Category Archives: Upgrades

Dinghy Project

Our new to us Bayliner 4788 came with an 11′ Rendova rigid inflatable boat (RIB) that is stored on the flybridge, out of the way of the main salon and cockpit.

We expect to primarily use the 4788 as a floating 2nd home, a dockside condo if you will, so most of our time aboard will be while we are tied up to our home dock. We’re very excited about the RIB, as it provides a quick, easy, and cheap way to get on the water for a couple hours and zip around the sound. In fact, even in the first few months of owning this boat, we’ve taken the dinghy out quite a few times.

There’s a davit crane on the flybridge that lifts the boat in and out of the water. We are still figuring out exactly the best way to put the RIB in and out of the water, but each time gets a little bit easier. The problem we run into is that we like to keep the big boat in the slip bow-in, so that the pilothouse has the great view of Commencement Bay, but that makes our home dock a port-side tie, and the crane is also on the port side. We either need to back the boat out of the slip half-way (our current preferred method), or push/lever the RIB past the finger pier (what we did the first few times, though that process won’t work if/when we have a neighbor boat in that slip).

And while we’ve been having fun playing on this little boat, as you can see, it does need a bit of cosmetic work and some upgrades.

There’s also another motive for this project: fishing.

For some odd reason, Megan doesn’t want me putting the new, expensive, big boat where the fish are…. near rocks, a few feet from shore, along the edge of a rip current, next to 30 other boats. Strange. So the RIB will be rigged as a fishing boat too, where we can zip out to the fishing grounds at 30kts, troll or drift for a few hours, and then run home when we get cold, tired, or otherwise finished fishing.

So this new series of posts will walk through the repair and upgrades we make to the SS TaylorTot, as we get ready for a summer of exploring, fishing, and micro-cruising aboard our RIB.

 

 

 

 

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TV on board

I just spent over 4 months figuring out how to solve the problem of watching TV, and to a lesser extent providing high-speed internet aboard. I tried to get cable hooked up, but the line to the pedestal on the dock was broken and had no signal, and besides, it would only work when tied up at our home dock and not underway or at guest marinas. I looked into satellite tv, but it just didn’t solve my problem, specifically because of the internet service, but also because of the equipment costs for tv — it also had the same problem as cable when upderway.

My solution was to go cellular.

Where we boat we have almost 100% 4G LTE coverage.  I purchased a new line/SIM card for my phone plan, purchased a dedicated cellular modem, and added an old wi-fi router that I had laying around  I now have a solid, always-on, internet connection, with plenty of bandwidth to browse the web, stream movies and shows on Neflix or Amazon Prime Video, including 4K content.

When researching, I found the big problem with tv was live events, specifically sports. I want to spend the weekend on the boat, and in the afternoon watch a soccer, hockey, or football game, and I really had a difficult time figuring out how to make it happen. Our marina is tucked behind a hill, so we have very little over-the-air capabilities. To solve the TV issue, I subscribed to YoutubeTV, and a new 43″ TV with Roku built in. I also added a bluetooth transmitter, so the sound gets picked up and played through the 5.1 stereo.

YoutubeTV was my best option as it had the best sports coverage as well as unlimited DVR, but if you’re not a sports fan you may find better options with Hulu, Sling, Vue, or DirectTV Now

For $40/mo I have all the local broadcast channels (NBC/CBS/FOX/ABC) as well as traditional cable channels such as ESPN/2/U FoxSports/FS1/FS2, CNN/Fox/CNBC/BBC, etc. Compare channel lineups and other offerings between the providers and pick the one that serves your needs the best.

For the past month or so I’ve been enjoying all the Hockey, NCAA Basketball, and soccer that I can watch on my boat. Way more selection and at a better quality than my cable account at home which costs over 5x as much. So I’m now looking into drastically reducing my cable television plan, and using this same solution at home.