Equinox Project | Monday, March 30, 2009

I began the day, and the week, with the mast beam and its final installation.  To begin, I masked off the beam and the overhead adjacent to the beam's location (which I'd previously marked during a test-fit), and then wedged and clamped the beam tightly in place temporarily.  Then, I drilled and tapped for five 3" machine screws through the beam and bulkhead and into the molded fiberglass bulkhead flange.  With this done, I reinstalled the beam with the screws, pulling it tightly into position.  I finished up the installation with a cosmetic bead of caulk along the seam between beam and overhead.  I still needed to build some wedges or spacers to fill the small gap between the bulkhead vertical posts and the beam.


Getting the beam into place meant that I could finally wrap up the wiring in the head and hanging locker, on which I'd been waiting since I needed the beam there in order to run the wires to their final locations.  I began by wiring up the starboard galley light and securing its wires within a split-loom sheath for cosmetic reasons.


Next, I worked on the more numerous wires on the port side, beginning with the wiring for the mast lighting.  I installed a terminal block on the bulkhead--this bulkhead surface would eventually be inside the hanging locker and not readily visible, yet still accessible--and then ran the four positive wires and three negatives (the lights combined in one of the fixtures share a negative) to the block.  Later, wires from the mast will make their way belowdecks to be connected to the appropriate terminals on the opposite side of the block, making for easy connection and disconnection each season when the mast is stepped or unstepped.

Finally, I wired and installed the port galley light and fan.  I didn't sheathe these cable runs since they would not be visible once the hanging locker front was reinstalled.

I temporarily installed the RAM swing arm and GPS mount, now that its backing block was securely mounted to the bulkhead, and ran the power cable and antenna cable up along the mounting arms out to where the GPS unit would be--this still represented for now by a cardboard template.  Allowing sufficient slack to allow for operation of the various adjustments on the mounting arms, I then made up any final wiring connections for the GPS (and the adjacent depthsounder) and secured the wires along their runs, and tied up the excess GPS antenna wire out of sight.  Late in the day, I applied a sealer coat of varnish to the GPS backing block, the first of several coats required.


UPS brought some much-needed supplies in the early afternoon, so with these new materials on hand I could wrap up several more jobs.  First, I made up the connections, finally, to the autopilot plug, using some new connectors that better fit the tiny terminal screw size, and installed the plug with screws and sealant.

Next, I installed the stern light on the pulpit.

The hose I needed for the bilge pumps also had arrived, so with that on hand I could do the final installation of the electric bilge pump.  I installed some wire tie mounts on the pump's lifting stick, and secured the pump's and switch's wires to these mounts, and made up the final wiring connections with the previously-installed wiring from the operation switch in the cabin.  I left ample slack in the wires to allow the pump and platform to be pulled out to the cabin sole for future inspection or maintenance, though once the pump was down in the bilge I bundled up the excess and secured it with a wire tie to keep it out of the way.

I attached a length of hose to the pump, and installed it in the bilge, securing the top of the stick with a screw into the angle FRP I installed for this purpose below the cabin sole.  I ran the discharge hose through the engine room and up to the discharge fitting in the starboard counter, where I clamped it in place.


I thought it'd be a good time to reinstall the stanchions and lifelines, so I did.


Total Time on This Job Today:  8.5 hours

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