The Better Bucket

Hey Ya’ll

Here’s a post that yields from my typical _ _ _ _ _ _ (you fill in the blanks) type. The previous Saturday it rained and rained and rained some more. So instead of heading out to ol’ Zoot Allures, I stayed home. I actually didn’t even step out side! I was starting to somewhat clear up my messy boat corner in my living room and came across a piece of 1/2inch rope which I’d been saving for a project I’ve read in a Lin and Larry book “The Cost Conscious Cruiser”. It’s “The Better Bucket”. Some links of it are here and here.

I’m a copyright fiend!

It’s a canvas bucket which is easy to store and scoops up water just about every time (instead of bouncing on the sea surface). Plus it looks salty as hell and is cool.  So first you burn and melt the ends of the rope together to form a ring. I also did the sewing part which makes sure it won’t come apart…. plus it was still raining! Then you measure out your canvas, fold it over and sew down one side.

Now, the next part was kinda confusing. And if you hit the links above and you figure it out, bravo to you! I experimented with a piece of paper and pretty much came to the conclusion that…. that canvas you folded over and sewed form a tube, which you pass through the ring and fold it over itself engulfing the rope ring, thus engulfing the ring in the fold over, forming , lets say,  a bottomless bucket (?). If you can explain that any better…. please do!!

Next you sew on a double layer bottom. This is a bit funky cause I’m going through 4 layers of fabric, and 6 at the hem. Plus it tends to pucker so you gotta take your time, which I didn’t. But hey, every thing I sew has my signature on it! Et viola!

Now I needed some lead to sew close to the rim so the better bucket tips in the sea to fill. During the week I went and shopped some. It’s a meter long and weighs 1 kilo. So 100 grams is 10 cm worth. Easy! Plus I can’t find my Moms  old Weight Watcher scale which is somewhere in my pad!?!! The instructions say to melt some down to form a disk. I opted just to fold my 10cm piece in half and pound the daylights out of it with a hammer. The hell with the neighbors! They’ve been too noisy lately anyway. So I drilled a couple of hole into it, filed the corners, sewed it on,  added two grommets (metal ones…. I hate sewing by hand like the instructions say), and……………………………………….

I got a Better Buuucket

I got a Better Buuuucket

Nia nia nia

nia nia


Stay tuned,

Capt Pete.

ps…. Spring has sprung! It stopped raining, the sun came out! I gotta get working on Zoot Allures before it is engulfed by nature!

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Heat Exchangers and Oil Coolers

Yes folks, it’s time to run away, flee, my little landlumbering snowflakes. Not much to get out of this post. Unless you like a Perkin’s heat exchanger and oil cooler…. or… you want to follow in on the investigations of the ties between Trump and Russia on the the Rachel Maddows Show…. something I’ve been totally hooked on.

Other news… we had 10 days of really sweet weather! And… guess what….. it’s shitty again. But last weekend was Zoot Allures weekend. I got my alternator back from the shop and re-installed it.. 4 times… ’cause I’m a dummie.

Back to the title. So… Zoot Allures has a classic diesel freakin’ Perkins 4.108. That in turn has two coolers. One for the engine coolant (like a car has a radiator and fan), and one for the oil. The heat is taken away by passing cool seawater though the coolers, aka heat exchangers. Since these coolers consist of dissimilar metals, a pencil zinc (a sacrificial anode) is inserted into them which needs to be checked and replace on occasion. When I got ol’ Zoot, the Perkins wasn’t very well maintained and the zincs were gone. I pulled the coolant heatexchanger and had it repaired… it was on its last leg. That was 5 years ago so I pulled it again. It’s lookin’ good apart from some debris. The zinc is on the coolant side, not the seawater side, which is odd, but all is looking good.

The oil cooler on the other hand….. the zinc was gone. Here’s a comparative zinc look.

If the oil cooler fails, seawater will enter the engine oil. In other words…. bye bye Perkins. So, with the help of Kostas the Man, we pulled the cooler. (Er…. it’s an OIL cooler…. er…. what an oily mess… again! I’m sooo ready for an electric motor!!!)

Conclusion….. it’s actually fine BUT…. the bracket that holds it on the mighty vibrating Perkins almost ate right through it!!!! WTF!! In the picks you can see the perpendicular gauge on the cylinder.

Ain’t that pretty? Just a hair away from being holed!

It wouldn’t of made it through the summer. So hopefully it will be repairable. So the Perkins is officially dead… again. Man, I’m so tired of this. When will the luxury days of varnishing the interior and other cosmetics come. Did I buy a truck or a sailboat?!?!

And yes, five (5) years ago, March 13th, I bought/saved Zoot Allures. Love at first sight. But like all relation”ships”, it’s not perfect. Ol’ Zoot’s got a dead relative hidden under the doghouse floor boards. Ain’t that a bitch!

Stay tuned and well maintained, bitch!

Capt Pete

ps… maybe this summer I’ll cruise through the Korinth Canal to the Ionian sea and harpoon Ol’ Zoot into the ex Onasis owned island, now owned now by a laundering Russian who’s placed a 2 nautical mile sailing prohibition, Scorpios. What an appropriate name!

pss… I gotta stop watching the news and start watch boat porn again!! 🙂


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Doodling…. not that I have a pen in hand…. but after some searching I came up with a better explanation.

“early 17th century (originally as a noun denoting a fool, later as a verb in the sense ‘make a fool of, cheat’): from Low German dudeltopf, dudeldopp ‘simpleton’. ”

dsc01730dsc01728Why you ask. Same old reason. Work and cold. Like, when I got down to ol’ Zoot I found some ice in my bucket. Yes, I acknowledge it colder elsewhere but you guys have better heat sources (a.k.a more money) to recover to. But this old whine is boring me too.

But that doesn’t mean there hasn’t been a bit of winter mayhem on Zoot Allures.

dsc01726One is that I pulled the SERCK heat exchanger. Four years ago it was almost holed from electrolysis and repaired. I’ll feel better if I know it’s still ok. The one thing that puzzles me is that the plumbing. My setup is the that coolant passes around the tubes flowing the sea water. Isn’t it supposed to be the other way around? The pencil zinc seems to think so.

dsc01727dsc01724The real mayhem in my eyes is the electrics “clean up” with the help of Kostas. It would be nice, let alone prudent, to know what goes where and why. Apparently the negative common buss is a bolt with everything on it and the whole spaghetti mess behind the panel makes my stomach turn. It’s gonna be an on going “thing”. While I had Kostas aboard, I had him check out the shaft break installation… in his re-occuring position.

A nice highlight is a belated xmas present from Sis.

dsc01733YAY! I’ve read quite a few Sterling Hayden quotes before  but I never knew the story behind him. One hellava character! There’s some old interviews of him on youtube that are priceless.

This is gonna be a “way cool” reading!

Stay tuned… and since it’s cold… read a book!

Capt Pete.

ps…. in a nutshell……………

“To be truly challenging, a voyage, like a life, must rest on a firm foundation of financial unrest. Otherwise, you are doomed to a routine traverse, the kind known to yachtsmen who play with their boats at sea… “cruising” it is called. Voyaging belongs to seamen, and to the wanderers of the world who cannot, or will not, fit in. If you are contemplating a voyage and you have the means, abandon the venture until your fortunes change. Only then will you know what the sea is all about.

“I’ve always wanted to sail to the south seas, but I can’t afford it.” What these men can’t afford is not to go. They are enmeshed in the cancerous discipline of “security.” And in the worship of security we fling our lives beneath the wheels of routine – and before we know it our lives are gone.

What does a man need – really need? A few pounds of food each day, heat and shelter, six feet to lie down in – and some form of working activity that will yield a sense of accomplishment. That’s all – in the material sense, and we know it. But we are brainwashed by our economic system until we end up in a tomb beneath a pyramid of time payments, mortgages, preposterous gadgetry, playthings that divert our attention for the sheer idiocy of the charade.

The years thunder by, The dreams of youth grow dim where they lie caked in dust on the shelves of patience. Before we know it, the tomb is sealed.

Where, then, lies the answer? In choice. Which shall it be: bankruptcy of purse or bankruptcy of life? ”
― Sterling Hayden, Wanderer

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