Port: Whortonsville, NC
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Boat Work May 2010

16 May 2010 | Whortonsville, NC
Lane Kendall
My first mate is an amateur archeologist. This week is her annual week long "dig" in the outback of South Carolina. Some day, after retirement, I will probably accompany her just to see what all the excitement is about, but for now, I just went to work as usual and planned a couple if days for boat work. Southern Star was still wearing her layer of winter grime when Benny and Bonnie came for a sail, but I simply had not had enough time or warm weather to clean her up. I had a list of things "to do" that was plenty long. I figured since the mate was out of town anyway, this would be a good time get some of the tasks accomplished.

Thursday May 12, 2010
I had a trailer load of things to take to the coast. Charlie Gibson (our dingy) had been hanging around in the basement for the winter and the portable air conditioner had been wrapped in plastic and sitting on a shelf. I wanted to bring my electric pressure washer as well as 5 gallons of diesel and various and sundry boat maintenance items. I loaded our car trailer on Wednesday night and hooked it to our brand new Nissan Pathfinder. We were due a new car since our 2001 GMC Jimmy was on its last legs.

I woke early on Thursday morning and left for the coast at about 6:30. The trip was uneventful and the new car got about 20 miles per gallon. It is a very nice ride. I arrived about 5 hours later, as usual after having made several stops including a stop for a Subway Sandwich that would be lunch.

The weather forecast was for partly cloudy conditions with a 20% chance of rain, which was wrong as usual. By the time I entered Pamlico County, it was raining and very overcast. Most of the work I had planned required some degree of dry weather, but I figured I could wash the boat rain or shine because I would probably be soaked to the bone by the time I finished anyway. The electric pressure washer worked great. The layer of winter grime yielded to the high-pressure water stream and I didn't have to scrub on my hands and knees. It is probably not powerful enough for most jobs but for washing a boat deck it is perfect and eliminates the use of lots of detergent, which ends up in the water. Another "weather neutral" job would be to deploy Charlie Gibson. I unpacked him from his cover and could not figure out why he was such a mess. He didn't see much use last year and at some point we must have left him inflated and on land for a while. There was a lot of grime inside which I washed out and there was an unusual amount of bird poop on the bottom. I cleaned and assembled at the same time and found that a wet dingy is actually easier to assemble and deploy because the water lubricates the parts and allows them to slide against other. It is not quite as much of a wrestling match. When inflated, his appearance was unacceptable. I tried some biodegradable cleaner that worked fairly well but I may need to find a bottle of the high dollar cleaner especially designed to clean and inflatable dink. After driving 5 hours and washing a couple of boats, I was ready to get something to eat and call it a day. I took a shower and went into town. I went to the Village Restaurant in Oriental and had a mediocre fish sandwich. I returned to the boat and watched "The Men Who Stare at Goats" on DVD. It was not quite as good as the fish sandwich.

Friday May 14, 2010
Today was to be dedicated to fixing those pesky window leaks. I had read about the procedure on the Catalina 30 web site. I planned to use a sharp utility knife to remove the existing vinyl gasket material and caulk. It was important to open the gap between the glass and the aluminum frame so that new caulk could be applied. I had purchased a tube of "Life Seal" which was the product recommended on the C-30 web site. It was VERY expensive for silicone caulk but is supposed to be so much better although time will tell. Judy had given instructions on which windows to fix. She said if they weren't leaking I should leave them alone. The aft window on the port side was in terrible shape. We had to cover the stove with plastic to keep the burners from being flooded with water when we were not aboard. Digging the old vinyl and caulk out was not quite as hard as I had anticipated. When I had gouged all I could I used a small stainless steel brush to clean up the frame and the glass. After that I used coarse steel wool and acetone to clean and degrease everything. It took a while to figure out how to tape the glass and frame so that the caulk would stay where it belonged but the process proved to be less trouble than I thought. I fixed the aft most window and the front one as well. The front window is in the head (bathroom) and had been leaking for a long time. I had completely resealed three of the windows on the starboard side several years ago. I spent a lot of time and money on a kit and had replaced the vinyl gasket and all the caulk. The problem was that it leaked worse after I fixed them than they did before. It was hard to cut the vinyl gasket that cost so much but I did it anyway hoping the quick fix would work better than the complete fix. I finished the aft most window before quitting time and left the other one for another day.

I went for a shower and when I finished I ran into Dan and Harriett who invited me to ride along to diner at the "Silos Restaurant" in Oriental. The Silos has switched to an Italian menu. Dan and Harriett had pizza and I had lasagna. Both were quite good. We returned to the dock where I checked my email then watched the movie "The Fourth Kind" which was not great.

Saturday May 15, 2010
According to Judy's instructions I had one window left to fix. I started fairly early and completed the remaining window. The work I had done on Charlie Gibson got him in good shape but he still had some grimy spots. I went to town in search on some sort of cleaner specially made for an inflatable dingy. Neither of the marine supply stores in town had anything in stock but one of the salespeople said I should try a "soft scrub' type cleaner. I stopped by Aggie's sandwich shop and picked up a delicious roast beef sandwich for lunch.

Back at the boat I added 5 gallons of fuel to the tank and filled both water tanks. I had a chance to visit with my friend Richard who was down for a boat check. I did a final rinse to get the boat completely clean. Brent and Mary were down to work on the new Endeavor 32, "Blind Side". Brent and I went into town for dinner but Mary wanted to stay aboard to complete her marathon boat cleaning. Brent and I stopped at the dollar store for supplies and had a burger at the "Silos", my second trip for the weekend. The burgers were quite good. Brent was ready to crash and burn when we got back. I watched another mediocre movie and turned in.

Sunday May 16, 2010
I woke up early, to cloudy skies. The only planned task I had not completed was working on the teak bright work so I felt pretty good about my weekend's work. I took some of the wooden pieces off the boat to take them home for refinishing. Another reason for bringing the trailer was to transport the many various cushions home for cleaning. Our covers are made of "Sunbrella" which is a terrific acrylic canvas that is as tough as nails. We will remove the covers from the cushions and wash them in cold water. If all goes well, they will look like new when we are done. Removing and packing the cushions from the boat took less time than I had anticipated. I got the boat ready for our absence. I was taking the hatch covers home for refinishing and the canvas deck cover home for cleaning, so I had to improvise a hatch cover using our screened hatch covers and some plastic trash bags. I used our boom tent tarp as a temporary deck cover to cover the bright work until we return. Brent helped me cover and tie the cushions on the trailer. Richard and Frances arrived before I left. I had not seen Frances in quite some time and I was glad I had not left before they arrived. We had a nice visit and I found out that both Richard and Frances had decided to retire this fall. I think that is great. I'm just a little jealous.

My trip home was uneventful except for the crowds I found at every fast food joint. I finally stopped at a Hardee's between Goldsboro and Smithfield. I was hoping to get home before the forecast showers and thunderstorms started. I almost made it. I ran into rain during the last 30 miles before I got home. Luckily there wasn't enough water to wet the cushions too much.

I was pleased with my work weekend. Southern Star is ready for a new season of adventure and the captain had a good weekend even if it was a working vacation.
Vessel Name: Southern Star
Vessel Make/Model: Catalina 30
Hailing Port: Whortonsville, NC
Southern Star is owned and sailed by Lane and Judy Kendall from Mount Pleasant, NC Southern Star (formerly Sea Breeze II) started her life on Lake Lanier near Atlanta. [...]
1983 Catalina 30 Tall Rig with Bow Sprint
Builder: Catalina Yachts
Designer: Frank Butler

LOA: 29' 11"
LWL: 25'
Beam: 10' 10"
Displacement: 10,300 lbs
Draft: 5'3"
Engine: Universal M-25 21HP
Fuel 18 [...]
Home Page: http://www.svsouthernstar.com
Gallery Error: Unknown Album [1:]:188
Southern Star's Photos -

Port: Whortonsville, NC