B-B-B-B-Bad… Bad to the bjorn

So a couple days before Christmas, I was in the RV parked outside REI.  It has dark tinted windows so from the outside just looks like a small van.

A guy parks next to me and as soon as he emerges from the car I instantly profile him and decide he’s just sketchy lookin. He looks like every Gary Ridgeway, Dahmer, Bundy or Dexter looking guy you’ve ever seen,  Middle aged, white guy, kinda scrawny kinda getting a bald spot combover deal, thick glasses,  whiter than Casper in the Arizona sun.  Total Creeper.  Totally out of place.

So he’s standing rummaging through the back seat for a LONNNG time, and then he stands up, looks around all fidgety and weird again to see if anybody noticed him, and pulls out this massive black cordura body armor!  W.   T.    F!!!!!!    He spends a few minutes adjusting and fidgeting with in, making sure the ballistic plate is adjusted on his sternum correctly and then looks around all sketchy again before going disappearing again in the rear seat. Shit’s about to go down.

So I think, Wow, OK this is how I am gonna die.  Shot dead in the crossfire a little strip mall in a mass shooting in Phoenix reminiscent of the Gabby Giffords shooting in Tucson.

I was really surprised when instead of an AK he popped back up with an infant that he strapped to his chest.  They really should put a little orange tag or something on those things to make em look less menacing.  Just sayin.


My new home addition.

So after a couple 1/2 days of ‘sort-of’ work my little $75 TENT trailer has transmogrified into a pretty nifty little toy hauler.  The vertical post up front is the future home of a 220w solar array. (it also has a hitch on it to mount the shelf thing that’s currently on the Motorhome. So far I’ve got $50 in lights, $50 for a jack, and about 140 in steel, 2×4’s etc. (and like $70 in gas and ferry fees which counts I guess.)

Tent trailer purchased for $75.

Tent trailer purchased for $75.

mini toy hauler after a couple day's work.

mini toy hauler after a couple day’s work.

total so far $385

total so far $385

I still need to figure out where to put the BBQ :)

It’s always the last place you look!

Yesterday I had a friend over to help and the damned compressor died (again).  I struggled with it a bit trying to start it before i got tired and gave up.

So today I went out to look at it and the oil pressure switch was not shorted, pulled the plug and it had spark, noted that it had compression and air, which leaves fuel right?  Yep it’s got gas…

So then I methodically trace the fuel line from the tank to the carb…   Hey, wait a minute, what’s that valve do?  OhGodDammit!


Got my degree in Redneck Engineering today :)

Oceana was built in Holland, and like many dutch steel boats she really has some exceptional craftsmanship.  One example of this is the curved metalwork, oceana is sculpted out of steel.

It’s great to look at but I’ve been dreading working on a couple parts because honestly I have no idea how to do it.

I’ve been putting off working on a couple spots on the aft cabin because it’s the one spot where that curved area is corroded.

So today I went to the friendly machinist near the marina and asked him if he could make me a piece of bent metal to repair that area.


He didn’t have a machine capable of making such a bend, and really didn’t know anybody else who did.

As I was walking out of his shop, I spotted a piece of thin pipe and got me an ideer!

I wedged the pipe into a piece of Aluminium “I” beam I have for a future project, and it just so happened to intersect the pipe near the middle.

So I just eyeballed it and ‘guessed’ at trying to quarter the pipe.



Zip, Zapped it real quick with the plasma cutter and bada boom bada bing I think this sucker’s gonna work!!!


Aaron’s Comprehensive 3-part plan to sail around the world.

Step one; go to the fancy high-end woodworking store and get a bunch of fancy-schmancy handle thingy’s

Step Two, Wack the jig off the thingamajig.

Step Three: Whack em again with a hammer.

Why Lookie there! I done plugged up them holes permanently like!!!! I Fixt it!
I fixt it!!!

Sad thing is: going to the high-end woodworking store known for being a bit ‘spensive and these more complicated lathe turned pieces were still HALF the cost of tapered plugs @ Worst Marine. :)

The truth is I figured it might be a good idea to keep welding sparks from falling into the diesel tank, since I seem to be pretty good at startin fires all on my own without the excitement of a large explosion.

Finally having a blast again.

So I’ve actually done a bit of work since my last post; FOUR months ago  ug where does the time go!

But I admit I’ve gotten a little down about the boat and feeling a little not exactly overwhelmed, but just lost interest a little bit I guess.

But so anyway I met a pretty cool girl and she was curious and interested in the boat and wanted to play with my tools.  (what can I say, I gots me some cool tools)

So anyway her enthusiasm rubbed off a bit and one of the cool tools I wanted to let her play with is the pneumatic needle scaler.

So I set her loose in the engine room because there were a couple places on the hull with some bad rust scale that really worried me.  But so anyway after she nuked those couple really bad spots with the scaler I followed up with a sandblaster and made a pretty amazing discovery.

The sand just peeled back decade after decade of dirt and rust and neglect, until it got to the original 76 year old paint from 1938. I dunno what’s in that crap, but it’s bulletproof and in STUNNINGLY good condition. The sandblaster easilly chews through rust and paint and dirt until it hits that old probably lead based paint and it just stops.  It’s pretty amazing! As you can see in this picture, there’s just a ton of stuff that looks like it could be rust coming through the hull, this is after a pressure wash BTW!   But almost all of the rust and grunge discovered so far has been sitting on the surface of PERFECT steel.

Sandblast media, DECADES of paint and grime and perfect white paint from 1938 on the right.

So like a well needed shot in the arm, I’m suddenly excited to be working on the boat and making just a bit of progress every day!

I’m not quite emotionally  ready yet to discuss Della being a way better welder than me on her first day though.

Headway at last

Once again I’ve been quite remiss in posting updates because I’ve actually had a few very productive days!

The big update was that Oceana got relocated 100 Yards over to the crane and we pulled both of the masts and the engine out of the boat


However it seems that during the great 4TB hard drive crash/new laptop/new laptop with dead hard drive/installing a Drobo fileserver debacle of 2014 those pictures are the ones that are lost :(


But since then I’ve also removed the binnacle which involved cutting off the nuts which I a a little freaking out about because the bolts are big and kinda unique so I “HOPE” I can replace them  :)

And then I started cutting into the leaking disaster that was the left side of the cockpit:

Tada!  I messed up a bit because I was going to leave the middle seam un-welded and cut out  a spot for the hatch there but once I started welding I was having so much fun I forgot :)