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So much for summer.

The days are getting shorter, half way to the shortest day of the year. Yesterday the sun was down by 19:10 and it was full dark by 20:00. It also appears that with the advent of fall, the temperatures just fell off a cliff. It’s 14:19 and the outside temperature is a balmy 60F. Good weather for me to get my arse in gear.

I’ve been working at getting all the welding pre-fab done. I’ve started to saw the shaft out of the rudder, in order to replace it with the 316 SS shaft which is now machined. Bitch of a job and it will take a while. I’ve also got a fair bit of work done on building the pulpit. This really annoys me, once more convincing me that this was the very first boat the builders ever did. Either the frame isn’t square to the center line or the bow is pushed off to starboard a bit. Anyway, the pulpit is noticeably cock eyed. I suspect it’s a bit of both. Still trying to figure out how to fix that.

img_0683        img_0686


First things first, the pulpit is removable so the ends have to be bolted. Then the tube needs to be trimmed to the funky angle needed to give a decent joint. So far so good.


Next, the first trial run

img_0673 It’s pretty obvious that this isn’t very good.



The cross piece was taken apart and welded to the tabs so that both sides would be of equal length from the #1 frame. As you can see, the crosspiece is now square (more or less) to the center line, but the two sides are intersecting at noticeably different angles. Damn.  BTW that huge aluminum thing is a humungous caliper for measuring across the hull. I will be using it to determine the distance between stanchions when I go to get the pulpit and push pit built. It will also tell me how much the stanchions are off vertical. The guys out fitting her didn’t shim under the sockets.


The last bit of welding I have is closing off the old forward hatch on the fore deck. To that end I have squared off and cleaned up the hole, and started to rebuild the underlying structure. I should be able to get all of this done by the weekend.



Bit by bit, things get done.

The heat wave just doesn’t want to stop. Currently 83F in the shade with humidity running around 65%. Oh well. Fall is coming soon. Got down a couple of weeks ago, in a minor somewhat cooler period, and  did some work on the exhaust. Using the cheaper hose I’ve laid out the runs and it appears that the plan to run it back to frame 9 and then forward on the starboard side will work just fine. The water box will sit neatly down beside the engine and the 15cm down/15 cm long minimums will be easily met and exceeded. From the water box, the hose will run just about vertical to the underside of the cockpit seats and then back to a gooseneck fitting I plan on having made up from 316 stainless tube. I’ll also replace the two cockpit fittings at the same time. Might as well get it all cut and welded at the same time. I’ll order the tube shortly.

Exhaust route 2 forward face Exhaust hose 3


Regarding the rudder shaft and log, I’ve finally settled on having the radial drive hub up. It still means cutting down the shaft log to allow for the stuffing box and clearance to put in the packing but it is decided and I just got back from dropping off the parts at the machine shop. There will still be enough room above the hub to put on a tiller arm and use that as the rudder stop, taking the drive, cable, chain and wheel out of the equation. Otherwise the stop would be on the outer rim of the drive, using that as the tiller. Still have a bit of time left to decide, but which ever way it goes, its off to the machine shop next week. If I do it right I can also use the tiller as a mount for the emergency steering shaft.

Got an email from my welder, asking if I was still alive. Can’t do much until the weather breaks but it is the end of August and tomorrow is calling for better conditions so it’s time to get my ass in gear again. I started futzing with the pulpit, spent a couple hours cutting out a pair of fittings to mount the first cross beam on the stem, the materials are all on hand now as well. The material for the closing in of the old forward hatch is also on hand. I’ve decide to fix the cheesy way I sealed off the old cockpit drains, which will require making up a couple of filler disks. And the rudder. Where to begin. The bottom fitting is a tad wonky so it will have to be redone but I’m not touching that til I get the shaft log back. Inside, I have to start thinking about replacing the crawl way frames with steel, save space and weight. The material for that is on hand for frames 7, 8, and 9.

All things considered I can see light at the end of this tunnel. The last of the welding will be done. Then the chipping can recommence, and e-coating. Through hulls all go in, as well as the depth sounder and sumlog. That will finish the hull and she will float.

I hate the heat!!!!

So far this month I’ve gotten 11.6 hours in. Last time I went down (yesterday) the thermometers inside the cabin read 87F and 91F. Time before that, 95F and 100F respectively but I got in 4 hours.  Found a dead bird that some how got inside and died of thirst. Man, talk about a stink. At least I didn’t have to go hunting for the corpse, I had visions of crawling round under the cockpit searching. Found it right in the middle of the cabin floor. Cleaned that up and  wiped the floor down with lacquer thinner, the stink went away for the most part.

That second last trip saw the 3/4 inch ply backing plate cut for under the pedestal, and the final position laid out and holes marked. Got it all epoxy coated over the next couple of days, and picked up the nuts, bolts and clips needed to hold it in position under the cockpit sole.  Went down yesterday and clamped the clips in place, and positioned the plate, then drilled two holes at 1/8 for screws to keep it located, then two at 27/32nds to allow tapping of the holes for 1/2-13 thread. Problem came when I went to open up the holes in the sole, couldn’t find the 1/2 inch drill and burned the smaller one to a crisp. I’m going to have to open up those holes with the die grinder. I have made up the tooling needed to measure the final shaft and log length. so far it looks like I can cut a good 10-12 inches off of the shaft and cut and re-machine the log about the same length. After that is done, I can get back to installing the lower bracket (correctly this time) and shaft log.

It’s about time that I called Mike again, to get the last of the welding done. I may try to install the under deck beams for the patch over the old forward hatch, my welding is once again good enough for that but I will let him do the shaft log. Probably get that set up for September, when it cools some. I’ve gotten Gerry Rolleson to give me a hand with all the through hull fittings when he gets back from vacation in mid August, and the concept for putting the exhaust on the starboard side for a greater distance and depth of fall seems to be feasible. The hose will loop back to frame 9, and then forward of frame 8 alongside the engine bearers. The cockpit drains will cross over the center line and then run forward to just aft of frame 7. They will co-located with the raw water inlet, and thus readily accessible from the galley. I may have to change out the hose at some point, although the hose is rated at 60 psi for fertilizer and other chemicals but the ribbing may be a problem.

It’s a bummer that the heat seems to go on and on but risking heat sickness isn’t in the cards anymore. Oh well, there are other things to keep me busy. Fuel system, and electrical system designs need to be worked on yet.



Floors are 2/3rds done…

Had a good couple of days, did some fiddling with the idea of running the exhaust over and down on the starboard side. Tested the hose run with the stuff I bought for the drains, and by looping it back to frame 9 and securing it there, then forward it is very doable. Lots of clearance on the shaft coupling. Once the crawl way frames are redone in steel, there will be plenty of room for the hoses to run under the crawl way. However, the anti-siphon loop will have to come up to just under deck level. Otherwise the hose will be just about dead level all the way to the stern. Not good. Still fiddling with that. Thinking about it, I could put the loop inside the cockpit lockers, that would raise it another 8 inches. Still not enough I think.

Finally got round to moving the fuel drums (1 full, 1 2/3rds full of diesel) onto a new skid. The old one was rotten and disappearing into the ground. Not to mention they were in the way of the step ladder for working on the waterline sanding. So that’s been taken care of.

As for the floors, 4-5, 5-6 and 6-7 are now all fitted, and bolted down. The removable portions are fairly tightly fitted, and the floor frame welds have been ground down. I still need to re-weld a few joints, but that can wait til fall and winter. Too friggin’ hot to be messing with that now. I was going to go down today and do 2-3, and 3-4, but it’s very humid and due to rain on and off. So that is scrubbed, at least for now. It is supposed to stop later and drop down to the mid teens. Maybe tonight? Who knows. It’s 1530 right now.

I’m aching pretty good, I think I’m gonna catch a nap. TTFN.


All the floor plates are down…

Got the last ones rough cut on Friday. Forgot the miter saw, so I couldn’t fit them over the various bumps and such so that was it. Temperature inside ranged from 87F in the bilge to almost 100F at head level (98.7F). Found I couldn’t stay working for more than about 15m max before I had to stop, sit down in front of the fan and guzzle half a bottle of mineral water. Took a mess of salt pills, but not enough. Had a cramp next morning. This weekend is blazing hot, so nothing planned. On the plus side, once they are all trimmed I can bolt them down and the floors are rock solid. Next will be to scrub out each bay and paint it.

On other fronts, I ordered the sheave idler wheel set, chain and cable, and mounting bolts from Edson, they arrived and were picked up Friday. With the idler in hand I can make the final determination on the length of the shaft log, and the rudder shaft. Since I pooched the bottom fitting I’m going to re do it. Doing so will shorten the rudder by 1.5 inches but it will do a better job of guaranteeing the bottom socket is true to the shaft log. After I get the final measurements I can take them into the machine shop, and get them cut to the right length and turned down to the right diameters. Then back to setting up the rudder and shaft log.

I’ve picked up the material to weld across the old hatch opening, and will be doing that shortly. I am tempted to put the patch in place myself, at least fit it in place and tack it. My welding is betting better, my first ones were atrocious. Being as I am using 1/8 material all the time, proper joint prep makes all the difference in penetration.

So far the weather appears to be cooler than last summer but when the heat hits it is brutal. I’m considering either working early in the AM or heading down after 10pm and work til about 4am. If I do it gradually I can skew my sleep patterns around without too much difficulty. Those cramps are a cast iron bitch.

Photos as soon as I can.


Floors are welded in…

Did the work over several days, but they are all in now. I figure I might be able to salvage about half the existing floor plates, some as is, some recut for other places. I will probably need a full 4×4 foot sheet, and at least on 2×4 foot sheet to make up new floor plates. Once they are cut to shape and can be bolted down I’ll drill and tap for either 1/4 or 3/16 bolts. I might go with the smaller size as the center beams are only 3/4 wide on each side, and 3/8 edge distance for the bolt holes on the ply wood might be a bit thin. Have to think about that for a bit before I go out and pick up the drills, taps and bolts.

Bay 5-6.


Bay 3-4, 4-5, 5-6 starboard side facing forward.


Each of the larger openings will have a removable floor plate. The outboard sections will be bolted down permanently once the painting is done.

After that is done, the work becomes two parts, one to clean and repaint the bilges and the lower chine, second to finish/refinish the floor plates. I might also have to shim the newer ones as the material is a tad thinner. Once the floors are finished, next step will be to start cleaning up and painting the middle and upper chine, getting them ready to be foam insulated.

Getting the floors cut, fitted and welded led to the first sacrificial blooding for the year. A few cuts from sharp steel and bruises from leaning against the edges of the angle iron. That in itself wasn’t bad. I did give myself another grinder bite, once again proving that inattention or sloppy work habits can be deadly. Minor one, a bandaid took care of it, didn’t even get through the first couple of layers of skin on my thumb.  But the biggy is a missing piece of hide off my right calf. Has to be at least silver dollar size, and it hurts like a sumbitch. Problem is it is on the area of my leg where the poor circulation is, and healing is going to take some time. Have to keep an eye on that, might need to go see the doctors about this one. I wash it down with hydrogen peroxide, put on polysporin and a gauze patch every day. Time will tell.

Spent some time putting together the next shopping list, stuff I will have to get together before my next 3 days off. The weather is promising to be cool for at least the next 14 days. (It’s getting pretty hard for the climate deniers to shrug off the weather these days. 🙂 ) I’ll be picking stuff up today and tomorrow, ready for the next 3 day cycle.

First of the summer heat waves…

Got down on the 21st and got the compressor back up on deck. It runs like a Swiss watch. Finally crawled under the cockpit and started futzing with the cockpit drain seacocks, trying to co locate them with the exhaust waterlock. In order to get the waterlock  low enough to meet the requirements for how low and how far away from the injector tube, I was going to put it on the port side, up near the front of the engine. This, because the exhaust is on that side. So, the first photo:


All this will be readily accessible via the removable panel under the galley counter. The waterlock is  upper right, the 2″ cockpit through hull just in front of it and the 1″ raw water intake in the small bay to the left. You can see the water inlet port on the pump up and to the left. The other cockpit through hull is on the far left.  Note that the waterlock is backwards, with the inlet towards the front. It would have been a simple 3 foot run from the exhaust to the lock. Bummer.

Next photo, the way it should be. Now the outlet loops fairly far into the cabin before looping up to the antisiphon bend.


Now I’m considering placing the exhaust to the other side, farther forward and lower, which allows me to run the outlet straight up. Only concern is that the exhaust hose will cross over top of the coupler. I’m planning on putting a guard over that anyway to keep the dripless seal protected. This also works better as the exhaust outlet on the transom is on this side too. I’m going to trial run it using cheap 2″ hose to check the run and the distances.  Photo:


Actually this shows it in the wrong spot. Move it forward into the next bay and down a tad. The cockpit drain hose will run outboard from the exhaust hose to the through hull as located in the first photo.

Got my micrometer out and measured the new rudder shaft, checked it with the vernier caliper. 1.258-1.259″. Now to get on to Reed at Epson for the bits I need.

With the compressor back on deck I finished chipping out the bays. 2-3 was done a couple years ago, and 3-4 is a mess on the port side where the head used to be. The inner sheet is completely rotted, actually removed a section of it, but the 3/16 sheet under it is in very good shape. I’m going to sand blast that area before I e-coat them.


While I can’t  figure out why the builders double plated the lower chine, in this case I’ll say thanks very much. Boat would have sank if not for that. There is a bit more rotted out to the upper right where that hole is cut but again, not going to worry about it.

Was out on the balcony just a while ago, sanding down the galley hatch for priming and refinishing. Lasted about half an hour with the heat/humidity, humidex says it feels like 36C. Back inside for a large bottle of mineral water and a couple salt pills. Thanks to a bit of forethought I spent Wednesday on a mission into deepest darkest Toronto (land of the endless road consturction) and picked up a couple of fresh bottles. In one spot it took half an hour to make it two blocks. Not fun. Thank good for a good stereo in the truck.

I can’t do enough to promote the use of salt pills. Last summer the cramping in my legs was cut almost to nothing. This year so far I’ve had 4, all minor lasting less than a minute. That and staying seriously hydrated.