Monday, August 25, 2008

Welcome MR. PERKINS!!!


Finished painting the chain locker and got that darn anchor chain off of the deck! Yeah! Oh yeah, and for the major accomplishment, we welcomed Mr. Perkins into our saloon. Here's travis doing his celebration dance!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Engine Removal


This week-end I spent almost entirely working on the task of removing the Engine from its compartment and putting it on a stand in the saloon. I had been lying awake nights for about two weeks prior worrying and figuring out the best way to build the apparatus, so I am glad to have the experience behind me.
My beam trolley design worked out great and the trolley and chain block that I borrowed from my friend Eric made the job of lifting and moving "Mr. Perkins" very easy. I even had some time this week-end for laminating some ribs in. I have more of that to look forward to for next week.

Monday, August 18, 2008

(Sanding+Epoxy+Paint) x 2= OUCH!


Spent some time painting the chain locker this weekend,
 and helped load the tanks into the bilge. I'm using the word helped very loosely here as Travis and Mike did most of the work. (Mike has restored my faith in the kindness of strangers, as he just showed up when we first got to the boatyard, and, being concerned for our safety, decided to help us get the tanks onto the deck,
 but Travis will tell you more about that)
As if getting the tanks secured wasn't progress enough, we did the unthinkable and finally reorganized the interior! 
Despite our best intentions, we were slowly falling into complete choas. The task of cleaning up seemed trully daunting, but after a few hours the difference was unreal. It was quite timely too, as this reorganization marks a new phase of the project...engine room rot removal and replacement.

Fuel Tank and Fresh Water Reservoir Installed


With the bilge rot beneath the sole of the saloon replaced with new mahogany and painted with two coats of epoxy and two additional coats of grey bilge paint, the tanks were ready to go back in. My friend, Tristin, was unable to finish welding up all of the leaks in the fresh water tank before his wedding, so I had to do it myself. For the record I want to say that TIG welding is lame, and I can't imagine how anyone could find it enjoyable, but I was able to successfully repair
 all of the remaining leaks. The fuel tank had at least 3/8" of sediment in the bottom so I gave it a thorough cleaning and then polished up both tanks to a non directional finish. The tanks are pretty heavy and we were not really sure how they could be lifted up to the deck without the danger of damage to the topside paint, the tanks, or to ourselves. As our great fortune would have it, just as we were unloading them from the truck, Mike, who works at the boatyard, offered to lift them with the yard's man lift. OUR HERO!!! As no good deed goes unpunished however, he soon found himself stuck in the soft ground and had to call in reinforcements to pull out the lift with a tractor. The lift then made easy work of loading the tanks onto the deck. Installing them was a bit more difficult but they are in and secure. Next week we remove the engine from it's compartment and put it on a stand in the saloon where it will be overhauled. I am building the apparatus that will make this possible this week. I am more than a little afraid, but I am sure it will go well as planned. It should make for some good pictures at least.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

A Bit About Dusty

Dusty is the well intentioned former owner of our beloved boat Me Voy. As the story goes, Dusty purchased her from a yard for one dollar. They had aquired her through defaut on behalf of the previous owner. Dusty being a professional boat carpenter who was already living aboard a boat, Snapdragon, jumped at the opportunity. He ended up falling in love with a younger woman and I have heard rumors that he may have found Jesus as well, but none the less his interest in Me Voy waned shortly after replacing the majority of the rot she had then. Anyway, Me Voy sat in waiting at Oxford boat yard slowly getting all rotten again.
However, Dusty seems to have been a quite popular guy in Oxford. We are constantly meeting people who knew him and had been aboard our boat with him. As I understand, Dusty was in the Navy and worked on an aircraft carrier. When he got out he got a thirty something foot Chris Craft who the yard had declared un-fixable, and he fixed it anyway. He was hooked, and he never stopped working on boats, in fact I believe he is still employed as a boat carpenter at a yard in Annapolis.

Recovering after the paint job


Another weekend at Oxford Boatyard. This time I was covered with fine epoxy dust and gray bilge paint. Yes, that's right I said paint, as the major section of the bilge has now been painted. That means that we have successfully removed rot and replaced it with new wood, and epoxied and painted over 2/3 of the underground depths of Me Voy.  So now, only the engine room remains to be excavated,  rebuilt,  and repainted. I'm looking for that to be a terrible job, mostly because when I expect something to be easy it turns out to be very difficult indeed.  

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Long Week-End


We just survived a four day work week-end on Me Voy. I woke up with more than a few bruises, scrapes, and aching muscles and joints as a result, and from the looks of it Maggie is no better off than I am. So, we decided to take all day today off. It has been a nice time for us to catch up on all of our computer work. I put up a few ads for work and I believe Maggie made some progress on the web site. It's been a pretty kicked back day. It has also been a nice time to reflect on the progress we have made on Me Voy. She has really been coming along now for a while. I think we are finally getting good at all of this terrible work. Don't get me wrong, it's terrible work, but it seems to be getting nicer and coming along faster than it used to. Which is good, because the work is hard and mean! I have never done anything harder and I have never worked with anyone who could outwork Maggie. I can't even believe some of the crap she's doing. Anyway, she got the big part of the bilge painted this week-end and I built new frames in the chain locker. We kicked butt. My friend Tristin welded our leaky fresh water tank on Friday, and had a hell of a time from the sound of it. The stainless steel tank was badly corroded on the low seam which leaked. I welded the worst problem but since I am not that great of a welder I got my friend to do the rest in exchange for fixing a dent in his car. Sweet deal for me! Neither of us knew when we made this deal that there would be any trouble but there almost always is trouble on our boat, and Tristin was about to be dragged into the nasty bilge stinky depths of terror where we have lived for over a year and a half now. Anyway, the tank was so badly corroded that every time he would weld a spot, a new leak bigger than the last would open up next to the old one. I'm not sure what he ended up doing but it must have been pretty lame even though I believe he has succeeded in sealing up the tank. So it will go in next week when we get back from Chicago, visiting Maggie's folks. Then we will build an apparatus of some sort to lift and move the engine into the saloon where it will be looked after. There is a real bad spot of rot under the engine. That will be the last of rotten hull work and we will be ready for floating. Well, nearly. More good times and bad memories to look forward to.