Category Archives: 2012

Cutting Up on News Year’s Eve

Shop Boss

Shop Boss Snips

Stowing stuff for long distance cruising on a 40 foot boat is a challenge from the outset. Stowing the trash is aggravated by the packaging that accompanies much of the stuff we bring aboard. Even after leaving all but the hermetic packaging behind (Boxes, bags, label wraps, etc^3), there is still a bunch of stuff that has to be retained for periodic disposal.

I bought the snips shown above for less than $10 at the temple of “W” because I didn’t want to use my sewing scissors on some of the the materials required in boat tailoring. (I think that price was definitely a loss leader.)

These light but tough Fiskars Shop Boss Snips (sheath includes pencil holder, and sharpening rod) now see much duty cutting up empty aluminum cans and plastic of all varieties. Using them has allowed us to reduce waste volume (if not weight) buy 20% at least. No small thing. Available from Amazon for ~$18 Fiskars Shop Boss Snips

No Bake Napoleon Waccamaw

Contains no gluten.

One afghan layered on
One bedspread layered on
Another afghan layered on
One blanket layered on
One sheet

Two pre-chilled sailors
Two knit hats, two  shirts, two pants, and two pairs socks (each)

One sheet layered on
One mattress pad layered on
One inch tempur foam layered on
Four inches closed cell foam

Served on plywood chilled to 32° at sunrise. Keep moist with dripping condensation.

Try not to have more than one of these a year.

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Sunset Panorma


Thank goodness we stayed topsides for moonrise. This sunset was the reward. Again, click pic for 100° panorama.

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A Waccamaw Panorama


Anchorage behind Butler Island off Waccamaw River – – chilly but calm and so quiet. Click on photo to get full 100° panorama.

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Arghhhh, not again

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Ice on the Dodger

Ice on the Dodger, Nov 2011, 37 miles S of Norfolk Va

In the Ch-ch-ch-Changes post I noted that the solar aspects of changes in latitude were moot. That is only because of our solar system design. So, with one caveat, I’ll explain.

We wouldn’t intentionally live on a solar boat through a Chesapeake winter, even as far south as Mile “0”. That said, here’s what our 2011-12 changes in latitude meant in solar terms — as I sit barefoot barely in South Carolina eating clam dip listening to boat-tailed grackles and Christmas music waiting for the next cold front to have done with us so we can move on.

HoursFirst, the hours of sunlight along our route were 2675.8  compared to 2666.3 had we stayed at Hospital Point in Norfolk the same period (~0.36% more). Clearly, the temps would have been different!

ElevationSecond, the sun’s elevation was higher as we went south, and it’s trajectory was also longer, and thus, radiance was higher on average. This delivered  the improvement shown (for solar panels, if not skin).



These latitude driven changes combine to provide about 20% additional solar energy to the panels. This doesn’t count, that over the period charted, average cloudiness along the Eastern Seaboard was 45% while in the Bahamas it was 37% (and much of the undersides of those clouds were turquoise).

So what? Well, since the solar panels are sized to exceed demand by at least a third, they recharge the batteries pretty much in three hours no matter where we are, but we really enjoy those three hours a great deal more looking at turquiose bottomed clouds rather than ice crystals on the dodger.

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