I’ve always heard the old adage that a boat is a hole in the water you fill with money. Growing up visiting Alaska, I saw first hand just how much work it took to keep up the maintenance on boats (though they were all power boats). This was enough to keep me from ever wanting to own one. So I am not sure what voodoo mind control Dave worked on me to get me to agree to all this, but here we are. In December 2013, we bought a boat! Even before closing the deal we knew it needed some work to make us happy: a new mainsail, a generator and air conditioning installed, and most likely 110v shore power access and some 110v outlets – as the boat came with European (220v) power.
Otherwise, the boat appeared ready to go. Of course, there were things we wanted to change, update or add, but they were not necessary to sail away. First and foremost that Dave noticed, the yellow had to go – all of it. The mainsail bag, jib trim, cockpit screens, and helm and cockpit cushions would all need new canvas. I never knew Dave had such an aversion to yellow, but anytime it was mentioned he would nearly go into convulsions! There was an unfinished space where we could install a washer and dryer or something else of our choosing. And, of course, Dave was dreaming big about all new electronics that would enable him to drive the boat from his iPad.
While relocating the boat, we discovered some issues that would need to be addressed. The windlass needed to be replaced ASAP, as we could not anchor without it. I’m nowhere near as buff as Jean and there’s no way I’m hauling the anchor and chain up by hand! In addition, several hatches were leaking, including those directly above the beds.
Since we were living on the west coast, we needed help. Ed Massey recommended Ted Weyhrauch as a project manager to complete or oversee any work we wanted done on the boat.
Fast forward to September 2014…
Ted has been great! Our hole in the water has turned into a black hole in the water with a void that can’t be filled up. It is our own fault. Well, Dave’s fault really. He wants it all. The windlass was ordered and installed right away along with a new anchor chain. After moving the boat and sailing together for a week, we decided the unfinished space should be a freezer. Ted built us a custom made, low-energy freezer encased in matching wood that made it look like it was part of the boat all along. Ted also installed the generator with sound shield, shore power inlet and 110v outlets, air conditioning along with the vents and a control panel at the navigation station, and a battery charger to charge the house battery bank from the genset.
We ordered a new mainsail and bag, jib trim, and all the canvas including dinghy chaps and a cover for the outboard. Instead of replacing the trim on the cockpit screens, we replaced the entire screens to be interchangeable with a new Eisenglass enclosure. Okay, I admit, that was my expensive add on, but I think Dave will be very happy for it during his first nighttime crossing and/or storm. We both decided on another rather frivolous addition: multicolored underwater lights. We had really good reasons, though: to look cool at dock or anchor, to help us find the boat while on the dinghy at night, to attract and watch wildlife in clear water, and to attract squid (and therefore the fish that eat them) to catch food.
Dave had Ted replace all the electronics (surprise!) including AIS that transmits and receives, the two televisions/chart plotter repeaters and the entertainment system. While working on the boat, Ted noticed we needed bottom surface repairs and paint, thru-hull fittings replaced, new bilge pumps, some rigging and lazy jacks replaced, a new radar reflector, diesel engine maintenance, and the leaking hatches needed rebedding. Dave also had the gel coat cracks repaired and the surface buffed and polished. Last but not least, we had new lettering and our logo placed on the boat to change the name and hailing port. Next up… the name change ceremony.
Shew! I’m exhausted just listing it all. Hopefully, we will just have to worry about the upkeep. She should be good as new. We will be taking her out for a test sail in October to make sure everything is working properly. Wish us luck!
For more boat work pics, take a look at our gallery: http://www.livin-life.com/galleries/more-boat-work/