The electrician came back, this time on our dime. Dave wanted him to check our boat for any stray currents since we were going through zincs so fast. He put a meter on anything that touches the saltwater. Our bonding system (grounding) for the mast, rigging, keel and engine are all good. He recommended bonding all of our through hulls, pump motors and anything else that come in contact with sea water into our existing bonding system. Otherwise, a metal that goes through the hull can be dissolved and you have a hole in your boat. Not good! We already knew that there were stray currents from other boats or the docks in a marina, but if you are sitting where there is a tidal flow or in a river (we have both here), then the movement of the salt water can increase the charge between any positive or negative. If we have everything equal, it won't eat the metal off of our boat. Any small amount left should be taken care of by the zincs. That's their purpose. So periodically you check your zincs and replace them. They are supposed to last 3-4 months and ours were gone in one month. So it was nice to know what was going on before we started taking on water from some metal being eaten through the hull.
Today, Shelly and I started looking at material to recover our cushions. Sumbrella is a strong material that is used for the outside "canvas" that is durable and can take the sun better than other materials. They also make indoor Sumbrella. Shelly knew there was a Sumbrella dealer in Wilmington, so we started there. First we looked for a material that would be comfortable to sit on and then would see what colors it came in. When we asked the price of the one we liked, it was $184/yard!!!!! I just looked at Shelly and said "I have a lot of yards." We made up some excuse to get out of there and never went back.
We talked about finding a similar material to what we have and just recovering the 5 pieces that are showing the wear. We stopped at a grocery store and headed back to the boat for lunch.
After lunch, we took one of my cushions with us. Before leaving, we went to the BBY office and asked where they would recommend going for material that would be in stock. If we have to wait for material, Shelly would run out of time. They recommended a couple fabric outlets and gave us addresses. The first one we stopped didn't have anything that would match. But we found two that were close and they were only $12 and $8 /yard. So we were back to recovering all of them at that price. They gave us samples from both of them and we went to the second outlet. They didn't have a close match either, but they had 3 to choose from that I liked better than the first two. These were $13/yard but you could tell they were better quality than the other two. So I took those three samples and we went home to look at the colors inside the boat and to sleep on it.
For the piece we want to add outside, Shelly had a piece of isinglass that we will be able to use. And we have pieces of Sumbrella that came with the boat for covering woodwork that we will never use. So we can use that material for the outside curtain. All we'll need is the zipper for the top and snaps for the bottom. Shelly and my friend, Cheryl, would get along great. But I am actually going to help with this project, not sit back and drink beer, like I do when Cheryl is working on a project.
When we got back to the boat, Dave felt like going out. He hadn't left the marina since we arrived a week ago. We made a trip to West Marine. I just stayed in the car and googled restaurants in the area. We found a great Italian restaurant called Osteria Cicchetti. The entrees were only $13, but of course we added an antipasto, one salad and wine. So it could have been a cheap date, but you know how it goes. They had an interesting antipasto option. They listed about 6 vegetable choices, 6-8 cheeses and 4 meats. You could pick any 3 for $12 or 5 for $17. It came out on a board and we ate it with their great bread. It was a fun, lively place. And we each brought home leftovers.