In the Water!
18 August 2020 | Raiatea Carenage
William Ennis | Well, hot...
We got splashed today at 1600 or so, and it's good to be on a boat again.
We were ready to go pretty early, having worked for THREE WEEKS, but after they lifted Wings from her cradle, we had to paint the areas where her cradle pads had been. After that, we just hung around and waited for the splash.
Our entertainment prior to splashing was watching a Frenchman direct his mast removal in order to install new rigging. As I do, he used ascenders to quickly climb his three-spreader mast. He attached a sling around the second spreader and the big boom truck pulled the mast up and out of his boat We talked to a nice friend of his, a man born in Paris but who lived most of his life in Santa Barbara so he speaks unaccented English. At some point, his father built a trimaran and the family set sail for French Polynesia where he's lived since. He's a citizen, since he's French and speaks fluent French and English. He looked like an old American surfer!
The TraveLift, the monstrous machine that uses slings to lift boats, slowly moved to the slip and gently splashed the boat. We quickly jumped aboard to check for leaks, as is the way it's done. I found that the new depth sounder install was solid and had no leaks, but we had a gusher on the damned packing gland that prevents water from entering the boat around the propeller shaft. I worked on it a bit but couldn't get the water stopped so called in more experience.
Here's the gist: we had two problems. I had removed the old stuffing and replaced it, but I had failed to push the new stuffing down far enough to allow enough threads to catch on the stationary part. The second problem was that, through the years, the threads on that part had become filled with debris and needed cleaning. Our friend, Eyo (we think that's how it's spelled since it sounds like that), used a small slot screwdriver to clean the threads and push down the stuffing, but even more impressive was that he sealed the incoming water with duct tape! It was an impressive performance. I learned a lot. I was concerned that my inability to tighten the device enough to stop the leak was because I had cross-threaded the thing, but a big hex nut that acted as a lock nut could be easily screwed on and off: no cross thread. At any rate, the problem is fixed, we didn't sink, and we're afloat here in the slip. We'll move out tomorrow morning.
We were able to add some more fresh water and I managed to find a hot outlet so we're running on their power tonight. Nice.
The engine started easily, and we had no leaks in the new manifold.
The new electronics all worked, including the depth sounder. We get depth and water temperature, so we feel that the "speedometer" will work as well. By the way, the water temperature is 84°F.
I did try to get the new photo pages posted but simply couldn't get to my web host's site last night, but succeeded just now.