Not a Boat
11 September 2020 | Raiatea Carenage yard
Wings was pulled from the water this morning.
We awakened earlier than usual since a group of live aboard crew from a large water taxi under repair next to us was up at 0600 and they were raucously loud. Sheesh! They were very nice guys, but they were too loud to be up so early.
Being up so early did provide time in the cool of morning to get our dinghy dry, rolled up, and stowed in her storage bag. At 120-pounds, she's a lot of boat to handle, so we used a halyard to lift the dinghy and our WinchRite to provide the muscle.
We also removed the forestay, preparing the boat for a ride on the TraveLift. Removing and replacing the forestay is a major task in lifting the boat, and we must remove and replace it every time the boat is carried to or from the water. We used to allow the yard workers to do the work, but they take less care of things.
Wings was out of the water by 0930 today, leaving a lot of time to work. Wings was placed in the far south end of the yard, far enough back, in fact, that we can remove all of the halyards and replace them with messenger lines. Real halyards are needed to remove and replace the forestay, as the halyards are attached to solid points on the foredeck, tightened, and used to pull the mast and forestay forward, thus allowing the removal of an attaching pin. We're so far back that there are no other boats for which Wings must be moved. We usually remove all of the halyards, and this year, we found that the yard had needed to move Wings but with no halyards, they just left the mast unsupported from the front: they removed the forestay and left it loose! What? We even asked Boss Dominique about removing halyards and he agreed that we could.
Our work began after Wings was settled in her cradle, starting with replacing the forestay. Since it's an obligatory procedure here at the Carenage, we've developed a way to accomplish the task that's less drudgery and considerably less frustrating. We use a jib sheet winch (a Primary winch) to tension a line. The other end of the line leads forward and under the stem fitting that connects the forestay to the bow, and finally attaches to the bottom fitting on the forestay. When the line is tightened, the forestay is pulled downward. At some point, the large pin that connects the forestay fitting to the stem fitting can be aligned in the holes in stem and forestay, and the pin pushed home. We lock the pin in place with a Cotter pin. We've been working on a better way to accomplish the task when we discovered this one and it's now SOP.
We contacted the manager of Pension Tiare Nui and he agreed that we can begin our stay on Sunday rather than Monday. Whoopee! While we're enamored of any shower facility that has ample running water and standing room, a WARM, standing shower is better yet! And we'll be sleeping in air conditioning, a huge benefit since it's been extremely hot the past week.
We'll start moving to our little bungalow all of the stuff that we'll take home: the old Raymarine electronics that we removed, clothing and such, and the various items that I must fabricate at home. Our trusty and beloved Hydrovane wind steering unit, for example, needs repair. When we installed it 10 years ago, we used teak and cedar blocks as pads to custom fit the Hydrovane to our curved hull. It took hours of work to modify the curvature of the side of the wooden pads in contact to the hull, test, then modify some more, before we got a good fit. Unfortunately, the wood faired poorly in the hot Pacific and they need to be replaced. That requires that we remove the entire Hydrovane in order to access the pads. We'll remove them and have them re-fabricated in some high-density plastic this time. I'm sure that the high-density plastic will last as long as needed.
We have a hundred tasks on our decommissioning list, and we've only just started, but we had a very productive day today. We'll get there.
Today is 9/11, a day that Americans should use to remember all those lives lost, families shattered, and communities devastated during one of the few attacks on our own soil. On all of our days of remembrance, we honor the lives lost.