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Topics - markr

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Catalina 34s for Sale / 1989 C34 MkI for sale San Diego
« on: November 02, 2011, 03:43:25 PM »
Hi All, regretfully my C34 MKI "Eagle" is for sale in San Diego. Currently listed at $46,000, been on the market for a couple of weeks now. I had to move to the East Coast and was unable to move her across country. I had done a lot of work on her, a lot of stuff from the projects on this site, and there are some good features and extras on board (such as a raymarine below decks autopilot fully installed and networked to the chart plotter, including the necessary quadrant tiller arm...). She is listed for sale with South Coast Yachts ( in San Diego. Thanks.

Main Message Board / 1-2-B switch + alternator diodes
« on: August 11, 2010, 01:37:32 PM »
Hi All,
I was reviewing some posts and became confused, so I had to ask the question:
I always understood that it was ok, with the engine running, to turn the 1-2-B switch between these positions, so long as it was not ever turned to OFF with the engine running. Turning to OFF risked frying the diodes in the alternator. To me, that is conventional wisdom. How else would you use your engine battery to start the engine then switch it over to charge one or both of your battery banks while motoring? I have now become confused because there seems to be some info out there about not changing the position at all of the switch once the engine is running. If this was the case, I would start the engine on ALL, leave it there until the engine went off, then switch to HOUSE. BUT: if I then run down the HOUSE, use ENGINE to start the engine, how would I then switch over the both to Charge HOUSE as I am motoring? Hmmmm

I realise that some owners have done an awful lot to their boats in terms of upgrades - echo chargers, whole changes to wiring and electical systems - which would be a better way of doing things (money,time notwithstanding). My '87 (#360) was pretty bare and original when I bought her and I am happy (budget and time allowing) to leave these basic systems in place. I don't intend on changing the 1-2-B system or the system of having simply house and engine bank (2 x 27's for house, 1 x 27 for engine, still working out where to out more house batteries when I can afford the money and time to install more).

So, what is the answer on turning the switch between 1-2-B when the engine is running? On the many other boats that I have sailed over the years, it has not been a problem do long as it was not turned to OFF. The electrical system on my boat is pretty much factory original, with the exception of the harness upgrades etc, but the 1-2-B system of charging the two banks is factory standard.

Main Message Board / Fuel accident into bilge + solution
« on: August 10, 2010, 05:12:06 PM »
I have just returned from 8 days at Catalina Island. Wonderful.
Problem: My confession is that, as part of preparation for the trip, I took the boat two days before to the fuel dock to fill up my 3/4 full tank. The next day, I was on the boat and wondered why it smelt of "glue". I checked the bilge and found it was full of fuel (heart attack moment). I cut the bilge pump wire and turned on the engine panel to see that my fuel tank was not full.
Took off the panel inside the aft cabin (port side) to gain access to the fuel tank. Saw that fuel was dripping out of the fuel hose at the point where it bends from the vertical to go into the side of the tank, towards the top of the tank. The hose had fatigued (probably original 1987) and had cracked on the lower part of the bend. Fuel had run out of the hose, under the tank on the shelf, down the side of the hull inside the cabinet under the basin in the head, and into the bilge. Luckily, only the amount at the top of the tank had run out and there was no evidence of it going overboard.
Solution: Bilge pump cut. Took off fuel hose at engine and turned on ignition - fuel pump pumped out fuel into bucket until drip stopped at pipe on fuel tank. kept this pumped diesel for re-use. Removed decayed fuel hose and replaced (took off engine panel to get to the attachment under the fill cap).
Replaced hose onto engine and put pumped fuel back in tank. Pumped the fuel out of the bilge using a manual pump into an old fuel container for disposal.
Moral: inspect and replace old fuel fill hoses! I had always assumed the only access was headfirst down into the aft lazarrette, but those panels in the aft cabin come off and give amazing access to the aft fuel and water tankage.
I get to know this old boat more and more, one issue after the other!

Main Message Board / Tachometer Problems
« on: July 17, 2010, 10:49:36 AM »
I have been having some problems with my tachometer on my 1987 MK1 (Hull# 360). I traced the root of the problem back to bad batteries - I was at sea over memorial weekend and noticed that there was a related problem with the tach dying and the alternator not charging the batteries. Long story short, I thought it was an electrical connection problem because it was intermittent and I seemed at one point to have fixed it. It then died. I had the altenator looked at since and it turns out the wires to the diodes had come off. I have now taken the opportunity to replace the 50 amp alternator with a 90 amp one. I also had a look at all my electrical connections including the engine start panel where the tach is and thought the problem was solved. The alternator charges the batteries now.

However, on start up the tach works, and can work for a long as 15 minutes before flickering and then not reading at all. Has anyone else experienced this? I had an electrician friend look at it and he sanded down all the conections on the back of the engine panel and greatly reduced a lot of the resistance across the instruments. There does not seem to be an obvious problem - perhaps apart from age! I see that I can replace the tach with one ordered from the Catalina Fordeck store for $120. However, can I reset the engine hours or do I have to sacrifice this and start over?

Advice welcome. Thanks.

Main Message Board / Extra Bow Cleats - request for installation tips
« on: April 01, 2010, 04:25:09 PM »
I searched the tech wiki (yes, Stu, I did, I promise!) for stuff on installing additional bow cleats, port and starboard. I have the 87 MKI with the single cleat in the center. In the one article I saw, there was mention of being able to get at the nuts and backing plate for the new starboard cleat via a beckson port in the anchor locker. It then mentioned having to install another of these ports to get at the port nuts and backing plate. Is this beckson port the inspection hatch (screw in type) in the anchor locker?

I ask because I was readying myself the take apart the shelf and forward bulkhead in the v berth to get in at the underside to install these cleats - I was surprised to hear about this port option. I was visualising  getting at the backig plate/bolts by reaching in  to the sides of the anchor locker, between the locker and the hull.......Any advice on the best way to do this job? I have to say that I am dubious about the inspection port in the forward part of my anchor locker giving me the right kind of access for this job....?

I was reviewing the recent article on installing a larger anchor roller (as well as windlass) - great photos - and this is also on my project list. I note the need to take apart the v berth to install the windlass.....the pictures helped me to see what was inside there.

Thank you.

Main Message Board / Battery placement
« on: March 28, 2010, 10:48:30 AM »
Where are people installing extra batteries?

I have an engine and a house battery. I added another to the house battery to make a house bank of 2 batteries. All three batteries are in the battery locker below the seat just forward of the galley sinks in the salon. I have noticeed talk of more bateries and wonder where people are finding places to put them.....curious, thanks.

I was investigating getting a tank adaptor to fill my CNG tanks directly from an LPG Gas Station - the subject of numerous threads on the forum. I now know someone who will  make them for you in San Diego and can ship them to you. The CNG adaptor is as per the tech notes description. If you are interested in getting one of these please get in touch with Justin:

Cost: $119.85 plus shipping.
(Harbor Docs is a marine tech unit with a shop at Sunroad Marina on Harbor Island, San Diego)

I just finished installing a Raymarine below decks linear drive autopilot today on my 1987 MKI. Memory does not serve me well but I think it is a Raymarine S1 series autopilot. If people are interested I can look at getting some photos and do a tech wiki on it? Here are some points that I found out about and did during the installation:

1. I contacted Catalina and they sent me photos of an autopilot installed on a MKII. In this case the aft water tank had been removed and the linear drive went aft from the quadrant and was attached to a point under the swim step.
2. I purchased a "tiller arm" quadrant extension thingy from Edson. This attached to the rudder post below the quadrant and is the only way they recommend to be secure attaching a linear drive to the rudder post - they do not recommend directly to the quadrant.
3. I installed this heavy metal tiller extension going directly aft of the rudder post. This means that unlike if you install it to the side, the arc of the tiller arm swinging does not affect the water tank, and there is enough clearance between the rudder post and the water tank to fit in this extension without having to remove the water tank.
4. Next was to remove the wooden lid above the quadrant and replace it with wood going all the way to the starboard hull. Of course, I had to also run the wires and install the brain and the control panel, but I also installed a raymarine A50 and have the two devices communicating by NMEA and using the same run of power cable. (note, after the installation of the motor and drive, there was some flexing in this wood, so today I finished off the installation by glassing with expoxy and fiberglass matting the starboard end of this wooden plank to the starboard hull).
5. The motor and linear drive are installed under his new bit of wood and  directly out to starboard of the tiller extension. The end of the linear drive attaches to the end of the Edson extension.
6. I installed the brain box also in the aft lazarrette on the back side of the aft cabin locker. I installed the flux compass in the Bottom of the locker just aft of the nav table - seemed the most central and below waterline place to put it away from batteries and the engine etc.
7. Coincidentally the top of this new long piece of wood that replaces the old quadrant cover is where I will attach strapping and place my newly acquired second CXNG tank - strapped down laying athwartships on top of this new piece of wood, with the linear drive underneath.
This is a fairly quickly typed out post so i hope it makes sense and is of interest....
Comments welcome...

Main Message Board / CNG Tank & Refill Question
« on: March 05, 2010, 11:39:01 PM »
Hi All,
A search for CNG reveals a lot of posts on the subject.
I am specifically trying to find out the following. I am in San Diego and the tank looks like a scuba tank and is fitted under the seat in the aft cabin:
1. My tank appears old and is not certified (or I do not have the paperwork for that). How do I get it certified? It is white painted with spots of rust. It looks original....
2. How do I get a new tank(s) if mine fails certification/I want another one as backup onboard?
3. What is the deal with this adaptor to fill from a gas station - would I need one and if so where would I get it?

The tank has run out for the first time and I need a workable system for CNG refills as I move forward.
(No, I do not intend to convert to propane - and yes I know personally of two people who were badly injured, one losing a leg, due to a propane explosion on a boat, and in that case a lack of propane safety procedure)


Main Message Board / Capsize Screening Ratio - wanders to solar
« on: March 03, 2010, 06:32:43 PM »
Hi, does anyone happen to know the "capsize screening ratio" for a 1987 MK1 standard rig, standard fin keel 5'7"draft?
i.e. the number that is considered good if it is less than 2.00 for offshore sailing.
There was a very useful post where a member did an assessment on his boat and arrived at a figure of 1.98. I cannot decipher the formula that he used to work out this number (my math symbol ability is sadly lacking!). He reports that his boat has a tall rig and a fin keel, so I am wondering if this number is different or even better with a fin keel and standard rig.
It is however encouraging to know that if the figure is 1.98 or better, it is below the 2.00 threshold and makes the 34 a blue water capable boat in terms of stability.....

I just pulled a working autohelm 3000 off my 1987 MKI. If anyone is interested please let me know. All parts included.

Main Message Board / Salon Curtains for 1987 MkI
« on: January 17, 2010, 11:34:10 AM »
My 1987 MKI has been missing the curtains in the salon since we bought her a year ago. Does anyone have a set or know where to get them from? The tracks are still there - I am looking for the curtains for the two large non-opening windows in the aft part of the salon. The opening hatches in the salonm do not appear to have ever been fitted for curtains or blinds and anyhow I see that there are commercially available solutions for that readily available - but the question of the original curtains for the tracks still vexes me....

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