Monday, April 30, 2012

Moving instruments

Just a simple idea.  Maybe a couple hours at most.  Just move the speed/depth instrument from the left side of the cockpit around to the front.  Over on the left side, someone is always sitting in front of it.  Not good.  So we wanted to move it to the front just above the companionway.  Step 1: pull the speaker (easy) to get to the back of the gauge.

Well - that's the end of the easy steps.  Crud!  

To get to the new location, the center section of the companionway had to come out.  To get that out, much of the overhead in the cabin had to come down.  It's amazing how many little pieces of wood go into the headliner of a sailboat!  There are trim pieces, headliner sections and backing pieces under all that.  Just to get to the 12 little bolts we needed to access.

Once we got to it, drilling the new hole and installing the gauge at the new location was easy.  

Now just bolt it all back together and voila!

Not so fast, naive one!  Seems like that center section of coaming was press fit way back when the boat was built.  Either that or it was made from some special type of fiberglass that expands when air gets under it.  Whatever happened, it would not go back into place.  No amount of pushing pulling, stomping, or pleading would make it fit.

Of course, that's when we ran short of time and had to leave for a couple hours for a 1 year old birthday party, leaving Phil alone with a dremel tool, a saber saw and a too-big piece of fiberglass. Who knew what we would find when we returned.

Nothing to fear!  When we got back, the coaming section was about a 1/4" narrower and it fit perfectly!  A little filing, a little butyl tape and it was time to snug it all up.  

Next time I suggest an easy, 2 hour project, someone please knock some sense into me!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Happy Birthday Greg!!

Back on the water!  After worship on Sunday, we headed out for our inaugural voyage of 2012.  

We were able to get all the projects done that needed to be done before we could go sailing just in time to get out on the water for Greg's birthday.  Jenny, Damien, Becca and Eliana come with us. Phil and Kathy, no excuses will be accepted next time!

A busy couple of weeks!

The final push to get ready for the season.  Seems like no matter how many projects get done during the winter, it's always a rush at the last minute.  But first a very necessary diversion...
Sock burning party at the marina
The door of the propane locker has long ago given up it's wooden core and turned into a spongy trap on the starboard deck.  So off it came and out came the dremel tool.  Cutting away the inside skin allowed access to vacuum out the old rotten core.  New core in a thickened epoxy bed, followed by a couple layer of fiberglass cloth.
Rebuilding the door for the fuel locker
Now to reinstall and test.
Installing the new door
Aahh.  Much better.  And the new core is isolated from the now through-bolted hinges so there shouldn't be any future core issues.
Now it's safe to walk on 
Who goes sailing without tunes?  But the ipod playlist needs a decent stereo and speakers to be heard.  It's amazing how easy it gets to disassemble all the interior cabinetry after the umpteenth time.
Installing a new stereo
We're having a new canvas enclosure built.  They started while up in the yard.  And continued in the water.  Should be great when it's finished!
Meeting neighbors at the marina
Now on to one of those ugly projects that's not hard, just a pain.  Rebedding all the lifeline stanchions.  The old ones were gasketed and the gaskets had hardened and flexed way too much.  Off with the stanchions, in went the thickened epoxy to reinforce the holes, then back went the stanchions with a solid bed of butyl tape.  Much stiffer and dryer!
Removed all stanchions to re-bed them
While working on the stanchions, we found out that the headliner in the aft cabin was great at soaking up all the winter condensation.  So off it came to be dried, re-glued and re-attached.  That project wasn't even on the list!
Headliner from the aft cabin being repaired and reinstalled
Then the fun stuff.  Get the sails back on and turn Paperbird back into a sailboat.
Jib coming out of winter storage 
A quick washdown and we're ready to go...
Swabbing the deck

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Splash Day, 2012!

Almost exactly a year after we purchased Paperbird, she's in the water with her new name, new electrical system, chainplates, and so on. 

It's been a long winter filled with lots of projects, time spent dreaming of future voyages..

...lots of coffee...

Come on down for a cup of coffee!

... and great times talking with our friends Phil and Kathy, whose help, advice and fellowship has truly been fantastic all winter.  They have proven me a liar.  I always maintained that boatowners have no friends in the spring, only in the summer.  In the spring is all the work getting the boat ready for all the fun in the summer.  But Phil and Kathy have not only been steadfast in the spring, but all through the winter, helping with the dirtiest, crummiest chores and projects.  We are forever grateful and in their debt and are looking forward now to enjoying with them the summertime fruits of those labors.

Thank you!