During our first two weeks in Amsterdam, we enjoyed being back in familiar territory with the city already lit up for the winter. We revisited some of our favourite restaurants, found some new ones, and stocked up on supplies and parts from known vendors. We also completed a fair number of larger boat projects, including changing the wing engine PTO clutch, bolting the Freeman hatch in place, and replacing the hydraulic steering rod end.
Below are trip highlights from November 2nd through 18th, 2019 in Amsterdam. Click any image for a larger view, or click the position to view the location on a map. And a live map of our current route and most recent log entries always is available at mvdirona.com/maps.
Today we changed the hydraulic power take-off (PTO) clutch on our Lugger L844d wing engine. We documented the job in this video, where we show the problem with the PTO clutch and how to change it.
Spitfire enjoying a snooze on the tray above the engine. He’s always finding new places to hang out, and especially likes warm ones.
Position: 52°22.38’N, 4°54.06’E
Delicious tacos and a pitcher of margaritas at another of our favourite Amsterdam restaurants, Los Pilones.
Building some extra fender lines from some bulk rope we have onboard.
Over the years, a few of the snaps that secure our canvas to to the boat have broken. We recently bought a Snap Setter, snap fasteners, and snap studs and have been replacing broken snaps as we find them. One of the snaps for the engine air intake covers had broken, so we replaced that today. When we’re moored for a while where the weather is cold, we cover the engine room air intakes with custom canvas covers to keep the boat a little warmer.
Position: 52°22.91’N, 4°54.13’E
We took the bikes on the ferry across to Amsterdam Noord to do a little shopping.
Rien de Wolf
Position: 52°23.80’N, 4°54.37’E
At Rien de Wolf marine supply store in Amsterdam Noord.
Position: 52°23.78’N, 4°54.36’E
Jennifer couldn’t resists getting these pink coveralls at Rien de Wolf. The problem is, she doesn’t want to wear them for boat work in case they get dirty. :)
Position: 52°24.18’N, 4°53.77’E
Picking up some supplies at the hardware store ToolStation in Amsterdam Noord.
Drilling bolt holes in the Freeman hatch to secure it mechanically. This is surprisingly easy, but hard to do without worrying about making a mistake in placement.
The Freeman hatch now is securely held in by six bolts rather than adhesive. It’s not going anywhere.
Position: 52°22.98’N, 4°53.21’E
The view down Haarlemmerdijk, lit up for the winter, as we return from dinner at De Pizzabakkers.
Position: 52°22.98’N, 4°52.92’E
At battery store Accu Verkoop to purchase two group U1 batteries for the tender. They only had one in stock and they’ll have both of them for us next week.
Position: 52°22.84’N, 4°53.44’E
We’d somehow not noticed Ibericus on Haarlemmerdijk before. It’s a branch of the Spanish cured pork retailer we saw last year in Rotterdam at Markthal, with its distinctive black hoofs, the Pata Negra.
Position: 52°22.82’N, 4°53.54’E
An excellent dinner at Stout on Haarlemmerdijk.
Position: 52°22.93’N, 4°53.43’E
The recently-installed Bubble Barrier in Westerdok minimizes the amount of garbage that reaches the sea from Amsterdam canals, without impeding boat traffic or fish movement. Compressed air is fed through a punctured pipe lying diagonally on the bottom and the resulting bubbles push garbage to the side of the canal, where it collects in a floating platform. Its a remarkably simple design and from watching it, one that really seems to work. Brilliant!
As part of our fendering redesign a couple of years back, we purchased four EasyStore 42x132cm fenders. They’ve performed well, particularly through our 97 lock passages this year, so we ordered one of their larger ones and it just arrived today from Amazon UK. At 24×59 inches, it’s a beast. And it cost only £175, about half the price of the smaller 24×42-inch Pro Stock marine fender we currently use at the bow.
This is the junction box with the new breadboard installed. This junction box doesn’t really have many connections but it’s enough to look busy and to require some care when changing the breadboard. Passing through this junction box are: • matrix 4×4 keyboard connection—8 wires in and 8 out • Lax I2C bus—4 wires in and 4 wires out • I2C to 8 pin digital I/O—4 wires of I2C and 5 signalling connections to sense: ◦ Digital in: Gen Autostart off/on ◦ Digital in: I2C bus off/on ◦ Digital out: Blue autostart warning light ◦ Digital out: ER Yellow warning light ◦ Digital out: ER Red warning light
Our Maxwell 3500 windlass has performed flawlessly for us in a decade of use across thousands of anchorages around the world. To keep it that way, we regularly disassemble and grease the top and change the oil.
Position: 52°22.98’N, 4°53.61’E
Using a wire wheel to clean-up the corrosion that developed underneath the weatherstripping on the anchor locker Freeman hatch cover.
We removed the Freeman hatch cover and brought it inside to reinstall the weatherstripping. It’s easier to work with the cover level, and the adhesive works better at room temperatures. Here the weatherstripping has been reinstalled using Loctite 37532 Black Weatherstrip Adhesive.
Position: 52°22.91’N, 4°54.13’E
Today we removed and replaced the hydraulic steering rod end. In the video at https://youtu.be/3kAtUMZ3_kk we step through the steering system on the Nordhavn 52, showing some of the wear points and the changes we have made to minimize these issues. Finally, we show the removal and replacement of the hydraulic steering rod end. This is the part that transfers force between the hydraulic cylinder and the steering arm. We show how to check for wear and change the part.
The five 20L pails of engine oil that we’d ordered from Amazon Germany just arrived today. (Well, four of the five did, the fifth came the next day.) That folding cart continues to get heavy use on Dirona.
We’d used every drop of oil on the boat, so this 100L delivery takes us from empty to back to full capacity. This will maintain all of our engines for about a year under normal use.
Position: 52°23.01’N, 4°53.63’E
Obtaining circular pails is getting harder in many geographies, where each company is using their own proprietary-shaped 20L container. We need secure storage when we’re in rough waters, so it’s far easier for us to use a standard shape. We try to get ACEA-E9 whenever we can, but sometimes can only get ACEA-E7, which meets the specs for our engine and is acceptable, but is not our preference.
Out with the Old
After a year of cruising, we’ve collected about 90L of waste oil. When we bring new oil in, we recycle the old oil.
333 Days Up
One of our five Raspberry Pis has been up and running without reboot for 333 days straight. That’s almost a year. For such a moderately-priced item, they’re surprisingly reliable.
Spitfire rolled into a tight ball while sleeping in the pilot house. He’s like a thermometer. If the it’s a little chilly in the pilot house he rolls up into a tight ball. If it’s a little warm, he lies on his back and spreads right out.
Jennifer getting rid of garbage, including a recently-emptied 20L pail of oil. We now have 100L of clean oil on board and are ready for another year of cruising.
We picked up two group U1 batteries from Accu Verkoop this afternoon and now are topping up the charge before testing and installing.
Rob & Janet
Position: 52°23.00’N, 4°53.56’E
It’s time to replace the tender start battery. This particular battery is nearly four years old and spent most of its life as a spare battery in the old tender and then was moved over to the new tender, where it has been in use for about a year. Technically it still starts the engine well, but it tests as needing replacement due to waning capacity.
Position: 52°22.77’N, 4°53.76’E
The holiday season decorations are out in Amsterdam. This large XMAS sign is displayed on a building along Prins Hendrikkade opposite Centraal Station.
Position: 52°22.54’N, 4°53.92’E
Warmoesstraat lit up for the winter season.
Dirty Chicken Club
Position: 52°22.54’N, 4°53.92’E
A fun evening at the Dirty Chicken Club for a Bear-Can Roasted Chicken for two.
Position: 52°22.56’N, 4°53.74’E
Looking south along busy Niewendijk.
Position: 52°22.47’N, 4°53.62’E
The fabulous art display Amsterdam Oersoep, in the renovated passageway Beurspassage between Niewendijk and Damrak. The display is a modern creation designed to reflect the city and its past and future.
De Nieuwe Kerk
Position: 52°22.41’N, 4°53.52’E
De Nieuwe Kerk (New Church) on DAM square dates back to 1408. That may seem pretty old, but it’s a century newer than Oude Kerk (Old Church). The traditional place for Dutch royal weddings and coronations, the building now functions as an exhibit gallery.
Mozes en Aaronstraat
Position: 52°22.42’N, 4°53.47’E
Winter lights along the lane Mozes en Aaronstraat on front of the Mozes en Aaronkerk (Moses and Aaron Church).
Position: 52°22.46’N, 4°53.44’E
The spectacular Magna Plaza building, erected in the late 1800s in the Neo-Gothic and Neo-Renaissance styles. Now a shopping mall, the building formerly was the Amsterdam Main Post Office and is included in the top 100 Dutch Heritage sites.
Draining the fuel from our fuel filter housings to clean them.
After a decade of use, a trip around the world, and fuel picked up in many obscure places, the fuel filter housings had built up quite a bit of gunk inside.
Nice and Clean
The fuel filters back in place after cleaning them.
Position: 52°22.67’N, 4°53.75’E
The seasonal lights along Nieuwendijk. We love how the Dutch cities light up their streets in the winter with unique street displays.
Position: 52°22.21’N, 4°53.53’E
A great meal at Adam & Siam in Amsterdam’s Rokin district with Peter Hayden, who owned Nordhavn 60 Tanglewood and currently is building Nordhavn 6837. We last saw Peter here in Amsterdam a year ago and had a great time catching up on his build progress and talking boats and travels.
Click the travel log icon on the left to see these locations on a map, with the complete log of our cruise.
On the map page, clicking on a camera or text icon will display a picture and/or log entry for that location, and clicking on the smaller icons along the route will display latitude, longitude and other navigation data for that location. And a live map of our current route and most recent log entries always is available at mvdirona.com/maps.