Page published 22 November 2023

Go to Top Friday 27 October - A Temporary Repair

Do you ever feel that you get over concerned about minor things when there are other more important things to worry about? I wonder if this is the case with the job I did today.

Initially, I hadn't even realised the function of the length of dowel that was hung over the door to the cabin in the forward well. For a while I had thought it might be something used by previous owners to support a TV aerial. It was only when I discovered that it was a ruler with quarter inch markings on it that I realised it was the fuel tank dipstick that I had always believed must be on board somewhere.

Dipstick stored over the door

A photo showing how the fuel tank dipstick is stored over the cabin door. It was taken on 18 July shortly after Singing the Blues arrival in Norfolk and before the Windscreen Wiper had been repaired.

While I hadn't realised what the stick was for I was concerned about the tool clips from which it hung. They were rusty. One hung loosely. Both were far bigger than they ought to have been to hold the stick reliably. I just felt they needed to be changed. So I cam up with a design that I hoped would look a little better and hold the stick a little more reliably.

Tool clip

Here's one of the two clips...

Tool Clip

...that I felt had to be replaced.

We happened to have an shallow, clear plastic, tub that used to contain sweets that was empty. I cut out a pair of rectangular strips and cut out a hole in each towards one end that was a little bigger than the diameter of the stick. I then sandwiched each of the strips between two squares cut from an off-cut of veneered board I had and bolted them in position under the visor above the cabin door.

The new stick brackets

The new starboard bracket.

The new stick brackets

The new port side bracket.

To hold my new brackets in place I bought new stainless bolts and cup washers. While not flush fitting, as the old bolts were, they do closely match the stud fasteners already found on the cabin top that hold the awnings in place.

Old bolt

One of the old rusty bolts.

New Bolt

One of the new stainless bolts.

My handy work with the wood is not perfect. In drilling through the small blocks of wood the veneer splintered and lifted away. However, I'm viewing it as a proof of principal project and even if nothing actually falls apart I still plan, at some point, to replace the wood with something of better quality and varnish it. While doing that I'll also consider shortening the bolts so they don't protrude beneath the wood blocks to make a really neat job of it.

Now read about a Change of Mooring for Singing the Blues.

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