Wednesday, September 08, 2010

FINALLY, Christening Day

September 4th was a beautiful day, albeit a bit windy, which forced us to keep the windward barn doors closed. We had a great turnout, about 40 people who came to see the finished product and watch as I smashed a bottle of champagne on the bow and rename the boat "Second Wind".

We spend a couple of days just "staging" the boat for her first public viewing. I installed the cabin-top fittings, mast pulpits, dinghy, etc., and set the navigation light boxes on the cabin top so folks could get a good feeling for what she'll look like in the water. The only major projects that we didn't get to were the recaulking of the teak decks and the finishing of the underwater hull.

The boat is going into "cold storage" at Brands' Marina in Port Clinton, Ohio, and they assure me that I'll be able to work on those items indoors. I also have some electrical connections to make in the engine room, but that's just the finishing touches.

The AC and DC breaker panels and the nav light control panel are wired and work properly (but I did need Troy's expert assistance in a bit of trouble-shooting).

The GPS works, showing us in the middle of a cornfield, but of course I couldn't check out the depth sounder function yet.

The VHF antenna cable now runs up the starboard side just below the pilot berth headliner and passes through the dresser cabinet and then up through a teak conduit, into the doorway lintel and then up into the mast junction box. It took some imagination and careful fitting, but it worked out okay.

The dome lighting puts off more than enough light for most nighttime functions, and the reading lights are remarkably bright. The fans are Hella "Bora" 3-speed fans and they do a pretty good job of circulating air in the cabins. The real proof will be on a hot summer day at anchor in the Caribbean! We can hardly wait for that magic day!

Barb couldn't resist "staging" the dinette with two sets of dinner ware (forgot the knives, forks and spoons) but the custom cabinet that our son, Michael built, won't be installed until this winter.

The sliding doors of the galley cupboards are just clear plexiglass. I spray painted a compass rose stencil on the back in dark blue and then oversprayed the back with a pale yellow. In retrospect, I think I should have used white instead, but perhaps next time we need to replace them I'll do that. For now it'll do just fine.

The stove is in my garage, in pieces, being converted to propane. We'll install it in the Spring.

This photo shows off the teak "conduit" for the VHF antenna cable and the door to the head on the right (actually it on the portside, since this photo is looking aft from the V-berth) and the dresser on the left.

We chose to keep the cabin floor, or sole as it is properly called, simple. For now it's just painted in an ivory one-part epoxy (Interlux "Toplac") and the plywood access hatches are just painted with the same non-skid paint we used on top of the cabin. The deck sole needs at least one more coat, plus the molded-in non-skid portions will get two coats of ivory non-skid. The plywood hatches will get teak and holly strips of decking. Another Winter project in my garage.

As I look at these photos I can already visualize some minor upgrades to improve both habitability and durability. It will give me something to do in Port Clinton.

We're really happy that we did the dinette table top with the Bermuda chart. We think it gives the right "tone" to the whole cabin and finishes it off much nicer than just a laminated top.

I learned very quickly that the dinette seating is snug . . . with four people seated the outboard diner has to be careful not to whack their head on the grabrail. It smarts!

The cushions that came with the boat fit fine, but we have four small cushions left over that we can't figure out what to do with.

The pilot berth was a big hit with the small children. They loved to climb up into the bunk and it took me a lot of vacuuming to get the cookie crumbs off the cushions.

This was a huge milestone. The champagne exploded (I'm glad I wrapped it up in a large piece of cotton fabric) just like in the movies and now it's time to move the boat to Port Clinton. The marine transporter is scheduled to pick it up on September 8th.



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