Complicated Memories and Thoughts

I was on someone’s blog and wrote a long response to a post they made. In the end I didn’t bother posting it as I’m not big on social media of any kind nor having my name out there on every platform under the earth. However my reply had a memory in it that I hadn’t thought about in a long time and I didn’t just want to delete it. So I brought it over here. Maybe you can figure out a little of the context by what I wrote if not don’t worry about it.


I mostly don’t post on the web anymore in sort of the same vein as the helping people conversation here. We live in a legally dangerous environment that what you say and do will be taken out of context and used against you.

Libertarian Fiction

I was recently exchanging correspondence with the Author of the book The Untethered, S.W. Southwick. His book is probably one of the best examples of Libertarian fiction/SciFi that I have seen. In my opinion it is reaching into the territory to be considered Classic Literature. Anyway he asked me what other libertarian stories I had read. I was able to rattle off 5 or 6 but I know that I have read 10 times that many but they just weren’t coming to mind.  So this post is going to be updated on a regular basis as I add in Libertarion stories and authors as I remember them and or read them. So in no particular order, or maybe in alphabetical order 🙂 here we go.

Seasonic Platinum Power Supply

Seasonic Platinum Power Supply

High Tech Towels

We were having space storage issues with our regular towels as well as them staying damp forever. I did a lot of reading of reviews on a lot of brands of the new high tech towels and finally came down to the Discovery Trecking brand. They were very expensive and the only reason we ended up getting them was a gift card we got.

We bought 5 of them and it is all we have used now for the last 6 months or more. We purchased the largest size they had and it is huge. I probably would have tried the next size down if I had known how huge these are.

Composting Head Two Year or There About Thoughts

Guests on board

Something else I thought about as a downside to these. When we have guests it is still as hard or harder to explain how to use these as it was a standard marine head. At least we don’t worry about people putting toilet paper into this one but having to explain that poo and pee go in separate holes and that you have to rinse or clean up after yourself every single time you use it seems to generate a lot of resistance. We now have people we would prefer not to visit us on our boat because of the mess they left behind on the composting head. At its messiest (oh shit I missed the hole) it is still a simple matter of a minute or so to wipe the mess down the open  hole to the composting bin and spray with water and wipe down again and then maybe spray a disinfectant if needed. In regular use you just about never need to do this but guests that have different attitudes or lack of ability to use it as described can be a trial.

Short reading list for lowcostvoyaging gang.

So I have much longer list of 215 books but for some reason am having issue getting it to display right. Hopefully this shorter list that I culled from the larger one does display. 🙂 these are the howto, and helpfull books that I thought follow some of the topics and character of our conversations on the list.

Ashley, Clifford
Editorial Reviews Review The Ashley Book of Knots takes us back to a time when knots saved lives and put dinner on the table. Whether out at sea or in a pioneer cabin, knots were a part of daily life, one that is nearly lost today. But in this attractive, well-organized archive of more than 3,900 different knots–presented through 7,000 illustrations–the art of knot tying lives on, both as a historical reference and a reservoir of handy knowledge. Product Description Describes every practical knot, what it looks like, where it comes from, and how to tie it. The book includes 4,000 knots, with all the varieties of shipboard knots as well as knots used by butchers, steeplejacks, electric linesmen, knitters, cobblers, surgeons, poachers and cowboys. –This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Marine Topics library with some recomedations for the lowcostvoyaging gang

International Marine Publishing
Book Description Fueled by 18 years of the best letters, articles, and firsthand accounts from Living Aboard magazine and the results of hundreds of surveys, Gently with the Tides is a compendium of the challenges of living aboard a boat and how to meet them. Includes information about the “perfect” boat, galley and provisioning hints, the law and liveaboard rights, and much more. –This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
I’VE BEEN AROUND Aebi, Tania 9781574092134 Sheridan House The Ensign, September/October 2006 “This collection is great for folks who have time to read it cover to cover as well as those who have to grab a bit of reading here and there.” Charles J. Doane – SAIL Magazine, August 2006 “…at once amusing, insightful, informative, and –more than anything else –both articulate and decidedly mature.”

Aebi, Tania
Ballantine Books
From Publishers Weekly Challenged by her German-Swiss father, an 18-year-old New York City bicycle messenger in 1988 became the first American woman, and the youngest person, to sail alone around the world. In this jaunty account of her journey, she veers between the perils of solo sailing, her relationships with her separated parents and the death of her mysterious mother. Aebi, writing with freelancer Brennan, reveals her lack of sailing knowledge and experience, describes the heavy seas and weather she endured, her numerous problems with malfunctioning equipment, the countries, people and cats she encountered and a sympathetic French-Swiss whose boat sometimes accompanied her own. The story is so compelling that sailing enthusiasts will read avidly on to the triumphant finish. Literary Guild alternate; author tour. Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc. –This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title. From Library Journal This is the story of an 18-year-old New York City girl and her exciting solo circumnavigation of the globe on a 26-foot sloop with only a cat for company. Aebi had little previous experience, so most of what she learned was “on the job” and from people she met en route. One of the most appealing aspects of this particular single-handed sailing account is Aebi’s naivete and the caring response that she encountered all over the world. Her 27,000-mile, three-year trek is usually attempted only by practiced sailors, and her survival was achieved by pluck, inventiveness, helping hands, and a good deal of luck. Armchair sailors will cheer and dream a little and veterans may only shake their heads. Recommended. – Susan Ebershoff-Coles, Indianapolis-Marion Cty. Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc. –This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Composting Head 1 Year Update

Well it’s now 14 months or so since we installed the Natures Head on Valkyr. I have had several people ask me for an update on our experiences with it,so here it goes. Overall we are extremely happy with the change from a standard marine head and holding tank to a composting head. Both me and my wife would do it over in the blink of an eye.

Positives for us include

  • Overall total lack of odor.
  • Ease of changing the composting mix.
  • Regaining the use of two compartments under the v-berth and space in the port side v-berth hanging closet.
  • Ease of Maintenance and totally removing or putting the unit back in place.
  • Ease of initial installation compared to a standard marine head
  • 90% less maintenance than a standard head and what maintenance you do end up doing is much less nasty.

BB&T (Branch Banking and Trust) institutes a 10 dollar a month fee on checking accounts

Recently I received a letter from BB&T where I have had the same accounts for well over a decade. They informed me that if my balances fall below 1500 dollars a month they will be charging me a 10 dollar service fee. It is a rare month in the last few years that I have a balance of more than a few hundred dollars in my personal account. So it leaves me feeling as if I am being penalised 120 dollars a year in the future for being poor. I will be expressing my opinion in person soon but for now I have sent the below letter to their customer service department through the online banking interface after receiving the same letter there that I did in the mail. Is it any wonder that we view the banks and credit card companys with such distrust anymore when at every chance they have they turn the screws on us a little more. I love how they can arbitrarily change the the type of account that I signed up for. Add fee’s, raise the fee’s, change the terms of the contract that I signed when I got the account…. grrrrr… I am not a happy camper right now.

Composting head ramblings

somebody on a forum was commenting about how they didn’t feel comfortable with a composting head due to if the boat every turned upside down that stuff could come out of it and make a mess.. I’m dubious as to the logic of this argument against a composting head but here is my answer to that as well as addressing someones concerns about the cost of the commercial units.

On mine it is bolted to the floor and the top part latches to the bottom that is bolted to the floor. There is a flap that secures the solid waste tank at the top. It is spring loaded and holds itself shut when your not using it. I don’t see the unit letting the compost fall out. Upside down there would be the possibility of the urine leaking back out. However if it was totally full that would be just at or over 2 gallons of urine no more. If it was that huge of a deal I could see how to modify our system to use a small tank for urine with a line running to it with a valve on it. However it would also call for all the plumbing of a normal holding tank to either pump the urine off the boat or discharge it overboard. Though more complex it would also allow with say a 10 gallon tank a pump out schedule or overboard outside the 3 mile limit of of say 20 to 25 day intervals for two people.

Rant on Technology, Government, Ethics and Mores, and Modern Life

I am finding in my life that some of the newer generation materials and products are starting to simplify. They are reducing the amount of resources, complexity and production steps it takes to do a job. The technology behind them is maturing technology with decades of development that are gradually looking to save costs by making simpler products that do more than the older more complex version for less.

The new synthetic line that is being used in the standing rigging in sailboats is one example. One hundred years ago you still saw rope rigging with deadeys and lashings holding up the masts. With technology came lines made of steel and then stainless steel, that were smaller and lighter. It was much stronger and lasted for decades between replacing it as opposed to a life span of a few years to just months. It’s downside is that there were a lot of special fittings that needed special tools to maintain it and usually you needed a rigger to work on it. It wasn’t simple. Today we are back to fiber lines being used with deadeyes and lashings again. Only this time they are stronger by a factor of three or more than the stainless steel lines, eight times lighter. We have gone through the technological life cycle from better but more complex to much better and back to much more simple to use.

Nature’s Head install on Valkyr

We installed the “Natures Head” composting toilet this past weekend. It fits perfectly side to side (read “it is a tight fit”) to get it in the head compartment you take the top section off the bottom section. This is just a matter of unclipping two clips, one on either side of the unit and then sliding the top section left 3 inches or so as you lift it up to disengage the rear hinge. At that point both pieces will easily fit through either of the head doors.

Here is a few picture of the two stainless angle pieces that hold the unit to the floor. The first shows how we marked where to set the mounts. We put the head in place and them made sure that we had room on either side for the crank to turn on the right without hitting the wall and the latch on the left side of the unit to open as well as being able to slide the top to the left when pulling it off the hinge when removing it. Once it was spaced right we took a pencil and just drew a line around the backside of the angle pieces to mark where they went.