Wednesday, August 04, 2010

This has been a long, hot, humid summer and the barn has been like a sauna, but I've made a lot of progress and the end of the project is now in sight!

As you can see, the cabin top is now painted out, non-skid has been applied, the hardware, rails, hatches and tracks for the sheet blocks have all been installed. The portholes are back in and properly bedded, the screens are in again, and the deck is just about ready for final caulking and sanding.

To answer the obvious question, the mast pulpits (the tall stainless rails flanking the mast base) are not caulked, just loosely bolted in place so I can remove them when we take the boat out of the barn. With any luck, that will be sometime around Labor Day.

Just today I put the repaired hatch framing back in, but the sliding hatch rails need some more fine tuning.

The interior is just about finished, except for painting the cabin sole (floor) and putting the teak decking on the hatches. That will be almost the last thing I do to minimize the wear and tear while in the barn.

As you can see, the pilot berth is the hold-all for my electrical tools and parts until I finish connecting all the breakers (about half finished now). I have 110VAC to the boat outlets so I no longer have to drag extensions in the hatch.

I hope you can see the teak trim flanking the coach roof beams. It trims out the overhead and helps to secure the headliner panels.

The v-berth is totally finished now, and all that is needed are the cushions and throw pillows. I still have to access the chain locker to bolt in the sampson posts and the locker divider for the two separate anchor lines, but that should be a pretty simple chore. With luck I'll only sweat one bucket! I'm glad that I put hand holds in the hatch framing - it makes it easier to get in and out of the berth.

I'm hoping that I can get Barb to sew up some ditty bags for toiletries, reading material, etc., that we can hang up along the side of the hull on hooks, but if that doesn't get done for awhile we can cope easily.

The navigation station is looking pretty good and only the VHF radio is awaiting installation (it goes in the side panel where the cardboard template is) and the breaker panel is now hinged at the bottom with catches at the top so I can easily access the back of the panel and wiring.

The crappy temporary ladder is still in use, but the rest is finished. The GPS swing arm is mounted, but I'm still trying to figure out a graceful way to latch it in the stowed position and also in the open hatchway. The hatch still needs the safety handles on either side, but they'll be install within a day or two.

The dinette has turned out just about the way I visualized it five years ago, but the real proof will come when we eat our first meal on the water. The amount of storage on the Westsails never fails to amaze me: under the seats, behind every panel, and even under the dinette floor panels. When I look back at the "before" photos I can hardly recognize the same space.

Now I need to figure out where to mount the small flat-panel TV so kids can watch a movie in the evening.

The next push is to mount the newly resurfaced rudder, the bowsprit and manual anchor windlass, the new stainless steel boomkin, install the battery banks, charger and voltage inverter, paint the upper hull, and prep the underwater hull for the anti-fouling paint which we'll wait to apply just before it splashes in the water. Stay tuned for the grand finale!