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Messages - pbyrne

Getting close to launch time here in the freezing north, and need to replace the VHF cable, as it's in poor condition at the masthead; crack and inner shielding is showing.

Recently installed a Vesper Cortex as well, and the antenna is also older so I'd like to replace the cable, and antenna.

Anyone have recommenedations a setup for the Cortex, or in general with respect to VHF cable, and shared VHF/AIS antennas etc?
I ran out of propane once, and happened to have my Tangia stove in the car so I took that with me.

I know this is not going to be a popular option, however, the Trangia stove burns pretty much anything, and works fine with gel fuel if you don't like flammable liquids (and who would blame you).

It works great, it's quiet, and you can take it to the beach if you want to cook, or boil water.

It fits easily between the pot holders.  The overall design keeps everything together safely, as the pieces interlock, and the kettle is recessed into the wind guard. It won't slide off.  I wouldn't use it if you were really rockin' and rollin' but at anchor you'd be fine.

Main Message Board / VC 17 Discontinued
November 06, 2023, 02:46:09 PM
Rather than complain, I thought I'd ask the wise community hear what the path forward is for fresh water, northern climates.

Any ideas?
Main Message Board / Re: Considering changing props
September 19, 2023, 05:21:54 PM
I have a variprop.  It works well. But you do need to lube it seasonal.
Main Message Board / Re: Creaking noise from rudder
September 17, 2023, 05:44:04 PM
Quote from: KWKloeber on August 31, 2023, 11:35:47 AM
EDITED for misspellings!
Also what I forgot to say is that below is what I would do if the cause is delamination and voids that are not soaked and punky substrate.  Basically mostly whole goods but not intact anymore.  If what you find is punky, like wet gypsum board then that's a different fix, in one way it can get easier to do -- depending of course -- but more involved.

Look this isn't rocket science so try not to over worry about it.  The cure reaction isn't that much with moderate and unnoticeable using small amounts -- and even if larger it isn't going to melt your cockpit sole.

You're not doing a critical structural repair -- it's structural in a sense but not like a hull or shaft log repair.  So a little learning experience is fine.  There is something I find so satisfying about epoxy work (and frankly drilling and cutting fiberglass when doing well-planned mods and repairs -- very sick, I know -- It's like a satisfaction of cheating the manufacturer and doing something not designed-in.)
Anything that mostly fills voids or re-tacks together separations will be a WIN for this.  Perfection is unnecessary.

I recommend Mas (which is an easy mix ratio using 3-oz plastic or paper bathroom cups to measure.  I actually prefer those because they are expendable and if you have epoxy cans left over the pumps tend to clog up or drip or get gummy and I am, quite frankly, not diligent about (read: lazy and hate) cleaning containers and epoxy tools.   So very easy to pour a full- or half-cup fulls and toss em into a landfill.

Mix using plastic silverware or BBQ skewers or popsicle sticks.  All throwaways, no muss no fuss.  Yogurt cups work well, paper cups, plastic cups, restaurant plastic doggie bag trays (an excuse to take the Admiral to Applebees or call DoorDash) -- the lower/wider the epoxy the less heat and longer pot time in the tray.  Use the smooth bottom tray not textured ones like a paint tray.)  The deeper, more confined volume, the greater the heat during mixing and shorter pot time.  (Think of a pilsner of brew (ok I'm conflating the work with the reward -- massive heat of reaction) vs. pouring that brew into a low baking tray (no heat -- but a waste of alcohol).)   

Rotating several plastic yogurt or other cups can be reused -- when the epoxy film cures, pop out the old film and reuse it.  When I was doing a bunch of fairing on the keel repair (photo) I used low Rubbermaid(tm) containers so I could mix, scoop, and lay it on with a throwaway 3" drywall knife (I have a natural ability for drywall finishing too -- another mental sickness.)  I popped out the cured poxy and reused trays 10 times -- and still use ones left over from 1996.

ID each individual void or separated area and mark their boundaries.  USE A DRILL DEPTH STOP to drill epoxy entry and exit holes (to expel trapped air and so you know when a void is reasonably filled.  The number and spacing will depend on the size being treated but work from from one fill hole to another.  USE A DRILL DEPTH STOP!!  and the hole needs to be so the syringe fits tight so you can force in the mix.  You can work from the center to the outside exit holes for small areas.  USE A DRILL DEPTH STOP!!! 

I recommend West microfibers additive.  It's the best adhesive, folds into the mix easily, and is nearly as strucural as colloidal silica (which is PAIN to mix into resin/hardener.)  Depending on the temps use slow hardener or if hot, keep the sole wet as a heat sink.  If working from below you want it like a soft toothpaste (thick maple syrup) consistency so that it will flow but stay put until you can tape over each hole.   Certainly less viscous is better to flow/saturate but harder to control.  It's a compromise (imagine that, needing to compromise involving a boat.)  If I were working from the top I would use unthickened mix.  Experiment with how much (plastic spoons) of microfiber to add to a full cup of resin and half of hardener (4-1/2 oz total) for your consistency in your chosen container.  Then check the pot time before it kicks (gels up.)  That tells you how much you can mix for the temp that day depending on how quickly you can work.  Use half that pot time so poxy can flow/fill and infuse before it kicks.  It's not a race, no harm in not going as quickly as you possibly could.  If you transfer the mixed poxy into a larger pan or mix in that pan you will increase the pot time (use it as a safety factor.)

You could work in succession for large areas by starting at holes on one end, filling until the next set of holes weep.  Tape over the first hole, pump into the weep hole -- behind it is already filled, so more poxy will push to the next weep hole in that void.  You just need to experiment and see with a trial or two what works best.

Immediately tape over filled holes w/ Frog or duck tape so they don't drip.
Wear safety glasses otherwise, IT WILL drip into at least one eye.  Guaranteed.  And no Buffett while you're doing this otherwise you'll be Parrot Heading along an acccompanyment and swallow a drip.  Been there.
Buy plenty of Harbor Freight nitrile gloves and change often - you'll sweat like Mark Meadows in Georgia.  Buy a dozen cotton gloves (cheap on Scamazon) you can wear them when not critical and won't sweat as much.

Now ask questions!!

PS: Everything above carries a standard 3-mile stern nav light guarantee.

If you are paranoid about tackling it I can tell you how to easily make a 2' x 2' mock-up to learn/test your skill in injecting, mix consistency, pot time, cure times, etc. but I don't think it's necessary.

Firstly I would like to offer my profound thanks for taking the time to write that, and even more to care enough to write it at all.

I apologize for being away from this topic for so long after all the help that has been posted here; life has gotten in the way.

It turns out we were due for a marine survey for insurance purposes. So we hired one.

The full survery is pending however the early results on the cockpit sole........were cockpit sole is fine.  The surveyor watched the same video and got the same explanation as here.

I have no idea what to think at this point, and I'm not ruling out doing some drilling, as quite frankly I'm flabbergasted.

Assuming there is nothing wrong with the cockpit sole, this movement is then by design, and I didn't get a 'don't worry about it, that's normal' from Catalina.

I don't want to look a gift horse in the mouth, but I'm struggling to believe this is possible normal movement, and that the noise is simply dirt in the bushing.

We are doing the winter haul out next week, and it look like to do this 'investigative' work I'd have to pull the aft tank, which I'm running out of time to do this year.  Maybe I can get to the right spot through the stern lazarettes.

I have also received the Ryobi moisture meter, and I'll give the cockpit sole once over as well.

KWKloeber, I'm more than happy to hear how to setup a test rig.  My garage is heated well enough that I can work in it over the coming months, and I'd like to learn how to do this work!

Main Message Board / Re: Oil change pump suggestions
September 17, 2023, 05:29:03 PM
Quote from: Ron Hill on September 16, 2023, 09:54:03 AM
Guys : Jim has a good point!! 

My 12V electric "sucking the oil out" has a large bucket that allows me to put a short 1 gal. used milk bottle inside.  So I suck out the old oil into that milk bottle.  Then put aa cap on the bottle and take it to recycle.  I put "chair tips" on the suck out hose and the discharge into the bottle hose so there is NO MESS!!   :thumb:

With the M25XP B and the M35 BC engines with the discharge oil in the rear of the oil pan - I also take that hose and lay it down under the engine so any residual oil will flow into a shallow catch pan.  That way I get ALL of the old oil out of the engine.
After I put in the new oil and run the engine for a minute or two - I can pull out the dipstick and see CLEAN oil!!  :clap

A few thoughts

What make/model do you have Ron?  I'm intrigued!  I found this on  Seems ok.
Main Message Board / Re: Oil change pump suggestions
September 17, 2023, 05:28:22 PM
Quote from: Jim Hardesty on September 16, 2023, 04:02:37 AM
QuoteJust want to make my life easier so open to all solutions.

A lot of good suggestions to think about.  One other thing to consider is recycling the used oil.  My club has a recycling tank that I can just pour the used oil into.  Easy.  I guess one question you want to ask yourself.  Do you want to put the used oil into jugs or have a dedicated system that holds the used oil?

Ah! Excellent question.  I would say my preference would be into a container that I can then dispose of. 

I can work with a self contained option, but you need to dump it into a container to get rid of it eventually.
Main Message Board / Oil change pump suggestions
September 14, 2023, 10:16:07 AM
It's getting close to that time of year again and I promised myself only the best way to change the oil.

I'm thinking a pump is the way to go but don't have a foggiest idea which one is a good one.

Just want to make my life easier so open to all solutions.

I guess it makes sense to reuse it for the transmission as well. 
Main Message Board / Re: Creaking noise from rudder
August 28, 2023, 06:36:51 AM
Quote from: KWKloeber on August 24, 2023, 03:15:30 PM


(West System has TERRIBLE amine blush - stay away from it.)

I use non blush Mas Epoxy exclusively, and the Mas ratio is more forgiving.  It is compatible with the West additives.
The hardener is what leaves the wax blush-- West 207 hardener is non blush.

I oftentimes mix epoxy in a paper cup and have gone and mixed way too much and of course in a deep cup it gets hotter than you can touch.  I've never come close to paper catching on fire (and wood and fiberglass both have a much higher flash point) melting of plastic and poor cure is a more significant worry.

One of our C30-ers did a repair on his cockpit sole that had deteriorated/separated in spots--it wasn't a "hard"
job -- he did it from the cockpit side as he has an older boat and (I think) he painted over the repair and may gelcoat it later.
I can put you in touch w/him if desired.

I knew the chemical reaction had a thermal component, but I didn't realize it was that significant.  I'm comfortable doing it as long as I have clear instructions, specific product recommendations, and a step by step for filling in the core.

It's more the later that concerns me.  I have no experience to rely on to help guide me with how much to mix up and put into the void to prevent any damage.  If that part of the repair could be broken down into amounts and steps, I'd be willing to take a shot at it.

For the record, I'm not against having a yard do it either, but I like to evaluate whether or not I can tackle it.  It's bloody expensive to have anything fixed by a yard, and this is just a hobby!
Main Message Board / Re: Creaking noise from rudder
August 24, 2023, 12:44:00 PM
I have managed to get one of the Ryobi meters off ebay in what appears to be excellent condition.

I'll report back when I get a chance to get to the boat.

Main Message Board / Re: Creaking noise from rudder
August 11, 2023, 07:17:55 AM
With respect to epoxy, I have no experience, and would appreciate a bit of guidance.  The 2 brands below seem to be the most commonly mentioned, but which ones make sense for filling the cockpit floor/replacing the plug?  Fast/Med/Slow...? No idea! 😀|10075|10696|10075|10699
Main Message Board / Re: Routing Cables in Cabin Roof
August 10, 2023, 05:59:40 AM
Quote from: KeelsonGraham on August 10, 2023, 01:50:56 AM
Hi Ron, good to know about that pipe for other projects. However, my SP is mounted on the sprayhood so this isn't an option.

PByrne, yes, I think ziplocks etc are the best option.

Sorry, I was being a bit dim.  It's the dodger you've got you're panel on.  I think the cable clam somewhere on the transom is probably the least intrusive location for the cable to enter the boat.

If using that approach, and keeping your current mounting location, you may consider adding some cable holders (if you can get attractive ones) along the outside of the coaming to the bimini frame, and then from there you can zip tie.  Or, and this is the simplest thing to try, see if it's possible to nicely zip tie the cable from the sprayhood to the bimini frame along the outside of the combing.  Its not a long stretch there maybe it will lie nicely.

Last but not least, consider mounting the panel on the bimini if you have one, not sure from the photo, and if you did, you probably would have thought of that by now!  :D
Main Message Board / Re: Routing Cables in Cabin Roof
August 09, 2023, 09:26:07 PM
I have a cable clam on the port transom just above the davit mount, that the solar cable passes through and I connect that to the panel on top of the bimini.  The cable itself is zip tied for the season cleanly along the bimini framework.

The solar power cable runs from the aft, along the hull to the nav table, and then goes under the floor to the battery area where the MPPT controller is.

On haul out for winter, I remove the zip ties, disconnect the panels, and remove the bimini, fold the frame for the winter.

This works very well, and to be honest I don't know how else you'd want to do this.  The cable clam is out of the way, and you cannot really hide the wires any better IMHO.  You don't even notice it for the season, and it can all be disconnected cleanly.
Main Message Board / Re: New Catalina Owner
August 09, 2023, 01:54:53 PM
Maybe this helps for context?  Mine's a 35B.  It vibrates a touch...
Main Message Board / Re: Creaking noise from rudder
August 09, 2023, 11:14:04 AM
Quote from: Ron Hill on August 08, 2023, 02:37:30 PM
pby : Your vidio definitely tells the story.  Try getting ahold of Warren Tandy (Catalina Yachts @727-544-6681) and have him look / hear your vidio.  He should be able to give you a diagnosis of what is happening and a possible fix.  If warren can't help You might even consider contacting Gerry Douglas.

A thought

I spoke with Warren.  Nice guy.

In a nutshell:

1) investigative drilling from below.  Either 1/4" drill bit working out from the middle in a few spots.  OR small hole saw in the same pattern.
2) if found to be wet, basically create a 'swiss cheese' pattern of holes with large hole saw, not close together, that will allow good access to remove wet core
3) epoxy fill cavity with putty filler(?), polyester, vinylester epoxy.
4) epoy the holes back into cockpit floor
5) sand
6) paint with gel coat from them

I summarized a bit, and I know zero about epoxy so I couldn't provide more details on that, but that's more or less what we discussed.

I'm going to start with rebedding the emergency tiller cover. That's at least an easy way to get a peek at the core without having to drill anything.  If it's dry, then I guess I start drilling.  If wet I'll try and scoop core from there, and move to drilling.