Team Seacats

Archive for March, 2011

Risk and Reward

by on Mar.30, 2011, under America's Cup

It’s all about risk and reward. Some of the most elite sports carry the most risk. Bicycling, Formula 1, etc. We’re finally there with sailing. Several of the new AC45 catamarans (a one design class for the most part) have been constructed and are now on the water in New Zealand. These are the predecessor to the custom team-designed AC72 catamaran big brothers we’ll see for the main event. I can’t wait! Even these 45’s are going to be exhilarating to watch!

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Wire, Wire, and More Wire

by on Mar.27, 2011, under Garage Mahal

I’ve been doing nothing but wiring for the last month or so.  Every time I move on to a new task in the garage, I’m reminded at how poor my time estimating skills are with these kinds of jobs I’ve never done before.  Though I thought that I should be done with the electrical work by now, thanks to three solid days (or more) of help from David Strickland and Tim Owens, the wiring is nearly completed for both the upstairs and downstairs.  23 recessed can lights are in place switched on 4 different banks upstairs and I’ve gone nuts with the number of outlets.  There are three circuits of outlets (I think 28 in total) and eleven network outlets – some of which will double as telephone connections.  I couldn’t resist putting in so many outlets – the space is so modular I thought it best to simply have a plug wherever we might want to put equipment because it’s easier now before the insulation .  Downstairs, there are six eight foot double tube florescent strips forming two runs down the length of the garage and specific workbench lighting.  There aren’t as many outlets downstairs but there are plenty with several mounted above “benchtop level” on the wall where there will be a long work table.  There are four exterior outlets – one of them 30Amp to power the RV.  I will have to be judicious with simultaneous power consumption and though it’s going to be a rare occasion that we are using much more than a computer and one or two lighting circuits, the 100Amp service will not power everything at once.  I hope I don’t regret not installing a 200 amp service (that would have required extensive rework on my house’s main electrical service and circuitry).

To finish things, I have some work to do with the HVAC.  I need to determine if my 25′ lineset for the upstair unit will allow me to install the two outdoor units side by side or if they need to be mounted one above the other (they’ll mount on brackets on the existing exterior wall).  Once that is determined, I can mount the disconnect boxes and run the wiring for those units.  All that is left after that is to run the 100Amp power feed from the main electrical box and then to schedule a rough-in electrical inspection so I can move on to hiring insulation and drywall contractors.

Several of these boxes are network – they’re not ALL power!

Electrical Panel before cleanup:

Electrical Panel after cleaning it up – I spent most of today wiring that cabinet alone…(I am short one 15amp breaker..hence the blank spot).

I need to call my original contractor out and get them to fix this leaky door that I already had them reinstall once…

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Fencing Complete!

by on Mar.06, 2011, under Garage Mahal

Sorry it’s been a while since the last post…It seems like I get fewer and fewer breaks anymore and I’m not making the progress on the garage that I had hoped by this point.  However, the things that are coming along are coming along quite well so it’s still gratifying.  I have been working on several different projects in and out of the garage and I hope to put up several posts in the next week or so updating the status on things.


During a warm snap several weeks ago I was finally able to complete the complex curved fencing that I had been scheming about ever since the garage project began. It was as difficult as I anticipated but the result was better than I could have imagined.  This curved fence section is roughly 30 linear feet of fencing and ties into brackets I had previously welded on the primary hinged fence posts. As I did on the back fencing, I used 2″ galvanized EMT conduit for the fence posts because it has a thicker wall, was available in 10′ sections, and was cheaper than the 6′ 2″+ thin wall fencing posts available at the big box hardware stores. Standard 2″ EMT conduit fittings were used to mount the fencing braces – although this time I installed stainless steel plates between the wood and the EMT clamp out of concern that the wood may compress overtime and allow the clamp to lose pressure and slide. The long braces are constructed from multiple layers of 1/2″ pressure treated plywood that were soaked for a few days and then braced around the curve of the driveway and screwed together. After drying for several weeks and waiting for a warm enough day to stain, everything was put together. I was concerned about the open grain of the plywood so I applied about 8 coats of stain to the braces to hopefully extend their life (I don’t want to have to make those again any time soon!). Should they fail in the future, I’ll probably try to heat some plastic decking boards and use them to form the curve.






Rats! – I didn’t get a photo with all the pickets trimmed and in place…there are 3 pickets missing in this photo

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