Fitting the new day tank

San Fernando, Buenos Aires, Argentina
The new day tank fits entirely into an existing access hole in the bottom of the cockpit. Nuts were welded to the underside of the steel cockpit bottom to bolt the tank to, and here the paint is being ground off in preparation for welding the nuts in.

New day tank

San Fernando, Buenos Aires, Argentina
The “day tank” is a fuel tank that supplies the engine for a while (not really a day in this case), and is refueled from other tanks in the boat. The day tank simplifies switching between fuel tanks, and can be used to help separate out water and dirt in the fuel (being heavier, they sink to the bottom and can be removed if there is a drain at the bottom of the tank). The old day tank was a cylindrical plastic affair, with fittings Sikaflexed (Sikaflex is a brand of glues and sealants) into it. It had been leaking, and the Sikaflex used to repair it was getting into the fuel and starting to clog the fuel filters. I wanted a bigger day tank (the old one was only good for about three hours of motoring) that didn’t leak and would help separate out the water and dirt from the fuel. This is the new day tank, made of stainless steel, much bigger, minus the fittings, which were installed after the tank was installed. The new tank is built to fit into an existing cutout in the cockpit floor.

New pulleys for keel

San Fernando, Buenos Aires, Argentina
The pulleys that are used by the winch to raise and lower the keel were badly corroded. The wire kept slipping off one of them, and two others were seized up and would not turn. All were replaced with new stainless steel pulleys with more grease nipples to make maintaining them easier.

Something completely different

Buenos Aires, Argentina
The boatwork continues to progress on Issuma. The other night we went to see a really good band from northern Argentina, La Bomba del Tiempo. The band played outside on a hot summer night, and the crowd loved the band. The girl in the picture is one of several people who were being passed around through the crowd.

Painting the bottom

San Fernando, Buenos Aires, Argentina
The old antifouling (paint that is put on the bottom of a boat to discourage barnacles from attaching themselves to the hull) was sanded off, the underlying paint inspected, and epoxy paint then put on. The purpose of the epoxy paint is to electrically insulate the steel hull (which is actually coated with zinc in this case) from the copper that is in the antifouling paint. The first attempt at putting the epoxy on didn’t go well, as it was not mixed well enough (it comes in two components, that must be mixed together correctly) before painting. Epoxy that is mixed incompletely or incorrectly results in paint that will never “dry” (cure). The following day, the incorrectly mixed paint was laboriously removed so the painting could be started again. The first coat of epoxy is on. The zebra look is from running out of white and substituting black (the next coat will be entirely black).

Welding on new Zincs

San Fernando, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Metal boats have pieces of zinc alloy (anodes) attached to them to protect different metals from electrochemically reacting (corroding) to each other when in water. The zinc anodes wear away (the zinc slowly migrates to other metals, such as the bronze propeller) and eventually need to be replaced. All the zinc anodes are being replaced on Issuma while she is hauled out. In the picture, the new zinc anode is being welded to the hull. Unfortunately the welding of some of the zincs was done too quickly and the heat that built up burned off the paint inside the boat, which we now need to scrape off and repaint (steel boats rust if they are not painted, and rust inside, where you don’t see it, must be avoided). But the hull will be well-protected now, and shouldn’t need the zincs replaced again for several years.