Saturday, November 16, 2013

Back home after a week on the boat.

Just back from a 6 day stay on our boat and I'm sad to say that I'm not real happy to be back home.  Tami and Justin arrived at the boat about 11 days ago, showed up with a car and a trailer and set up a home.  All the bed covers, seat cushions, and curtains were removed and taken to the laundry-mat.  Everything was wiped with clean-wipes as there was no running water.  Tami even fell 6 feet off the back of the boat because the only access was from a ladder.

Tami's battle-wound from her 6' fall - sailboat livin' is tough stuff

So much has been done to the boat over the last week and half, I don't even know where to start.  I could go into all the details of my trip but I'll just keep it simple and just list what's been done.  But as it stands right now, and to be as less confusing as possible, I'll just say that as I took off on my 8:15 pm flight last night, Brandon's 8:40 pm flight was about to land.  And as I was arriving at our home in Texas around 1:00 am this morning, the rest of my family was pulling up to our boat in Key West.  

But here's whats been done as of today:
1.  They've finished sanding the bottom, and by the way, after all the barrier coats and paint were sanded off, the hulls are in beautiful condition.  We've heard that a lot of times after boats get sanded down to the gel-coat, you can see a lot of the repairs that's been made over the years.  They will show up as repair spots similar to what are delamination repairs will look like after they get repaired.  Both hulls are just in really pretty condition and the new bottom job should look awesome when we get it on.
2.  Both shower sumps had to be replaced - neither was operational and its so nice to have them automatically kick in when anything is poured down the showers.  Also, its what all the a/c units drain into so as we bleed that system its nice to know that when they're operational that the sumps will spit out the drainage.
3.  Both hull sumps had to be inspected, removed, and flushed as they weren't picking up anything that might have spilled over to the bilge area.
4.  Generator water pump was removed due to leaking but the new one will have to be installed in the next couple of days seeing as how it just arrived today as I was about to pack up and head out.

Justin removing the generator's water pump

5.  Both massive water tanks were completely cleaned out by Tami as they were a little nasty - they're so clean now, that you could actually drink from them (I guess people drink water from their water tanks, don't they?)  
6.  The generator compartment was stripped of all its nasty (and I mean NASTY) insulation that had been attached to the floors and walls.  It was so deteriorated that the foam would turn to dust when I'd touch it.  We put our masks on and disposed of it all and then scraped everything with a putty knife.  We couldn't even complete item #4 (the generator water pump) until this step was complete.
7.  Tami spent 2 days cleaning everything in the galley - every dish and every drawer - its like the previous owner never washed a dirty dish.  A lot of it, Tami just threw away and down-sized to a more manageable size.
8.  The hull bilge area was sprayed out and cleaned - its not that they were horrible, but it seems that every stray hair finds its way to the bilge - yuk!
9.  The batteries were completely dry and Justin ended up putting somewhere between 4 and 6 gallons of distilled water in them.  But after unplugging the main power, it seems that they'll have to be replaced sometime soon as they just aren't holding a good charge - at least that's what the initial indication is.  It was expected, but we were crossing our fingers that the batteries might make it - it hurts to buy four 200 amp hour batteries...ouch!

Justin removing the impeller on the port side engine

11.  All the old electronics have been removed except for the SSB and the VHF radio and I also have a new Raymarine HD Radar on its way so it can be mounted on the mast while its on the ground.
12.  And finally (and this is real insignificant) new fan blades were purchased and installed on the 12 volt fans that were in the boat.  I thought they were crap, but after Tami got to looking at them and tried them out, they are the sh!t - they really work good except that the longer they ran, the blades were in such bad shape they started falling off. 

The mast still hasn't come down yet because the day it was scheduled to be removed, the winds were running between 20-40 knots - so that's happening next week also.

Lastly, it's becoming more and more apparent that I really watch too much TV.  This time a boat docked in the marina is one that I've seen on television.  It was actually on two different channels with two different titles.  On National Geographic it was called "Shark Men" and on the History Channel it was called "Shark Wranglers" and it was about this ship that tags great white sharks off Africa for research.  According to the article I read while gathering information for my blog, they are still hard at it but it sounds like the shark-tagging season doesn't begin until July or August.  We walked by it on our way back from the restroom and some of the crew were busy sanding some areas with an orbital sander where the paint was coming off.  Anyway, its docked right behind our boat and here is a picture of it.


  1. Found your blog through This Rat Sailed. We too are finally on our way after nearly 7 years of preparation. We wish you the best - you have a great boat for your adventure that''s for sure. We're hopefully going to make it as far as Key West so maybe we'll see you there.

    S/V Kintala

  2. Thanks for checking out my blog and we would welcome a visit from people with "like-minds" - as we should be in the Keys for at least the next few months. Congrats on your adventure and good luck.