Friday, October 17, 2008

Since my last posting I've been concentrating on the work in the head and dresser area.   I would have liked to wrap up the v-berth, but it's a two-person job and I'm waiting for my Navy buddy, Joel, to be available to help.  The head I could do alone, so I did as much as I could short of the plumbing and installing the countertop/sink and the medicine cabinet, which I will have to build from scratch.  This photo shows the lower cabinet and the tongue and groove paneling which forms a wainscot in the head.  The cabinet and the upper mahogany panel will be stained.  the wainscot, trim and the small shelves will be off-white, and the bulkhead above the wainscot will be a medium gray-blue.  

The fiberglass pan which forms the deck of the head was damaged, apparently cut from top to bottom in the rear corner, and I had to patch and sand it to the original contours.  The sanding alone took nearly four hours by hand, but I'm satisfied with the results and once the pan is primed and painted it will look like new.  The marine head will be mounted on a block of teak and the portions of non-skid will be covered by new sheets of commercial non-skid.

Above the wainscoting I built narrow shelves along the forward and aft bulkhead and cut and fit standard galley rail.  The longer one (shown here in close-up)is large enough to hold a shaving kit and the small one on the forward bulkhead (to the right) will hold a large bottle of shampoo, softsoap, etc.  They will be white.  Above the marine toilet (I rebuilt the Groco head which was in the boat - I believe Fred Nelson salvaged it from a boatyard.) I'll install a triple hook to hang Barb's toiletry case, a towel or a clothes bag.  

I've fitted the doors for the head, as well as the teak brace to support the aft stub "wall" which is hinged on the mast support so as to open up the entire head for doing emergency work on plumbing while underway. Murphy's law says it will be necessary someday!  The two halves of the forward head bulkhead, which separates the head and v-berth, are off-set by 1-1/4 inches.  I find it hard to believe it was intentional and I think Fred made a mistake here.  To complicate it further, the bulkhead is curved slightly, top to bottom!  To remedy it, I had to build up a rather large door jamb, nearly as large as the mast support on the aft side of the head, using five separate pieces of oak.  It came out fine, but the fitting was tricky.  It makes the forward, aft and opposing starboard door jamb all parallel and plumb so I can fit the doors.

I've cut and fit several pieces of trim, including the bulkhead mountings for the reading lights and fans, the corner pieces which conceal the DC wiring (and are removable for repairs), the framing of the dinette bookcase and the teak "fiddle" rails which line the cabinetry and countertops.  This teak trim was in the boat when we bought it and was still wrapped in the original factory wrappings!  It takes considerable sanding to smooth out the saw marks and masking tape residue, but the effort is worth it! All of this mahogany and teak will be stained and oiled.  The exposed fiberglass hull will be covered by teak and holly decking. 

I've framed in the opening for the engine room door (not shown here) and after a short three-week layoff while we make the grand circle tour of the grandchildren (IN to OH to CT to PA to IN) I will finish the interior just in time to beat the onset of cold weather.  The rest of the interior painting and varnishing will probably have to wait until spring, but with the international economic troubles it's just as well to slow things up a little bit.  

Finally, I've included a photo of the starboard bulkhead in the v-berth with the light/fan mounting plate in place and the side trim roughed in.  (The white on the mahogany panel is dusty hand-prints. )  More to come in a few months.