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Sunday, May 27, 2012

Getting Some Work Done on the Masts

This Friday was spent getting some work done on the masts.  On the main mast I discovered that someone had left an old wire in the mast....  It got wrapped around the halyard for the genoa. what a mess... Oh well, it is fixed now and the new wind speed and direction unit has been wired.

I am also trying to source a track for the storm tri-sail that I can attach to the mast...  I have found one so far but it is in Rhode Island...  To ship a piece 20 feet long will be a real problem so finding something we can use close to home would be great.

I wired the mizzen mast for the WiFi antenna, the DSC/SSB antenna, and the TV antenna.  As soon as I get the last cable that I need for the radar unit I can test it and then install that cable which should finish everything up. All that will be left will be to decide which mast to wire the emergency strobe and the PA/Hailer horn to.

I also brought all of our charts to the boat and they are now put away in the chart drawers and table...

Next week I hope that I can get the SSB and the VHS transmitters installed.  this is a pretty big job that will include wiring in the antenna tuner in the lazerette and the ground plane.  The traditional way to properly ground a sideband radio is to lay out a 2" wide copper band the length of the boat.  Not only is that difficult to do but it requires a fair amount of maintenance. We found a gizmo that makes that all unnecessary. The KISS-SSB is a marine SSB ground plane system. This Icom endorsed principle is the one and only complete counterpoise system. It does not require  any holes under the water-line in the hull for a bronze plate, copper foil or copper mesh. The system has over 600 feet of exact length wire radials built in it. The SSB also has a pactor modem that we will be installing so that we can send and receive email when we are off shore...  Now while this system will work, it is limited by the quality of the signal that we have at a given time and it is REALLY slow so we will be setting up a special email address that will only be used for short "text only" communications and weather grib files.

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