New Year and a Old Boat.

Happy New Year!

We spent our holiday weekend on the coast.

Arriving late Friday night we got up early on New Years Eve and decided to take a little trip.


Checking out the neighborhood after our first overnight at the marina.

We had planned to stay the weekend at Marine Land, taking the Bell up it ICW but discovered the A4 was not cooling properly.   We opted to drive north in the car instead

First thing we did when we arrived in St Augustine is locate a good childrens park for Elizabeth.


7 foot ladder, no problem for Lizzy, scared the crap out of mom and dad.


7 foot slide, No problem.


Daddy for scale.


We love playgrounds but miss our puppies that can not go in.

After the playground the sun was going down so we headed over to down town St Augustine to see the lights.

We found a good parking place and walked around the old town.   Eating at the Florida Cracker we enjoyed the mad crowds.

We had called to get a slip in the Municipal Marina but it has been booked full for this weekend for a few months now.


City of lights. Pretty nice.

Elizabeth wanted to do the driving but we thought better of it.

After eating and walking around we returned to the boat at 10:30pm,  just in time to avoid the drunks out for new years and enjoy the sound of the breakers on the beach.  We never realized they could be heard from the boat.


Lori Bell at night.



In the morning after breakfast we reinstalled all the electronics I had pulled off the boat due to Matthew.   This also included permanently mounting the Epirb..



After spending the morning working on odds and ends on the boat we took Elizabeth to the local park.  It turned out she was exhausted from the day before and fell asleep before we got there,  we let her sleep and took the time to explore the area and check into alternative marina locations.   Lizzy slept for two hours and in that time we determined that our current marina best fits our needs,  others were too far inland, too run down or both.

Following good dinner at Boondocks we left the dogs on the boat and took Lizzy for a walk on the beach.  Wow,  so nice and very dark without that much of a moon.   Such a nice night.


Monday morning we troubleshot the cooling issues,  I think figured out the issue.    I believe the movement had bounced the electric coolant pump loose and it caused it to form a kink in the coolant line on the feed side of the pump.    This resulted in the pump ceasing to work and no antifreeze to flow thru the motor.

I ordered a new pump, hope that fixes the situation.

We also started the installation of the chart plotter, this involved drilling two holes in the boat.


Tiller pin


Another hole in the seat of the cockpit.


I then went to work cleaning sawdust off the starboard side of the boat.  This was caused by her rubbing up on the side of the piles during the storm.   I decided to measure some of the damage and get a feel to the extent of the storm surge from Matthew.


Sawdust from The piles, ground off by the rubber and stainless rail on the boat.

The rub rails on our boat are 36″ above the waterline.


You can see the discolored area on the left of this pile.


5′ 6″ above normal high water is what I measured at the top of the pile rub.

The measurement of 5’6″ above high means the the water was 2 feet over the top of the deck of the pier and only 2 feet from making our boat go over the top of the piling with the rub rail.  I would expect the boat would have been holed if this had happened.

Lessons learned is my fender boards were much too short.   Next time I will buy longer boards,  our 4 foot boards are fine for normal weather but can not cope with the range of motion involved with this type of storm.

We got lucky.



Just chilling in my fresh diaper.

The Ultra Firm 3″ foam we put into the new to us cushions is great to sleep on.   No more camping mattress and odd lumpy cushions.   I think we will be adding the same to the V-berth soon.