After Lady Stardust arrived in Liverpool in December 2004, there was a short break for Christmas before I embarked on a few major jobs that needed attention before I would feel 100% happy with the boat. Some were cosmetic, some where for convenience and pleasure and others were structural or safety matters.
The main jobs I tackled initially were related to water ingress through the decks. Upon inspection of the port side lockers I found a rotten section in the bulkhead behind the galley, this needed attention as it was one of the main bulkheads and provided structural support for the deck and stiffness for the hull. (pictures here)
Next to re-bed all the thru deck fittings.
Firstly the fuel filler needed to be replaced, the deck sealant had perished and water had worn a hole through the side of the aluminium filler. This will be replaced with a stainless fitting
Next - The Chainplates.
I removed the port lower aft shroud and pulled the chainplate. Sadly I found a rather damaged chainplate, (Pictures here) rust had caused some cracking and it was obvious I was going to need to replace this one, and I expect all of the others as they all seemed to be suffering from rust stains around the bolts. Oh well, at least I can have confidence in the new fittings.
17th April 2005, Time is running out, I have replaces 6 Chainplates, 3 port, 3 stb. All were badly corroded, They might have lasted another ten years, but then they might not. I don't want to be thinking about that when heaved to in a mid Atlantic storm. Better to change them all now. It Only cost £200 to have new Chainplates fabricated out of 316 Stainless. Also I learnt how to polish raw stainless into a mirror finish. I bought the kit from Chronos and using their mops and grinding compound, in my electric drill, I was able to produce stunning results ( at least by the turn of the last 2 chain plates !).
I now have a watertight boat, everything forward of the engine is 100%, and I have started on the outside. I have stripped down the pulpit. Kevin, an old friend and retired chippy is sanding and varnishing the pulpit platform and gratings. I have sanded back the bowsprit and surrounding cap rails. They look great. I have sealed the gap around the Sampson Post as this was letting in water. Next year I will re-jig all the drainage around the pulpit, i don't like the current arrangement. I also removed the refrigerator compressor to look for the reason it fails to work. Can't see anything wrong so I need to replace part or all of it, more expense !
On the positive side, I have plumbed in a snazzy car CD/Radio/MP3/WMA player. I have a rocking, source of 100's of hours of great music now. This will probably be my most luxurious item on the boat.
6th May 2005, Time really is running out, I have three weeks before I sail for Ireland, and for one of those weeks I have to go to Greece to prepare our holiday boat for launch. Today I removed the prop shaft, and disconnected the connecting flange from the gearbox. I had to hacksaw through the shaft to get it out. I will also replace the stuffing gland just as soon as I can remove the old one. I have a sore back from spending the last two days bent double in the lazarette. Pictures of the haul out and Cutless bearing replacement project here. More to follow.....
A busy year, we head off for the arc soon, many jobs completed, many to do, recent jobs include New Windlass Compression post rust Backstay Bobstay Rudder post Haulout New Signage Stanchions re-bedded
A new solar panel gantry is now fitted, this is providing 14A in Portugal, so that should help keep the engine hours down.