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Thursday, June 23, 2016

Boat Projects at the Dock

 We returned to Annapolis with two long “To Do” lists; the first list has the routine maintenance sorts of tasks, and the second list contains all of the “To Be Fixed” tasks.  In my opinion, the second list has too many items on it.  A list of this length makes me think that there is some cosmic plot afoot to keep us in one spot longer than is planned.  And I wonder, will there always be a long “fix it” list at the end of each winter season?  Other more seasoned cruisers try to break it to us gently, ‘Yes, there will always be something that needs fixing.”
Under the covered patio at fish and crab feast, hosted by Capitol Stand Up Paddle at SAYC.   

I know I shouldn’t complain.  We met people in the Bahamas whose cruising plans had come to a screeching halt for the lack of some small boat part which in the U.S. would cost less than a dollar and could be purchased at any West Marine store.  In the Bahamas, however, the part needed to be ordered and shipped from the States.  One couple waited for four weeks for a little hydraulic part to arrive, go through Customs and get delivered, only to find that when it did, it was the wrong size hydraulic part.  They didn’t even cuss!  I was impressed with their forbearance.  While dozens of other boats anchored briefly near them, and then went off to explore other islands, their boat remained anchored in that same spot, unable to go anywhere.  
Preparing to leave Marsh Harbour, Bahamas.  One of those anchored sailboats was still "stuck" there when we left.
When we left the Bahamas, they were still there, waiting, six weeks and counting.  You gotta admire people who tolerate delays so gracefully.  I hope they made it out before the start of hurricane season, which, according to our boat insurance, goes from June 1 to November 1.  
South Annapolis Yacht Center (SAYC) at dusk.  Stand Up Paddle boarders preparing for evening paddle.

Now it’s time to pay the piper for all that frolicking that we enjoyed over the winter. We are again at the South Annapolis Yacht Centre, which is the oldest remaining marina in Annapolis.  We like the neighborhood feel here and the price, which is less than other marinas in Annapolis, probably because the amenities are bare bones.  No laundry facilities, although I don’t mind driving to the laundromat in the nearby Spanish-speaking neighborhood once a week.  The shower facilities are much like you would find at a privately owned campground — well, maybe not quite that nice.  There was no hot water last time I went to shower.  Sigh.
Scrubbed and cleaned shade panels hanging on life lines to dry.

The important thing about being at a dock, however, is to do things that we cannot do while we are at anchor or moving around all the time.  Cleaning the mildew and dirt off the boat canvas is much easier at the dock where I can take some of the canvas off and lay it on the dock to scrub.  Then, I can use the free water from the marina spigot to rinse.  
An example of dinghy chaps, protection from UV rays.

The much bigger task for me at the dock, however, is to make chaps for our dinghy.  Dinghy chaps are kind of like a heavy-duty protective coat.  Chaps are meant to protect the dinghy from the relentless damaging UV rays of the sun and some of the rougher things that the dinghy will bump up against n the watery environment.  I can tell that our dinghy has aged significantly since we left the Chesapeake Bay last November.  
Freezer repairman standing in the sail locker.  We put our food in his electric cooler, borrowed for 36 hours.

Other items on the “to-be-fixed” lists are:  1 - Investigate the whimsical nature of our refrigerator and freezer.  They sometimes work just fine, and then for no apparent reason, they don’t, until they’ve been turned off and rest for a while.  <—Done.  2 - Our electric winch decided to join the ‘whimsical party’ as well.  The electric winch hauls up our mains’l which is a whole lot easier than when I crank it up.  <—Repair in process.  3 - I’ve been complaining about our headsails not fitting properly so we need the sailmaker to look at them.  Were they cut too long?  <—discovered they’re attached to the wrong halyards!  Hah!  How embarassing!  4 - Questioning whether our rigging is appropriately tensioned and if it were, would that fix the sail fit problem?  
Lifelines coiled on the dock.  Replacement lifelines are being made.

5 - Lifelines look slack and worn.  Probably need new ones.  <— Old lifelines have been removed and new ones are being made.  6 - Questioning whether all of our standing rigging is in need of replacement.  The boat is 13 years old, as is the rigging.  Definitely need to evaluate the chainplates holding the rigging to the deck and the bulkheads.  7 -  Our Force 10 3-burner stove is great, EXCEPT that the oven will not come to temperature.  Perhaps a rebuild?
Coffee and breakfast first--then tackle boat projects of the day.

A partial “to-do” list reads as follows:  1 - Thoroughly clean the boat, inside and out.  2 - Clean the canvas and cockpit cushions. <—Done.  3 - Measure both of our two anchor rodes.  Do we have enough chain?  Should have 200’.  
Water damage in galley is now repaired.

4 - The fiddles around the galley sink are being undercut by standing water.  Fill gouges, stain and varnish fiddles.  <—Done.  5 - Buy back-up parts for water pump and a couple other things.  7 - Order enough Amsoil oil to last a year and have it shipped here. 
My work space under covered patio.  Waited out heavy downpour after covering my work area.

And now, midway through sewing the dinghy chaps, my SailRite has gone out of timing.  Sigh.  So, I took the machine to a shop last week.  Waiting for its’ return so I can finish the chaps.  As I said—there’s always something….

Fingers crossed that we are ready to leave the Chesapeake and head to New England after the 4th of July. 


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