March 30: Exterior Cleanup
I returned the next week to spend a couple of days doing work. The goal of the first day was to get as much cleaning done as possible. Since I had to load up junk from the house, I got a late start, but managed to complete all of the following:
- Wash and scrub the deck and cockpit.
- Empty the space under the seats, and wash and scrub that area.
- Clean all of the bins from under the seats. Wash lines that were soiled in the washing machine.
- Empty the lazerette. Clean all of the items from in there.
- Wash out the interior of the lazerette.
- Clean the cockpit cushions.
- Wash the topsides and transom of the boat.
At around 16:30, it started to rain, but this seemed like a productive list of things to have accomplished since noon. After a quick shower, we went off for a basket of fried oysters and a beer.
March 31: Interior Cleanup
This was a similar day to the one before, but my attention was on the cabin.
- Pulled out all of the cushions. Strip the covers. Put them in the wash.
- Pulled out all of the galley stuff, and everything out of every cabinet, and run it in the dishwasher.
- Scrub all of the interior surfaces clean.
- Clean the cabinets.
- Remove the carpet and shampoo it.
- Wash the topsides and transom of the boat.
This day took from 8:00 to 17:00, and I still didn't get to any repairs.
Here's why one should always take days off work to do things like this. Wiping the mold off the ceiling of the boat cabin beats the crud out of sitting at a desk talking to customers on a nice day. On the other hand, if I had given up a weekend day for all of this, it would have been a rough day.
April 1: Cleaning's Over. Time for Chores
On this third day of work, I finally got to start making repais and improvements. Here's the list:
- Remove the old depth sounder. Velvet Elvis had come to us with a depth/speed gizmo attached to the transom. The speed wheel never worked from back there, but the depth sounder did for a while. Anyway, it hadn't been used in a long time. It's job was just to sit in the back, grow algae, and add drag to the motion from the water. I got back there in a kayak and finally removed the darned thing.
- Pop top slide. Velvet Elvis has a pop top, which allows the roof over the cabin to be lifted. It's a nice feature that opens up a lot more of the boat for people to stand in and still be part of the action. The front of the pop top slides up and down the mast. I lubricated the mast and replaced the ring that allows it to slide up and down.
- Install solar things. I have solar panels that are supposed to keep the batteries charged. I haven't been trusting that the panels aren't allowing voltage to esacpe out of them, or that they haven't been overcharging the batteries when the sun is intense. I installed a little component that is supposed to prevent both scenarios.
- Lazarette hatch. I had to tighten the bolts that keep the lazarette attached to its hinges.
- The head. I needed to fix the head. I have a full installed head, and it has been having trouble pumping the lake water into the bowl. I took enough pieces apart to determine that the water can flow freely to the pump, but isn't making it from the pump to the bowl. I replaced a gasket that is supposed to control the flow, but it didn't fix the problem. Looks like I have to replace the whole pump assembly.
- Tighten screws in companionway hatch.
- Disconnect the yellow stereo wire. This is the one that keeps some charge for remembering the time and the preset. I suspect it as another cause of some of my battery charging problems.
- Tighten the screws on the pads for the pop top.
- Replace whisker pole shackle on genoa. The old one had gotten a bit rusty.
- Re-glue the coaming on the door to the head.
- Remove holders for anchor on the bow. The anchor looks kind of cool up there, but we've found it to be much more useful to have it stored under a seat in the cabin.
- Tighen screws in latches for the forward hatches.
- Build rig for towing two kayaks. This is how I finished up my day, and it was by far the most fun project. I cut piece of line to tie the two kayaks side by side, with lines connecting bow to bow and stern to stern. I also connected each bow to a small bumper just forward of center for the kayaks and both sterns to a bumper just aft of center. Then, the two bumpers are also connected. One bumper is also connected to the seat of each kayak seat.
All of the lines that are supposed to attach to the aft or stern of a kayak are connected to caribiners, for easy connect/disconnect. It is easy enough to hook everything back together from the deck of the sailboat without getting wet.
The forward part of both kayaks connect to a swivel connector, which gets connected to the sailboat with a single line. This proved incredibly effective for towing (with one caveat, which will be described later). Both kayaks move and handle similarly to a single dingy being towed.
- Re-reoute genoa furling line. Somewhere along the line, it had gotten moved to a cleat where it didn't belong.
I was pretty pleased to have gotten this much done in one day. It's been a while since I was that productive at anything. I haven't mentioned that my sleep pattern over these days had pretty much reverted to Joe average pioneer, circa 1874. Due to first light and puppy urges, I was up at around 5:30. Due to lack of cable television and more fatigue than I'm used to, I was asleep by 9:00 every night. Sometimes earlier.
April 2: More Work
I promise that these boring itemizations are almost done.
- Oil teak. Mrs. theskinnyonbenny spent a lot of time oiling and cleaning all of the wood in the cabin. It came out looking much better.
- Replace battery on deck fan. The Velevet Elvis has a small fan on the bow deck that keeps air circulating. It has a small solar panel to keep the battery charged, but I still have to replace the battery every few years. My few years were up.
- Single line reefing. My big project for the day was to set up single line reefing for my standard main sail. I looked at a simple drawing in the Harkin catalog, made some small mental modifications, and started rigging it up. This was another fun task, although 25-knot winds do not make for the best conditions for projects where you have to raise the sails while still tied to the dock. But it seemed to be a succesfull install.
We did have a little mishap along the way. Mrs. theskinnyonbenny had obviously taken her vitamins that morning, because while wiping down the glass on the forward hatch, she completely ripped it right off of its hinges. The plastic arm on each side that allow the hatch to open and close snapped into pieces. It boggles my mind to contemplate exactly how this happened, but I know that it did. At the time this story is posted, we have some very nice looking duct tape holding the broken hatch in place. This took until noon. Maybe one. Then we went sailing.