I have been calling all over the place trying to track down marine plywood. I found one place, $190.00 a sheet! Call me crazy, but they are NUTS! I called a marine place here who repairs boats and they said they use regular plywood but coat it with resin. I think we may end up doing that. Not fun.
Michael wanted to see how the tarp would last through the night, so we didn't head home for church last night. The tarp did great, if yesterday wasn't enough of a test. We packed up and headed home to take the day and relax. Once we got home we found our hinges and teak veneer had arrived. Very nice veneer, can't wait to use it!
It was nice, we were able to be lazy this morning. I made home fries for breakfast, then we worked on adjusting the aft tarp. We moved it back one set of PVC ribs. We got it nice and tight and did the best we could around the aft end. Looks like a butchered diaper job.
We then went to Lowes - it was the only place we could get the heavier silver tarps. We needed to get another tarp for the forward part.
When we got back, we finished putting up the last PVC rib and front connection. A storm started blowing in and we raced to get it the tarp up. We got it over and tied down somewhat, when it started to rain. We told Mikey to get Hunter and put him into the boat. Hunter is scared of thunder and was crying. Michael and I finished tying the tarp down as it lightly rained.
We went into the house to grab some tea. As we were inside it started raining and blowing much harder. We raced to get us and our tea onto the boat. Under the tarps was like being in a drum as the sides were belted with tiny pellets. This was the strongest wind we have been in here and were worried about her windage, especially with the new tarp enclosure above the deck. Michael was worried about the boat tipping over. He told all of us to get off her NOW. I asked about Hunter and he yelled to leave him. We ran through creeks of water that had popped up below the boat and got inside the house. It then dumped on us! It started hailing and the wind kept changing direction. Michael even mentioned it could be a microburst. Our eyes were all pasted to the boat. I was sure Hunter was absolutely panicking inside there alone, but no matter how much we love our animals human safety comes first.
Michael ran out to check the straps but he only stayed out briefly, he ran back and was soaked through. I didn't think we needed foul weather gear during a refit. It lightened up and we went back into the boat. She did just fine. Other than leaking into the open hatch from the seam where the 2 tarps meet. Hunter was running back and forth and was very happy to have us there.
We put in a movie and Michael went to lay down, but that didn't last long. We went up and started sanding in the cockpit. Michael started sanding the hatch. Paisley soon came to help and Mikey joined us and worked on the starboard aft handrail. I worked on the port aft handrail.
Paisley went to make dinner and we went to work inside. We had talked about the portlights and Michael thought we should take one out to work on. The middle on on the starboard side had rot beneath it, so that was the one we chose. The portlight, the trip, the wallpaper, and the vinyl underneath the overhang all came off. Now we have a boat with half a dinette and the other side of the salon is missing a portlight and has nasty exposed rotted wood. Lovely. Nothing like tearing things up to motivate you to put them back together. While Michel was ripping our boat apart and I was finding out if there was anything salvageable underneath the varnish. It was so black Michael thought they were painted - but there was beautiful shiny under all that. Michael got the dremel going and its beautiful under it all - we have bronze portlights - all it will take is tons of elbow grease to get them beautiful again.
One nice thing about (b)logging is you can complain about the injustices in the world. It's my time to complain about early mornings. I hate them, they are nasty and should just disappear. As you can infer, today was an early morning. Michael was up at 4:30 and had a shower. I didn't get mobile until 20 minutes later, but I was conscious at 4:30 and it was not fun.
The kids got up about as happily as me and we got to the boat by 6:30. The kids went straight to their beds, I went to plug the power in and got bowls for the leaks (it was supposed to rain today). Michael thought to bring 2 little ceramic heaters with us (smart guy!), and I brought them out of the truck. After I got the kids heater going well enough where I was sure it wouldn't burn anything, I went back to our cabin for a nap myself.
Once I was up, I made breakfast for the kids, they worked on school and I cleaned the rear head and cabin. When Michael got back, he took a brief nap as it rained outside. He didn't sleep long and when he got up we started on the dreaded sole project.
Before we purchased her, Aurora was flooded on land. Water got into her bilge straight down the mast and flooded about 6 inches above the floor. The problem is that the support beams that run under the main salon now have rotted. It is one of the big projects we have to do on her, and we knew it was one of the first that needed to be done.
The beam to be fixed ran under the aft seat in the salon, so it had to come out. Michael started by chiseling between the plywood seat part and the teak edging. For fun he decided to take out a piece of paneling behind the seat that a previous owner had tried to repair. Problem with the repair was it was uneven and not even teak, it had to come out. They had put it on with liquid nails, so you could hear wood tearing and crunching as it came off. Note to self - NEVER use liquid nails on a boat. During the removal process Michael forgot how sharp his chisels are and gouged himself. He didn't lose any fingers but it did hurt. He got the plywood seat off and next it was the teak trim around the edge. He tried to take it off as gently as possible so we could use the trim when it goes back together. Then the edges of the seat came up after that.
Michael then took out his skilsaw. I confess, I turned away and plugged my ears. I have heard the saw before, but its disconcerting to see someone taking it to your beloved boat. Rotten chunks of floor started coming up, along with the bad stringers. We put what we could into totes and decided to leave it for now. Its distressing to see such a big portion of the floor cut out. Although we knew this had to be done and it was one of the biggest tasks to accomplish on her. Doubts run through your mind if you have the skill to put her back together as she was (or hopefully, better). I guess we will find out soon enough. One bummer is now we have no seat for Michael and I to sit on together as we eat dinner and a movie..
We ran to Home Depot and King Soopers. I made dinner and we watched 13th warrior as we ate. I had the additional pleasure of listening to that nasty mouse chewing at our boat. I did remember to buy some mousetraps at Home Depot this time and some poison in case that didn't work. I hate poison because he could die in the walls then then stink, just what we need.
As I sat I was thinking of the mouse - maybe it was something else. I asked Michael about it and he said it could be. He went outside to track down the noise. Sure enough, there is a tag on the lifelines put there by the rigging crew who removed them in Annapolis for us. I think we found our mouse. So much for my mouse-capades. But I am still keeping the mousetraps set, you never knew.
To the boat again. This time I am going to pay a $2 toll and skip most of that terrible traffic. It should save me just that on gas. I found the propane attachment for the grill, so we can eat this weekend. Yay!
Great. The kids and I got to the boat about 4:30 and got the power all hooked up and the car unloaded. I sat down at the nav station and heard scratching at the hull. I thought maybe Mikey was picking at the bottom paint. Nope. The sound has the evil tones of a mouse. It must be killed - now. The last thing we need is a mouse chewing apart our wiring. Nasty buck-toothed evil monster.. you will die! Ok, rant over.
I started cleaning in the rear head and removed doors, vacuumed and then cleaned with Mr. Clean. I didn't realize how much space was tucked away in that medicine cabinet/rear cabin drawers. I guess this would be a good time to make my storage compartment list. I found software (Mastercook) that allows you to put in a pantry list. I am going to put in all my nooks and crannies as separate pantries and then list what I put in them. I can do a search by either item or specific 'pantry'. I think it will be a great way to organize, as long as I keep it up to date.
Michael called and was stopping at Home Depot to pick up the PVC for the enclosure. I needed to get groceries and as I was heading out my car died going around a corner. I called Michael and he told me to go back to the boat. I did a bit more cleaning and then headed down when I heard him arrive. We unpacked the truck - no mousetraps. ah well. Paisley stayed with him as I went to get groceries. Mikey stayed too, but Paisley actually helped Dad while I was gone. I need to plan going to the store better next time so I don't have to drive 20 minutes each way, I could be cleaning instead. woo hoo.
When I got back, Paisley and Michael had most of the skeleton for the enclosure built. It looked to me like they were building a greenhouse. Michael said their were battling wind while they were doing it. There was enough wind that it was difficult for them to stand at times. Nasty.
I started dinner and Michael came into the house. He said he had to go to Pueblo tomorrow for a meeting. It dawned on me "Do you have your boots?!" Well, lets just say it was not a snoopy happy dance moment. After a discussion we decided that we would have to drive back home tonight and Michael would drop us off early tomorrow morning on his way to Pueblo.
So all we did was close up the boat, unplug the power cords from the pump house, grab some butterscotch pudding for bribing the kids, grabbed the dog and left. Oh! And I forgot mousetraps, doh!
I cleaned the house somewhat, and in the evening won an auction on eBay of teak veneer sheets. Great price. We may be able to do a lot of the veneer repair fairly inexpensively if I keep using eBay. I also worked on the companionway door again.
According to the brightwork book, we need to get some chemical stripper to get the little bits left over from the scraper. One more thing to put on our to get list.
Oh! My Sunbrella arrived today. Hooray! The UPS girl had to ask what it was. The roll of thread taped on the side threw her off. I found a great 'how to' for the handrail canvas and will be measuring for it this weekend. I hope my machine can sew this stuff. At least I get to play with my new soldering gun with the fabric cutting tip. Should be fun if I don't burn myself... I have a nasty blister from the heat gun already.
Its amazing how much stuff we keep taking every weekend to the boat. Michael's truck is full and it doesn't even seem like much this time. Ah well.
After Michael was off work, I met him at the highway and we went to the Lowe's to get the tarp, some electrical outlets (black ones, nice), and a mat for wiping off muddy feet before they go one the boat (Mikey!). We also picked up one 2x4 of redwood cedar. We saw a KP that had the headliner done in wood and we want to experiment with different woods. Teak is too expensive for that application so maybe redwood or pine might be the way to go.
We then left my car and drove with Michael to Lyons where there is a small boating store we know of. We were able to get some Pettit's Captain's varnish, which Michael is going to use on the plywood companionway doors he will cut out before we leave soon. I also picked up a Miracle cloth. I read it was supposed to work well for metal cleaning. Our portlights are nasty with tarnish and I am bringing along a couple metal cleaners to see what works best. I want to avoid spending a couple hours bench grinding each one. But if that's what it takes to make them look good then that's what I'll do.
We came home and worked on cleaning the garage. Actually, Michael and Paisley worked on the garage, I worked on the other companionway hatch. Garage is looking good, we could actually get to the router table which Michael is going to need for the headliner job.
I researched hatch hinges today because we plan on taking the hatches off soon and need them to put them back on right. Two of the hatches only have the top part of the hinge. Now how on earth do you end up with *half* a hinge? Anyway, I found 2 SS sets on eBay - I LOVE eBay.
I started to read the book "Brightwork, The Art of Finishing Wood" by Rebecca J Whittman. It's a great book and got me really wanting to do the brightwork. It may be something I enjoy doing. We shall see. I did some major researching on varnish and want to use Epifanes, even though it is expensive and the only way I could find it was to order it online. I am waiting for an auction on eBay of the stuff. We shall see if I get it..
I then ran to Home Depot to get a soldering gun and to a sporting goods store to get a sun shower. The water in the trailer was leaking so we shut it off, hence the reason for the sun shower. I begged and pleaded with Michael to let me come with him to the Rockler woodworking store down in Denver after he was off work. Yup, I am weird. I did get lost, but found my way with help of the Rockler staff guy on the phone. When there we bought two things of teak veneer, one door hinge (for inside the boat), a scraper and a veneer book. The book is for Michael, I have no desire to learn that for the boat. The staff guy and us talked for quite a while when he found out about the boat, lots and lots of questions.
When we were home I ran to Home Depot and picked up a hot air gun. We needed it to strip the varnish off the companionway doors we brought home. When I got home I asked Michael if he wanted to go for a walk. While I was waiting for him, I went into the garage and started to play with the heat gun and stripping tool. Michael joined me and hours later we had the one door done. So much for our walk... but the door looked good.
It was raining when we woke up this morning. We did get to find out where the leaks in the hatches are. There is a leak over the V-berth, one in the main salon and two over our berth. We decided to work inside the boat this morning and Michael worked on getting 'shore power' into the boat. We bought heavy duty wire and a plug at Home Depot yesterday and today he put them together. We shut everything off and plugged the cord in. We then turned switches on and cheered - it worked, with no shorts or fires. We went over the boat and checked lights. We even had lights on both sides of the rear berth. We do have to replace the 120v outlets since they are old and outdated, but I would like them to be GFI ones anyway.
While Michael was working on the power cord I was emptying drawers of junk. I filled up 4 totes with miscellaneous stuff, more than half I have no idea what it is.
We pulled off the radar and the ancient Loran. To get the Loran out required ripping apart a cabinet in front of the navigation station. That lead to pulling out some wires and now I have no light on my side of the aft cabin - it was a sweet victory while it lasted. We put on 'National Treasure' while I did my best to remove the VHF, I ended up stripping the insides and was left with only the plastic case stuck to the wall, and I still couldn't get it off. It took Michael a half a minute with a hammer and he got it off. I guess I should have gone with the heavy artillery in the first place. Michael then had the urge to get the wiring out of water out of the bilge, which entailed using the wet/dry vac to get the water out of the bilge. We have a 16 gallon vac and it filled it up half way! That's a lot of water in the bilge. Time to track down those leaks.
While the kids and I packed stuff off the boat and got it acceptable to leave, Michael cut some temporary particleboard companionway panels to replace the wood ones that are going home with us to be refinished and fixed. We will bring back some plywood panels to use until the good ones get done. Michael also put a bottom platform on the stairs and figured out how we are going to put a cover over the boat so we can work without the weather affecting us. Lets just say it has to do with PVC and tarps.
Michael had a terrible time trying to get to sleep last night. He said the last time he looked at his watch was 2:30. Ugh. In the morning he took Hunter outside and left for work. I went back to write in my journal and drifted off to sleep. When I work up with the kids, Mikey went to go say hi to Hunter and he was gone. Panic ensued with tears and calling for Hunter. I called Michael crying, he said Hunter would probably come home on his own. I drove around and the kids kept calling for him. Michael finally took pity on me when I called a second time and came home to help us. I weed wacked the front yard until he got there, I had to do something to keep busy.
Michael and I drove to the nearest house - it has a dog kennel and sure enough there he was. There were 3 boys the age of Mikey and the youngest caught Hunter. They knew he belonged to someone, he looked well looked after, one of the boys said. We hit if off well with them and hope Mikey and the boys can play together when we are there. We came back and told the kids to get in the truck because we had to go somewhere. We didn't tell them he was in the backseat. They were so happy.
We went to Petsmart to get Hunter a harness. Then went to Walmart to get some more stuff and then to Home Depot. We gone home and got much of the yard wacked (as much as the extension cord could reach). Then Michael started working on the set of stairs.. It started to really blow and clouds darkened - we started to put everything away. Drops fell and the tools went away. Since it was very light we decided to keep working. Good thing too because it never picked up and Michael was able to get the whole thing built except for one full handrail on one side and a half on the other. We ate the rest of dinner from last night and watched the rest of Captain Ron. We played a game of Cranium and a long game (1 hour!) of Uno which Michael won. It was the first time he played that game, and I don't know if he will ever play it again.