03/01/2009, Pueblo, CO
Well, I thought I should update this since I was looking at the site and realized its been a LONG while since I last did an update.
Here's where we stand right now.
We had to move Sand Dollar again from Bernie's place (long story). I think that was what got me depressed and hadn't updated anything. We have a friend who allowed us to put it on his property - 10 minutes away from our house!!! That's great, BUT... Michael had to go work in Pueblo on a job and hasn't been home since August of 2007!!
Now you see why nothing has been done on the boat.
We are hoping to be back home at the end of the summer this year, and we're going to get some work done. Our biggest project is that deck. We have to cut it off and get it sealed. Of everything we have to do, that is the only structural thing left. She can sail after that. I still want the starboard gas tank replaced but we still have the port side tank. We have the possibility of some jobs coming up in Hawaii and we may actually sail Sand Dollar over there and live off here while there...our moorage would all be paid. Gotta love it. But its a long way off and so much to do.
We hadn't had a chance to get to the boat with commitments, but Michael took the next week off so we could get some uninterrupted time working on her.
The first thing we did was get the table area back up. We buffed up the table leg and Michael recut the V below the table between the benches. We got the table put up, but couldn't find the pieces to attached it to the wall so we used screws instead. You can't see them, and they do work well but I have got to find those pieces.
Michael wanted me to research water pumps for a washdown. We have Michael's laptop with wireless capability and it works great for times like these.
While I was researching, Paisley cleaned out the port lazarette to get it ready to work in and paint. Michael is going to rework the propane system. As you can see by this picture the wires were cut and another attached openly. Not good to have open wires next to your propane tank.
At evening approached Michael wanted to find out why our starboard galley, cabin and forward head lights were out, but Paisley's starboard berth light worked fine. We had to laugh, here we were working on the lights in the dark. Nothing like perfect timing.
Michael got the holes cut out of the starboard wall and they look great. He used a laminate bit and they nice an even. They just need the finishing edging inside. No rush for that.
Michael put in the settee, a little sanding on one edge and it was a perfect fit. We finally have our settee back, and it looks good to boot. While he was doing that I put in some shelves I painted and took a few more down to paint.
Michael was looking at the water hoses and they are nasty looking inside. I think he is going to replace the water system. Just add that to our list of things to do.
Lastly Michael varnished the sole with Epiphanes and the wall he just made the cut outs in. Paisley had been sanding away in her cabin and they got those varnished as well.
What a bad night last night. That storm we were watching must have moved our way. The wind blew continually and blew HARD. The door to our cabin opened and hit the wall with a bang in the middle of the night. Michael woke up and had to investigate it. I told him what it was, but he had to be sure.
Then another mystery bang. Michael had to go on deck to find the source of that one. A board had blown off of Paisley's hatch. Michael laughed later that it felt like he was in a hurricane up there.
We got up about 8 and I made bacon and eggs for everyone. Bernie came over and we walked over to see his grounding plate that he had bought for his boat. He also showed us his bimini cover he was working on.
We came back, took the stuff to the truck that needed to go back home and left Paisley to unpack and repack the truck. Paisley is second only to Michael in packing ability. She's so good I get her to pack my freezer at home.
Michael sanded the V-berth floor and put down a layer of Ultimate Sole. There was a problem. Michael wasn't so aggressive with the sanding here and the floor was splotchy. Not good. He was going to have to sand it down and redo it. Luckily it was a relatively small area and wouldn't take too much time.
Paisley and I worked on painting shelves and setting them up to dry on the trailer porch. , now just for another couple of coats next time.
Del and Dee called and I drove out to meet them off the nearest main road. We didn't want them to get lost, so thought an escort would be the easiest way. They brought us all Famous Dave's BBQ for lunch so the time to escort them was certainly worth the time! I love BBQ!
We showed Del and Dee the boat and Del teased Michael about being Noah (and me, Mrs. Noah). I feel like them sometimes. They said we must be great people of faith. Yup, we pray all the time we will get this done.
After they left it was quick work to pack up and head back home. We were all tired, needed showers and were looking forward to our beds at home. This was definitely a LONG weekend.
We had gotten to bed by 9 and slept for 10 hours. That was amazing for Michael who usually gets by with 6 and often only 4 hours. Now if only the bed were more comfortable.
The next morning after a filling breakfast of Captain Crunch - Peanut Butter mind you. We took of the table and Michael sanded the floor between the seats with the power sander. The dust was so bad we rigged up a box fan to suck the air out, worked pretty good too.
Paisley sanded in the rear cabin today while the sanding was going on. When he was done on the floor Michael decided since he had the power sander out he would work on one of the teak tops to the coming in the cockpit. Paisley helped him and they both varnished the teak.
While they were doing that, I used stain blocker on a few spots in the forward head shelves, and in the starboard shelf that had a large spot of oil that must have spilt. I didn't know what to think of that large bit of oil that had marked all the way down the floor, but asked Michael if he thought I could try and cover it with stainblocker. I thought he said sure. He told me later he didn't, ah well. It can always be covered by formica, like the other shelves. I put a second coat of regular paint in the rear head, and there is nothing left to paint in the rear head any more. We took a stop for lunch and watched the movie 'Apocalypse' which is about John in the bible.
Bernie stopped by and I showed him my new Pren-N-Snap tool from sailrite and he told us how to raise the boat. Michael has been concerned about leakage in the boat. When we got to her there was too much water in the bilge and he thought some of it was because the boat was tilted too far forward and water wasn't draining to the scuppers. Bernie told him he could do it just by raising the stands bit by bit. So he did.. and it worked pretty good. We shall see if it helps stops the leaks.
After lunch Michael worked on the lower port side wall. We had bought paper backed teak veneer for this wall and it was time to see if it was a good idea. It took a good part of the afternoon and we both worked on the wall together. We used contact cement rather than epoxy and it worked well. We were worried about misaligning it, but it matched up excellent. Michael used our new XPR multitool that attached to our dremel (think reciprocating saw in miniature) to cut out a small spot so he could replace the power plug in that was there and we replaced it with a black CGFI box. Looks nice too. Michael was horrified when he saw the hole cut into the wall. It was very rough and we told him we were going to leave it like that. He didn't like that idea at all. Good thing we will do the final cut next time.
Michael hasn't decided if he will use fetches for the upper part of the wall or more of the paper backed. The one problem we see is the teak paper backed is quite dark. We hope it doesn't look funny when its varnished.
Dee and Del called and are going to stop by sometime tomorrow, so during the dinner movie I put away tools and tried to do a general tidy up. Our evening ended by watching a wicked lightning storm in the east. Mikey said "Too bad we didn't have a video camera with us - the people back home wouldn't believe this." We all looked at him and laughed "Who? The people an hour away?" Silly kid.
Here I was getting up at 5:30 am again - there is something wrong with me. While the kids slept (Michael was awake having a tea) I ran to King Soopers, gassed up the truck, grabbed some milk and hamburger and then ran to McDonald's. Ahh, the breakfast when you don't want to fix anything. The kids got up at the smell of egg mcmuffins and we got going.
We got all the way down to Parker road and realized we had forgotten something. The teak! We had cut it the night before and left it standing by the front door. So we turned around, paid more tolls and got back home. On the way to the boat AGAIN, we stopped by Home Depot and picked up some more brushes, veneer and drill bits. They were having an anniversary party and we joked with the cashier about coming back to the truck with our faces painted. But the kids are used to our little quirks, I don't think it would shock them. Ah well, we will have to work on something to cure that. hehe
Since we had already wasted a good part of the morning we decided to go to West Marine in town. The store is small but had a couple of things we were looking for. We bought more West System Epoxy, penetrating epoxy (forget waiting till Wednesday) and more stainlessscrews - at $0.60 each - ouch! We decided to feed the kids a real meal and popped into a buffet which was poor, too bad.
When we got the the boat Michael laid part of the sole. He put on the final teak veneer on the galled bulkhead - its a perfect match. woohoo. Then he installed mounts for the settee, again another great match.
Paisley worked on scuffing up the varnish in the forward cabin to prepare it for a new coat of varnish and I painted the rear head shelves. Mikey helped too by being a gopher for Dad.
Since the kids and I were whining he put the table up temporarily for us for dinner. During dinner we watched a classic movie - 'Attack of the Killer Tomatoes'. Yup, pure kitsch. Paisley said it was the worst movie she has ever seen, but Mikey loved it!
Michael also got our new berth light installed with an LED bulb inside. It has great light for reading, nice and clear white and cool. The previous light gets so hot it has melted the cover, not good. The light looks great and we are going to replace all the berth lights with these. It was a great day full of successes.
Today was the start of the long weekend for us. Michael had to go into work for half a day, then it was off to work on the boat for 3 solid days... or so we thought.
We all got up early about 5:30 (ick!), had ourselves showers and got our bags put into the back of the truck. We had loaded most of it the night before, so the load up went quickly. The kids and I dropped Michael off to work and went to the boat. We were going to get it all set up, get some schoolwork done and some small tasks done before we had to leave at 11:30 or so to pick up Michael. As I neared the property I noticed how much rain they had, there were puddles in the road which was unusual. I got to the start of Bernie's driveway and half way along, plopped down in the middle of the road was a dumptruck load full of chewed up asphalt. I drove up to it and got out. I looked at the grass next to it and back at the pile. There were tire tracks in the grass, but there was also a puddle and deep tracks. I had a temporary loss of sanity and had a brief panic attack. Yes, stupid I know.. but it happened.
I got back to the truck and started to back up the hill to get cell phone reception. Mikey said excitedly to me "Are we going to jump it?" It's funny now, but at the time I didn't laugh. I told him no, although that option was a valid one in my state of mind.
I called Michael. He was busy and had to get back to me. I asked them to have him call me right away. Well of course, he thought someone had died and I got a little upset. It WAS an emergency in my mind! I didn't know what to do. I had decided it wasn't worth the risk to get stuck because then I wouldn't be able to go get Michael and he would be upset at me. Nope, not worth it. He called back and agreed with my assessment... after telling me not to worry him like that.
So we drove back to Michael's office and found a nice warm spot in the parking lot. I knew Michael had an important meeting so we stayed in the truck. I was very tired from being up so early (I detest early mornings) and so took a nap. At about 11 Michael called me, he didn't even know we were outside. We came inside and eventually went back outside so Michael could get some work done and get out of there for the weekend. Luckily for us the guys in the warehouse were having a BBQ so we got to eat while we waited.
When we finally got out of there and made it back to the boat with Michael, the puddles had dried up and Michael decided to drive around the asphalt pile. We made it of course, but Michael had at least the foresight to bring a shovel from work incase of stuck-age. Good thinking.
For the rest of the afternoon we were able to get a fair amount of work done. Michael worked on putting the floor back in, and we had a problem. Some of the teak strips we cut yesterday weren't the width of the teak strips on the floor. Say what?! So we focussed on other projects and put in the last floor hatch. Michael also worked on the galley bulkhead repair and I puttered around other areas in the boat. Michael built up the damaged area using scraps of the teak fetches, and it worked beautiful. We had to leave the top section because we had to use penetrating epoxy, but it was only going to arrive from West Marine next Wednesday. Ah well, we still got some work done. I had brought a wallpaper book from Lowes so worked on picking out wallpaper to replace the pulled off stuff.
We made our way into the trailer and found no water on in the kitchen. We thought there was no water at all and knew we could not stay there. We decided to head back that night and we could get more teak cut. I think that was Michael's main reason to go back. I told him not to worry about the difference, it was a repair after all, but he likes things done right. Just as we started to head home, Bernie had come over and told us that the water wasn't working in the kitchen, but did work in the bathroom. At least we could use the toilets, but since Michael had it in his head to get that new teak cut, we still headed out. So we threw our pillows back in the truck and headed back home.
We have been working on building a couple new fences at home and have put off coming down last weekend. So this weekend was it.
So... we went to the boat today to get her all set up for more work. We brought the finished settee, floor hatches and repair boards for the floor. We had to make an inventory of what else we needed and what we HAD to get done now. Our priorities are being moved around involuntarily, but we can still do this.
We got the settee in place, figured out how many more floor sections we need to cut and put the floor hatches in place. We tidied up and she looks great. We even put on the seat cushions to look at it. Looks awesome. Now to get the table back. The settee isn't nailed down, but its at least back on the boat. We still have to fix the bulkhead between it and the galley and the port side. But we figure that can be done fairly quickly.
We had the hatches all stacked neatly in the garage, but forgot to screw the hatch lifts on... they were just laying in place. That's OK, I will bring the screws next week and get that done.
While Michael was working on the floor stuff, I removed all the cupboard doors with the caning. I have the items I need to redo them, except wedges of course (ugh!) and will start working on those during the week. We were only at the boat for only a few hours today, but she looks all nice and tidy again, not like a workshop.
Michael is thinking about staying on the boat a couple of nights a week to get some more work done on her. He wants to work on the floors, sanding and putting on the varnish. The hatches look so beautiful I can't wait to see the whole floor done.
When we got home about 4:00, I couldn't sit still. I felt like I should be doing something. So I left Michael to play a computer game and Paisley and I went to Lowe's to look for wallpaper. We need to replace the old stuff that was on there. It is so bad it looks like a hack job. They have patches of it here and there and I absolutely hate it. So I found some that has great potential. I will get the book and take it to the boat next weekend to check. I also checked for veneer for us to use to build up the spot where the plywood was peeling off in layers. Its cheaper for us to use birch with the teak on top that all teak... much cheaper. And then I also found some great wood leveling compound we can use. So it was a very fruitful trip to the store. Now just to put in my orders - woohoo!
It was a quick trip to the boat today. We knew the tarp was going to be ripped up and had to come down, but we didn't realize how bad. The tarp was shredded. We get a wicked northern wind where Sand Dollar is standing and just keeps blowing. We got the tarp down, cut off the PVC and picked up the mess. It took us a couple of hours. We then covered the portlights up with makeshift 'plugs' to prevent water from getting in worse that it was. We didn't notice but the cap where the chain comes out was left off. So, the water went right into the bilge. The boat is sitting with the bow slightly down, so it didnt' run out. Ah well. At least it is only a couple of inches and not feet!
I brought a half dozen totes full of food and boat items so we should be pretty much set to go when we start coming down regularly. Now, lets hope the mice have already been fed and there won't be any snackers!
I had fun shopping last week. I did my research and bought a new berth light with a xenon bulb. We need to replace all the berth lights (they have those ugly plastic covered ones), but I wanted to see if I like this one before I buy a bunch and discover I don't like them. I didn't use the xenon bulb, but went with an LED one instead. Then I bought a pair of Sensibulb LED replacements for the cabin lights. Again only a pair to see how well they work. If they are good then they will all be replaced.
Next I bought (well this one I had to beg Michael for) was a Pres-N-Snap tool along with 100 SS snaps. I need to make covers for the top deck goods and wanted to have a tool that would make it easier than a hammer. I will keep you posted on how well it works.
I also bought cane and spline to replace the ugly dirty cane that was in the cabinet doors. I bought one with stars instead. To tell you the truth, I don't know if I like it or not... I will have to finish one and find out. This will be my first time doing any caning. I won't be doing that though, until the door is sanded and revarnished. Yeah, more varnishing!
The last thing I have to order right now anyway are a set of hinges for the above cabinet doors. I have one set already, but they aren't the right depth. So off to order another set at $20 a pair. What's the saying BOAT - break out another thousand. Yup, working on that.