Tech Net F


TWIST TIES
You can get a continuous roll of coiled twist ties with a cutter included from garden centers. (Salty Paws)

VELCRO
Light duty, velcro spools can be found in garden centers. These are sold for tomato plants, etc. (Dyad)

WALL HOOKS
Command 3M strips can hang on bulkheads without making holes. (Cat Tales)

WIRE TIES
Stainless steel wire ties for single use projects. Good for exterior use and they look good too. The sun won't bother them. They come in a ten pack and are inexpensive. Found at Depot/Lowes electrical department. Auto stores carry them for twice the price. (Mon Amie)
Comment:
UV tolerant wire ties can be found at the Depot. (C_Language)

Fastenal carries a huge variety of fasteners of all descriptions.

(also rivets)

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Tips from "Valkyrie"
Mix carefully or your results will either not cure or will dry with no strength.
Start working and keep working quickly.
Anyone can do this.
Two quart multiple batches are workable for large projects.

FYI
The shelf life of the catalyst is relatively short. After about a year, it will be inert.

Glass work will harden on the surface, but actually takes weeks to fully cure.

HEADS UP
The vapor of the catalyst can actually set off a whole can of resin. Keep them separated in distance when open.

THINGS THAT WORK
Add wax to polyester resin for finishing. (Abraxis)
If you use wax in your gel coat, it should only be used for the top coat.

Use melted candle wax as a mold release for fiberglass. Melt into place, then use a heat gun to release. (C_Language)

Laundry detergent is good for removing the wax film on new polyester. Don't use acetone on new work, as it will melt.

Use cooking spray on screws for a mold release from new epoxy. (Dyad)

RECOMMENDED
Raka in Fort Pierce is a good source for fiberglass supplies. (Salty Paws, Valkyrie)

(also dinghy repair,  hull care)

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MAINTENANCE
Shake canisters or invert and tap them to keep powder loose.
Keep them in good condition and check the gauges.
Manufacturers recommend shaking them monthly.
Fire Boy brand is best for engine compartments.

Think P.A.S.S. to operate the extinguisher:
Pull the pin out.
Aim at the fire's base.
Squeeze the handle.
Sweep it from side to side.

FYI
The powder in them is sodium bicarbonate.

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"If the wind is blowing toward the cut, the fishing is good."
Local Bahamian Lore (Solitaire)

Query: What's the longest safe time frame from catch to fillet? Sometimes it's difficult to process immediately.
Comments:
No longer than six hours max. (Salty Paws)
In the meantime, wrap a saltwater-soaked towel on the fish and leave it in the shade. (Destiny, Hold Fast)

BARRACUDA
Decrease barracuda catches by fishing in 30 feet or more.

CALM THAT FISH
Use a squeeze bottle for alcohol (booze, any kind). Squirt it into the fish gills to sedate it.

Drape a dark colored towel over the fish to keep the fish from flopping overboard. (Amazing Grace, Valkyrie)

CONCH
(see conch)

DOUBLE HOOKS
...catch more fish.
...present more opportunity to snag debris.
...are fairly dangerous when actually landing a fish.

FISH FINDER
(see depth sounder)

GAFF
While the fish is still in the water, use the gaff by sliding it under the gill and through the mouth. This method makes the fish docile and easy to catch or release without undue harm. (Salty Paws)

Gaff near the tail to prevent excessive thrashing. (Paydirt)

GAFF SUBSTITUTE
Get a stainless steel, T-handled hay hook. Antiques shops. (Valkyrie)

Dexter-Russell stainless meat hooks work nicely. (Beluga)

In a pinch, a pole spear will substitute for a gaff to boat a good sized fish. (Slow Mocean)

HOOKAH RIGS
Query: How to avoid breathing moist air?
Suggestion:
Use a water catcher in the hose, such as a paint filter.

LINE
Use braided Kevlar line instead of monofiliment. It's smaller diameter means the reel can hold more so it won't run out while landing a fish. (Cat Tales)
Comment:
Use gloves if using braided line. It's strong and can cut hands. It's also helpful to use a roller-eye, as high tech line can cut through the eye. (C_Language)
It's very good line. It has no stretch and it's lively. (Shining Star)
Store it inside when not in use as it degrades in the sun. (Salty Paws)
Use monofiliment on 1/4 of the spool first, then attach the newer braided line. (Naked Lady)

Use weed-whacker line as a leader. (C_Language)

LIONFISH
Lionfish are 3 to 16" long and are easy targets. They will not struggle. Use gloves, spear, suit. Do not touch them with bare skin. Use your fins to push them off your spear. (Salty Paws)
To spear lion fish, remove the tip of your spear, then thrust into the fish.
They can be flicked off the spear without touching them. (Veranda)
If you have a fixed spear tip, place a small tube over the tip. (Salty Paws)

LOBSTER TOOL
Fashion a hook about 1/3 the size of a standard gaff hook and attach it to a 2' length of an old fishing rod. This tool will help extract shot lobsters out of tight spaces. (C_Language)

LURES
Query: Which color is best on cloudy days?
Comments:
Bright colors on cloudy days; dark colors for sunny days.
Use a flasher ahead of the leader. (Le Bella)
Use a few old CDs in series.

Use several skirts as teasers and also use a cedar plug. The skirts act as a mock school to attract. (Anania)

Use a cedar plug for Tuna. (Trumpeter)
A green squid caught a tuna. (Mon Amie)

Make a large lure from the box wine bag. Cut the bottom off the bag, then cut strips up the sides to create a skirt lure. (Discovery)

Increase the catch by using a plastic cap from a standard 2 liter bottle on the top of a skirted lure. Paint large eyes on it. It makes good bubbles and the color doesn't seem to matter. (Salty Paws)

Make Your Own Lures

Alutecnos makes a Lure Keeper that stores lures in a zippered nylon case with "pages" (like a notebook). Each page has pockets to slip the lures in. Stores easily; nothing to rust. (Cat Tales)

MASKS
DEFOGGERS
Johnson's Baby Shampoo works well and "no more tears." (Valkyrie, Cat Tales)
Sea Gold Defogger works just as well when watered down, which makes it last longer. (Shamal)
Totally Awesome, a dollar store item. It's an all purpose cleaner (yellow in a spray bottle) and it creates a moisture barrier. Dilute 2:1. It's pH neutral and will not harm eyes. (Reflections, Salty Paws)

THINGS THAT WORK
A good repair for a diving mask is Textaline cloth embedded with RTV. (Cat Tales)

Use a fine polishing compound on the inside of your snorkel mask. This will create a better mask seal afterward. Not to be used on the lens.(Salty Paws)

POLE SPEARS
Query: I'd like some ideas for using one more efficiently.
Comments:
Hold the spear fairly high, then cock it. Practice with steady pressure.
Practice on land with an object such as an old beach ball. Try not to twist it on release. (Chardonnay)

Use heat shrink on the end of a pole spear to hold barbs closed while you extract the spear. (C_Language)

Surgical tubing is better than the standard rubber tubes on spear handles. The tubing is easily found at medical supply shops; 15' for about $6. It won't degrade like the standard tubing does. Rub silicone caulk around the knot. (Valkyrie)
Comments:
Rinse in fresh water after use and store it out of the sun.
Rolls of the standard tubing can be found at most dive shops.

RODS
FYI
It may be helpful to tie a line from your reel to your boat rail. We lost our line, rod, and even the rod holder by hooking a big fish underway. (Naked Lady)

TANK FILL COMPRESSORS
Query: Where can I purchase a 3000 psi compressor?
Comment:
Sears, of all places, carries a variety of good ones.

FYI
In addition to Warderick Wells, Conception Island in the Bahamas is a designated Land and Sea Park. No taking or harvesting is allowed. (Second Sally)

THINGS THAT WORK
Clean catch with saltwater for better taste. (Destiny)
A large jar of freshwater is handy to keep in the cockpit. Use it to rinse the lures after fishing, then pour the remainder over the reel to de-salt that too. (Cat Tales)

(also ciguatera)

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Query: Is there a source for Bahamian courtesy flags that will last a long time?
Comments:
Buy a box of cheap ones and consider them disposable.
Try the Sail Bag Lady in CT.

Use a square of canvas or sunbrella and make your own with paint. (Moira)

I make my own out of poly-cotton. They last two seasons. Also, hang them lower on the halyard. (Windswept 4)

Sail Bag Lady Makes custom flags that are very durable. Your design. (Eldridge C, Trumpeter)

Take your flag down or roll it up when the fronts blow through. (Discovery, Windswept 4)

Use a little bit of Super Glue on the stitching of the flag to prolong it's life. (Trumpeter)

Use Scotch brand Tuff transparent duct tape on the edges. Use varying lengths to prevent a uniform leading edge. (Iolar)

Fray Block is applied to cloth seams and prevents fraying. When unexpected 40+ gusts tear up the edge of your new flag, repair the ragged edge with bias tape, then re-apply Fray Block. Found in fabric stores. (Dyad)

Display your flag without a pole. Flag on a Swivel.

How to make your flag last longer:
Expert advice from The Flag Guys.

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LOW SULFUR DIESEL
The process of lowering the sulfur content also removes the aromatic hydrocarbons which help preserve engine gaskets. Lubricity additives help metal parts but do nothing to help O rings or gaskets. The solution is yet to be invented: a new fuel additive or a different gasket composition. Stay tuned...

PRICES
Cruisers Net lists current fuel prices along the waterways. Updated often.

Explorer Chart site lists current fuel prices and dockage fees in the Bahamas.

ETHANOL
Issue: There's a lot of water in my gas tank when using ethanol.
Comments:
Close the tank when not in use to prevent condensation from air temperature changes.
Use green Sta-bil.  (see fuel additives)
Pressurize the tank to look for leaks. Use a foot pump.

Issue: I'm dealing with corrosion of rubber fuel system parts since using ethanol. I'm also concerned about any negative effects on aluminum or steel fuel tanks.
Comment:
Visit various forums online. There's a mix of conjecture and facts which is hard to sort out.

My home generator now needs 93 octane, instead of 87, to make up for ethanol. Ethanol gets added to fuel after the octane rating.(St Jude)


This is a photo of the in-carburetor fuel filter from a 3.0L I/O that stopped running yesterday. The ethanol has destroyed the tank, in-line filter and the carb filter. I got it running today using a 6 gallon portable tank. (St Jude)

Fuel lines may be ruined by bad fuel. The crud is then deposited to the filter and carburetor. Avoid ethanol-laced gas for older outboards. The squeeze bulb can capture the crud that sloughs off the lines and water too. Replace the fuel line if purging doesn't do the trick. (Dyad)

Comments:
You can't remove the ethanol; it's in solution.
If you can get past the first round of crud, it should be okay to continue using ethanol afterwards.
Ethanol is hygroscopic. It attracts water. (Naked Lady)
It can be used to remove water for other applications instead of acetone or rubbing alcohol. (Salty Paws)

Find sources of ethanol-free fuel in the U.S. and Canada at pure-gas.org (C_Language)

THINGS THAT WORK
Blue dye made specially for fuel sampling. This will detect ethanol in fuel. Eaa.com (Blackfoot)

When filling the tank at the pump, use a small tube next to the fill tube to listen for fullness. This works best if filling tube is straight and when using a high fill hose rather than jerry jugs. (C_Language)

(also propane)

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Query: Would a Cetane booster in the diesel hold up during long term storage?
Comments:
It's good for about a year.
It holds up well even during winter storage.

Query: Are Cetane boosters good for diesel?
Comments:
It provides ability for combustion under pressure. Prevents incomplete combustion.
I've tried Cetane boosters in my diesel and have not noticed much difference in performance, but have noticed less soot.

Query: Why do people use additives at all?
Comment:
Mostly due to low sulfur fuels, which increase friction which wears out components like gaskets and seals.

Query: Is it okay to use Sta-Bil long term?
Comments:
It's a different alcohol than ethanol, so it should be fine to use long term.
My two stroke outboard owners manual recommends high test fuel and Sta-Bil. (Le Bella)

If the label on the additive says E-10, then it's a good product for ethanol woes.

RECOMMENDED
Add 2-stroke motor oil to diesel. Use one third ounce per gallon to improve the lubricity of the diesel. It may not actually help, but it doesn't hurt. (Moira, Valkyrie)
Lubricity Plus from FPPF Co. is an excellent additive. (Destiny, Rejoice, Salty Paws)
Pri-G also comes recommended for gas. (Biscayne Bay)
Power Services Diesel Kleen with Cetane Boost. Used for long term storage. (Reflection)
Seafoam gas additive. (Aquavit)
Sta-Bil works well for keeping stored gas in good condition. (Shining Star)
ValvTect Ethanol Gasoline Treatment. For smoother, cleaner, and better performance all around. Coinjock Marina now carries this line. (Destiny)

FPPF or Amsoil Cetane boosters can be used to increase performance. (Shamal)
FPPF was rated highest on testing. (Evening Star)
You can find FPPF products anywhere Yanmar products are sold. (Discovery)

Sta-Bil Comments
Sta-Bil has two products. The red is for standard gas and may be overdosed.   The blue/green is marine for E-10.
Blue is best where ethanol is used.
Blue has double the ingredients of regular/red Sta-Bil. (Shamal)

Further Comments
Four strokes seem to need more help with gas problems. (Shamal)
Siphoning out the crud in the tank will prevent the additives from emulsifying it and running it through the system. (C_Language)
Any E-10 fuel conditioners will work. Use, rather than store, the gas. Octane levels go down if stored too long which makes engines harder to start. (Naked Lady)

ALGAE PREVENTION
Recommended additives to combat algae in fuel:
Hammonds Biobor JF (Serenity)
Killem (Salty Paws)

External hardware-based algae eliminators:
Algae X uses a magnetic effect to work. Thumbs up. (Paydirt)
Algae X is considered controversial.
Morrison DeBug unit works well. (Blue Highway)

Query: Where does all the algae go?
Comment: Supposedly, it gets broken down and burned with the fuel.

RECOMMENDED READING
Lubricity Additive Study Results "The purpose of this research was to determine the ability of multiple diesel fuel additives to replace the vital lubricity component in ULSD (Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel) fuel. (Evening Star)


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Query: How to clean the inside of the glass bowl of a Racor filter?
Comments:
It must be removed first; not hard to do.
It's not really glass. It's plastic, so use care in your choice of cleaning products.
Use denatured alcohol as a cleaner. It will not harm lexan.
WD 40 will clean it.
Use clean diesel as a cleaner.
Also check the valve for gunk build-up.
Use slightly diluted laundry detergent.

OUTBOARD
Use a filter similar to a Racor filter between the fuel tank and engine. West Marine carries them. (St Jude)
A filter with a clear bowl works very well; $15. (Shamal)

Further comments:
Do not use an automotive type filter on two strokes. Fine media is a problem.
Four strokes are more sensitive to gunk than two strokes.

MAIN ENGINE
Recommended: Walbro fuel pump for fuel filter priming. (Blackfoot, Celebration)
FYI: Racor turbine filter can plug up on internal check valves. It's most common on new construction. (Shamal)

On a Yanmar, secondary filters should be changed once a year. (Discovery)
On a J8, Yanmar recommends a 300 hour change on the secondary filter. (Soul Mates)
Yanmar recommends a 30 micron filter for the primary. (Serengeti)
Racor also recommends 30 microns for the primary. (Trumpeter)

GAUGES
After a vacuum pressure gauge on Racor was installed, the filter has not needed to be changed. (Salty Paws, Alcid)
A gauge with a drag pointer is helpful. It can be viewed at anchor rather than viewing underway. (Dyad)
Make sure the orientation of gauge is correct so it won't leak when changing filters. (Mon Amie)
Refill the gauge with mineral oil, if needed. It also keeps the moisture out. (Salty Paws)
Designated Engineer carries a good variety of gauges.

RESOURCES
Filtration Depot carries Racor parts and knockoff line "Griffin" which works. (Serengeti)

(also oil filters)


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Query: On a fuel lift pump on a diesel engine, can I replace the steel output house with a standard rubber fuel hose?
Comments:
Yes. They are standard. Yanmar uses them. (Discovery)
Yes. High grade marine diesel hose will work. (Salty Paws)

Query: Fuel gauge sensor needs replacing. Which one is best?
Comments:
Use a standard Stewart Warner; 240 ohm resistance type.
European standard is usually incompatible.
Blue Sea VSM Systems Monitor is recommended. It uses three wires instead of 2. (Kokopelli)
Wema brand is reliable. (Dyad)

Issue: A new filter did not cure vacuum problems.
Suggestions:
Blow through the hoses to check for clog in line.
Check the lines, air vent, base of pickup tube.
Check all elbows for clogs.
Check all valves (subject to algae).
It may be a gauge problem.
If all else fails, test the engine without the filter to determine if the problem is in the filter or the pipes.
Update: Success. The check valve and intake hose were clogged between the racor and the tank.

Query: What is vapor lock?
A: Atmosphere in the line at a high spot with suction insufficient to remove the air bubble. The source is a leak.

Query: How to remove vapor lock? The engine dies after five minutes.
Suggestions:
Check filters for cleanliness.
Lift pump may be insufficient.
Check fuel line for leaks.
Temporarily convert fuel line suction to pressure to check for leaks.
Not likely to be caused from pulling air trapped in fuel.
Rubber hoses may become porous. Replace them.
Check all fittings.
Shut off valve may be defective. Look for fuel residue on it.
Use soap (Ivory) on fittings to check for bubbles, or use Dust Off.
Check O ring on the nylon plug on the bowl of the racor filter.
If the valve is above the tank level, no leak my show unless under pressure.

FYI
Check fuel line connections. After experiencing engine power reduction, the problem was traced to the high pressure fuel line connectors. One out of three fuel delivery pipes was loose. A 10 minute fix. (Morning Glory)

THINGS THAT WORK
Fuel polishing system: Use drill with a paint stirrer to agitate the tank. Use apartment size fuel oil filter and pump to filter out the crud. (Shining Star)

(also asphaltenes in fuel)


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Issue: The seal on the gas tank intake doesn't seal. I'm looking for a sealer that won't deteriorate. Have tried Permatex 1 and 2 already.
Suggestions:
High Tack (Permatex) is a good compound that will work. It's brushable with a heavy consistency. I've had good luck with this.
If using cork as a gasket, coat both sides of it, then apply.
Permatex Aviation Form-A-Gasket Sealant Liquid. This product is a sticky brown liquid. At the yard, we use this stuff to seal all the fittings that we install in aluminum and fiberglass gas and diesel tanks. (Shamal)

REJUVENATING
I used to coat the inside of fuel tanks for antique gas and diesel engines with a white liquid coating that did an excellent job of rejuvenating old, pitted fuel tanks. The product was Randolf Sloshing Sealer 802; but it's degraded by ethanol. They have a new product Randolph Sloshing Sealer 912, which may or may not be impervious to ethanol.(St Jude)

THINGS THAT WORK
On the dinghy, cover the fuel tank with a plastic bag and loose canvas, like a tent. This prevents moisture in the carburetor. (Blue Highway)

Use the bottom of a Gatorade container over the gas tank cap to prevent water intrusion. (Scaramouche)


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Fugawi marine chart program with Google map images is available through downloading in advance. About $220. [June 2008] [$399 April 2010] (Voyager)

(also opencpn)


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High Current Fuses
Issue: 150 amp class T fuse blew.
Comment:
Probably caused by fatiguing. Fuse body can crack over time due to differing loads. Replace it.

FYI
Check for corrosion on fuses. This may solve mystery electrical gremlins. (Lion Heart)


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