>It’s Sunday morning and it’s pouring cats and dogs. It’s a good thing that I was able to put in a full day working on Pandora yesterday as it’s coming down to the home stretch and there is still a good amount to finish to be sure that she’s ready to go back in the water for the Summer. When I think about the amount of time that I put into Pandora over this winter it’s quite amazing.
What brought it into perspective for me yesterday, I worked from 7:45 till 5:00 yesterday (with a bit of time out to have lunch with my Mom and Dad) was when a guy working on the boat next to me, a Cal 23, remarked about my work “so, trying to get it all done in single day?”. He was referring to the fact that he had seen me working on the boat all day, sanding and painting the bottom and cleaning the topsides and assumed that I was rushing to get all the prep work needed to launch done in a single day. I had never laid eyes on this guy before so I expect that it was his first day down to see his boat this Spring. The look on his face was priceless when my reply was “actually, I have been working on the boat nearly every weekend since the second week of January”. That’s actually painfully true with very few exceptions. I can recall a few weekends when I had to wade through 3′ drifts to get to the boat and climb aboard. In the interest of full disclosure, I rarely worked aboard more than one day each weekend.
The number of projects that I did over the winter, painstakingly detailed in previous posts, is my most ambitious to date.
Here’s the list., not counting the little projects.
- Holding tanks: Ripped up the floor so I could measure for, build and install two gelcoat lined fiberglass holding tanks, These babies are so nice I can’ believe what we are going to be putting into them.
- Radar arch: While I didn’t make the arch, just installing it was a tall order. It’s great and will make a big difference in our enjoyment of the boat. Hey, now I can climb right into the dink even if it’s hanging from the davits. Not sure why I would do such a thing but it’s nice to know that I could if I wanted to. I also fished the wires for the GPS antenna, aft running light and moved radar from the backstay to it’s new home on the arch.
- Freezer: Now, I can have ice cream on board, actually, make that GREEN ice cream. No, not the kind from a Dr. Seuss book, Sam I am, but the kind powered by my solar array. We sailors are all about being green and off the grid, right? I separated a section of the fridge and made a freezer compartment with a dedicated cold plate and new compressor.
- Spice rack: Behind the fridge in the galley I constructed a new spice rack. I went to great pains to match the design so that it blended with the other details in the galley.
- Salon and cockpit cushions. I ordered new cabin cushions for the main salon and cockpit. That wasn’t too hard as I just had to write a check. Brenda picked the fabric and she choose well.
- Curtains in the salon: Actually, they are pleated shades and really give the boat a more tailored look.
- AIS/VHF radio combo with a remote cockpit mike: I installed the system but had some help from my electronics guy wiring it up and making sure that it will work as advertised.
- Raised waterline: With all this new “stuff” aboard, in addition to the 1,200lb keel shoe that I had installed when I took delivery of Pandora, I needed to raise the waterline by two inches. This entailed sanding the boot top, putting on three coats of Awlgrip primer and then sanding all of it again.
And, all of that in addition to the usual washing, cleaning, bottom painting etc. You know, the normal sort of getting-ready-to-go-in-the-water sorts of things that happen after a long cold winter.
Speaking of cold winters. Thank goodness that I put in an Espar heater a few years ago. Without it, I wouldn’t have been able to reply with such enthusiasm about my work on Pandora from January on. I do enjoy working on the boat but have to say that it was nice to just write a check and have those cushions show up magically. Alas, I may be busy but I always seem to have more time than money. Hmm…
Back to yesterday (Did I mention that I had lunch with my Mother?) Yea, I thought so. Well, I did get a lot done and Pandora is looking great.
One of my favorite parts of getting a boat ready to launch is painting the bottom. So, you are asking yourself “is he nuts?”. Actually, it’s not so much the painting but the sense of accomplishment that I feel when I take off the masking tape, stand back and take a look at Pandora, so near to being launch ready.
Doesn’t she have a great bottom? The last step in finishing the new waterline will be the installation of a 1″ white vinyl boot top, which will separate the bottom paint from the blue section. I am a bit skeptical of this approach but he yard assures me that it will stick well. We will see as if it doesn’t, it will be there problem to replace it next Winter. Anyway, it will look great.
And the shine on that hull? Not to shabby either.
Actually, that photo was taken before I sanded where I had primed the, now raised by two inches, waterline.
Down below is looking pretty snazzy too with the new cushions. I am particularly happy with the ottoman which I made out of 3/8″cherry marine plywood and oak reinforcements in the corners. The canvas shop put a cover on it. Now I have a place to store bulky items and a place to put up my feet.
And it fits nice and snug between the port settee and the table when it’s not in use. Here’s what it looked like when it was “in the raw”.
Think of us over the Memorial Day weekend as we head out of Norwalk and off to Mattituck, on the North Fork of Long Island, one of our favorite places to visit to begin our much anticipated Summer aboard Pandora. And, no I will be sure not to forget the ice cream. Let’s hope that the sun shines plenty this summer to power all of the equipment that I have installed over the years.
That’s all for now.