New Life for Christy Lee

Detailing the restoration of a classic Spencer 35...

30 September 2014
27 July 2014
07 June 2014
22 February 2014
05 February 2014
25 January 2014
02 June 2013
10 April 2013
25 March 2013 | Norfolk, VA
15 March 2013
14 March 2013
13 March 2013
12 March 2013
03 March 2013
28 February 2013
24 February 2013
23 February 2013
25 September 2012


30 September 2014
Pulled the table out and brought it home for refinishing. Since it's made out of the same wood as everything else it seemed like a good test piece for the interior. In the picture the small piece is the table leaf, which I am going to leave off, untouched. The big piece is the original table top, refinished with some work to do still. I sanded until almost all the grooves and marks were gone, then smoothed it out. 5 or 6 coats of Deft Clear Wood Finish later I like the results! Still have to round the corners and make new trim.

Moved back to yard

27 July 2014
So I've decided that trying to SAIL the boat and trying to RESTORE the boat cannot be done at the same time. The work I have to engage in next is BIG, so I'm going back up on the hard to do it. The galley is ripped out. Next will come the cabin sole. Ugh. This is starting to sound like work!

Galley started

07 June 2014
Ok, so the galley is the next major obstacle. The support underneath is long-since gone, so every time someone stepped into the boat the countertop sagged. Beyond that, the replacement countertop installed with the new engine isn't holding up, there's wasted space below the counter, the sink has no plumbing, and the old engine access was built for the bigger Mercedes, so the extra space is wasted on the new Vetus and is infringing on the small walking-area. Soo...

Out comes the galley! I'm reframing it all in white oak and hoping to replace the countertop with Corian. I will be installing a refigerator / freezer into the wasted space back in the corner and re-doing the shelving to accomodate for the microwave.

Quick Note

22 February 2014
Finally, I believe, the base level of CL's electrical system is complete. I separated the starting battery ground from the house bank ground, opening the contacts on the VSR resulting in an immediate 3A current reduction on the house house bank. The starting battery and house bank are now completely isolated except when paralleled by the VSR. Seems like it's right, time will tell...

Now, what's next...?

Christy Lee is moving into the modern era

07 February 2014
After 2 day marathon of wiring, rewiring, and rewiring again I've finally completed a couple major hurdles. The aux panel, pictured, works 100 percent. 12v outlet, solenoid control for propane, analog meter for starting battery, and even the digital amp-voltmeter for the house bank. I completely rewired the batteries and charging system today in a configuration much more suited to my VSR. And the lower panel and modern battery selector switch with VSR is completely functional. Next stop: main electrical panel. Once that's done the galley demo can begin!

unplanned day off

05 February 2014
Ok, so I thought I'd have the bottom panel finished today. As it turns out the heater in my Durango quit working yesterday. Yea, so today is fix the Durango day.
Vessel Name: Christy Lee
Vessel Make/Model: 1963 Spencer 35
Hailing Port: Chesapeake, VA
Crew: Steph & the kids
I got a boat in the first place because cruising is a family thing. I have many, MANY good memories of sailing that involved my uncles, my grandparents, and the good people at VYC. My crew is my family, and anybody else who decides to come along. [...]
Extra: “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” - Mark Twain
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Christy Lee's Photos -