Nicely chilled

Refrigeration work complete. Onward.

We spent the last few days in Mystic undergoing a much-needed upgrade to Andante’s refrigeration system. After two days of ripping out the old and installing the new we now have a modern, efficient, and quiet 12V system (a Seafrost Tradewinds XP) that will keep our freezer and refrigerator boxes well-chilled when the engine is not in use. Yay cold drinks and firm cheese and not-so-funky mayonnaise. It was a messy job made somewhat more challenging by my living aboard during the work but the end result is worth it.

The entire galley had the be disassembled and the contents of all the lockers removed. The final result is a nice clean installation with even more storage space than before. But my shoes are still under the table.

The company that did the refrigeration work (Cool Boats LLC) secured us a slip in downtown Mystic between the railroad swing bridge (Amtrak trains several times per hour) and the old bascule drawbridge (endless parade of tourists). We were docked right between the two bridges and could watch the action all day long.

The Mystic River railroad bridge viewed from our dock. The bridge is normally closed to accommodate the frequent trains but swings open on request for boats.
Looking north from our dock is Main Street and the Mystic River highway bridge, a 1922 bascule drawbridge. A few afternoon clouds threatened but the weather was ideal our entire stay.
Andante at the dock for repairs. Tim from Cool Boats does nice work.

Upriver less than a mile is the Mystic Seaport Museum. There was a steady stream of beautiful wooden schooners passing just off our transom on the way to tie up at the museum.

The schooner Roseway passing off our stern.
And the schooner Harvey Gamage doing the same.
The schooner Argia moored just below the highway bridge. Tim, the technician that installed our new refrigeration system, used to captain this ship as well as others in the Mystic area and the Caribbean. It was fun talking with him while he worked.

After putting the interior of the boat back together late this morning we repositioned from downtown Mystic to West Harbor on Fisher Island. It was only about an hours steam down the river but it feels like an entirely different planet. Quiet, secluded, and a nice gentle breeze that doesn’t smell like boatyard and restaurants. And nice clear water.

Lately I’ve been noticing increased vibrations and noise when motoring at cruising speed. For some weeks I’ve suspected hard growth on the propeller and prop shaft but have been unable to do much about it because the visibility has been so bad. I took advantage of the clear water in Fishers Island Sound to investigate using the GoPro-on-a-stick contraption that Alex and I figured out earlier this summer. Once growth on the prop was confirmed I took advantage of the sunny, relatively calm afternoon, squeezed into my wetsuit, and went for a refreshing swim in the 60 degree water to scrape away all the growth with a putty knife. Mission accomplished in less than 5 minutes. I’m hopeful that this will lessen the vibrations since there is a lot of motoring in our future.

Video frame capture from a GoPro camera attached to the end of a pole lowered from Dinghy. There were several medium-sized barnacles on the prop blades.

We are anchored just outside of West Harbor positioned for a quick exit early tomorrow morning. There are supposed to be strong winds from the south that should make for good sailing. With an early start to avoid the strongest adverse currents we will try to sail about 50 miles west to Milford, CT. From there it will be just one more 40 nm hop to City Island, then into the East River and through New York Harbor to Sandy Hook. But one step at a time.

Note: I’ve put the link to the tracker on its own page accessible through the top menu.

4 thoughts on “Nicely chilled”

  1. Mystic pics are great Dave. What a prime spot you had to observe. Hoping the prop barnacle removal solves the vibration.

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  2. Looks like you’re on Long Island now… hope that is nice. I want to see a photo of Lady Liberty!!! Sailing down past Manhattan sounds so much fun. I hope it’s a great clear day when you get to it.

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