Sunday, April 24, 2016

Getting ready for Stanley Steamer

With the last of the interior painting and trim refinishing complete, Frances came up with the idea of having the carpeting and our furry walls cleaned professionally. That would mean, Stanley Steemer, a company that Frances has had good luck with in the past.

One call and we found that yes, they do boats and could begin after visiting the boat and giving us an estimate. We also found out, when we asked in the marina office, that Stanley has been there to clean boat carpets in the past and that we seemed to be the first this year. Good to know that they have never has a complaint. But, then again, they don't know Frances.

If we were to invite Stanley over next week, we needed to take everything out of the boat. These people will move furniture but we're not sure they have ever encountered anything like the inside of our boat. We have nick-knacks, people. We have good sized rocks collected from various beaches over the years. We have books... lots of them. Want a bird book? We have many. Want something on flowers? Just let us know.

So, on Saturday, we moved all nine chairs, the rock collection, the Henderson Library and lots of other things to the cockpit or to the fly bridge for temporary storage. If the boat were in the water right now, it would tip over and sink.

Everything is covered so all we have to do now is wait and meet Stanley.

On Sunday, Frances moved even more stuff out of the boat's interior while Bill masked and painted the boot top stripe.

Painting this stripe isn't something we do every year but it had become somewhat beaten-up from fenders rubbing on it. Time to make it look good again and when we left on Sunday afternoon, it looked good.

The boat looks funny with nothing in it.

Never fear, Frances will soon fill it up again.

Silly video follows but it is really run to do.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

V-Berth Rehab Finally Complete

How long has this project taken? Six weekends? Maybe eight? We hesitate to count. Bringing the interior of our old boat up to date was more of a project than we thought it would be and, like many of our boat projects, most visitors won't ever notice what we've done. It just looks nice, and isn't that what visitors expect?

On Saturday,  we pulled off all the masking tape that protected our trim and reversed the process. That enabled us to complete painting the walls.

It was interesting to really dig down deep into all the corners and little trim pieces. There were some trim areas that we never knew existed but now that we know they are there, we'll be more careful to hit every little corner when we vacuum.

Anyway, both the guest berth and our v-berth look great. The mahogany trim glows and the walls (after three coats in some places) are now a new, brighter color with all of the old holes plugged, sanded and now invisible.

As you can see from the photo above, Frances joined us on Sunday afternoon to help and to do something that in the video, she calls "Torquing."

What she means it that we wanted to tighten the four new portholes that we installed earlier in the winter. There are 12 bolts holding each porthole in and we needed someone to hold a wrench on the inside nut while someone else (Bill) went up the ladder and tightened the bolts. It went perfectly and we now have tight portholes. We are "torqued!"

We have three weekends left before we are supposed to launch. We have no idea if that will happen according to schedule but in the meantime, we have lots to do.

This weekend's video follows.

Monday, April 11, 2016

Refreshing the V-berths

Since we've completed making the two guest berths more presentable, we continued with our plan to do the same to the two v-berths, where Frances and I sleep.  Nothing fancy here, just refinishing the wood trim and covering the old, dull, wall covering with a nicer and brighter new color.

Taping the wood trim is a lot of fun if you are into torture, but by squirming around into a lot of odd positions, we got it done. Applying the Sikkens varnish takes just about 15 minutes. Making sure that it is done right by masking properly took us more than two hours per side.

Frances arrived while we were prepping the surfaces and her help taping was much appreciated. As it was, we spent all of Saturday and Sunday afternoons on this project and looks like we'll spend a couple of more afternoons to make it the way we want it.

This is the port side V-berth looking aft just after we finished scrubbing everything with Dirtex. Those dark marks on the wall next to the reading light wouldn't come off no matter how hard we scrubbed. By the end of the day, they had disappeared behind new paint.

This shot shows the wall above the port V-berth after the removal of a bookcase that had been mounted there. Someone in the past tried to varnish that bookcase without removing it first. Sloppy and lazy. The bookcase is now on our workbench at home where it will be cleaned and refinished properly.

It is rewarding to look back on this project as it nears completion and see how much more inviting the inside of the boat looks. One or two more weekends and we'll be ready to clean up the hull, refresh the boot-top stripe and put on a few new zincs. Then it's back into the water.

A few weeks ago we bought a knock-off of the Go-Pro camera. Yes, we know, we have more than enough cameras but we thought it would be fun to experiment with a body-cam. Even the cheapest Go-Pro cameras cost a couple of hundred dollars but we (and a lot of other people) found one that looks and works almost exactly like the real thing for, in our case, just $38.00.

Our body cam shown with a standard household duplex outlet cover for size comparison. The cam itself is inside a plastic waterproof housing.

 These aren't exactly precision instruments and have very few exposure adjustments but the video they produce has that crazy fish-eye look that you get from a lens with a 170 degree field of view. Go-Pro body cam videos are all over You Tube and are meant, it seems, to be used outdoors. There is no way to set the color temperature so the shot you'll see at the beginning of our video looks very red because it was shot under several CFL indoor bulbs. We sped it up so it hopefully wouldn't be too boring.

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Guest Berth Rehab Complete

This project took longer than we thought it would but the effort we put into it really paid off.

Note in this photo that the bottom bunk is exactly the same material and color as the top bunk but our little point-and-shoot camera just couldn't capture that. As shown, it looks like an old army blanket but it's actually the same as the top, nice and new looking.

Anyway, the mahogany trim looks like new after a good cleaning and a single coat of Sikken Cetol Marine Light. The wall covering on the walls also looks much brighter and cleaner and is now free from any old dings and small tears

The bunks themselves are hollow, somewhat like some residential doors, and after light sanding took the new paint very evenly.

While the weather this weekend is terrible (Long Island Sound East forecast for this afternoon was wind 20-30 Kts, gusting to 50 Kts with seas 5 to 7 feet.) spring is coming soon and we're putting the boat on the launch list for early May. That gives us about a month the finish the v-berth rehab, do a touch-up on our bottom paint, replace the zincs on the shafts and waterproof the bridge enclosure.  We'll clean and wax the cockpit and cabin sides when we get to Norwich for the summer.

Next it's on the the v-berth. We've started cleaning the mahogany trim and next weekend, we'll mask off the trim and apply Sikkens to it. We may also be able to begin some painting of the wall covering. We learned a few tricks to save time during the guest berth project.

We shot some video of working on the guest berth this weekend, mainly so Bill can continue to improve on his rusty editing skills. It's tough being the talent, the video guy and the sound guy all at once,  but it's fun for us to look back on these videos later and usually laugh.