Thursday, April 14, 2011

Starting to Relax a Bit

This is the only Deck Locker for just general stuff and now it has a couple of buckets, hose, Lots of various sizes of extra line, cleaning material and a siphon hose.

This is the anchor locker but it currently has rode for three anchors, a bridle, and the towing line for the dingy. I plan to modify this into 3 separate compartments to keep the anchor rodes separate and a small storage compartment in the aft end of the locker. For safety reasons this area needs to be very organized in the event you need to quickly deploy your anchor unexpectedly. You do not need a bunch of stuff in your way.

This is the aft pulpit which is another very busy place with the dingy and the dingy davits, man over board pole, 2 throwable safety flotation devices: a horseshoe ring and Lifesling, the BBQ grill, the outboard motor, and the motor lifting hoist, with a couple of jerry cans thrown in the mix, and that is our Kayak on racks on the starboard side. I will revisit all this soon and see how I can better organize all in the name of safety of course.

All the storage spaces aboard are either full or partially full, this is the starboard storage located behind the back of the settee cushion, you can see it is full. Each storage bag is color coded for it's contents. We will re-visit each storage bags contents and make sure it needs to go with us.

I think we are in Phase II of our transition to living on a boat. Up until the moment we brought the boat back from having the tanks installed and getting all the flooring re-installed we were still in a bit of gypsy land. The Admiral returned from a full day of birding and I spent the day getting the saloon floor back in...when she returned she remarked " I forgot how nice the boat is." She and then I began to relax and fade into what is definitely the second part of our transition to living aboard. The boat moved from restrictive to open and living aboard easier than land based accommodations. We are still learning to deal with limited storage space but we are close to solving the assumed problem. We make fewer trips to our 10X10X8 storage. We used to go once or twice a week, now it is about every 2 - 3 weeks. My personal goal is to bring aboard everything that is in storage that we need to go cruising and find a place for it, and remove everything on the boat that is unnecessary for cruising. One of the hardest parts are the clothes. Since we still attend lots of different types of social activities, it is difficult to toss it even though we know 70% of it must go.We donated many boxes to the Salvation Army before we moved to Corpus Christi. Shoes are another need exercise shoes, boat shoes, foul weather gear, shower slides, dock sandals, beach/water shoes and some dress shoes....and that is just me, The Admiral needs more. I have to have my Wet suit including a Hooka dive pump/regulator and we both need our snorkel gear. My tools including chargeable power tools, Her Stuff (more than tools). Plumbing, electrical, hardware & engine spare parts including extra oil, antifreeze, distilled water. Both of our laptops, printer, Sailing and technical library. Navigation gear and charts. Galley (kitchen) supplies, first aid supplies, cleaning and maintenance chemicals. Towels, toiletry, minimal office supplies. Sewing machine and complete marine sewing kit. Lots of Safety gear, summergable pump, life jackets, jack lines, sea anchor, water activated lights and flare guns, smoke and other safety devices. There is lots of other stuff on this boat like lots of spare batteries, lots of different chargers, two small vacuum cleaners and lots of canvass and eisinglass that are only used either in very hot or very cold weather. Endeavour 42's were originally built for the Florida Charter trade for sailing to and from the Bahamas so deck storage is small. Most cruising boats have huge deck lockers for all the stuff you do not want to store down below. We have three deck lockers, forward is the anchor locker so it contains three large anchors and all the chain, rode, and bridle. Aft there are two lockers in each stern quarter. One is a dedicated Propane locker where there are two large propane containers. So that leaves just one relatively small locker for all the deck stuff. This means all the fenders, jerry cans, dock lines, and miscellaneous gear has to be stored somewhere on the deck. A bit of work has to be done here to have it stowed properly for the times we are sailing on the "outside". 10-12' seas can easily wash off gear not properly lashed down to the deck. As you can see we have prepared a lot to reach our goal of beginning our cruise in November, but we have a bit more to get ready ...we are with in reach however. We have a friend, Kevin Kalderbach who left today for Florida and he is single handing his Cape Dory 31. I spoke to him yesterday and he said in order to leave within the current weather window he had to just concentrate on those things that he needed for the crossing and deal with the other stuff when he gets there. I think that is the way it is for everyone who starts a journey like this. You just can not possible attend to every single detail, there would always be one more thing to do just have to go and deal with it along the way. I think that is the way we all live our lives anyway.

Foot note....I was delayed getting pics for this post so I am posting it 2 weeks after writing it. Kevin has made it to Boloxi after 9 days in the Gulf. He had an appointment to help a friend bring his boat back from St. Martins to the Chesapeake area so He left his Cape Dorey in Boloxi to catch a flight to go help his friend, then when he gets that done he will continue on his voyage to get his boat to the East coast.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Sailing Again

Only two more coats to go...starting to look good......
Finally Sailing Again!

This is Bruce & Tammy's "Elan"...a great boat to go racing on

The Cockpit if Elan has 10 winches, the most I have seen on other boats is 4-5, This one is set up to have a winch for almost every halyard & sheet!

On Thursday March 31 the Admiral woke up and said we needed to go sailing to test out the tanks and make sure they will take the Bay Chop in 15-20 knots. I knew she was right but it would take a bit to get Wand'rin Star ready to sail again, besides stowing all our stuff to go sailing I had to tune the rigging. I grabbed some coffee and started the process. This would be at least the 5th time I had tuned this rig and I wanted to do it to perfection since I knew it was never tuned as well as it should have been since we owned her. To get it done right you have to go over your work 4 to 5 times to make sure the mast is in column and properly tuned. By 1100 hrs I was done and this time I got out my departure checklist to make sure I had all the other ordinary things done to prepare to take a 42' vessel out sailing since it had been over 5 months since we had put the sails out. It was about 78 degrees and partly cloudy, a fine day for a sea trial. It is hard to say in words how good it felt to get Our boat under sail again after this very lengthy project. We saw more dolphins than ever in the bay, a good omen I think...and I pushed the boat to the point that the Admiral was asking to slow her down and lessen the heal. It felt great. It is April 10th now & I am turning my attention to the IRS but we are very close to have all the things back in place below. I have a small bit of trim to complete and a large piece of cabinetry under the galley sink to install. A few more hours of plumbing and wiring and it will all be complete. Lots of small upgrades and improvements were possible during this project and since we were so involved in all the details, future maintenance will be much more accessible and manageable. Due to the Corpus Christi Boat Show we had to temporarily relocate to a slip on Lawrence Street, the good part is we can park the cars right in front of the boat. But since it has been blowing at least 30 mph with gust to 40 and 1 day to 50 for the last 10 days, we haven't sailed since moving to this slip Last Wednesday however I was invited to crew for "Elan" a CS 36 owned by Bruce and Tammy Swart. The event was the Wednesday night MORF races. I was in race heaven on this boat, there were 10 winches just in the cockpit area. I think every halyard and sheet had it's on winch! It was a wet ride as we were among the 5 boats who ventured out in the 20-30 knot winds. We missed our start by approx 50 secs so we were mostly chasing the fleet but it was all out sailing at it's best. A very different sailing experience when you sail with experienced racers. Wow time flies and it is Wednesday again,,,,I have been refinishing the teak on the deck of Wond'rin Star the last couple of days out I get to out and race with Elan today...Can't Wait!