Editor:  Randy Oates   Interim Publisher:  Joe Preece

October 2014


In this issue:
Excellent Advice
Commodore's Report
Membership Report
Education Report
Cruising News
Social Events
Events at a Glance
Sunshine Lady
Meeting Minutes

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Excellent Advice for Halloween...?
Hmmm.   If the little piece of advice shown in the above picture is true, what about those guys on the Flying Dutchman?  Is "Pirates of the Caribbean" all a lie?

Nevertheless, if adventure is what you're after, and you love the sounds and smells of the sea, well, matey, you've come to the right place - and the right club, too!  As the Seafarers' season heats back up (at the same time cooling down) you'll find adventures of every sort on the water and even on land.  And since you'll be safe from zombies, why be afraid to pitch in and run a cruise or help out on an event?   Or even throw your three-cornered hat in the ring and join the Board!   After all, if Jack Sparrow can be a captain, couldn't you be an officer?

To view the past 12 months' newsletters, click here (be sure pop-up blocker is off):
October | November | December | January | February | March | April | May | June | July | August | September |



Commodore's Report: by Eric Norlin

 My great-grandfather would be pleased to know that I will be packing his six-shooter in my role as sheriff at our Old Wild West Regatta. Corporal Olaf Norlin served with the 57th Illinois Swedish Volunteers, Company D as an infantryman in the Union Army of Tennessee. His pistol has seen action at Pittsford Landing, Corinth and Shiloh, but never at Burnt Store where it may, once again, be tested. Lord knows what shenanigans a mob of Seafarers will be up to when the ‘likker’ is flowing and spirits are high. I’ll be ready! Will yo?u



Membership Report: by Joe Preece, Director

 Our Membership is currently at 300 and I would like to welcome our newest members Tom and Vicki Britton. They own a 21’ powerboat named the Striper Seaswirl and being Floridian’s by birth they have years of boating experience. Also they have been members of multiple PGICA clubs for several years and are great organizers and committee leaders.

It looks like everyone is getting the hang of the newer portions of the website as indicated by the numbers who are signing up for events and cruises online. Good job to all.



Education Report: by Joe Longo, Director

 Holly and I have dodged another hot Florida summer and like most of the Snowbirds we’re back for the fall cool down. First of all we had to get the house up and running, restock the refrigerator, do a bit of house cleaning and get the boat out of storage. Re-commissioning always starts out with a through wash down to get rid of all the mildew that built up over the summer. Next is to wax the hull, bring out all the safety equipment, check it over and replace worn out items, and install the electronics and the batteries. Now for the engine: drain the engine and transmission oil, change the filter and replace the fluids. If it’s an odd year I replace the fan belt, drop the lower unit and replace the water pump. In the past I replaced them every year but after one year they still looked new and even now after 2 years they still look new but preventive maintenance prevents a problem. Next I replaced the spark plugs, fuel filter and water separator/filter. The water separator/filter is important to me because I use gas station gas in my boat. I use it mainly because of the price. I know that most marine fuel doesn’t have ethanol in it but I’m willing to take the extra steps to make sure there is no water in the fuel I put in my tank. To do this I run all the fuel through a Baja filter before it goes into the tank. The Baja filter has a fine mesh screen, which is too fine for water, under atmospheric pressure, to go through and it filters down to 10 microns. With no water in the tank, other than the moisture from normal condensation, the chances of phase separation are greatly reduced.

For those of you not familiar with phase separation I’ll try to give a little explanation. Ethanol (alcohol) is made from water and it has a higher octane rating than gasoline. Unfortunately it delivers less power than the same amount of gasoline by volume. Ethanol delivers 76,000 Btu/gal while gasoline makes about 120,000 Btu/gal. Ethanol is an oxygenated hydrocarbon compound, which is very hygroscopic (attracted to water and soaks it up like a sponge). When gasoline is produced at the refinery and is to be mixed with ethanol, the refinery blends that gasoline 3 to 4 points lower in octane, say 84 instead of the 87 that’s needed by our engines and then they add 10% of ethanol to it to bring it up to the 87 mark. When water finds its way into the fuel, mainly from condensation after being in storage tanks at the refinery, the oil company tanks, delivery trucks, barges, gas station storage tanks or our boat tanks, it all adds up. When the water in the bottom of the tank comes in contact with the ethanol it gets absorbed by the ethanol, it becomes unburnable and lowers the octane of the fuel in the tank. If you run the engine or engines on this lower octane fuel you can seriously damage them due to pre ignition (pre ignition or dieseling occurs when a low octane fuel ignites mainly from compression). Pre-ignition is an uncontrolled burning of the fuel and causes temperature spikes in the combustion chamber that are hot enough to melt the pistons, burn the exhaust valves and in some cases even break connecting rods. One way of preventing this, besides not buying gasoline with ethanol is to add an octane booster to your fuel when recommisioning the boat after it’s been in storage. I depend on the water separator/filter on doing its job and I also replace it mid season just as a precaution. Now it’s time to launch the boat and get out there and have some fun. Don’t skimp on the preventative maintenance. It’s important for a safe boating season.

Remember, Safety on the Water is No Accident



Cruising News: by Jack Gardner, Director

  We are finally coming out of the summer doldrums and the Seafarers are starting the fall cruising season with a bang. September 19th Bob and Helen Shirk tried to lead a lunch cruise to the Lazy Flamingo. Unfortunately a rainstorm caused a change of plans. 37 out of the 48 originally signed up, went by car and had a great time.

On Sept. 25th Mike and Carla Clark led an anchor out at Pelican Bay. For several members this was a stop on their way to the South Seas Cruise and for others it was a pleasant way to spend an evening on the water with friends. They had 5 boats signed up for the evening.

Art and Lynne Armstrong led their annual cruise to the South Seas Marina and Resort on September 26th – 28th. This must be the fourth year they have done this. They are either dedicated Seafarers or are acting as paid travel agents for the Marina. I think the former is true. They had 13 boats signed up.

October 7th there is a lunch cruise to the Navigator, which John and Debbie Grabau are leading. I believe this is the third time they have led this cruise. Thank you.

October 10th Mike and Carla Clark are hosting an afternoon raft up at Sunset Lake. This is a really good time on the water. Good food, drinks and friends are only one mile or less from your dock.

October 17th – 19th Bill and carol Miller are leading a cruise to Tween waters. This is one of the Seafarers favorite destinations. It includes great pool, bocce competition, and a superb meal at the Yacht Club. They already have 12 boats signed up and have a limited amount of slips available.

November 7th is our annual Regatta which this year has an Old Wild West theme and should be great fun.

November 18th Ron and Judy Stafford are leading a cruise to Capt’n Conns Fish House at Bokeelia. They have the best fish stew in the area. Because of the shallow water we can only get there comfortably in the fall and late spring. According to the tide charts we should have over a foot.




Social Events: by Walt Zink,  Director and Bev Riggs, Co-Director


 Fat Point Brewery Tour: We had a fantastic turnout for the Fat Point Brewery Tour. Nearly 40 Seafarers braved the heat and liquid humidity to taste fine brews and tour the facility at Punta Gorda's new microbrewery.

Members shared their favorite appetizers and had an opportunity to sample each of Fat Point's four currently available beers or enjoy a pint or two of their favorite. Bill, Fat Point's Brew Master, led us on a brief tour and explained the brewing process. Fat Point Brewery is growing quickly and you can already find their beers in several local bars and restaurants. If you like can even take their beer home from the brewery in a 32-ounce jug known as a “growler”. You can "like" them on Facebook and sign up for a newsletter, which will announce the opening of their “Tap Room” in a month or two.

Special thanks to Craig Esterly who chaired this social for the club.

Walt and Bev


 Events at a Glance  


7     Navigator Lunch Cruise
9     Social at St. Andrews South GC 5-7 pm
10     Sunrise Lake Raft-up (on rim canal)
12     BBQ Picnic
17-19     'Tween Waters Cruise
23     Social at St. Andrews South GC 5-7 pm
28     General Membership Meeting PGICA 5:30 pm
****     Sign-up NOW for the 'Old Wild West'
      Regatta at Burnt Store Marina, November 7-9
 The Sunshine Lady - Cynthia Cowdrey

Cynthia Cowdrey is the Sunshine Lady for the Seafarers.  So if you hear of anyone who is ill or is hospitalized, or of anyone who has lost a family member, you should contact her. 

Her email is ladyofpalmas@hotmail.com and her phone number is 941-575-5671



Membership Meeting Minutes -- Click here to view.



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