Got down to Totnes early to give the mast a clean with boat shampoo and the updated version of Blakes' Mast Care. This Hempel product (Blakes were taken over by Hempel some time ago) is now called Alu Protect and works wonders on 30-year-old masts. The mast was out of the rack and on accessible trestle tables so that Nick the electrician could install the new LED anchor/tricolour light, the VHF and Windex (wind direction instrument), radar and LED white steaming and deck light. The Furuno radar is unique in that it sends its signal direct to iPads and iPhones rather than to a multi-function chartplotter. At the same time, agreed the position of the solar panel arch to take a couple of solar panels and the aerials for the GPS and AIS. Hopefully, this will be finished by the end of the month.
The new radar randome on the mast
Out with the old, in with the new
05 February 2020 | Bristol
The new engine is now in place, but not connected, and all the old electronics are being stripped out, ready for the latest technology. You can see from the pictures how much smaller the new engine is (Beta 35) against the old one (Bukh 36). The four new domestic batteries are also visible (Rolls AGMS), plus other bits of kit lying around ready for Nick (electrician) to fit. The boat looks a bit of a wreck as everything is pulled apart to lay the new wires. Nick (engineer) will be back shortly to finish off the engine installation. Hopefully, I will be back down in Totnes tomorrow to clean the mast as Electrician Nick is planning to rewire this week.
Nick with the chaos he has caused through rewiring!
26 January 2020 | Totnes
Although I haven’t seen it yet, I’m told the new engine is now in place. Nick (electrician) reported on seeing a big new shiny red piece of metal in place on Friday. Confirmation from Nick (engineer) that this was indeed the case and the fitting of the new Beta 35 should be finished next week ready for sea trials when launch comes at the end of March/beginning of April. The serviced Bruntons Autoprop will be delivered early next week. Nick (electrician) has started stripping out the old electrics and will be working on Topaz Rival over the next couple of weeks. We are waiting for the final design of the solar panel arch which will also host the antennae for things like GPS, AIS and satellite telephone. Looking forward to our next visit to Totnes to see progress. Topaz Rival is now out of the shed and standing on the hard at Baltic Wharf and Dawn and I popped down last weekend before all the excitement began.
Shiny new bottom
09 January 2020 | Totnes
The osmosis treatment is now complete and Topaz Rival has a new skin under the water together with a special covering of Coppercoat antifoul. The Coppercoat will change to a greenish blue when she hits the water, but is a rather unpleasant shade of brown at the moment! Other work finished includes installation of the new electric windlass (waiting for electrical connections), installation of the holding tank and the complete refurbishment of portlights and hatches. Other unseen items include servicing of all the through-hull holes and valves, crossing over the cockpit drains (key safety item) and modifications to the stern tube to take the new engine. Off the boat, the sails have been washed, repaired and have new UV strips to protect them from the damaging effects of sunlight.
Boat with no name
01 December 2019 | Totnes
The refit latest - Topaz Rival has no name. As part of the buffing up of the hull the old painted name on bow and stern have been removed ready for a new design. Topaz is now waiting for her Coppercoat anti-fouling which should be applied next week. The engine bay has been cleaned up ready for the new engine and the hatches and portlights have been removed and sent off to be reglazed and resealed. A new Lofrans Kobra electric windlass has been delivered together with 60 m of 8mm calibrated chain and 30m of 14m Anchorplait rode. The old Simpson Lawrance manual windlass will be making its debut on Ebay shortly with 40m of usable chain. I have also taken the Mantus chain hook and bridle off Knot Telling as it is also 8mm and should work well on Topaz Rival. We didn't think keeping it on the boat for sale would influence the purchase one way or another!
Ready for the new engine
Portlights away for reglazing
Inside the tent
18 November 2019 | Totnes
The refit continues and Topaz Rival is now snug and warm inside a temperature and humidity controlled tent waiting for the new gel coat next week. In the meantime we have been talking to Nick (electrician) about where all the new bits of electronics will fit and the smooth coordination of the various specialists working on the boat. The philosophy of the restoration is to try and maintain as much as possible but at the same time bring Topaz Rival up to date without breaking the bank... Full details will appear later as the equipment is installed. It is expected that she will remain in the shed for a good few weeks (New Year at least) as all the portlights need to be reglazed.