Yet Another Outboard motor stand

You may not have followed this blog long enough to know that back in 2011 I built a motor stand. Then I built another motor stand. It’s hard to believe that was four years ago!

I sold the first motor stand along with my first rehab sailboat and the second is still in service holding up the motor for the Catalina 22.  Now that I own yet another boat with another motor I need yet another motor stand!  From my vast experience with motor stand building this one went very easily.

Parts and tools for the motor stand.  This took three eight foot 2 x 4 boards, some nails, some leg screws and four wheels. I forgot to include a drill and circular saw in this picture.

parts and tools for motor stand

First I built the two frames using nails. It’s hard to tell from this picture, but the vertical frame has the horizontal boards sandwiched between the two vertical boards.

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The long vertical boards are 44 inches high, the horizontal board that holds the motor is 22 inches wide.

The boards that will be parallel with the floor are 35 inches and of course 22 inches wide.

Next I nailed the frame that will be the horizontal bottom frame into the vertical frame.


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Next I grabbed a scrap of plywood and cut to side supports. The size and angle isn’t that important it just has to support the vertical frame from wobbling back-and-forth.

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I got the wheels with brakes so they were a little more expensive.  These were pre-drilled and then screwed in with lag bolts. There is a minor wheels/no wheels debate out there on the net. I built one with and one without before, I still have the one without and I definitely preferred the wheels. Space is at a minimum in my garage and I have to move things around quite a bit. If you have a dedicated space then maybe you don’t need wheels.

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It was a bit chilly so I fired up the propane double burner.

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Total cost was about 25 bucks. Whenever I build a project I get extra screws or nails or whatever so I actually bought an entire box of washers and lag screws. Then I didn’t even use the washers!  That added another 25 bucks to the total cost but I can’t count that against the motor stand can I?

Total build time about an hour, maybe less. Plus a trip to Home Depot.


Capn NoHab

First, there was captain Ahab and his quest for the great white whale.

Then there was Capn Rehab and his quest to bring a boat back from the dead.

Now there is Capn NoHab who said, “I’m working two jobs and have too many projects on the house, there is no way I’ll be able to put the Catalina 22 by in the water by spring”

And there is Mrs. Capn NoHab who said, “Why don’t you buy a boat you can sail now, then you can fix the 22 later.”  (Is that a great wife, or what?)

Then my truck died and the mechanic said it wasn’t worth fixing.

I turned my attention to craigslist to find a truck, and while I was at it created some alerts for “trailer” in the sailboat section of all the locations around me.  I still want a trailer-able sailboat, because there are so many places around the Chesapeake to go, I didn’t want to be stuck to one location.

I’ve been on the lookout for a Catalina 25 because for those extra 3 feet you get a lot more room than a 22 inside.  I also like that so many of them were built, and that I would still have a lot of community support.  I just didn’t see any show up that were in my price range and seemed interesting.   I did go see a Catalina 22 that was in “great shape ready to go sail”.  Ha!  It’s keel was in worse shape than mine when I started.

After 2 months of looking and a lot of false starts, I found a great truck.

new (to me) truck

new (to me) truck

After looking at it I told the owner I needed to leave, because we were going to see a boat.

PO:  “Oh, I have a boat for sale”.
CapnRehab : What kind?
PO: “A Catalina 25”
CapnRehab: “Oh really, do you have a trailer?”
PO:”Yes, want to come see it?”
CapnNOhab: “Sure!”

By the way, the PO stands for “Previous Owner”

So here is my boat, a 1995 Catalina 250.  Water Ballast, 90lb swing keel.  Draws 21″ when up, 6 feet when down.



I’m going to get to sail it a couple of times before winter shuts me down. (Maybe)  I must have brain damage.

No, I haven’t given up the Catalina 22.  It’s not like my repair progress can go any slower is it?

Smithsonian Air and Space Museum – Dulles Airport

On Father’s day weekend my son surprised me with a visit, all the way from Orlando.  Quite a shock to come in from Laser racing at WRSC and see him and his fiance sitting at the dining table with Mrs. CapnRehab!

So I put aside all my work plans and just had fun.  One of the places we went was the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, VA.

It is an amazing place full of all the planes the Smithsonian Museum downtown in Washington DC doesn’t have room for. It’s also the place where they restore planes, and you can see the work areas from a big observation deck. If you come to Washington DC for vacation or to visit, I recommend that you try to fit this place into your schedule and give it a full day to really give it justice.

They have tours that start frequently and a very knowledgeable guide will take you around and talk about the different planes. Our guide was so knowledgeable because they have to take continuing education classes and also get tested every year. He talked about approximately 60 planes but there are way way more planes there than that.  He was very informative and made the tour very interesting. Much more interesting that had we just walked around and looked at planes.

tour guide was good

tour guide was good

Some really famous planes are there too. Perhaps the most famous plane there (although there was some steep competition) was the the “Enola Gay”. This is the actual plane that dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima to help end World War II. The outside has been meticulously restored to its original condition.

I just read “Flags of Our Fathers” about the invasion of Iwo Jima and how difficult it was. 6,821 US and 18,844 Japanese soldiers died on one little island a little more than 3 miles wide.  It was the final island to be taken before the planned invasion of Japan.  If we had invaded Japan those numbers would have been minor compared to the carnage that would follow. I also read “Unbroken” which you saw a review of here a little while back, also about World War II. Having that background made seeing this plane a little more meaningful for me.

Enola Gay dropped the atomic bomb

The first plane you see as you walk in the door is the SR 71 blackbird spy plane. The tour guide told a story about how once the plane is flying it heats and expands by 9 inches so it was designed to be loose when it’s on the ground, and that means it actually leaks fuel. So they would only fill it enough to get it off the ground and then it would have to go to an air tanker right away to get a fill up.

SR-71 Spy Plane

SR-71 Spy Plane

Another great plane from my childhood is the worlds first super sonic airliner – the Concorde. It could go from London to New York in just a few hours -, not anymore.


Concorde Supersonic airliner

Last but certainly not least is the space shuttle discovery. This is an actual spaceship that has gone into space and returned. The whole hanger there is dedicated to space exploration and I saw several projects that I’ve worked on through NASA. Pretty amazing!

Oh, and don’t forget the selfie!

Space Shuttle

Space Shuttle

Okay, it’s not really a selfie. MrsCapnRehab took it. 🙂

Victory in Europe 70th Anniversary

Sometimes I work in downtown DC and yesterday just happened to be there when the VE day celebrations were going on.  I didn’t stay outside for long but had a chance to see a few old planes flying over.  They weren’t as loud as a cigarette boat on the bay, but they were pretty loud.  I like that I was able to get the flag in as well.

Thank you WWII veterans.

VE Day Washington DC Flyover May 8, 2015

VE Day Washington DC Flyover May 8, 2015


VE Day Washington DC Flyover May 8, 2015


VE Day Washington DC Flyover May 8, 2015


VE Day Washington DC Flyover May 8, 2015

Keel repair continues – news from the machine shop

I decided to make a template for the machine shop to use when brazing the keel pivot pin bushing .  My dimensions are 5″ 3/8″  front to back, 4 7/8 wide at the front and 5″ wide at the back.

keel bracket template

keel bracket template

I’m not sure how useful this information is to anybody, or even if this template is needed – but it seemed like something worth doing to help the machine shop get this bushing in the right place.  The two pencil lines are the actual size of the slot in the hull where the keel swings up.  Notice that the brass brackets are significantly over into the swing space.  That’s as expected and the directions are to grind them down to the correct size to minimize the play in the keel from side to side.

In the above view, the template is actually upside down.  Here is it from the top:

keel bracket , right side up

keel bracket , right side up

The bolts will come up through the brackets like this, and will screw into the weldments as shown in the next picture.

weldment/bracket configuration.

weldment/bracket configuration.

You can imaging that the upside down “L” shaped weldments are embedded in the fiberglass at the bottom of the boat.  You’ll have to imaging it because I haven’t done it yet.

So, on to the machine shop news.

I dropped by a machine shop after work this week, and talked to a friendly guy about my keel.

It seems I had 3 jobs for them.

  1. Mill the brass brackets down to size
  2. braze or weld the bushing into the keel and build up the area around the pivot hole
  3. Sand blast the keel

He needed to talk it over with his boss and go online here to check out my pictures so as to get a good feel for the job without me hauling my 550 lb keel over there.  He did, and the prices were a bit more than I want to spend.

  1. $300 to mill the brackets
  2. $800-$1200 to weld the bushing into the keel
  3. Didn’t get to discussing the price for sandblasting, but in our initial conversation he did mention they didn’t usually do stuff this big.


In our conversation he was very helpful and realized this was out of my price range.  He suggested that maybe using JB Weld was the way to go to get the bushing in, and that with a grinder I should be able to downsize the brackets as needed.

So, bottom line, as that old saying goes:  If it is to be, it’s up to me.

I’m going to start grinding the keel this weekend to fit the bushing and get the crud off the sides.  Stay tuned.




Book Review – Into the Storm – by Dennis Perkins

Book Cover - Into the Storm by Dennis  Perkins

Book Cover – Into the Storm by Dennis Perkins

This excellent book is really two stories.

The first is a fascinating look at the 1998 Sidney-Hobart sailboat race.  Due to a storm that built bigger than expected, of the 115 boats participating only 44 reached the finish line.  A boat was sunk and others abandoned. Twenty-five sailors were washed over board and seven died. Fifty-five sailors were rescued. It was the largest sea rescue in Australian history.  The story is told well, and lets us experience the storm from the perspectives of many sailboat crews, rescue personnel and family at home, not just the winning boat.

The second is a leadership guide that takes lessons from the experiences of the sailing teams, with an emphasis on the winning boat.  Lessons like the importance of team unity, skill, competence, preparation and relentless learning.

The author even sailed a later Sidney-Hobart race to experience first hand what a long open ocean race was like.  I’m sure that helped him tell the story so well.

The entire book is well done and held my attention from start to finish.  I’ve taken up the bad habit of starting a book on my tablet on Friday evening, and staying up all night reading it till I finish.   This was no exception, and I got to see the sun come up as I was finishing.

I’m reading a lot of books since I discovered our local library lets me check out e-books on my tablet.  If you haven’t tried it, do it!  If you like to read at all (which I very much do) you will find out that a tablet combined with your local library can bring an amazing amount of free knowledge and enjoyment to you for absolutely no cost. (Of course the tablet costs, but you can get a good one of those for about $100 and you’ll make that back by borrowing 5 or so books instead of buying them)

Happy reading!