Last year got swallowed up by a new job and home renovations. But this is the year of the boat! While I had hoped to do all the boat projects myself, a few of the projects were simply too big. As I write this entry, the boat has been on the hard for several weeks receiving the professional attention it needs. The two major projects are thru-hulls and chain plates. Other work includes bottom paint, repairing the transom, zincs, re-finishing the prop, and a variety of small fixes and improvements.

The boat arrived at the yard with three inline seacocks, two Blakes seacocks, and a small valve on the sail drive for the engine cooling system’s seawater intake. The five seacocks were removed and the holes glassed in. Two new holes were drilled, reinforced with fiberglass donuts and finished with top-of-the-line Groco flanged seacocks. One drains the galley sink and the other drains the head sink. To guard against corrosion the new seacocks are bonded to a dedicated diver’s dream zinc.

The three seacocks that were eliminated were a galley intake—that also, somewhat unusually, T’d into the engine’s water pump—and the two thru-hulls for the head. I will remove the ElectraScan waste processer and associated wires, controllers, toilet, and stinky hoses and replace with a simple composter from C-Head. In addition to the three seacocks, a few other assorted doo-dads were removed from the bottom, including a previously decommissioned cathodic protection system and some wood slats that someone thought were needed to secure the old sail drive boot. Needless to say, the boot also is getting replaced.

The chain plates had been entirely sealed inside the sidewalls and ceilings of finished cabinetry. Over time, water intrusion had rotted some of that interior wood. It was cut out in order to access the chain plates and no one will ever miss it. The new chain plates are thick bars of stainless steel that Superman would have a hard time bending. As nothing on my boat is allowed to be straight-forward, the large, stainless steel bolts securing the chain plates have to be metric—a special order—to fit the existing holes. Topside, it’s a pleasure to see the gleaming new stainless deck fittings and no more hideous globs of caulk someone used in a desperate and futile effort to seal the old fittings.

One of the boat’s unique features is the swim scoop, which had some cracks and minor damage. Also, the transom had been painted a slightly different color from the rest of the hull. The fiberglass is now repaired and the scoop and transom painted to match the hull. The boat’s old name was removed and the hull buffed. Prism vinyl will make vinyl decals of the new name and hailing port and apply them. From the water, we’re going to look like a brand new boat!

A plethora of projects still remain. But with a solid bottom and secure mast, we’re going to do some sailing this summer!

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