It is coming along… One Project at a Time.

I began manufacturing a hard dodger a couple days ago. The canvas ones are pretty and all but when you really need a dodger they just won’t stand up. One of those guys pictured above landing on deck and …. well…ya get a wee wet 😛

Progress is slow as I am redesigning it on the hour with each new piece cut out and welded in. I really wish I knew how I manage to measure things incorrectly so often when I am living by the rule of measure twice and cut once. Well it just aint so. I measure 3 or 4 times and yet I am often cutting twice 😦 Thank God welding can help make up for my incompetence. Speaking of welding…. I am slowly improving. I think one major mistake was I wasn’t providing enough power as I was fearful of burning through the steel. I finally turned it up for the gauge and I am now getting much better results albeit my aim still needs improvement.

Manufacturing with steel has some distinct advantages over a fibreglass boat as I can easily (well relative for me) weld the dodger directly to the cabin top. With fibreglass I would be drilling holes and bolting it down with back plates, so I think this is somewhat easier and probably stronger. Now that I have the framing structure in place it is very strong and stable.

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I initially considered using plate steel as the roof but I have changed my mind and will now use 3/4 inch plywood as it is much stronger, stiffer actually,  and will allow me to stand on top should I need to. I can also insert sweet little windows in the roof flush with the surface by routing a recessed edge.

Yesterday I went into the big smoke to pick up my electronics. It felt a bit like Christmas until I had to pay for them. The it felt a bit like bankruptcy 😛 I will begin installing the hydraulic auto helm in a day or two by manufacturing a base in the lazerette. I can’t start to install the electronics until I get out of the indoor storage as I will have to cut some holes in the steel and the management at the harbour won’t like that too much. Hopefully I will get outside this week. Maybe it will warm up and dry out a bit too. Wouldn’t that be nice 🙂

I am quickly running out of time. I have to return to work the end of May. Bills to pay you know. I figure I have another 2 good weeks to dedicate to the refit. I do have to complete a recertification in Controlled Substances for work and that will be a pain in the butt that no narcotic can alleviate. Aa well the last few days in May I will have to knuckle down and review for the Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support (ACLS) course I have to do. 

Next week…… Autohelm installation 🙂

Head Repairs

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What a mess I found after removing the floorboards. Rusted holed hull, rusted stringers, old corroded and foul pipes.

It is now starting to look fresher. I am Building a new holding tank out of plywood and fibreglass. The old tank was aft of the head below the bilge but too was rotten and poorly plumbed with hoses coming and going everywhere. It was removed and now I can use that space for heavy storage and future expansion of a water desalinator. The new holding tank will be above the waterline behind the head but hidden by a removable wall. It will be gravity drained which will be very helpful while off shore.

I haven’t decided what to do with the walls. Any suggestions? I was thinking a clean simple look of white as it is or even pine wainscotting or even stainless steel… Hmmmmm?