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Old 06-12-2021, 08:24 AM   #1
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Lets talk about being STUPID again

I opened a thread a few years ago asking members to recall, for our amusement, the most stupid thing they had ever done on, or to their boat. I searched for the thread but couldn't find it so I'll start again with one or two of my own stupid mistakes.

While working on my genny, it would start and run fine but self shut down after about three or four minutes. It felt warm so I checked the coolant level. Low, of course. I grabbed the antifreeze jug and started pouring. It looked awfully clear. I thought it might have been pure water so stopped pouring after about a quart. I checked the jug, paint thinner! Damn! It was time to drain the system, the antifreeze was pretty old and dirty anyway but good lesson learned. Read the jug!

Also:

I was spray painting a small piece of something, a dark brown. Of course I got a tiny amount of paint on my finger. I keep a small spray bottle of alcohol in the galley. It is great for cleaning, sanitizing and cleaning my glasses with a soft cloth. I grabbed it to get the paint off my finger and gave a quick squirt. Damn again. It was the brown spray paint! Now instead of a tiny spot on my finger I had half my hand painted brown. Again, slow down, read the can!

In my own defense, I am not a drinker but am on some fairly potent medications which cause me to have a condition referred to as "Chemo Brain". I don't have cancer but the drug is very similar to chemotherapy. Just makes you a little stupid. Guilty as charged..

Anybody else care to fess up to being stupid or doing something less than smart? If we can't laugh at ourselves, who can we laugh at?

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Old 06-12-2021, 09:24 AM   #2
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Pete, went up to WA to move my boat to a new marina two weeks ago . . . did something REAL stupid which damaged the boat . . . not expensive to repair, but a little involved . . . Maybe in 6 months to a year I'll be willing to talk about it . . .
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Old 06-12-2021, 09:38 AM   #3
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A looong time ago I had a 1982 Hunter 33' sailboat. It was my first cabin boat. I traced a small leak to a crack in the hull leading to the shaft orifice.

I wriggled back into the lazarette space and carefully ground out the crack, drilled both ends and epoxied them. Space was very tight in there and I had to work one handed most of the time. Finally I was finished and tried to move back to admire my work and go home. Alas I had epoxied my hair and part of my scalp to the hull of the boat!

I wont describe the pain it took to unstick myself. The next owner must have wondered who was scalped down there!

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Old 06-12-2021, 09:47 AM   #4
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Found your stupid old thread!...

https://www.trawlerforum.com/forums/...oat-45446.html
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Old 06-12-2021, 09:54 AM   #5
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I launched my RIB without the plug in.
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Old 06-12-2021, 10:45 AM   #6
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I mounted the 2.5 horse Suzuki outboard (for our dingy) outside the cockpit. I have a block mounted on the cockpit railing, port side. It "always" goes inside the cockpit. Almost always, anyway. We then towed about 25 miles to a marina ramp. Unbeknownst to me, as I towed at freeway speeds the prop on the 2.5 spun in the air flow (duh)...enough to put a 2" long gouge about 1/4" deep into our hull gelcoat. Looks like someone took an angle grinder to it. To make it worse, it's in the black trim color, not the more easily matched white.
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Old 06-12-2021, 11:49 AM   #7
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I over drilled a hole to mount some instruments on the side wall of my cabin. Turns out that the total wall thickness was less than 5/16" in that one spot. Oops. Successfully filled the holes with gelcoat, and no lasting harm done.
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Old 06-12-2021, 11:56 AM   #8
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I bought a boat…
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Old 06-12-2021, 01:11 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Giggitoni View Post
I bought a boat…
PHUNNY! Heck, I bought another one after selling the first!

I think I mentioned this elsewhere, but recently, I decided to remove the useless (and potential cause of serious engine damage if allowed to corrode) air heater coils in the intercooler. They come on after start up of my 315HP Yanmar and were just a sop to the environmentalists to halt a couple of seconds worth of light smoke. I didn't clue into the fact that the heavy 12-volt power cable to the heater coil solenoid was connected to the same lug on the starter as the heavy cable from the start bank. Soooo, when I got to that part, I merrily disconnected the cable at the heater solenoid without any sparky incident and just let it loose to fall back. It did indeed fall back... to make sparky contact with the engine-mounted fuel filter where it promptly burned a hole in the thin metal casing resulting in the filter peeing a stream of diesel into the bilge. Can you imagine what would have eventuated had I been working on a gas-powered boat?
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Old 06-12-2021, 01:41 PM   #10
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You wouldn’t be here to tell the story.
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Old 06-12-2021, 03:43 PM   #11
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This was on my flats boat, not the big boat but still dumb.


About 6 years ago over the winter either a rat or a squirrel got in our carport and set up shop inside my flats boat. Chewed up a few cushions, three of my commercial pfds and quite a bit of other stuff.


About a year ago I was replacing the bilge pump float switch and while I had my head (and headlamp) down in the small access hatch inside the bilge I noticed that the little bastard had chewed on the fuel line that runs through there. Damage was isolated to about a 2' section, so I decided to splice in a new piece. Got about halfway through cutting through the fuel line and found out it was not a fuel line. It was the main wiring harness for the engine which is encased in black insulation. Looks just like fuel line.
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Old 06-12-2021, 03:56 PM   #12
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Sailed a catamaran in over a bar late one night
Was pretty fatigued but had crossed it many times during the day so figured I knew it well enough
At night there was a red light on it, never noticed during the day.

Picked up a wave, surfed her in towards the red and a very sudden stop as we hit the beach.
Jumps off front and the red light was the tail light of a 4x4 parked on the beach with some guys fishing.

Luckily the cat was light enough (30ftr) that we could push the bow around and keep sailing her in.
Could have ended a lot worse.

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Old 06-12-2021, 04:24 PM   #13
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Years ago, thought I was doing pretty good to dodge a tugboat in the fog off Anacortes.

Then the barge looms out of the fog off the port beam!
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Old 06-12-2021, 05:05 PM   #14
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I love threads like this. Always makes me feel better.
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Old 06-12-2021, 06:53 PM   #15
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We used to tow our dinghy until I found out a quick burst in reverse will suck a line with a bunch of floats on it down into the prop.

Our daughter asked, "So why do we tow it anyways?"

"It's convenient" I said in a shrinking, nowhere to hide kind of voice.
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Old 06-12-2021, 08:49 PM   #16
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I closed my seacock to the engine to replace zincs and forgot to reopen it then my sister and my new brother in law stopped by my slip and I offered to take them for a ride. I was halfway down my fairway before it dawned on me. STUPID. I flew down the flybridge ladder and opened that thru hull in record time.
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Old 06-12-2021, 08:56 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gdavid View Post
I closed my seacock to the engine to replace zincs and forgot to reopen it then my sister and my new brother in law stopped by my slip and I offered to take them for a ride. I was halfway down my fairway before it dawned on me. STUPID. I flew down the flybridge ladder and opened that thru hull in record time.

I've got a personal rule on stuff like this: if I'm doing anything that makes an engine not safe to start, I trip the ignition breaker (in the engine room) so that if I forget, I can turn the key all I want and nothing will happen. Then I have to go down to the ER and should notice or remember the concern.
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Old 06-12-2021, 09:56 PM   #18
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Despite a less-than-ideal forecast, despite an excellent set in a bullet-proof anchorage, I pressured my captain to weigh anchor in order to "keep to the schedule." Major fail. I spent the next three hours on my a** in the saloon, back braced against the icemaker that was trying to fly across the boat and barfing into a salad spinner. The Captain? He was at the helm, whistling the theme to Gilligan's Island. A plaque stating "The Captain's Word is Law" was mounted above the helm shortly after.
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Old 06-12-2021, 10:38 PM   #19
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I left the dock last week, there was a quick bit of wind, and the boat wasn’t handling well as I left the slip. Reverse was not responding, neither was forward ....

I looked at the shifter, and yes, there was the blinking light indicating it was locked in neutral! I got that undone as fast as I could, and was able to get out without ramming anything. Then the wind really came up, so getting turned around in the fairway wasn’t fun!

I’m not sure that it was me who left the shifter in that condition, but I sure won’t forget to check it from now on!!
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Old 06-13-2021, 09:44 AM   #20
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I got a brand new one that I nearly forgot. My son, youngest daughter and I went bottom fishing for some perch and spot yesterday. We did a few drifts in an area with a few crab pots (crab traps) and my daughter snagged a crab float line, I couldn't see the float and ignored the golden rule of never putting the boat in gear if you know you are near one but can't see it. I was immediately treated to the thumping sound of a float slapping the hull. I tried reverse and mercifully the float and line came free. You don't get that lucky everyday. I got another free pass playing the game of STUPID.
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