Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Westerly Nomad Renovation: Another Milestone passed

So, the darkest hour is the one just before dawn. Just as I was beginning to despair of ever getting this boat sorted, things began to move at a better pace. The list seemed depressingly endless but the tasks were getting shorter and easier by the minute. The trick is not to dwell on how much there is still to do but to celebrate how much you have achieved.

Today, the boat came out of the hangar and we raised the mast. She she is covered in dust but still looking like the prettiest boat in the yard – and the good news is that rain is forecast so she should look even better next week.

There is still a lot of work to do – the washboards are at home being oiled, the cabin for example is a wreck, the rigging needs tensioning and new sheets and halyards need splicing BUT when the antifouling is applied and the fishfinding transducer is fitted – she’ll be good to launch and day-sail.

I Feel so good I have even shelled out a few pounds to buy nautical signal flag bunting so she can arrive at her home port dressed for the occasion. Best of all however, is the feeling that I did right by the old girl. She came from a farm covered in chicken poo but she’ll return to her natural element looking her best – not brand spanking new but more like a well loved Grande Dame of a certain age, with a lot of life in her yet.


Sunday, 1 June 2014

Low Spot

I suppose there comes a time in every project when you wonder whether you should ever have begun; a low spot when the tasks seem overwhelming and never ending. I’m surprised to have arrived at this point so late in the process – a lot of the boring cleaning, sanding and polishing and painting has been done and I now seem to be in a phase of having to undertake dozens of small tasks. This should be more interesting than the months of mindless sanding but at the moment the boat seems to be fighting me every step of the way.

Nothing is straight forward at the moment and every task seems to require a good deal of lateral thinking in order to establish a process which will lead to a satisfactory outcome. Fitting sliding hatch doors in the cockpit for example, turned out to be a real time consuming pain. The runners obviously had to be parallel to allow the doors to slide but there wasn’t a single right angle to be found anywhere. I got through the job but there were several sleepless nights spent trying to develop a method. Now the latest problem is refitting halyards to the mast. The ropes came in a sail bag so it is guesswork as to each rope’s function and they were pulled through internal mast pulleys. To date I have spent two days trying to get the ropes back through and round. I’ll try again tomorrow with three new ideas – just hope one of them works.

None of this is helped by the fact that it is now June and I want to be on the water. Added to that I have to go to the UK for two weeks to see family, deadlines are being missed and it is all very frustrating.

So to cheer myself up I have just spent an hour looking at pics – before and after - and I can certainly say I have made real improvements to the old tub – I shouldn't moan – and if I can get those halyards fitted tomorrow I may feel better – meanwhile family and friends have been advised not to talk about the bloody boat!