Back in another Boatyard

Going to Green Cove

September 30, 2011

10/10/11 to 10/12/11

 

Put the boat back in the water on Tuesday, painted under the jackstands/blocks before the initial splash. We did the mexican mast dance with a tractor to put the stick on deck. Very scary and at certain angles nauseating. One end of the mast is heavier than the other so from certain spots it looked at if the mast could tip over the tractor. It got on the boat safely without too much screaming. Two horses and a beam across our arch are supporting it, with lots of line to tie it down. It took us more time to clean up from where we have been dry docked the last 3 weeks than to move the boat and stick. We had stuff everywhere, extrusions, roller furling, line, tape, rollers, bins, towels, having to go through all this stuff and decide what goes in storage and what comes with is also interesting and you have to go down a very detailed algorithm of does it need to be on the boat? Will we use it? Does it have more than one purpose? Is it for safety’s sake? Do we have room? And then of course there is Matt’s idea and mine so we end up having to compromise after long “conversations” about boat it or stow it. On the plus side the boat floats and no leaking is noted. Spent one night in at the wet dock, got to see a few alligators and even a water moccasin.  We made the trip to Green Cove on Wed, was a little cloudy and we dodged a little line of thunderstorms to our northeast. The wind was light and the St Johns was just a little ripply. We were welcomed upon docking at Green Cove by smiling faces and funny jokes. So nice! Got the low down on putting together our new roller furling system, I might have to reschedule the crane guy for friday as the roller furling might be a bit more complicated than foreseen. Matt went through the box it was shipped in and found no instructions. This is the main problem, the internet is not much help either, so hopefully we have misplaced the instructions or its going to be a very long phone call to Pro Furl in the morning on how to set this thing up. The boat is docked on the Pier too so its not like were in a slip and can snooze we have to get done what we need and get out. The boat ran well today, the perkiness purred all 34 or so miles without a flinch. Took us about 5 hours to get here, only saw one other little sailboat with an outboard powering it, and a person on an inner tube in tow. 

 

10/13/11

 

Assembled the new Profurl unit today. The first 3 letters in the word ASSembled explain the experience. We never found the instructions, so we had them faxed to us. The fax was received all 32 pages mostly in french and the contrast was so poor you could not make out the instructions. After another lengthy phone call, we got the manual in a PDF file, pictures and instructions were much better, however, the instruction in one sentence would be in french and a size or two larger than the italicized smaller fainter english instructions. The pier at green cove is very spacious so we had plenty of room to put together the furled. As we were reading the instructions we realized that neither one of us really had any idea what they were talking about and to which picture they were talking, very ambiguous instructions. So we stopped and thought. And then proceeded. Then stopped again for the fear of screwing up this expensive piece of equipment. We called few fellow boaties to see if they could come out and help us…no luck there though. So we stopped and thought. The boat tied up to the pier behind us had a fellow doing something to a roller furling on that boat so the next time he passed buy Matt asked him about the set up. And thank goodness he knew how to do it or we’d a been up a creek. So this guy “Cole” explained to us what went where and when and how and we had it put together by the end of the day. The crane is coming tomorrow to re-step the mast, now we really are ready. Had some awesome pasta marinara for dinner with a very colorful sunset and a red moon rising. The pier here is almost a half a mile long so we went out to the very end and had a front row seat to it, saw a shooting star too! 

 

10/14/11.

 

Restepped mast today with giant crane. The guy driving was smoking a cigarette and had a cup of coffee in one hand the whole time, very talented. Huge crane, tall mast, 6 men, and 45 minutes later we had a real looking sailboat. Paint job got scratched up in the process, I spared the photo opportunity because this was quite nerve racking. The rigging is all attached but not yet tuned, and Matt still has to go back up the mast and get the topping lift out from over the forestay. Attaching the profurl to the bowsprit was extremely difficult. One because Matt had to screw everything in at an odd angle, two because one of the many strong crane men had to hang off the dock and hold it in the right place for Matt to put the screws in, and three if Matt had dropped any of the screws we would have been screwed because profurl doesn’t send you any extras. So if you have the drop-sies it’s on you. Lucky enough we found another fellow sailor who was nice enough to man his dinghy under the bowsprit in case of such a thing. It was horrendously hot this day as well. The boat is put back together was well as can be for now, we still need to put a mast boot on, the one we have is too big and of course we don’t have a receipt to take it back. So I get the joys of another 30 minute phone call to west marine. 

 

10/15/11

 

Left Green Cove Springs at 10 am, motored the ICW until midnight on the 16th, tied up to the transient slip at Hidden Harbor Marina. Glad to be back, was welcomed by an old neighbor with a 12 pack. This part of the ICW is tricky it dog legs in multiple places and the markers converge with the inlet at one point so you have to figure out which ones to follow. It’s pitch black, some of them aren’t lighted, and we had a little bass boat with 2 drunkards following us with their spot light  waving it erratically around from left to right, up and down, the whole time blinding us to the markers. It shoals in many areas of St. Augustine, we had to stop several times and get our bearings to figure out the right way to go. And as for the bass boat we slowed and let them pass. I hope they enjoyed our spot light.  As we went under the bridge of lions the smell of fajitas or BBQ was somewhere and I about jumped ship and swam to the scent. For the night we tied up to the transient slip and moved to a permanent spot the next day. Now we will have the windlass and the SSB as our next project. 

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Going to Green Cove

September 29, 2011

10/10/11 to 10/12/11

 

Put the boat back in the water on Tuesday, painted under the jackstands/blocks before the initial splash. We did the mexican mast dance with a tractor to put the stick on deck. Very scary and at certain angles nauseating. One end of the mast is heavier than the other so from certain spots it looked at if the mast could tip over the tractor. It got on the boat safely without too much screaming. Two horses and a beam across our arch are supporting it, with lots of line to tie it down. It took us more time to clean up from where we have been dry docked the last 3 weeks than to move the boat and stick. We had stuff everywhere, extrusions, roller furling, line, tape, rollers, bins, towels, having to go through all this stuff and decide what goes in storage and what comes with is also interesting and you have to go down a very detailed algorithm of does it need to be on the boat? Will we use it? Does it have more than one purpose? Is it for safety’s sake? Do we have room? And then of course there is Matt’s idea and mine so we end up having to compromise after long “conversations” about boat it or stow it. On the plus side the boat floats and no leaking is noted. Spent one night in at the wet dock, got to see a few alligators and even a water moccasin.  We made the trip to Green Cove on Wed, was a little cloudy and we dodged a little line of thunderstorms to our northeast. The wind was light and the St Johns was just a little ripply. We were welcomed upon docking at Green Cove by smiling faces and funny jokes. So nice! Got the low down on putting together our new roller furling system, I might have to reschedule the crane guy for friday as the roller furling might be a bit more complicated than foreseen. Matt went through the box it was shipped in and found no instructions. This is the main problem, the internet is not much help either, so hopefully we have misplaced the instructions or its going to be a very long phone call to Pro Furl in the morning on how to set this thing up. The boat is docked on the Pier too so its not like were in a slip and can snooze we have to get done what we need and get out. The boat ran well today, the perkiness purred all 34 or so miles without a flinch. Took us about 5 hours to get here, only saw one other little sailboat with an outboard powering it, and a person on an inner tube in tow. 

 

10/13/11

 

Assembled the new Profurl unit today. The first 3 letters in the word ASSembled explain the experience. We never found the instructions, so we had them faxed to us. The fax was received all 32 pages mostly in french and the contrast was so poor you could not make out the instructions. After another lengthy phone call, we got the manual in a PDF file, pictures and instructions were much better, however, the instruction in one sentence would be in french and a size or two larger than the italicized smaller fainter english instructions. The pier at green cove is very spacious so we had plenty of room to put together the furled. As we were reading the instructions we realized that neither one of us really had any idea what they were talking about and to which picture they were talking, very ambiguous instructions. So we stopped and thought. And then proceeded. Then stopped again for the fear of screwing up this expensive piece of equipment. We called few fellow boaties to see if they could come out and help us…no luck there though. So we stopped and thought. The boat tied up to the pier behind us had a fellow doing something to a roller furling on that boat so the next time he passed buy Matt asked him about the set up. And thank goodness he knew how to do it or we’d a been up a creek. So this guy “Cole” explained to us what went where and when and how and we had it put together by the end of the day. The crane is coming tomorrow to re-step the mast, now we really are ready. Had some awesome pasta marinara for dinner with a very colorful sunset and a red moon rising. The pier here is almost a half a mile long so we went out to the very end and had a front row seat to it, saw a shooting star too! 

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The mast is the master

September 28, 2011

9/26 to 10/2

We have been sanding and painting, painting and sanding, rolling and tipping, tipping and rolling. The mast now has 2 coats of paint and is shines like a new car. I swear it is almost so white that I think it glows in the dark. Fixed all our corrosion issues with a wire wheel and  zinc chromate, everything that is aluminum on our boat now has a coat of it. Spent two days with our good friend Dan who drove 6 hours to be abused by us, figuring out how to run multiple wires down our mast that has very little holes. After trying the cheap way with twine and taking up a complete afternoon we finally borrowed a steel snake. This was also tricky, we attempted to run all 3 or 4 wires we needed with one pass and that was a no go, then we tried two and that was a no go. Then we finally just went with one and it worked and it worked for the 3 wires after that. Success! Much anxiety relieved, as we were about to drill another whole in the mast. The spreaders have been treated and painted black, we had an additional piece welded on to one of them for a PA system. So we will have a bright white mast and black spreaders…not sure how this is actually going to look until it is up but I will go along with it at this point, the mast is the master. Matt has installed a traducer on the boat for depth, speed, and temperature for our Simrad unit. It looks very nice. The rigging should be here by the end of the week, then maybe we can put the mast back on the boat. Finished with the bottom painting the boat. Very important lesson learned here, you do NOT save money buying cheap masking tape. You will spend more money, and much more time getting the cheap crap off. After holding a hair drying to the crappy  masking tape and carefully removing it without shredding one end or another, you still have to get the glue off. We used goo off, and technically per matt you cant let the chemical touch the antifouling paint or it takes away the properties of it in the very place you need it the most, the waterline. So another afternoon of tediously and carefully removing glue in the hot sun with a can of goo off clipped to my hip, spend the extra few bucks and buy blue tape. By the time you have used half a roll of paper towels and a can of goo off, your energy and patience, and the extra beer you had to buy to deal with the situation its much, much cheaper. The XM weather is now working and we are having very nice cooler days now so much more is getting accomplished. 

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Back in the Boatyard

September 27, 2011

A little update since my last entry….me and matt ended up in st augustine for 3 months after pulling into halifax and staying there a month. After 3 months in st augustine an opportunity arose for us to travel to alaska. We did not take the boat, just ourselves and some warm clothes. Spent 9 months there making money and paying off our boat. As of now, we have spent the last few months since july on dry land building a garage to store all the stuff we don’t have room for on the boat. Now we are leaving for the boat yard in San Mateo, FL. 

 

9/21/11

 

We left northwest florida yesterday and headed in the car loaded down with various boat parts, accessories, and hardware to san mateo, florida. Oliver rode along in a pet carrier the whole way without too much of a protest. Just the occasional ME-YOOOOW out of him. Made it to the boat yard in just a little over 6 hours, after arriving we unloaded the boat of all the necessaries and reloaded it with the car full of necessities…so needless to say  we still don’t have much room. Then we accessed our storage unit and removed our cushions, clothing, and linens that have been marinading in there for over a year. Lots of dust, and we even had visitors…insects. All kinds of kinds, ants, love bugs, ear biters, crickets, grasshoppers, a bugologist’s dream. Not mine. So again, we load the car again with even more boat essentials and now we have even less room. After unloading again me and matt were sitting around and realized we had not a drop of water! We were both soooooo thirsty! So back out again and down to the gas station to get ripped off on gallon bottles of water. To me this was an essential so it was splurged on. 

 

9/22/11 

 

1st day to work on boat. Aw so nice to be back on kindred spirit. We thought she was white but as we started washing her we realized she was more black with dust, grim and the dirt that has collected over the last year. Scrub, scrub, scrub, wash, scrub, wash, wash, scrub, scrub, scrub. That was how cleaning went, only multiply it by 10. We had moochers living in and around the boat, they were quickly evicted, good bye mud daubers! Scuffed up some of the bottom paint today, had nice cloud cover, so the humidity was not at 400% like usual and we were able to scuff a lot more comfortably if there is such a thing with scuffing. Plus the boat got a free rinse from mother nature..woo hoo! During this whole process I learned that ants love boatyards…or maybe they love my toes because at one point in time i looked down and they were feasting on me like my foot like it was a lonely cheerio. They also quickly got evicted or atlas i think they did. I experimented with my slushy soapy water with runny bottom paint mixed in as a “do what you can with what you got” ant killer. I believe it worked quite well, I felt a bit evil doing it…watching them shrivel up and die in the mixture, it was sort of gratifying. I have 10 ant bites on one foot, they itch like crazy! 

 

Oliver is doing well adjusting back to the boat, he’s already doing his business back in head. Because god knows we have no room for that cat litter box. We haven’t found any brown surprises on our pillows yet. Keeping our fingers crossed.

 

It is still raining! its so nice and cool outside. Matt and I have almost permanent prunes printed on our finger tips. Dishes and laundry and tooth brushing are going to be interesting, we cant fill our water tanks in dry dock because the water we use goes right where we need to be working. So every time water is needed its out up the companion way, down the dive platform, down the ladder, 50 foot trot to the water spigot, to the blue bucket for washing. It’s going to be interesting. I’ll spare you the details of the bathroom situation for us. On the plus side we’ve got the window unit from Lowe’s pumping out the A/C from shore power. This =  :)

 

We are prepping taking the mast down to re-do the rigging and replacing parts on it, plus painting and sanding it. Took the boom off today without too much trouble, it sits beside kindred spirit now.  And the ants are loving it. 

 

I reached a very thirsty point today. I took the closest fullest water glass and chugged it. And in the process I swallowed a couplet of love bugs! It was to late to barf them back up by the time I figured out what happened. Later, I made dinner, me and matt had exactly the same thing. Matt was fine, and afterwards sleeping comfortably, Myself, was having some severe stomach situations, abdominal pain, cramps, bloating and yep you guessed just what you want to have while your at dry dock living in a boat…diarrhea. Up the companion way steps, down the ladder, in the rain, in the dark, to the treacherous “bathroom.”It lies tucked away behind other boats in long term dry storage, its also full of bugs, and you gotta bring your own TP. I wont go into details but I spent most of the night there and now we need more toleit paper. 

 

I imagine the next few days will be spent doing more bottom prep work, boot striping, painting, an expensive trip to west marine as always, and probably a few curse words and a case of beer. 

 

 

9/23/11

 

Finished barnacle scraping, and more scuffing. Had a moderate issue with the roller furling being froze up. . . after a lengthy phone call to sea furl pricing a new unit and finding out if they made replacement bearings, a stop to the ace hardware for some penetrating oil did the trick. Unfroze, turning nicely, and now dis-assembled in a bucket waiting to be cleaned, lots of corrosion. Took some measurements for rigging, and contacted the crane man to come out to take the mast down. 

 

Bug-wise ants are finding there way up the keel from various spots where the boat is sitting on blocks. Super annoying. Love bugs have super imposed my jerry-rigged dish/clothing washer. The multi-purpose blue bucket is asymmetrically patterned with the black bugs in a matter of minutes with multitudes of them. Big grasshoppers, i mean huge. They look like nasty spit out tabbaco with legs and beady looking eyes. Oh and now there is some weird beetles that likes to fly around and land on the back of your leg when your hands are full. 

 

Cool place for an ice cream cone for a $1.65 found today just down the road. Yay! Plus they have a life size strawberry sugar cone outside. 

 

Between the GPS, antenna, and weather service we are subscribed to, one of them is not communicating with the other. So this has turned into frequent trips to burger king to use their wi fi. Tried software updating and resetting the unit to no avail. Still not working, and Garmin tech support people aren’t back until monday. Add it to the list. And in case your wondering no we have not bought any beer yet. 

 

9/24/2011

 

Today was a massive work day. Finished solvent washing and painted 90% of bottom. We ran out of paint. Mast is down, process of it was very nerve racking. It sits next to the boom beside kindred spirit now. We have been taking measurements and labeling all the rigging, turnbuckles, etc. Shopping around for a rigging place, along with a sail making place. Now there is a hole in our boat where the mast used to be, luckily i remembered this before it rained. Gorilla tape and a zip lock bag are now our official jerry rigged mast window. Every afternoon it clouds up like dooms day and we find ourselves in a mad rush putting all our supplies either back in storage containers in the car or throwing things from the ground up to the boat to be stowed. We did buy beer today, we earned it, the express mart will stay in business for a little longer. 

 

9/25/2011

 

Expensive day at west marine, I knew it was coming. But they didn’t have the bottom paint in the size we needed. Since 90% of the boat is painted I did not see the use in purchasing a whole gallon, especially at almost $300, so I ordered a couple of quarts and they should be here next week. Also made an expensive trip to lowes. I am convinced they call it lowes because it does substantially lower what was in your wallet. Plus we had to drive an hour away because we are in a little town with no such major franchises. And again today it clouded up and rained. No boat work really got done, we did have a nice nap though, and so did oliver…not that he needed it. 

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