Staying Afloat

Replacing Seacocks and thru hulls

 I had no intentions on replacing these this time around, but our neighbor at the yard suggested we do. They are mostly original Wilson Crittenden which is pretty amazing! Most of them are seized in the open position though by now. The previous owner had replaced 2 and we went ahead and replaced two more (bronze ball type). We will replace the final 2 the next time we haul out.

 I ground the old thru hulls down carefully which made it easy to push the seacocks out. Careful you don’t melt the fiberglass or grind into the fiberglass (like I did)! Ah, more repair work.

 

 I understand G10 is the best material to use as a backing plate (none previously), but not even West Marine sells it locally! I couldn’t even find a fiberglass panel locally. What the heck! So I decided to epoxy over some marine plywood I already had. Not too difficult to make unless you have to later make alterations due to alignment mistakes or foundation obstacles.

 I drilled 3 holes and ended up using SS screws with a plastic washer to separate it from the bronze. Bronze screws are incredibly expensive. Q

 

 First install attempt was a disaster as I have a tendency to over-do things. I slopped on way too much 3M 4200 on the thru hull threads making it impossible to screw on as it dried pretty quickly. Not mention I cut the thru hull too long anyway. Crazy me had to remove everything, including the 4200 and start a new. The second attempt went well. We also bedded the wooden backing plates to the hull with 4200. A little more piece of mind has just been just been purchased.

 Btw, it’s really quite easy to use a metal bar of the proper size or even a piece of wood to tighten the thru hulls with if you don’t want to spend the extra for the special tool. We used a metal flat bar we already had and it worked like a charm.

 Until next time….

Splashdown Imminent

Final step till splashdown!

 Now that the boat looks beautiful from deck to topsides with a new paint job and all, we decided that she could use a new bottom job. Lots of flaking at the water line, a few bare spots and some chips here and there.

New paint

Normally I would opt to DIY most work to keep expenses down, but our yard does not allow us to do any sort of bottom paint work ourselves. So the least expensive option is to have the yard pole sand lightly and paint, but the waterline area will need to be hard sanded due to flaking. Total cost = $1,325 using Mar Pro Super B ablative paint. Next time We haul out I will use higher quality paint and go to a DIY yard where I can do the work myself and save some cash. Good thing she is only 30 feet!

 This will be the final step before she gets splashed again. What a celebratory day that will be!

A quick shout out to Kimberly and Jeff from S/V Pegu Club. They stopped by St. Augustine, Fl. during the holidays and we had a chance to hang out and talk boat stuff a while over lunch. They also own and now travel full-time travel on a B29.9.

 Until next time…..

If Only I Had Known

If I would have known then what I know now / Buying a Sailboat

Owning and maintaining a sailboat (especially an older one) requires a lot more time, work and money than we could ever have imagined. There are definitely other much easier ways of travel. If you have lots of free time on your hands and don’t mind, or better yet, actually enjoy replacing this and fixing that constantly, it might just be your cup of tea. I may be wrong, but I don’t believe that is the case for most people unless you are retired. If you are very financially well off, well I suppose you would just pay people to do the work for you (that would be ideal!). Either way, it’s not an inexpensive experience by any stretch. Even DIYing everything

Currently, we are in the middle of painting the deck which is like 100 step process, or so it feels like. TONS of prep work!  Sanding, cleaning and de-waxing, wiping off 2x, taping, priming, sanding again, painting, sanding again, painting 2nd. coat, etc! It’s enough to drive one insane!!!! Absolutely ridiculous! After that we will be painting the topsides. Later sometime, we will need sand, re-barrier coat and paint the bottom. Really looking forward to that one! Not!

I must admit there have been many times that I ask myself why are we doing this. Why am I putting myself through all this torture, especially in the Summer Florida heat! I honestly didn’t think that it would take this long and I really wouldn’t have called her a fixer upper. She did require some attention and repairs though. I keep telling myself to keep my eye on the prize – sailing to Bahamas, Caribbean, Mexico etc. It’s the only thing that keep me going.

What we see on youtube is mostly glamour, and the amount of work that is required to keep things going is not fully disclosed. Hard to do in short videos and who want’s to see that anyway!

We really do hope it’s all worth it in the end. That we will develop confidence as sailors and be able to travel to some beautiful destinations and make lots of friends along the way, before it’s time to repaint!

For those of you who are considering owning a sailboat, think hard and talk to many people. This rose has it’s thorns and you will bleed.

There are easier ways to enjoy the sailing experience other than owning a boat that needs to stay in the water. Trailer sailors may be another easier option, but they are not generally built for long range travel. Make sure you do your full research (alternatives to owning a sailboat) and make a quality decision for yourself, whatever that may be.

See you back on the water soon!IMG_3331