Fixing up a boat is a lot of work. We knew it was going to be but we definitely underestimated the time and resources needed for each project, big and small. Our initial “guestimation” to set sail for the Bahamas was early February, but we see now that was a little too hopeful.
Still, all is well. We can’t complain about spending a little more time in Florida. Most days are beautiful, sunny and warm. Also, the time we are spending on all these projects is well spent. Doing everything ourselves might not be the fastest way to get things done, but it’s definitely the most cost effective and it also allows us to know our boat better. If something fails out at sea, we will better understand how to fix it on our own.
The past week is sort of a blur. We’re busy all day everyday, yet sometimes at the end of the day, I can’t recall exactly what we’ve accomplished. It’s because we’re mid-project on a bunch of projects. Some things need a pause of a couple days for caulk to dry while others need that last piece we don’t have. Jordan says; “some things are on the work list, some the punch list, some are done, some are done done, some are substantially complete, and some are finally complete”.
One of the major projects in the works right now is our companionway. Jordan is working with one of our boat neighbors, Joe, who is an awesome carpenter. They are re-building the rotted sliding companionway hatch (boat front door). They removed all the rotted plywood beneath the teak strips that make the top. The teak strips were separated by caulk that cracked over time, letting in moisture and rotting the wood beneath. The teak was still salvageable! Instead of using plywood again, they used fiberglass and epoxy. It should be finished in the next couple of days, so we can finally stop duck taping ourselves in with our temporary (jury-rigged) hatch.
Other projects between our time spent on the companionway:
- Converted hanging locker to pantry by adding shelves
- Purchased and installed new head and plumbing
- Completed port hole screens
- Repaired some existing interior woodwork
- Repaired our cracked teak cap-rail
- Sanded companionway teak hood
- Figured out our electrical scheme for “off the grid” living and purchased batteries
- Installed a bigger galley sink
- Attempting to grow basil and cilantro!
The other day we took some time off and took a ride to a flea market down in Stuart. It was super cool. We bought an old manual drill, sharp chisel, manual coffee grinder, and as much produce as we could carry. When we got back to the boat we didn’t have time for much so, we wanted to start the engine and let it run a bit and check the fluid levels. Jordan put the key in, turned it, and snap! The key broke off in the ignition. We spent the next 30 minutes trying to get the key out, and finally it came out. We dug out the spare key, put it in, turned it, and whooomp, not enough juice. The batteries had seen their last start. This event helped push the purchase of our new batteries, which was already on our long list of “to do’s”.