I originally was posting infrequently because there wasn’t much going on while waiting for the sale to close. Now, I’ve been working until I just about pass out almost every night!
In April, we hauled the boat out for a week and a half to get a lot of things done that we couldn’t do with the boat in the water. We continued to live aboard while it was hauled out, which was a bit strange. We had a single, unisex shower closet, no water (we didn’t bring any hose – let alone one long enough to reach the one faucet we found), and we couldn’t use our sink (because the water would drain right out onto the ground) or our head (because the holding tank would quickly full up). But we got quite a few things accomplished that week.
Project #1: Standing Rigging
We took the boat over to one boatyard to have our mast pulled out so that Pacific Offshore Rigging can replace the standing rigging and overhaul the mast. I had already removed all thee sails, the booms and prepared the standing rigging to the Rigger’s specifications. The mast was pulled out without a hitch, and taken off to the Riggers so that they could start their work. As of this writing – almost a full month later – we still do not have a mast, but we expect to get installed this week. This project is ongoing – and will be discussed in more detail in a separate post.
Susan Blair of Blairwood Marine Services did a really great job on our “brightwork” (wood) – or at least the trim around the outside edges of the boat. She sanded everything down and re-covered it over the course of the week. Marcia spent a lot of time with her, and helped out where she could. She has taken on the role of managing the brightwork. Suzan was able to get all of the trim done while we were hauled out, and it really looks great.
Polishing & Bottom Paint
We had the exterior gel coat polished, and the bottom painted. These are all services that are handled through Shelter Island Boatyard, and they did a really good job. The bottom coat needs to be repainted once every few years, to keep the sea life from making a home there.
When we had the survey done, we noticed that the rudder was holding water. This was a bit of a concern – as most rudders have a cast iron support frame with a solid foam core inside fiberglass. When we cut it open, however, we discovered that the boat had bronze, and not iron inside. So we were able to patch it back up and forget about it. Having a little extra water in there won’t really cause any problems. Additionally, the foam core is in really good condition. The boatyard had every opportunity to up-sell me on this, but instead, were quick to tell me that any further work is unnecessary, and charged a vary reasonable amount for the work that they did in cutting it open and sealing it back up.
For the month we were in the water, I had been nervous about the bilge pump situation. We had one working bilge pump that had to be turned on manually. There was supposed to be an automatic one, but it didn’t seem to do anything. Also, the manual bilge pump (operated by hand) didn’t seem to do anything. Once we were out of the water, I felt a bit more comfortable poking around. As the bilge goes well down into the keel, and the pumps sit a the bottom of the bilge, I had a bit of difficulty getting them out. Turns out they weren’t screwed down in any way, and I was able to pull them out by the hose and wiring. The automatic pump (1,100 GPH, or gallons per hour) was indeed broken, but the manual electric one (1,500 GPH) seemed to be fine. However, when I looked into how the bilge pumps hoses were run, I noticed that the manual, hand pump, when operated, would go into a T-connection where it would drain right back down into where the 1,500 GPH pump was connected. Also, the two electric pumps were plumbed with corrugated hose – which, while cheaper, reduces the throughput of the pumps considerably. Needless to say, I removed all of the corrugated hose, cleaned up the 1,500GPH pump, threw away the 1,100GPH pump, and purchased two new automatic bilge pumps – one 900 GPH for the bottom of the bilge, and a 2,500 GPH a little higher up (the 900 will kick in, and if it can’t keep up, the 2,500 will kick in to help out). I’ve also placed the 1,500 GPH at the bottom of the bilge so that it can be operated when needed – but I still need to add a thru-hull for it – as well as the manual (hand) pump.
I started looking into the electrical, and didn’t like what I saw. All of the 110V AC outlet wire was original, and the insulation crumbled when touched. Once I discovered this, I disconnected the outlets and rewired the first one. The rest of the outlets I rewired a few weeks later. Many of the other 12V DC circuits were equally scary – unprotected (no circuit breaker or fuse) wires run the length of the boat, with multiple splices, and in many places, run through ordinary, household speaker wire. This is an ongoing project, and may delve into it in a bit more detail, but I’ve slowly been rewiring just about every circuit on the boat.
My First Thru Hull
We purchased a B&G Instrument set, and one of the items with the set is a speed / depth sensor that needs to be installed through the hull. There was already a hole where the old (broken) speed sensor was, but it was too big. After consulting Morton Marine Services (no charge – thanks!), I understood that I needed to have the Yard fill the hole, then I could drill a new one. I asked them, and they completed it the next day. I was able to drill a hole, install and seal the new sensor – and I’m proud to say that it’s leak free and working perfectly!
Just a few hours before they dropped us back in the water, Shelter Island Sign Shop put our new name on the boat – Lift.
When all was done, they dropped us back in the water, and we headed back to our marina.