Our latest entry always comes up first...

Click this link if you want to start at the beginning of our trip from
South Carolina (where we bought the boat) to Lake Ontario Click this link:

If you want to see the story of our 2 1/2 year project getting
Blowin' Bubbles ready for our life on board click here:

If you want to start at the beginning of our trip:
START OF TRIP - July 2014
2015, 2016, 2017, 2018

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Progress in the Mid Winter Freeze....

Over the last few weeks I have been building a diesel polishing unit. For Some reason, in Canada, this is something that no one ever uses... I got the plans from a fellow who has a unit on his boat... With his design as a guide I have now built a wonderful, compact unit that will not only polish the fuel in my own tanks, but will transfer and/or pump fuel from another container should the need arise...

From the pictures you can see that there are two filters. the first will either strain the fuel (if if is REALLY dirty) or flow through with a 10 micron filter. the second, is a spin-on filter that is also 10 microns... on the other side the 12 volt, 10 GPM pump will be located just below the valves.

The valves are designed to either pump the fuel or filter the fuel, depending on how they are set. The pump itself is ordered and is waiting at our mailbox. We will pick it up at the end of the month...

Thanks to all the people who helped this project come together. If you want a parts list and supplier sheet, just email me and I will send it along...

The other happy event this month was the Toronto Boat Show where Shelley and I picked up a few odds and ends needed for our spring launch... We got 3 blocks from Gaurhauser (really cheap!) and a solar vent for the fwd head and a Hella 2 speed fan for the aft cabin... And of course, a couple of new pairs of Topsiders... you can't ever have enough deck shoes....

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Tuesday, January 8, 2013

This REALLY Works!

Well folks, sometimes in the middle of the ton of junk mail I get every day a gem gets uncovered.... This quote is from a boat building newsgroup that I subscribe to:

Penetrating Oils
Machinist's Workshop magazine recently published some information on various penetrating oils that I found very interesting. Some of you might appreciate this. The magazine reports they tested penetrates for break out torque on rusted nuts.
They are below, as forwarded by an ex-student and professional machinist. They arranged a subjective test of all the popular penetrates with the control being the torque required to remove the nut from a "scientifically rusted" environment.
*Penetrating oils ........... Average torque load to loosen*
No Oil used ...................516 pounds
WD-40 ..................... ... 238 pounds
PB Blaster .................... 214 pounds
Liquid Wrench ...............127 pounds
Kano Kroil .................... 106 pounds
ATF*-Acetone mix........53 pounds
The ATF-Acetone mix is a "home brew" mix of 50 - 50 automatic transmission fluid and acetone. Note this "home brew" released bolts better than any commercial product in this one particular test.

Our local machinist group mixed up a batch and we all now use it with equally good results. Note also that "Liquid Wrench" is almost as good as "Kroil" for about 20% of the price.

Steve from Godwin-Singer says that ATF-Acetone mix is best, but you can also use ATF and lacquer thinner in a 50-50 mix.
*ATF=Automatic Transmission Fluid

I went out yesterday and bought the components and a couple of spray bottles.... WOW! it works better than I could have imagined... who knew?

Have an awesome day everyone...

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Monday, January 7, 2013


That's right folks, Shelley and I will be heading off in our adventure in just 18 months. Our plan this year is to get the boat back down to Lake Ontario as early as possible in April.  I have booked the week after Easter off of work so hopefully the weather and the crane company and the trucking company will all co-operate and we can get the boat to St. Catharines....

Once we are on the hard beside the lake, we need to get all the standing rigging put back together and get the new arch installed with all the bits that go with that. Then we need the lifelines re-installed and we should be ready to go. All that should take about a month or so to complete.

Our plan right now is to dock the boat at the Royal Hamilton Yacht Club.  This is where we were for a few years before we bought Blowin' Bubbles.

On January 15th Shelley and I will be heading to Toronto to attend the annual Toronto Boat Show.

While we don't need many more bits for our boat, we have made a short list of people we want to see while we are there.  We will begin by hopefully picking up our life-raft at Inland Life-Rafts.  They are the people who have had the raft for a little while now and are re-certifying it for us. We were lucky enough to be there when they unpacked it and they inflated it for us so we know exactly what it looks like and what is inside it.  We also sent the folks there some extra supplies that we want put into the raft before it gets packed away.

After picking up the raft we will see a few people at the show.  We need a couple of turning blocks, some rope (we lost some last winter to the mice in the trailer), a man overboard pole and some solar vents.

The two other places we need to talk to are some canvas people to look at the possibility of one of them making our dodger, and a mechanical company who might be able to help us with a noisy shaft coupler.  both of those may end up being too expensive...

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