Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Life "on the hard"

Put it in, take it out.  Put it in, take it out.  It’s too small and it fell out.  Wait!  Stop!  It’s too big!  Get an extension.  Brace yourself and strain.  No, don’t put it there.  That’s not where it belongs!

Our biggest project?  The old engine, "take it out", and prep for the new one.

Barbara in the vile bowels of the boat, already partially cleaned even though it doesn't look it.

Barbara heading donwn the port lazarette in the cockpit to get to where she was in the last picture, but this time carrying the scrub bucket to scrub the vile bowels of the boat before painting.


Engine "put it in", suspended by antique chain hoist over cockpit before passing into salon through companionway

Moving the engine through the companionway involves Barbara steadying the engine while I manhandle first one side of the A-fran-and -beam assembly forward 6" then the other.  then the engine is lowered to the salon flor and "worked back under the cockpit through where the companionway steps used to be, and then make a right turn as seen in the picture above.  Then, "take it out" to modify the engine stringers.

Hours over the past couple days have been spent searching, calling, researching to find appropriate wood from which to make new engine stringers.  The day was saved by Jerry, who is only about 100 feet away, who remembered a piece piled in the back of his boat repair facility.  Jerry specializes in wooden boats.  He’ll be able to bring the beams to us tomorrow.

As it was.

As it is.

Living on the boat, in a boatyard, while working on the boat means neither living nor working goes smoothly.  Half the time is spent moving things out of the way to some spot where they will be in the way later. 

Clutter on deck above and in cockpit below.

The V-berth.  Fortunately we do not sleep there these days.

Lower salon starboard setee filed with parts and "stuff".

The purpose of the above picture is to show that we live at the moment without companionway steps.  Supports for them had to be removed to get the old engine out, the new engine in...and back out...and hopefully soon to be back in again.  No steps means barbara has to step up onto the settee on the right by the throwable flotation device and butt pad.  This is a step of about 30 inches.  At 5'2", Barbara's inseam is much less than that.  Then she must reach to the coach roof and hoist herself up to exit height....every time she goes outside the boat, which is many times per day.  She rapels back in.

 The other half is spent taking several times longer than necessary to accomplish anything.  I’ve come to believe some “Boat wisdom” I’ve heard repeated:

10 projects on the to-do list minus one completed project equals 19 projects on the to-do list.

Everything costs twice as much and takes three times as long as originally anticipated.

Every major project takes a boat week and there are 12 boat weeks per year.

Costs are measured in boat bucks.  One boat buck equals $100.

BOAT stands for “bring on another thou$and”.

Down the ladder to do a project.  Up the ladder to get the parts and tools left behind for the project.  Down the ladder to get to the laundry or shower or bathroom.  Up the ladder to haul supplies.  Down the ladder to haul the trash.  Up the ladder to ask a question.  Down the ladder to take a measurement.

The broken ball valve on the cockpit drain was a bugger to remove.  In the process, the through hull, which was of inappropriate design, was probably over-tightened and stressed.  And, since I would worry about the through hull failing at some bad time, and because it is undersized and incorrect anyway, I’ve decided to replace it with a proper seacock 50 percent larger. 

Buy the right parts.  Cut a bigger hole in the boat.  For 50%?  Well, a 50% increase in diameter doubles the size of the drain.  And, if you have to go to all the work of changing, why not change for the better?  Now, as soon as we can get all the right parts, we can fill the hole in the bottom of the boat with the new drain!

Barbara did some cleaning and corrosion control on the refrigerator compressor system.  The beer is staying well chilled!

We’ve removed the old exhaust through hull leaving another hole which will need to be made larger and filled with the new “exhaust pipe” for the engine.

Barbara has modified, repaired and reorganized some of the interior shelving.

I lowered the new engine back down to the ground outside the boat outside the boat and covered it with plastic since it is going to rain.  Barbara taped over all the holes we’ve created in the deck in hopes of forestalling leaks.

We’ve decided to add an accumulator tank into the water system and have acquired the tank but have not yet installed it.

We almost collapse into bed at night.  Internet reception has been good so we’ve been watching episodes of “Green Wing”, a British medical comedy, before drifting off to sleep.   Morning brings a fresh pot of coffee percolating on the stove and more debate concerning which project to leave incomplete this day.

Thank heavens for my Bride.  She is relentlessly cheerful.  She prepares tasty meals.  She is willing to be involved in the projects.  She fits where I cannot!  She’s become a good Cribbage player.   She makes me smile and laugh every day, and I still think she’s cute!

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