People are unable to service or recharge European tanks and extinguishers here in North America - metric versus 'other' system - so parts are not available. So that was a very welcome solution to my problem- the powder had been in the extinguishers on board since early 2009 and might well not have worked if I'd had an emergency situation arise….
Of course, one minor detail for all three is to adapt the holders to take the slightly larger new tanks - another item added to my already very long job list!
Next stop was Wilson's Dive shop in Esquimalt - where the owner kindly gave me a whacking discount on the cost of a 'viz' (visual safety inspection) and an immediate air fill for my borrowed dive tank.
While waiting for the tank to be ready, Steve drove me through the dense forest around the remains of the historic fort guarding the approaches to Esquimalt naval base, close to Victoria, down to a lovely view over Strait of Juan de Fuca and a long, grey, sandy beach beach jammed with old logs that have been washed up over the years - a typical B.C. scene!
On the way back from Esquimalt, I picked up the remainder of the dried milk and tinned chick peas that I needed to complete my long-term provisioning. (I also treated myself to some canned apricots - thinking of Christmas and the New Year when I’ll want to celebrate with something special!!)
I’ve been busy listing everything on a computer spreadsheet so I can see at a glance where I’ve stored each type of food item and also what each locker contains. What a long time all that food organisation has taken… It’s kept my vacuum-packer busy - with clothing also being looked over and re-organised, with quite a few items being vacuum packed to guarantee some dry clothing available - even if the boat is unlucky enough to get water down below …
On the way back into Victoria, Steve realised that the new lifting 'blue bridge' was signalling a lift about to start up - a Seaspan barge and tow was waiting near the low bridge.... Sure enough, up it went, the barge passed through and then down it came - impressive!
It was good to get away from the dock (making good use of tides each time) - to Tsehum
Hbr and Long Hbr (on Saltspring Island) and then a pleasant, sunny trip to and from Friday Harbor. It was great to meet up with friends on San Juan Island that I’ve not seen for a while!
I was intending to work on fibre-glass backing plates for my big sheet winches over last weekend but was delighted when John Booth, well-known for being an expert when it comes to anything to do with boat construction, turned up at the dock in Long Hbr and offered to make them for me in aluminium. I must now make a template of the area beneath the sheet winches - an awkward task, involving getting into confined spaces both in the cockpit locker and above the head-lining of a hanging locker. I also need to check the length of the present bolts used in the winch bases, to see if I need to order slightly longer ones.
Had an enjoyable live radio interview on CFAX1070 on my return to Victoria last Monday - mostly to do with my food stores onboard. It always intrigues people that I have to take so much food with me, with no stopping allowed at shops on the way!!.
I’ve now come back to Tsehum Hbr - a peaceful place where I’ll be able to continue undisturbed with boat jobs over the next week. I actually flew a full genoa for a short while, with a 10 knot following wind on the way here, which boosted our speed a little - but that didn’t last long - I effectively motored all the way, but in nice, bright sunshine.
Postcript from Tsehum Harbour - Tuesday 14 August 2018
Wonderful workshop available here at RVYC! I’d needed to adapt the fire extinguisher brackets that hold the dry powder tanks in place - with a good vice, crow-bar an d long pliers (and some useful help at one point from fellow-member Jerry) that was achieved yesterday for all three.
The final outstanding problem is to lengthen the straps holding the tanks onto the brackets - a machining problem left to another day since it needs a short length of sturdy tape which I don’t have.
The next problem reared its head when I went to stow the sturdy bolts which are used to fix in place my emergency hatch and port light covers (intended for such time as strong breaking seas manage to break a hatch or light - so far, not needed, but you never know….)
I found they were rusty in places - and several nuts and wing screws didn’t want to budge - so that kept me busy last night and today - all now moving, clean and well-oiled - and stowed in an easily-accessible place.
Now for the winch bases I’ve been trying to get to….