Friday, October 10, 2014

Hit The Deck

We arrived home from the airport and were back at the boat within an hour. We had a bit of a breather but now it was time to address the last big topic on the refit- the deck layout.

Ceol Mor is a really great sailing boat. Bob Perry knows a thing or two about designing a boat which is balanced, comfortable and sure footed. Previous owners of Ceol Mor ostensibly purchased her because of the way she moves under sail. So why exactly did they undersize the winches then add a Bimini top whose frame fouls the winch handles constantly and, run lines so they aren't in the most direct line, have a track that does not allow the genoa cars to be adjusted without a set of power tools and a hammer and have a traveler that is pretty much inoperable? The only thing I can figure is they like a challenge. I like challenges too but fighting my boat just to adjust the sails is not one of them. Also, deck hardware options have a come along way since the 1980s and just the progress of line clutches alone warrants some redesign work on an old boat, Fortunately, Captain Perfecto feels the same and as a bonus he has mad engineer skills so after a long design process, it was time to get busy.

Painted and prepped and ready to go

With Mark's spudly wiring conduit and mounts installed to support the new NavPod, the turtle shell painted and polished, it was time to address the traveler. We removed the track and end blocks and had them re-anodized. Once we got them back, Mark began putting together his new design for the traveler car.
Stainless steel mounting plates made by Mark with, you guessed it- his beloved angle grinder.

 Being Captain Perfecto, he of course had to make his own part (which we will call a thingamabob) out of a stainless steel bolt. With an angle grinder. By hand. I am both proud of his design and craftsmanship abilities and terrified at his enjoyment of a successful outcome. No Mark, I do not want stainless steel davits hand crafted by you. I want to go sailing already. They would undoubtedly be beautiful and perfect and would take months to construct

From this, to this. No one can ever accuse Mark of not being patient.
In preparation for the installation for the deck hardware, we prepped the cabin top deck area for painting. No sense in mounting the hardware on a beat up deck that will have to be removed again soon for painting anyway, just get on with it bit by bit from the get go.

 We removed the hatches to have the frames bead blasted and re-anodized and started taping. It sounds like such an easy thing, taping. In actuality it took hours and hours to get it all done just so. The actual painting it self, using Awlcraft 2000 went fairly quickly. Thanks to the ability of Awlcraft to be sanded and buffed, we were able to get a finish we were happy with. Getting the spray gun to give a finish took a bit of time and patience but again, one of Mark's strong qualities is patience. We are giving it a bit of time to get a good cure on it before we get finicky with the paint line edges in preparation for painting the lower portion of the decks once we are ready to address the genoa tracks.

We had such a (ahem) good time spending countless hours taping, that we got to retape the deck in reverse to freshen up the non-skid areas. We used Awlgrip as that was there originally. We maybe aren't 100% happy with the amount of texture we got with the Awlgrip and Griptex. I think we made an error in going with the fine but we can make do for now. Just have to remember to wear proper shoes with grip until we can readdress this down the road. I think we are going to do a bit more research on Kiwigrip as we have friends who have used it with great success. The best is the enemy of good enough so we are moving on...

With the hatches out for refurbishment, it was time to address the hatch lenses. They were cloudy from UV damage, scratched from years of use and stained a bit from determined birds. It took a bit longer to get the lenses polished up, but polished up they are now. They look like new. Can't wait to get the newly anodized frames back, reassemble and rebed them. The difference in clarity and light through the lenses after attention is massive. Unfortunately, now the Sunbrella hatch covers are looking really sad so it's time for me to sew up some new ones.

We've gotten Kitty into a morning preschool twice a week and she is really liking it. When she isn't at preschool, she spends a lot of time on the boat with us. She spends a lot of time drawing pirate treasure maps. She gives them out to dock friends here and there, admonishing them to keep it secret. She's been through enough of a refit to wisely tell the potential treasure hunters that she will help them find the treasure by sailing with them on THEIR boat. Hang in there little one. We will be able to sail to find treasure with Ceol Mor very, very soon.

I can't see us having the boat back together in a month, but we are making steady progress and there is light at the end of a seriously long tunnel. I can see us having Ceol Mor back together, in tip top shape and ready to sail very soon indeed.


  1. Oh my what a project! All the taping! My neck hurts just thinking about all the time I would spend on my hands and knees. Oy. But hey, what are the details on that lens refinishing? Trying to decide whether to replace ours. One definitely must be replaced, The other? Meh. Maybe we could polish it out.

  2. Do you think we will actually meet up before you leave?

  3. Love this post, and your guy's handmade hardware. Two questions, did you have the anodizing done locally, and what type of polishing compound did you use on the hatch lenses?

  4. Never mind...I think I understand.

  5. Oh my GOSH!!!!! She is SO ADORABLE even from the back!!!!!!!!!! And I have no idea about any of those questions, but I do know you take beautiful hardware pictures! :-)