Adding Carpet and Preventing Mold From Finding It

I spent weeks looking for the perfect throw rugs for our boat interior.  The problem was I liked them,  but  the love factor was not there.  I googled nautical theme rugs and nautical theme carpet.  There were some that I liked from Home Depot so I ordered them.   Again, I didn’t love them and I wasn’t thrilled about the idea of throw rugs that could shift around the boat.

Google To The Rescue 

I will be the first to admit I am a little creeped out when Google sends me ads based on what I was searching for.  It feels a little too much like someone stalking me.  This time however, I was thrilled to have google send me this ad .  When  I opened my browser and saw this carpet,  I was ready to send Google a thank-you note.   This carpet  was being sold by Bed Bath and Beyond.  A quick trip to Home Depot to return the other rugs was all it took for me to order this carpet.  I had spent $107.00 on throw rugs.   This is  a large rug and I paid $64.00 after applying a 20% off coupon and free shipping offer.

It is an indoor/outdoor carpet,  so it will not wear as fast and should be easier to clean.  It will also be better in a moist environment like a sailboat.

Perfect Rug… Too Big

I loved this carpet. See how it matches  my cushions perfectly.  The color is off in this picture.  The vinyl is white on the seats and the blue is the color of the picture above.  The lighting in my living room made it look yellow.

Seats and rugs match

More Rugs

Because the carpet was so large,  it was a 5x9ft carpet,  it wouldn’t fit in the space I was trying to cover.  We ended up cutting it and getting two identical carpets for the same area.  This means we have a spare for later.  We were also able to cut  a small piece for inside to put shoes on and a small rug outside the companionway door to keep dirt out.

The boat is dirty and dusty from the winter, please ignore the filth.   I wanted you to see how it fit in front of the companionway.  So,  we were able to get two of the interior rugs and two smaller area rugs out of this one carpet.  We found a local carpet shop that could bind the carpets while we waited.   It cost us $45.00 to get all four rugs bound.  They did a wonderful job binding them.

So, all things considered the four custom fit rugs cost us $113.00 after binding. The throw rugs were $107.00.  The throw rugs would not have stayed in place the way this rug will.

You can see how the rugs look when they are in the boat.  In these pictures they are not bound yet.  We were just checking the fit before we took them to the carpet shop.   It looks like they are not going up against the wall but there is actually a curve to the floor.  It goes right up against that curve.

We will be putting one of the large carpets away for a spare.  The other carpet will go in the boat and be able to be removed at any time.  Even if I just get sick of it.   Because the carpet is not glued or taped down, we will be able to remove it to shake or wash.  Since it is indoor/outdoor,  washing it should be a breeze.

Mold, Not On My Boat!

Before we put the carpet down, we will be  washing the floor with vinegar to kill any mold spores.  After the vinegar dries the smell goes away very quickly.  We will then be spraying the floor with Concrobium.  The aerosol spray works best.  Although, if you have a large area you can get it in a gallon jug.

It is important that you can get the Concrobium into all the tight spaces.  The Concrobium will prevent the mold from starting for 3 months.  Using this stuff has solved  all our mold problems.   I would not sleep on our sailboat without it.  We spray Concrobium under our mattress and seats to prevent mold due to condensation.  It is 100% non-toxic.  

You can take any carpet and make it work in your boat.  It just takes a carpet knife and little planning.

 

5 Tips to Reduce Anxiety Before You Sail Away

After we purchased Seabreeze, I started following all the blogs I could find.  Sailing Britican,  quickly became one of my favorites.  So, you will understand how excited I was to have Kim Brown,  from Sailing Britican,  write a blog post on reducing anxiety before sailing away.

Kim, Simon and Sienna are at this time sailing somewhere in the Bahamas.  To say I am jealous, is a real understatement.  Enjoy Kim’s article and check out her blog.

An Introduction to Kim and Britican

Sailing Britican is a family blog about how they sold up and sailed away in 2013.   Captain Simon is British. First Mate, Kim, is American and their daughter, Sienna (age 3 1/2 when leaving land) is both – thus the name Britican (BRITish & amerICAN).

Thus far,  they’ve circumnavigated the Mediterranean, crossed the Atlantic, sailed up the Caribbean and along the east coast of America and Bermuda doing over 23,000 nautical miles. The family creates videos on YouTube and writes articles with the hopes of entertaining, educating, inspiring and connecting with other sailors.

Britican’s Experience

As we enter our sixth year as sailboat owners and forth year as full time sailboat liveaboards, we’ve racked up quite a bit of experience.  Recently, we celebrated 23,000 nautical miles of travelling.

Looking back, the most difficult part of transitioning from a land-based life to one on the sea was the overwhelming learning curve. The sheer amount of things needed to be mentally consumed causes once organized and stable people to feel totally out of control.

Although the cruisers life is well worth the effort there is an initial phase or ‘bump’ that has to be overcome. We’ve met many others, just starting out, that could have benefited from some beginner tips; perhaps advice that will allow the bump to be lower and shorter!

Tip One:  Feeling Overwhelmed

Realize that there is, indeed, an initial phase and its totally normal to feel overwhelmed and out of control. No matter how much you prepare, you ultimately won’t truly be prepared. And that’s okay. I often equate this transition to being similar to having a baby. No one actually prepares you for what’s to come and it’s because it’s just not possible.

Many new boaters romanticize about sailing into a sunset, swimming off the back of the boat in calm tropical waters and enjoying the sights and sounds of foreign countries and islands.Those things are all a part of sailing and they are fantastic.

There are also the not-so-great parts.  It’s not fun going through a storm. Nor is it enjoyable to be ‘stuck’ somewhere waiting on parts. It’s hard to wait, sometimes weeks, for a weather window. And it’s certainly not fun when you have to quickly learn how to be a plumber, mechanic, electrician, refrigeration expert, short-order cook… not to mention sailing in all sorts of conditions. Expect to feel overwhelmed and also expect this phase to eventually end.  Knowing that it’s a part of the process will make the transition easier.

Importance of Becoming an Expert in Anchoring

Before leaving your homeport become an expert about anchoring and in particular your anchor and anchor equipment. For some reason,  this topic often gets missed when preparing to head out into the sunset. Many boaters, us included, learned how to sail, how to maintain an engine and spent countless hours planning on what we’d take on the boat versus leave behind.

What we didn’t fully appreciate was the whole complex world of anchoring. Considering that it’s the anchor that will keeping you from heading into harms way, it’s imperative to be happy with what you’ve got and how to use it. I can’t tell you how many new cruisers I’ve met that are going through the ‘bump’ and realize too late that their anchor doesn’t hold, they don’t have enough rode (chain or rope), or they never learned the tried and tested techniques on preventing an anchor from dragging.

Living through the bump is one thing. Not being able to sleep due to the fact that you don’t have anchor faith is an added worry; one that can be avoided. (Resource: How To Anchor: A Checklist To Prevent Dragging)

Preparing For Water… In The Boat

Create a map of all your sailboat’s through-hull fittings in addition to tying an appropriately sized bung to each fitting using a piece of string. Put the map on the wall. Furthermore, make sure you have a system (e.g. checklist) of testing your automatic bilge every week and ensuring your high water alarms work.

We’ve had water flowing into our boat on a few occasions. It’s not something that anyone wants to talk about or even consider, however, this is not the kind of thing a new, or seasoned boater should ignore. Boats get holed, stopcocks fail and engine hoses burst. To ensure your ‘bump’ phase is less stressful, it will help you to have a plan on what to do if water enters the boat.

If and when water comes in, you’ll need to pull up floorboards and determine which direction it’s coming from and then head in that direction, pulling up more floorboards. If the engine is running we check that first, as it can be a blown hose. Failing that, we start looking at all the through hull fittings. Knowing where to look and having the means to stop it will provide you with an increased sense of control.

Prop Failure

Make sure that you have snorkeling gear, a wetsuit and at least one oxygen tank and regulator (even it you’re not a diver). It is not uncommon for props to get fouled. We’ve had ours fouled five times. In some occasions the prop will still operate and in others it becomes completely inoperable. The first time our prop was fouled we didn’t even have a mask – it took my husband 45 minutes in a fast running freezing cold tide to get a 12’ fisherman’s net off the prop.

Aside from snorkeling gear we also have two small oxygen tanks that take up very little space. They only hold ten minutes of air but we use them often. The oxygen also helps when we have to inspect the hull and change anodes. Furthermore, we’ve used the tank to dive on our anchor to ensure it’s bedded in. It’s a small amount of equipment that provides a huge amount of help.

Take Spare Parts

Spend time considering what spare parts are necessary and then stock them on your boat. If you’re going to venture into places like the Caribbean or Pacific getting parts becomes a lengthy and costly process. The more you can take with you, the better. Of course you have to be realistic about cost and space.

Consider various scenarios with what you can and cannot live without. If you have two heads, perhaps it’s okay if one goes down. If you don’t have an ancillary hand pump from your fresh water tank, having an extra fresh water pump would be high on my list. Many boat components have service packs or spare part kits. Engines, generators, toilets, pumps and so forth all have service packs. Find out what you have (e.g. the make and model of your engine), search for a service pack and determine whether you need it or don’t.

Now the Good News

The liveaboard lifestyle can be the most amazing experience. It’s full of adventure, incredible sights and many new friends. We’ve been going for several years now and I can’t foresee us stopping anytime soon. It truly is a dream world, but the initial breakthrough from living on land to living on the sea can be bumpy. Hopefully some of these tips will provide you with some key areas that are worthy of consideration.

 

 

Seasick Prevention on Your Wrist

I wouldn’t venture so far as to say I have never been really seasick while onboard.  If I don’t get up and go on deck first thing in the morning,  I  do get nauseous.  But this has been easy enough to control.  I  just make sure to get outside and look around as soon as I wake up.

The Reliefband is FDA cleared for nausea and vomiting associated with motion and morning sickness. The big plus is that unlike drugs, you don’t turn it on until you are feeling sick. Pills have to be taken prior to feeling ill.

How Was i Going To Review This Band?

When I first talked to Good Old Boat about doing a review of the Reliefband, I had my doubts.  I was also not sure how I could test it since I am not prone to getting seasick.

Watching a movie while down below will usually make me run for topside.  After watching an entire movie in rough water, I wasn’t so much as queasy.  The movie wasn’t bad either.

Still Not Convinced

Reading in the car for 3 hours has never been possible before. Even when I look up every few minutes, I still get motion sickness.  I can usually read about a half hour then need to stop.  We were going shopping a few hours from home.  If I could read on my Kindle the entire trip…then this thing works.  Guess what, I read for 2 hours there and 2 hours back home.  Not a bit queasy, although I did get tired.  This was not a concern, since I fall asleep reading in my living room.

Before I Give It The Thumbs Up

As I said early on, I don’t get really sick.  So I decided to put it to the ultimate tests.  First, I borrowed it to a friend that was sailing with us.  She always gets sick and has a hard time keeping down her breakfast.  I had her apply the gel and put the band on.  I told her not to turn it on until she felt sick.  My test was to see if it would work after someone was ill.  After about 5 minutes she turned it on.  She felt 100% better and turned it off after about an hour.  There was no need to turn it back on for hours.  According to my tester, she said it was her best day out on the water ever.

Now I wanted to do the ultimate test.  If it worked for a  pregnant friend then I could give it the two thumbs up.  Then I could be sure it did exactly what they claimed.  So, I  had her test  it for a week. When she felt sick she put it on and it worked like magic.  As a matter of fact, I had a hard time getting the band back from her.

If motion sickness is a problem you have to live with, give this band a try.  If you are out sailing by me you can borrow it to try.

Happy Sick Free Sailing.

These reviews are not paid for in any way.  Our opinions are not for sale.  If we don’t like something we will tell you why.

 

 

Never Enough Space

Everyone admits that no matter how much storage space they have, they will  fill it.  This was so true for us.  Our first home was a 3 story farm house.  You guessed it, we filled it, the garage and the barn.

Finding Space

When deciding to live on a sailboat, you need to step back and take a look at what space you have to work with.  You are right, it isn’t much.  It is time to decided what you can live without, then get rid of it.  What you can purchase that will serve more than one purpose.  Also, what you can get that will take up less space, things like collapsible strainers.

Kitchen Equipment

We replaced bulky pots and pans with a set of Magma nesting pots.  Magma offers either a 7 piece or a 10 piece set.   For easier cleanup, I purchased the ceramic  7 piece set.  If you love stainless steel, they have a set for you too.  A padded storage bag makes it easy to keep them all together and prevents scratches.

A 3 quart Instant Pot  will serve as our pressure cooker and crockpot.  The Instant Pot is a rice cooker, yogurt maker, crockpot, steamer, and pressure cooker. This makes it easier to cook healthy meals while underway.  Unlike a regular pressure cooker, it can be plugged in then placed safely in the sink.  This will prevent it from sliding around.  Using a pressure cooker on the stove would require me to stay right next to it.  It would be too dangerous to just leave it on the stove while the boat was heeling. I want to eat dinner not scrub it off the walls.

The dishes and silverware are all safe in the dish cabinet.  It was decided that if a kitchen utensil did not collapse for easy storage or have more than one use, it would be replaced.  All our kitchen utensils now fit in a small plastic tote on the counter.

How and Where to Store it

In one of our earlier blogs, we showed you how we designed and built our sail hammock.  You can pull the hammock out for storing sails or you can push it up against the wall and use the whole bed.  Our grandkids can sleep on the bed with the hammock out.

To keep all the cooking gear in one place I purchased a heavy duty trunk organizer with carrying handles. You can adjust the size of each compartment to fit your equipment.

  We store the Magma pan bag behind the trunk organizer,  under the sail hammock. Since the sails do not take up the whole hammock, I purchased a pull out storage bin to put the towels in.  Before the bin it was impossible to find a towel.  They always ended up stuffed to the back.   I could  air dry before I  got my hands on a towel.  

 

 

 

 

Clothes?

When asked most sailors will tell you they don’t wear clothes on their boat, especially once they get to the Bahamas.  I don’t know if they are lying or not?  But, that won’t be me.   To keep our clothes within reach I found a closet organizer with drawers that only cost about $20.00 at Wal-Mart.  It has hooks that go over our hammock rod.  I goes right in front of our equipment bags so I can slide it from side to side to access what I need behind it.

Our next blog will have information no how we turned our not so easy to access storage,  into a perfect storage area.   These doors were not there originally.  We will show you how we built and installed them.