Thursday, August 21, 2014

The Inside of my Boat

I am hanging out in lovely Oriental, NC, so today I thought I would blog the inside of my boat.  At first sight, 250 square feet of living space is not a lot of room, but as in all things marine, decisions are a compromise. If you are in a seaway, with the boat banging around in rough water, you do not want big open spaces to go flying around in. The Westsail 32 is built for blue water cruising, and with a mind to that, designers restricted the space. As you enter the boat and climb down the stairs in the companionway, the galley is to the left, or port.
You can see the stairs to the left of the photo. These are all removable to get access to the Yanmar engine which sits directly behind them. In the middle of the photo is the icebox where I store all my plates, cabbage and bottled drinks. I do not have a refrigerator, primarily because I do not have the power to support it's energy consumption but also because refrigerators are notoriously unreliable. I have found that 90% of the time I am in port anyway, and it is a simple matter to get frozen items. Behind the icebox is my propane stove of which I am deadly scared of. Even though I have an electronic gas shut-off switch, most of the time I manually turn the gas off at the cylinder. I also have a gauge at the cylinder, that I can check gas leakage and whenever I turn the gas off at the stove, I always turn the switch off first before turning off the burner. I have 2 propane cylinders which sit outside the boat with a drain at the bottom of the propane locker that goes overboard. I usually use the stove every morning to boil water for my coffee and teas, but I haven't cooked meals with it very much because it has been so hot. Notice also the beefed up, 4lb fire extinguisher which is one of 3 and the heavy, green, woolen blanket on the seat to bottom right in case of fire. While on that subject, I added lots of fuses to the boat wiring, including ones on each of the positive terminals on the batteries. Back to the photo, you can see the sink to the left of the stove, which has 2 faucets next to it. One is for fresh water with an inline filter, from 1 of two 70 gallon plastic tanks that sit above the keel, and the other is a sea water pump. Both pumps are manual and I do not have hot water on the boat other than a 2.5 gallon portable shower container. Also in the photo you can see a thermos, Epirb, lighter, another fire extinguisher, water filter carafe, kettle, radio, LED light, vent, hooks for hanging vegetables, oil lamp and a ton of storage behind those 40 year old beautiful wooden cupboards. I store all my cans of food, fruit, pots and pans, coffee and tea, cups and galley cleaning stuff behind the cupboards and the bottom left on the sole is the bilge access. Here inside I have 3 bilge pumps including a manually operated whale gusher, a 1500 automatic bilge pump and a 3700 one with a manual switch and 25 foot hose that I have to feed over board. I try to exercise each of these at least once a month.

My navigation station is to starboard as you are coming down the companionway.
I covered the Formica counter-tops with granite looking contact paper, and sealed it with a couple of coats of clear polyurethane. Along the top of the photo from the left, I have a Garmin GPSmap with an anchor alarm that can run for 28 hours on two AA batteries because it is monochrome. Next is one of two yellow LED 12V rechargeable lights from ALDI that have been invaluable along with a LED headlamp. Hanging in the middle for best reception is my Verizon hotspot that I pay $70 a month for 8Gb of data. For redundancy, I also have a T-Mobile plan on my tablet of $20 a month for 3Gb of data. I do not have a cell phone and use skype for telephone calls. To the right of the 8" port hole is my barometer, my winch handles and upper right is my RAM Mount for my Nexus, a Hella turbo fan, the rear of 2 gauges, the log and my fish finder/depth sounder. Below the brass companionway handle is a digital kitchen timer with an alarm to wake the dead, and a rack with a brass horn and an infrared laser thermometer, that I use to check the engine temperatures while under way. Below that is my 400 watt inverter and going left my electrical panel behind the sliding doors. Middle center is my Sony with an input from my mp3 player and left is my Standard Horizon VHS with AIS that warns me of ship traffic. The yellow book that you can see the spine of to the left of the VHS mic is my waterproof log where I write down details of my voyages. Below my VHS is my caddy for binoculars, drinks, handheld GPS, sunglasses, etc that I carry up to the cockpit while underway. I have my Nexus on the desk and of course, there is a lot of storage below.

The dinette area to port behind the galley has seating for 4 and the table can be lowered to make a double bed.
I had all the cushions reupholstered before I left to go cruising, Top right is an oil lamp and hammock where I keep light weight vegetables like green peppers, celery, cucumbers and courgettes. Any heavy fruit is kept either hanging in nets on hooks or in the wicker basket on the table. Notice the bungy cords keeping everything down so that it doesn't move in a seaway. Computer on the table is a 10" Ubuntu netbook that uses very little power. I do have a 14" Dell XFR laptop for redundancy, but if I have a choice, the netbook gets the nod. Ditch bag is that bright green bag, depth transducer behind it and my toolbox on the sole in front of it keeping the floor down. I keep all my rigging parts, nuts and bolts in storage behind the seats and that roll of wood vineer with the blue masking tape is waiting for me to use to fix the broken floor beneath the table.

Two starboard berths with the bottom one sliding out and again lots of storage below and behind.
Racks above for a broom and potentially, fishing poles and a coat hook on the left for life jackets, and hats.

Head or a bathroom for landlubbers.
Tricky to take a good photo but I took it over the sink looking to starboard, so that's why you can't see the fresh water tap and sink but you do get to glimpse the Jabsco head, bottom right. Wood sole floor lifts up if you want a shower and that yellow thing is where I carry my dirty laundry. Fire extinguisher, book and DVD collection is top and underneath is my hanging locker where I store clothes, vacuum cleaner, Grundens wet weather gear, face mask, flippers and snorkel. Right side drawers contain electrical bits and cleaning gear.

V-Berth at the bow of the boat is a cool dark place for sleeping.
I store my spare sails here but the is another Hella fan at the back that runs quetly all night long. Behind the doors at the the very back out of sight is my chain locker where I keep 275 feet of chain for my 45lb Manson Supreme anchor, and 30 feet of chain and 150 feet of 3 strand nylon rode for my 35lb CQR anchor to port. The holding tank for my head is to port. Overhead I have a clear hatch that I keep open all the time for ventilation. It has a insect screen looped over the opening so that I can open it and close it all the time without moving the screen.

These are my Canadian neighbors here in Oriental that have made my stay such a delight.
  I am eating and having way too much fun here so tomorrow I am off to Belhaven.

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