Monday, 31 March 2014

Jobs #24 and 25 completed... 16 days to go...

Couple more jobs completed, as the clock ticks steadily away...   bit of a cheat these as they have to be done every year anyway...

Job #25 was the antifoul - that's completed now...  from this:



...and two coats of Tiger Extra later she looks like this:


Navy blue is the dogs nadgers for making boats look good...


..I also put an extra layer round the water line for good measure, and based on last year I also raised the water line half an inch....



...ached in every bone in my body once that lot was done...

Job #24 was the outboard service - all done, no issues...

Finished the day with beers in the cockpit with "Coral" Paul who'd been crawling around underneath his all day with a pressure washer - think we both deserved the beer, and what a lovely day it was weather'wise!

Thursday, 27 March 2014

3 weeks to launch and ...

..the bar has been re-stocked!


I've also had word that the outboard is ready to collect... no problems/issues identified straight forward service...  good news, and I'll collect it Saturday along with the anti-foul!

Monday, 24 March 2014

More progress as lift in approaches...

Just a short trip to the boat this afternoon but some good progress made...

Prep started for job #19 ("GRP damage to nose rebuild") - not really warm enough yet for epoxy, but I rubbed down the bow to remove those stains left by the anchor chain...

From this:



To this, following the gentle application of a little 1000 grade wet and dry..  very pleased at how clean it came up:


Main job of the afternoon however, was job #2 (missing fair-lead) which I managed to complete following the (very timely) appearance of fellow club member Julian who was down at the club anti-fouling his boat ("Billy")..  this allowed me to bolt from the inside while Julian pressed down and held the screws steady from above... cheers Julian!

The fairlead is (well) bedded on some butyl tape - probably too much to be honest, but the fitting doesn't need to be massively load bearing....  Over the summer as the butyl warms up I'll tension up the bolts a little more and take some more excess from round the edges....  I wanted to do the other side as well but the screws (??) are brass, and look to be original as they are stuck solid - working on the principal that it's better not to fix stuff that isn't broken I've left as is...




Separately - my sis advises me that she has the following sitting on her desk - hope to pick it up this weekend as I need to get a couple of coats on soon to allow it time to dry before lift in (so that we don't get partially dry antifoul being transferred from boat to boat via the hoist slings)



Other progress:

  • Sent off payment for Chichester Harbour fees this morning...  £38'odd for the year for Sparrow and tender...  up about £6 from last year, but I still reckon it's amazing value...  just over £3 a month to sail in one of the nicest harbours you can imagine... 
  • Lift in date is confirmed as 17th April - lift in forms handed in - need to put some lifting marks on before the day...
  • Just ordered a new tricolour for the mast head - they were the same price as an all round white and seeing it as it saves me having to install a whole load of lights at deck level it seemed a no brainer...  deck plug is new, as is in mast wiring (last summer).. so it makes sense to get this done before the mast goes up....  need to also sort out a windex/burgee/wind indicator... 
  • ordered some gel coat filler to fill up some of the little blemishes and holes...
  • ordered hinges for job #11 (cockpit locker lids), I already have the hasps.. the lids are 11mm ply with a lip round the outside to fit in the recess around the mouth of the opening...  I'll try to use the existing lids...
  • washboards (job #10) are also 11mm ply

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

So it made me laugh...

...what can I say..  I'm sad!

For Christmas the girls brought me one of those printed t-shirts with Sparrows name on it - it was only supposed to be a joke, but I loved it, and ended up wearing it almost constantly - which is more than I can say for the joke captains cap with the gold leaf brim..! The only downside was that the t-shirt was very (very, very), cheap - and it's now stated developing holes even though it's only 3 months old..  bugger it I thought - I'll get another....


Saturday, 15 March 2014

New jib/genoa

Wouldn't have had any trouble with seeing approaching traffic...
Having had a bonus at work I've been given permission to spend some of it on a new foresail ...  you may remember from last year that having put a UV strip on the foresail that came with the boat, when the time came to actually put it up it was far smaller than I expected... With a luff of approx. 20 feet, and a foot of approximately 8.5 feet I think it is roughly  85 sq. feet; having spoken to the sail loft this morning it appears to be a working jib.

The new sail (from Arun Sails [clicky]) has a full length luff of 22 feet (so I can lose the strop I've been using) and a perpendicular of approximately 11.5 feet giving me an area of about 120 or 130 square feet - that's 30% bigger...

I've ordered it with the UV strip, and it should be ready in 2 to 3 weeks...  very excited!

Separately, the outboard went in for servicing this morning... clearly the season is beginning to get closer, there are 14 other engines in front of mine in the queue... 

Friday, 14 March 2014

First sail motor, of the season..


Britain (well, my bit anyway) is currently enjoying a period of high pressure unheard of since (about) last summer - unseasonably warm, wall to wall sunshine...  lovely...

Not the best time to have your boat in the yard while you finish working on her, then, but Rod the Mod came to the rescue on Monday with an email telling me he was taking AmiLy [clicky] out on Wedneday and did I want to come... took me about 5 minutes before the holiday request form was in...

So it was that Wednesday saw us pushing off from his pontoon on Whale Island for a day in the Solent - the plan was to head to Cowes for lunch, and that was about it.....

As it turned out the weather was perfect, but there was little or no wind, I think we may have got a half hour of sailing on the way over, but most of the forward momentum was tide, so the engine and auto pilot worked overtime...



Beers in the Cowes Ale House [clicky] were first on the list - this was a place I'd spotted last time we were in Cowes - beer was clear, tasty, but utterly lifeless - if your going to serve beer from the barrel you really need to make sure it's in good condition. We cut our losses and went for lunch at the Island Sailing Club (above) [clicky] which was a first for me - last time we tried to get in we were turned away as they had an event on, but this time we were welcomed (and as I looked like a complete and total tramp I was delighted!). A very pleasant lunch in their lovely club room/bar, and then back on the boat for a putter back to Portsmouth....

I have never seen the Solent so flat - it was like a mirror - not a breath....

We were back and tied up by 4...



Log:

Distance: 21.42 miles (added to the 2014 mileage tab at the top of the page but not counted toward my yearly mileage as, one, we motored all day, and two, it wasn't in Sparrow! )
Wind: Force 1 gusting 2 in the morning E/NE - nothing in the afternoon...
Sail Plan: Full jib and main for half an hour - engine for travelling..
Speed: GPS track says max speed was 6.6 knots - average speed 5/5.5 knots

On the way back I popped into the chandlers at Port Solent - I wanted a bow fender (to protect against any further anchor chain rub), and a replacement gas bottle for one of my life jackets...  mission accomplished on both..  result!

Thursday, 13 March 2014

Job #12-8 (Deck plug) and Job #5 (Hatch covers) .. completed

Another excellent Sunday basking in the sunshine and finishing off a few more jobs... 

After the cockpit drain hoses were re-bedded and sealed (see previous post [clicky]) I move on to the other jobs - it was a toss up between rubbing down the nose ready for the repair and some other tasks but in the end with a nice dry day I went for the paint brush and gave all three hatches another two coats of Homebase own brand "masonry paint" - I gave them a coat last summer [clicky] and was really pleased with how well they stood up to wear and tear...   job done, it was time to sit back and enjoy a pint of the freshest Ringwood "Best" I've had in some time along with a cigar...  bliss!

Next up was the through deck plug for the masthead light - I had had the mast rewired as part of the standing rigging replace last winter, and rather than putting on the old plug they'd put on a new one which was subtly different to the old one that the (new) plug no longer fitted the (old) deck socket

Old socket - two equal sized pins - new plug is two pin with one pin bigger than the other....


Socket removed - gasket was in good condition so I decided to re-use after cleaning up


Small smear of frame sealant (probably not needed but why not), and new plug now installed ready for when I get round to putting wiring in...  I decided to keep the old (copper?? brass?) cover as it was nicer than the more modern cheap plastic one that came with the new plug, and more robust...



Other than a couple of coats of anti-foul (which my sister tells me she has sourced (Dark Blue/erodible/Tiger Extra) to all intents and purposes she's good to go back in - everything I do now is just extra jam on the toast...

Monday, 10 March 2014

Job #9 - Cockpit drains - completed...

Hell yes....  

Just before my Saturday duty at the club (which was mud wading to check the moorings; a more execrable - quite literally - job I find it difficult to imagine) "Coral" Paul and I fitted the contents of the package I'd received from ASAP [clicky] the day before...

For the record these were:
  • BALL VALVE DZR 3/4"BSP FEMALE PORTS x 2 (part no. 405704) @ £21.16 (each) 
  • HOSETAIL 3/4"BSPM-19mm HOSE CRBRASS x 2 (part no. 435045) @ £3.83 (each)
  • JUBILEE CLIPS 16-22mm 304 S/STEEL x 4 (part no. 416103) @ £1.08 (each)
  • BLACK HELIFLEX HOSE 19mm x 1 MTR (part no. 412419) @ £1.95
So DZR throughout, and enough clips to double up  at both ends....  throw in 5 metres at least of PTFE and the job was a good'un for just less than £50 delivered...  

From this:



To this:

Double clips all round - and offset as I read somewhere that this distributes load better than having both screw heads facing the same direction....


Shiny!

Slight hiccup when a few days later, I found I had a small but irritating leak when it rained - I suspect that the hose was so stiff that it wouldn't collapse fully on to the hose tail...  I undid the hoses at the ball valve so as to pack the hose tails with PTFE and a thick smear of silicone (I used the frame sealant again as I had it handy), I also kept the hose end in a cup of boiling water as that helps with the compression from the clips...  Hopefully all now good - fingers crossed it stays that way when I launch!!

Absolutely made up as this was my big job of the winter...  now if/when I can get the cockpit drain sorted I'll be chuffed to nuts.....