I’ve tried to get down to the boat at least a couple times a week. I’m avoiding the weekends if I can. I’ve come to realize that the small 1,300 acre Prairie Creek Reservoir also rents slips for 300 other boats, mostly pontoons. Additionally, fishing boats and ski boats can be launched from the public ramp. There’s a 20 mph speed limit and a 200 foot idle zone from the shore that few recognize. Tubing is only allowed on the south 1/4 of the lake but often they can be seen screaming past the entrance to the club. I’ve been told the Indiana DNR enforces both the state and Muncie ordinances. Really? Although the sailing club offers private docks, fishermen can bring their boats into the docks to fish as long as they don’t tie-up to the docks. I upgraded my bow dockline with some heavy rubber snubbers to reduce the bucking caused by the excessive wake from non-idlers.

The Muncie Sail Club had their first get together since the WUHAN flu lock down. It was a full moon sunset cruise. It gave me a chance to try out my new battery and nav lights. After that, I decided to invest in a solar battery charger. I also installed a 12 volt accessory outlet that allows me to plug in the charger or a USB adapter (to charge my phone) or a new oscillating fan. I stayed overnight one evening and the cabin never cooled off. The companionway and hatch had to stay closed to keep out the mosquitoes! I’m on my second attempt at a screen for the hatch. I sewed up a mesh screen with Sunbrella edging with Velcro.

I took my trailer to a local welding shop near the club last week. I’m having him modify the trailer so it will have a true telescoping hitch. I’m hoping for about a 12 foot extension that can be easily used during launch and recovery.

Lastly, I’m now on my THIRD outboard. My second, the 1985 Mariner that I drove 3-1/2 hours to buy last winter, will no longer go into forward gear. Of course I discovered this when I needed it to get away from the rock seawall. I somehow kept the boat from grounding and managed it into another slip to tie-up over night. After some quick research online, I learned it may be a worn out dog clutch $$$. I confirmed this with the mechanic that bought my old Evinrude. He offered me a newer, 1993, 4 hp Mariner that he had picked up for somebody else. It’s in very good condition with a long shaft and for a great price. I picked it up yesterday morning and soon realized my old Mariner was 5 inches longer! It’s a 25 inch shaft instead of a 20 inch. I hadn’t planned on going to the club yesterday, but I had to find out if it will work with the existing mount. It will be close. If we keep the weight aft and the lake isn’t too rough it should do the job. I may need to find a different mount or extend the throw on the existing mount.

Almost forgot! I did put on my new slippery sails one afternoon. They were great! But when it came time to flake the main on the boom, it was impossible for one person to get it done. I’m back with the old worn out sails for now. 🙁

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