Saturday, May 21, 2011

Breaking the Logjam

I'm going to post the actual progress for a while and stop trying to find meaning. I've gotten things rolling with setting traps out for the season. I'm up to 35 after being at it a day and a half. That would take an hour or so in a conventional boat. The weather, tides and other circumstances have made it a challenge.

The good news is that the new electric motor, charged via solar panel, is a game-changer. It is very handy to slide along with a load of traps and not need all the space that 8 foot oars require. I found it strange to get places and not exert myself. I feel like I'm riding an aquatic powered skateboard. It is to my liking.

The less good news is that the same company that sells the motor also sells a "trolling motor power center"- basically a box to keep the battery dry and provide external electrical connections. The problem is that the box is wired with components that stand up to salt water about as well as do wheat thins or kleenex. The works were highly corroded- inside the supposedly waterproof enclosure, from last year. Clayton helped me rip out the rotted tissues and replace a circuit breaker. The other problem is that the external posts corrode together miserably, requiring pliers and threatening to shred the wires attached to the post.

The end result is that the motor can't get power out, and the solar panel can't get photons turned into electrons. I really need photons! They're very helpful to me. Some marine grease is probably called for. LPS 5 or something.

The other report is that solar-electric boats work, at least so far. It's a little early to tell how well the panel will keep up with both the winch and motor.

There's a hummingbird outside the slider. The feeder is empty. I need to find out how much sugar, water and red stuff to put in.

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