Boat Life Croatia

The Barbecue saga: a non plug and play life

Written by Renato Matiolli

Today we are all used to a plug and play life, right? We buy something on internet for our Drone and that fits perfectly with your GoPro, which synchronizes with your iPhone and Mac, which recognises the technology and everything works perfectly, right?

Well… boat life it is not like that. Not at all.

I get people asking all the time… “But what do you do in the boat?!?! Why haven’t you set sails yet?!?!

Well, what we do mainly in the boat for now is… fix stuff! We also do a lot of engineering to get something that works quite easily in a house to work somehow and poorly in a boat.

I like to use the “Barbecue Saga” as a good way to illustrate boat life for two reasons: 1) MostDSC00157 people I know likes barbecue so they connect to the example and 2) in theory, a barbecue should be very simple – one needs the barbecue and gas. Period. No electronics, no hydraulic, no technology.

So as any Brazilian would do, I decide to have a barbecue onboard and I bought a barbecue already FOR BOATS on Internet (purchase 1). I thought it should come ready to use, as it is for boats, right? Wrong!

When it arrived it did not have the connection to the gas or the connection to the railing of the boat. So I also had to go out and buy a mount to attach the barbecue that would fit my boat railing and the low pressure regulator (purchases 2 and 3). When I got them, I had to do another trip to the shop as I realised the mount did not have the screws to attach it in the barbecue (purchase 4) and the regulator did not have the hose to connect it to the gas tank (purchase 5). When I got the hose, another trip to the shop, as the hose did not have the pressure reduction gauge (purchase 6). When I got this part I realised that I needed yet another part (the high pressure regulator) to connect it to the gas valve to regulate the gas and turn it on and off. (purchase 7 – still to come). Now we are running out of gas, so soon I will have to put the gas tank on my folding bike and chase some place where I can refill it (purchase 8 – still to come). Of course these things are also harder in a boat since you don’t have a car to go to the store, the boat is usually staying in a Marina in a small town and everything you need it far away than in a bigger town.

Now do you have a better idea why everything takes so long to get done?


Boat life is not for everyone, but for some people it is perfect!

If as a kid you used to play with Lego and liked it, or when you were growing up you went to engineering school and felt you had thrown five years of your life away? Well, in that case boat life is perfect to ensure you pay off all those years and more.

Every now and than I get myself thinking what was the formula we used in that boring Electricity, Fluids Mechanic and Materials class I knew I would never use it.

You are always trying to find a solution for something that it should be very simple, but in a boat it ends up being very complex. At least for me, I feel this way for now.

About the author

Renato Matiolli