Saturday, June 13, 2009

Marching forward

If that damn engine would fire I would have made good progress. Alas, changing every part in the ignition system didn't change anything. No spark. My thinking now is that something happened when the engine was rewired. Everything checks out fine. I find voltage where I should find voltage and I find ground where I should find ground. Still, I am thinking I may have a bad connection that is just good enough to look good but under a load it fails. I have seen this with old rusty cars.

That last thing I can check -which I thought about on the ride home- is to run a jumper from the negative side of the coil straight to the battery. I already ran a jumper from the positive side of the battery - bypassing every positive power wire in the ignition system - but I didn't think to do that with a ground wire. The only other explanation is that one of the new components I just installed is bad. Highly unlikely but then again I am well past the 'likely' stage.

Other than the engine I made some decent progress today.

I started by glueing up some teak for the blocks that the stern cleats will mount on.

I would have made more progress on the bow mounted hardware except my friendly neighborhood shop that stocks a wide selection of bronze hardware has decided to stop opening for the weekends. That is a bummer.

Luckily my local hardware store had enough stainless hardware to finish my chainplate installation.

With the chainplates all bolted in I could seal them. Unfortunately, I could not get the chainplate covers I wanted in time so I am re-using my old narrow ones for just this season.

I didn't bother with screws since I will be pulling them up within a year anyway. The stern chainplate is of the wide variety that I want on all the chainplates.

With the chainplates in, I decided to continue with the rigging and install the pins that arrived from McMaster and Carr in just over 24 hours from when I ordered them. I found ordering them from McMaster to be much simpler than any marine resource I have used. They had every size of clevis pin and cotter pin that I could want and dead simple to find in their catalog too. They are a great resource.

I just started from the top and worked my way down.

I have no idea what those side tangs were for. No fractionally rigged Triton uses them. The rope is to pull wires through the mast someday.

The forestay and upper stays.

Funny, those struts are under a lot of compression and the only thing they rest on is a cotter pin. Why rigging doesn't fail more often is beyond my comprehension.

I secured the upper stays to the struts with stainless safety wire. I would have liked to have used monel but I could not find my stash and I refused to waste my time going to West Marine. Plus, my work has lots of this stainless wire. Its 'good enough' for one season.

Then I took a look at my roller furler. I will admit I was a little intimidated. More because I just didn't know what to expect. The instructions were good I guess but a little vague.

The first step was to mark the two holes that hold in the top fitting.

Heath from Northeast rigging cut my top foil to length when he made up my rigging order. He actually did a great job and packaged everything I would need and did everything he could to help speed me along - including writing his cell phone number on the box of parts. Too bad he left Northeast rigging. Actually, I have been hearing a lot of negative comments about the company so maybe Heath just didn't fit in.

After using the template to make the marks, I drilled two holes. The holes are what the self tapping screws go through to hold the two piece top fitting in place.

Then I laid out the rest of the foils and ran the forestay up inside them.

Then I just had to join the foils together. This is where the instructions were a little vague. There was a lot of 'tops' and 'fronts' and 'forwards' with no good reference to go from. Eventually, I kept staring at the parts and the logical solution became obvious.

Two plastic halves hook onto the metal joiner piece. A little tab is set in a slot on the joiner piece and the whole assembly is slid into the foil half.

Then 5200 is applied via a syringe into the screw holes and through a filler hole between the screw holes. Channels in the joiner piece allow the 5200 to flow around and fill a cavity sealing and securing the pieces together. The syringe and 5200 (plus the other tools I needed) were included with the installation kit. Thank you Harken.

Once I figured out how to join the foils, I just worked my way down and did them all.

When I got to the bottom I had to slide the halyard swivel and roller drum onto the foil and attach the bottom fitting with a Norseman type mechanical fitting. Funny, I googled for instructions on the fitting and one of the first and best hits came from site. A fellow Triton owner and inspiration for my own project. You would think Norseman would have their own page with installation instructions but I guess not. Thanks Tim, for posting those instructions with pictures :-)

The norseman took a few minutes to fuss with but I am pretty happy with it. Then I slid the roller drum down and fastened it with the pin.

And then I unpinned it again so that the turnbuckle would be accesible when we step the mast. I think that is a feature riggers like and one reason they recommend this Harken Mk IV Code Zero furler. A quick pull of the pin and the roller drum slides up allowing easy access to the turnbuckle underneath.

And just because I have a tendency to forget important things, I put all the rigging pins in the chainplates so they would be there when its time to step the mast.

The engine was actually the last thing I did today (mast rigging is mandatory for launching - engine is optional since towing is another option) so after some decent progress I got stumped again by the engine. Not a great way to end a productive day.

Oh well, there is always tomorrow...

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