Saturday, March 26, 2016

A New Unit of Distance, MPO

Marathon, FL

I've invented a new unit of distance measure MPO, or miles-per-oarlock.  You see, we have worn out two pairs of bronze oarlocks.  The holes become oval shaped, giving the oars lots of free play each stroke.

We use two pairs in the dinghy, one for rowing alone, the other for rowing with two people in the boat.   Both sets are about equally worn.

So, exactly how to convert MPO to miles or km?  I have no idea.

Last year, I saw a man at a nautical flea market with a big bin of bronze oarlocks.   Since the ones I see online appear to be overpriced and of dubious quality, I'll wait until next years flea market to buy new ones.

I meant to get our outboard motor running in order to offer it for sale, but I never got around to that this year.   We bought the motor because Jen was coming to visit several years back.  I think it has been 2-3 years since it last started.

Rowing and walking are about the only exercise we get here in Marathon, so there is a good reason to not have a motor.

Ditto for our Honda generator.  with solar panels we don't need it, but to sell it I'll have to put some work into getting it started.

Follow up question:  I have lots of smart blog readers.  

Just 5 months ago I sanded the oars to bare wood, then coated them with epoxy resin, then gave them several coats of varnish.  Now already, they are showing black spots and bare spots.  I've never had any luck with varnish on oars.   Libby won't allow me to paint them white.

How to make a clear coating for wooden oars that stands up to the rough handling they get?


  1. Don't throw any rocks as I have never tried it but,... How about 3M Clear heat shrink tubing in the areas that get ruffed up? It's tuff and chemical/UV resistant. The thin wall (2:1) size range is from 1" to 4".


  2. Short of painting them something that isn't white :) maybe this link will shed light on the issue - I suspect that the epoxy below the varnish is part of the issue... as the UV is killing the epoxy through the varnish.


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