August 21, 2005

Back at the dock. Between end of the summer social obligations and post blitz burnout, work has slowed down a bit.

RICHARD WOODS (Our boat's designer) came through Vancouver and spent the day spinning sailors yarns before visiting the boat. He was darn quiet as he assessed the construction site - but did take a ton of photos and has offered feedback and support if we need any.

Rain is still a problem for us (Ev bailed about 20 gallons from the interior after our single rain). But he spent the past couple of days taping up seams and filling in the gaps. Windows and doors are on the agenda for the next few weeks.

The mast is temporally secured. The chainplates are on hold while the cabin is made waterproof. Hopefully the number of PERSONAL WATER CRAFT will reduce on the river after the end of summer. The wakes from all the little boats managed to chafe through the lines holding up the forestay and shake the shackles open on two of the shrouds...

August 5, 2005


The boat is back in the water, on time and on budget. How rare is that for a boat?

I had the pleasure of standing on the side of the river, while she chugged by, an hour late, spewing black smoke.

Aside, from the fact she looked like her engine was on fire, I got to admire the lines of the cabin from a better angle. We hadn't been thrilled with the look, from the ground, while on the hard. But across the water the cabin lost all its boxiness and looked fairly sleek. (We'll do some pictures from that vantage next week.)

The engine problems were actually propellor problems. Ev set the pitch wrong on the prop, and also got the rotation wrong, but countered this by hooking the controls up backwards. The result was they ran it in reverse at a 1000 rpm for the trip down the river.

Fortunately, we have a nice bank for beaching her on across the river from our dock and the repair is minor.

We're now off, later today, for a boatless weekend of R&R.

August 1, 2005

We can see the first finish line. It looks like we may escape the fate of those who have bitten off a bigger boat project than they have the energy, or pocket book to sustain. This project definitely pushes that edge though. As much as Evan insists we are not building a boat - we pretty much are.

Our goal for this haulout was to keep the duration to no more than a month. In that time we needed to install a fully functional diesel (where no diesel had gone before), take out the rotting mast beam, replace the cockpit and midboat sole, erect a cabin (and get the thing somewhat watertight), fair and paint the underside, get the mast back up and keep within our budget.

Well, 95% of our goal is met, but we are out of time. Ev is back at his job tomorrow and we need to leave for the Island on Friday. The boat needs to go splash, so there are a few late nights left on the agenda.

Today we finished fairing the underside and got a coat of primer on. Ev's dad, Dennis, worked on the diesel - getting it ready to run. Still to do is the finish coat, another coat of bottom paint and sorting out a few mechanical systems.

It was nice for Ev and I to work side by side in a boatyard again. I have missed being fully involved in this project. I even miss being in a boatyard - covered in grime, seeing my work evolve into the finished product.

But I must say - I'm not sure if it is a geographic thing, the difference between sailors and fishermen, or simply that I look more fetching covered in blue dust and paint splatters than white dust and paint splatters, but I received a far higher caliber of propositions when I worked in the boatyard in Annapolis, than I do here.