Friday, June 3, 2011

Into Hell

Who installs a new wiring harness to replace a failed one and simply leaves the old one in place?

Who uses five different types of zip ties, electrical tape, duct tape, to secure wire runs?

Who weaves single wires around hoses, throttle cables, in order to secure them?

Who can possibly install four butt splices in a twelve inch wire run?

Who usedsin line butt splices as cap splices?

Who uses a god damn *extension cord* to wire the bildge pump in Brigadoon, twisting the wires together, and wrapping it with electrical tape?

Who did this?

The previous owner of Brigadoon, that's who.

Why?  I'd love to ask him. I really would.

My story happens in this hole.

I was curled up in a little teeny ball, in the aft compartment, under the cockpit, trying to fit over the bilge, next to the muffler, pushing spare hoses out of the way, and trying not to break anything. I was cursing, just a little.  As I cut zip tie after zip tie, with wires randomly attached to hoses, other wires, even random wires in the same bundle, I was cursing under my breath.  As I stuffed cut zip tie after cut zip tie in to my pockets so as not to clutter up the bilge, I really wanted to have a talk with the previous owner.

Today, after a good nights sleep, I think I have a theory as to why he did what he did.

Any time spent working on a boat is time you aren't sailing her.  Now, I live on Brigadoon.  I don't have to go down to the boat to work on her.  I'm already there.  Last night, we decided not to go out, so I started wrecking out a small section of dead wiring left in place.  That piece of dead wiring led me into the aft compartment. It's a lousy crawl into a tiny space but, I was able to wreck out all the stuff in a couple hours and then sit in the cabin and have Kerry read me Maiden Voyage, by Tania Aebi.  You see, I wasn't losing any time on Brigoon.  I didn't have to pack up my tools and head home. I was home.

He didn't live on her.  He likely had a land house and a land job.  He did spend a lot of time on her.  I know he loved this boat.  He kept her for sixteen years, sailing her all over the northwest and into Canada.  I bet he spent all his spare time out on the boat.  Therein lies the rub.  He wanted to sail her, not fix her.

The previous owner wanted to sail Brigadoon and I think that, in his quest to get out there, in his desire to just solve the problem, he just fixed stuff.  He just got it going.  He just made it work.  One more butt splice doesn't matter when the fix is in and the wind is in your sails, right?  Right?

This does concern me a little but, as  long as he only did this kind of stuff with electrical systems (which is what I've found so far) it's all relatively simple so solve.  The boat isn't dangerous but, it is a wiring mess.

So, I'll still curse the previous owner, just a little.  At the same time I understand that he cursed when he found a problem the day he was planning on heading to the San Juans or the Inside Passage to Alaska.

He still owes me a damn drink, though.

1 comment:

  1. It never ceases to amaze me the *horrible* electrical I find on boats. So far the winner is a "splice" made by laying the ends of two wires together (untwisted) and wrapping a Band-Aid(TM) around them...