The SWELLing List
Lot’s been done since I reported on boat project progress, but for the last few weeks it seems like whenever I finish one thing, another gets added to the list. Sometimes after lunch, the guys in the yard come over to have a look at what I’ve been up to. They poke around or answer my questions and generally find something important to do that I had missed altogether. Like a few weeks back when, Tiere, the mechanic, laid a hand on my prop and wiggled the shaft.
“Too much loose,” he said in his best English, “you need a new bearing”
Or when Silvan poked at a small depression in the hull, “You must be see what’s underneath, looks not good”. I ground it down to find a thru-hull that had been shoddily sealed only from the inside. Someone had filled it from outside with a blob of caulking which was wet and soaking up water in to the wood above it for who knows how long.
Or when Taputu walked by and pointed out that the thru-hull for the sink, yes, the one where I had just replaced its valve, had broken its seal as could be seen by the cracked paint all around it. When I had re-tightened the new plumbing I’d been through a labyrinth of fitting options to find a combination that would align right. When I found one that was just a few millimeters off the mark, I tried to tighten it just that little bit extra, but unknowingly spun the actual thru-hull off it’s seal. My choices where either to take all that plumbing apart again (a thought that instantly made me want to cry) or grind it down and seal it with epoxy and fiberglass form the outside. I chose option B.
So right here I had three new significant projects added to the list. Replacing the cutlass bearing included pulling out the propeller shaft–NOT a small task in itself. It was corroded in place where it attached to the V-drive and only came out after hours of soaking in penetrant and more hours of banging on it with a hammer. That project’s on hold as I am waiting for the new cutlass bearing to come through customs.
In the meantime, I continued with the daunting hull work.