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Dinghy cleaner


I was curious if I could use my recent purchase of Vim bathroom cleaner ($1.99!) on my new/old/new again Hypalon dinghy and the self-destructing PVC dinghy. I looked up what were the active chemical ingredients on the MSDS.

The main ingredient in the cleaner is something hideous sounding, Ethoxylated C9-11-alcohols. These are very effective surfactants – interestingly it shows up in a dinghy specific cleaning product from Polymarine, one of the leading dinghy paint/cleaner brands.

As it turns out, Polymarine Duo-clean (duo=PVC & Hypalon) is comprised of :

  • Ethoxylated C9-11-alcohols
  • Sodium hydroxide – aka lye or caustic soda
  • Tetrasodium Pyrophosphate – a salt used as a buffering agent (A buffering agent can be either a weak acid or weak base,  which only slightly changes its pH in response to other acids and bases being combined with it)

Dinghy materials are very resistant to alkalines, but not petrochemicals/solvents. So I used it….!  There are still some tannin stains on the floor in the fiberglass, but the dinghy looks much better. This is the dinghy we used on our Thousand Islands trip and is now permanently ours.  Thanks Malcolm!


Ikea lights

Before we left or the 1000 islands I grabbed some Ikea strip lighting. It is cheap and easy to install. I played around with a few locations and decided one a strip above the sink. Given that this is the most used location in the boat it makes sense, also it us useful as a reading light when sitting at the table.

I tied into the supply for the round light fixture. a few snips, crimps and a quick solder on the ikea fixture and we were finished. I included a shot of breakfast as a way of explanation, the kids were off playing in Gananoque while I did this.

I experimented with lots of locations for these strips. They work tucked under the cabinetry as incidental lighting. Especially low down. I could go crazy creating nice mood lighting on the boat. The next one to be installed will be in the bathroom under the cabinet above the sink. It creates nice lighting and brightens a dead area.

Up the Rideau

In front of the Newboro locks.

This summer we took Tortuga up the Rideau canal to Ottawa, it was a great trip. I hope write some tips from the trip for others – in the mean time here are some photos from the Toronto -Coburg-Kingston leg.
Continue reading Up the Rideau