he might have been referring to me:
 

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I knew that. You are the only one who puts it in his signature, while others chose not to was my point . that he should look deeper than that.

The OP can google delivery captains in the Chessie . I know of 4 whom I’ve worked with . 1 I hired. It’s great the OP already has recommendations from all thee of us already

BTW Dave doesn’t have it in his I noticed

I know a number of people on the site which have credentials including me . Getting my six pack was relatively easy and I choose to not even bother with master as I didn’t ever want to purse it ability to use. The most difficult part for me was getting all the documentation for the on water experience.
 

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I knew that. You are the only one who puts it in his signature, while others chose not to was my point ...
No, I am not the only one on Sailnet who puts MMC in my signature. I might be the only one on this thread who did (but I'm not going to re-read 596 posts to verify), and of course, that could change anytime as others post here and/or update their signatures.

I don't consider this a big deal. You're welcome to do as you choose. Dave Skolnick hasn't posted here for several years (which is a real loss for all of us) so his signature is kind of a dead issue.
 

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Rick, I think you have misunderstood what I posted and taken it to mean something it didnt or you though I was criticizing you had that in your moniker. Not at all.

My thought to the OP was because he posted that there was a licensed captain in the thread to hire ( May have referred to you) to help him move his boat. I was responding to him that there were many people he could contact that don’t have the” licensed captain” in their moniker, but they could possible help him, that many people didn’t put that verbiage. in their monikers.

easy does it i was not Referring to you

To the OP......attached is website for Chesapeake delivery captains

I have recommended Dave
I would also recommend Caitlyn [email protected]
I gwould also recommend ....Dane Skagen .....http://www.usdeliverycaptain.com/DeliveryCaptainDaneSkagen.html

I know all three and receive no renumeration from them for recommending them

in terms of lifts for the cat I would contact Bert Jabins , Herrington, Hartge boat yards.
 

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Thank you all and Dave at Auspiciousworks was the one I was thinking of. I'm bummed that I'm not going to meet you guys this summer but good news is I'm keeping my boat in the Chesapeake until at least the spring. The CAPCA link is awesome too.

Don
 

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Sure is hot out there...Not much in the way of sailing now that I got my new boat. 1987 Catalina 34 fin keel. Very comfortable compared to the Tartan. Bimini, dodger and connector is great in the summer sun. A/C makes working down below quite comfortable. I still have a list of to-do's to bring her up to my standards but I'll get there.
The couple that bought my Tartan appear to love her and it looks like they will take very good care of her. Already some upgrades.

Hopefully the heat will break and we'll see some of you out on the bay.
 
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