Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

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Oyster
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by Oyster » Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:57 am

So any updates? Have you made it across the state or the stream yet?

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curtgard
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:37 pm

We have been at the Edison Ford marina in Ft Myers for two weeks now. We really like this marina. When we arrived two weeks ago, the harbormaster could only guarantee us a slip for two weeks because it was all ready reserved by a party coming down the East coast to Florida for the winter. But the boat had transmission problems in Georgia and they are waiting on parts to arrive from England. So now the harbormaster thinks we most likely can stay until the end of the month. When we leave this marina, I think we will head to the Keys. We will not go to the Bahamas this winter because of lack of time. We must go back home for the month of March so that would not leave us enough time to explore the many islands in the Bahamas. Instead, next Fall we will trailer the boat South and launch in November to head to the Bahamas and points South for all winter.

We were paid a visit this week by fellow True Grit boat builder, Ray Macke and his wife. Its always a pleasure meeting up with Ray and they spent three days with us in Ft Myers. The first day was spent in downtown Ft Myers where the ladies checked out the many shops while Ray and I checked out the ice cream shops and the boats in the city marina.The second day we all went to the Edison and Ford museum and winter homes that are located next to our marina. Edison received 1093 patents during his life with many of his inventions on display in the museum. There were also several Ford vehicles and one Cadillac on display also. Ford was involved with Cadillac before starting Ford Motors.
1908 Cadillac
1908 Cadillac
Ford
Ford
Ford pickup
Ford pickup
The staff started the Ford car and it ran smoothly. Pickups were shipped without cabs and boxes so the buyers had to build their own.

con't

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curtgard
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:51 pm

One of Edison more famous inventions was the phonograph.
early phonographs
early phonographs
The staff even played one of them for us. Edison had a lab where he tried for several years to come up with a plant species that was available in the United Stated for rubber production. By the time he chose the goldenrod plant as the best candidate, synthetic rubber had been developed.
Edison lab
Edison lab
Edison lab office
Edison lab office
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curtgard
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:59 pm

After we completed looking at all the displays at the museum and lab, we went across the street to the Edison and Ford Winter homes.
Ford winter home
Ford winter home
Edison winter home
Edison winter home
The homes were not open where you could walk through them but the doors and windows were open for you to look inside.
living area in Ford home
living area in Ford home
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curtgard
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Fri Jan 10, 2020 7:19 pm

The Edison home was larger than the Ford home and Edison spent alot more time each year than Ford in Ft Myers.
Edison dining area
Edison dining area
We walked around the grounds of the homes where we discovered odd roots on a tree.
mysore fig tree
mysore fig tree
We could easily see our marina from the back yards at the homes but our boat was hidden by all the large yachts in the marina
Edison Ford marina
Edison Ford marina
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curtgard
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Fri Jan 10, 2020 7:36 pm

On the final day that Ray was in Ft Myers, we drove South to Koreshan State Park on the Estero River. This park was the site of a utopian community of 200 people that relocated from Chicago to Florida in 1894.
IMG_5960.JPG
There were several old buildings used by the community that were open for viewing.
Main living quarters for the leaders
Main living quarters for the leaders
The community was self sufficient with their own power plant even.
Fairbanks Morse 2 cylinder diesel engine belted to generator
Fairbanks Morse 2 cylinder diesel engine belted to generator
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curtgard
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Fri Jan 10, 2020 7:45 pm

There was a woodworking shop at the settlement with many old tools. If I had to use them to build my boat, I think it would have taken considerable longer and probably minus a few fingers also.
wood shop
wood shop
saws
saws
Walking around the grounds, we stumbled upon a gopher tortoise.
gopher tortoise
gopher tortoise
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curtgard
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Fri Jan 10, 2020 8:01 pm

The Estero River ran along the North side of the park. This river went out to the Gulf and was used by the community for bringing supplies in and shipping good out. Today the river is a scenic canoe voyage.
Estero River
Estero River
There were trails in the park that followed the river with signs warning of alligators but none were seen.
bridge on trail
bridge on trail
We wrapped up the state park visit, caught a late lunch and headed back to the marina where Ray dropped us off so they could head back to their camper in Sebring. We had a good time with them that ended too soon.

Curt

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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by Hercdrvr » Sat Jan 11, 2020 7:20 am

Wonderful travels, thank you for sharing.
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by Oyster » Sat Jan 11, 2020 7:28 am

Great reporting, Its so detailed that you could create a book relating your travels that others coming after you could use too. Thanks again for taking the time to share it.

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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by raymacke » Sun Jan 12, 2020 11:15 am

We had a great time hanging out with Curt and Noreen for a few days. He is probably tired of my million questions about about the challenges encountered on a trip like this. I can’t express how jealous I am. He is there on his True Grit and I’m going back inland to stay in my RV...... :cry:
So Many Rivers,
So Little Time....

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mkkknox
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by mkkknox » Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:07 am

Curt, Glad you're enjoying the warm weather! Keep those posts coming. It's great to hear about your adventures!

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Roberta
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by Roberta » Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:18 am

Yes, keep posting. You are a Great Inspiration to many builders and boaters. Not to mention being entertaining and educational.

Roberta :D :D :D :D
Roberta "Queen of the Boat Builders"
Built Zip "Oliver IV", Super Spartan "Jimmy 70", and Torpedo "The Glen L".

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curtgard
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Thu Jan 23, 2020 11:07 am

We are still docked at the same marina in Ft. Myers but we will be leaving the first part of next week for Marathon. The last couple of days have been real cold here by Florida standards with lows in the upper 30's. It was funny the warnings on the news to watch out for iguanas falling from trees. When the temps drop into the 40's or lower, iguanas bodies go dormant and since they live in trees, watch for falling iguanas. We stayed in the boat so saw no falling iguanas. We have been taking the city buses all over town and went to Walmart last week. It really seemed strange to shop at their garden center in January where you could buy orange trees, guava trees, tangerine trees, and orchid plants. Noreen spent one afternoon at a play, "Barefoot in the park" while I went to the library. The downtown area is always a hub of activity with people walking dogs, cats in baby strollers, and an occasional goat.
goat in downtown Ft Myers
goat in downtown Ft Myers
downtown ft Myers
downtown ft Myers
We took the bus to the Lakes city park in the South part of Ft Myers. This park has miles of walking trails where you can rent bicycles and paddle boats.There was also a railroad museum at the park along with a 7.5" scale train that you could ride around the park.
model train layout at museum
model train layout at museum
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curtgard
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Thu Jan 23, 2020 11:20 am

We had a burger at the concession stand that overlooked one of the lakes in the park where we were warned not to feed the alligators.
IMG_20200120_142656.jpg
Having finished our burgers, we started walking one of the paths along the water, where our first wild alligator was spotted sunning on a log.
alligator
alligator
The miniature train ran for about a mile around the park.
miniature train in park
miniature train in park
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