Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Back in the yard, back to work on the boat!

After an absence of 15 months, I am back in the yard and back to work on the boat.  I had left the boat in a rush, thinking I'd be gone only for 8 weeks, but everything was OK and there were no big problems with the boat in the meantime. There was no mold inside, thanks to the new interior paint job with the anti-mold additive, and also thanks to my friends who aired-out the boat for me on a regular basis. About 20 gallons of water hd accumulated in the bilge - more on that later.  And the epoxy primer I had put on the deck will need to be redone (it did not fair well under the beating Florida sun, and was cracking/peeling) but that's not really a big deal either. All in all, I am happy to be back!

The first job was to have the boat moved from where the yard management had stored it, to better spot with more room for a workshed This took a few days but was done by Thanksgiving.

Moving day

My new "backyard" view

The next immediate project was to make a temporary replacement for the fore hatch lid that had blown off in the last hurricane. I had covered the hatch with a piece of PVC board, weighed down with my anchor and windlass, and this had worked for the 15 months of my absence but was now impractical since I couldn't open and close the lid easily. I had to make a quick-and-dirty, slap-dash replacement hatch without my tools or supplies that were still in my storage unit.

Making the temporary hatch was a quick job: Put some plastic sheeting over and around the hatch, drape the fiberglass cloth over it and then wet it out with resin. Repeat a couple of times, then after the fiberglass cures, just lift off the new lid and trash the plastic sheeting under it.

 The result wasn't pretty but it does the job for now.

Pretty enough, and keeps the rain out

Made a hatch lid in-situ, using hardware-store fiberglass resin

Next, I have to set up a new work-shed area and I've decided to build a stairway to climb up to the boat rather than continue to use my boatladder. Going up and down a ladder 50 times a day, while carrying tools or my cats, is just not practical and there are too many stories of people being injured on ladders in the boatyard...

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