Saturday, June 2, 2012

On the hard at Mackay - 02/06/2012

Well we have just finished our second day on the hard and it feels like it has been longer. We hauled out at 0700 hours yesterday morning and it is always a nervous time watching 'Alana Rose' on the travel lift on two slings. Going into the travel lift bay was good the wind has died down from previous days so no pressure in that area.
(Just out of the water and the hull and props look good)

(Going up, these are nervous times, the boats in someone else's hands but the responsibility is still mine)
(The travel lift taking the girl to the hard)
(Ready for the pressure wash, the only growth is a little moss on the waterline probably more from the rain we have had.)

The guys at the yard were good, Ben who last year was assisting the travel lift operator is now the operator and he does quite well. The lift went well and then we had to wait about an hour whilst the boys pressure washed the hull not that it needed that much as the hulls were quite clean. I am quite pleased with the Altex 3000 antifouling paint. As I mentioned before the diver that gave it a wipe over in Brisbane said we could go another 12 months before having to do anything, however, this yard is easy to haul out with our width and the yard is good to work in, so once we had sorted out the little problems that arose before re live aboard all is well now.

Whilst we were waiting for the boat to be pressure washed and moved to the location of the working bay we headed to the cafe for breakfast.

We got back just as they started to move the boat to the work bay which was good timing. They sat Alana Rose down and as soon as she was settled it was time to get to work. Nancy went around collecting bits of wood to set up as a seat and a small bench to put gear on as I started with the sanding using the silicon carbon sanding mesh and water. We have to sand more the pity to get a bonding surface for the new paint, this is a shame because we are taking off good antifouling to do this. However, the benefit should be that we will not have to do this again for two years which will see us through the circumnavigation.

The other thing that I am pleased about regarding hauling out now is that when I serviced the engines in Brisbane and cleaned the heat exchangers when isolating the sea suction valve I broke the valve spindle which I had to do a makeshift repair . This involved some silicon on and around the spindle and then using the handle used electrical plastic ties to hold it position to stop the small seawater leak as you would.

So yesterday was taken up with sanding and rubbing small damaged sections that will need special attention, whilst I completed that Nancy got stuck into cleaning the propellers making them good and clean and shiny.
(The cleaning and sanding starts, antifouling will be as good as the preparation you put into it.)
(Yeah I know the photo is a little fuzzy, thats because I am working fast)
(Nancy cleaning the props, notice the photo is not fuzzy)

(Nancy did a good job of cleaning the props - This hull has been sanded ready for painting some bare patches of the old antifouling paint shows through).

(This is damaged that occured when anchoring in shallow waters in high winds, the boat was pushed sideways with the wind and the chain stretched out scraping the hull, it looks worse than what it is, it has removed the antifouling paint and the length would be less than 300 mm).

'Neriki' had hauled out a couple of days earlier and Rick was getting his few problems sorted out and the problems we are all having is the weather as it keeps raining and it looks like it is going to hold up the painting.

We all had a hard working day and Michelle invited us all over to 'Neriki' for a roast dinner and it was very nice. We had a lovely evening with them and a few red wines naturally.

It rained most of the night, not a good sign and looking at the weather forecast there is not much change until Monday.

Today work was done between showers or under the bridge deck where it is sheltered. Rick came over to borrow some tools, he was working on his damaged anchor winch and was having problems getting the stainless steel screws out that had welded themselves to the alloy body. Two Alan headed screws had rounded out and Rick had drilled the heads out hoping to use vice grips to remove them. Well we worked together and with a lot of heat from his heat gun and his perseverance with the vice grips we got them out.

With the rain still bothering us I decided to remove the broken valve and when it was removed I was cleaning the through hull fitting thread to fit the new valve and noticed that the through hull fitting was cracked  along the thread for a short distance. So we have to change the through hull fitting, I had prepared for that as I thought if changing the valve disturbed the through hull fitting it would have to be replaced anyway.

Rick came over to help me as I did the same with removing a through hull fitting on his boat yesterday. The problem with through hull fittings is that they are usually in a very difficult place to reach or get a decent purchase on a spanner if you can get one on. After a few attempts which failed miserably, I decided to grind the fitting from the outside and now I have done it this way I will use this method every time, it saves bruised knuckles and removal of flesh from different parts of the hands. By grinding the edges of the hole of the through hull fitting until you see the cracking around the flange head, then I used a socket that measured the same size as hole going through the hull on a short extension and a couple of blows with the hammer the flange of the through fitting fell and the rest of the fitting went inside the boat.
(The old through hull fitting after it was ground down and pushed through with the socket and hammer)
(Fitting after separation)
(The new through hull fitting, you can see the ring area that I ground down with the grinder, going carefully not to damage the baots hull, you can see the area crack with the heat before you grind all the way through).

Once the fitting was out then I had to thoroughly clean the holes and mating surfaces ready for the new fitting and after this I used Rick's heat gun to make sure all was dry before installing the new fitting. Nancy assisted me in putting the new fitting in place, we will wait until the Sikaflex is dry before fitting the new valve.

After this little job I did a little more sanding and then used the filler paint on any bare patches then taped the waterline ready to do the antifouling paintwork when it stops raining.

This was followed by an early a nice shower  a couple of beers at the pub and then tonight a BBQ steak and veg on board with the mandatory red wine.


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