Dawn & Patrick -

We're looking for the trash fence

<I wrote this last week>

I met with two yards and a third failed to get back to me at all after I sent them my then 4 page (now 7) word doc about my plans. Both yards had essentially the same bill rates and yard rules, I chose to go with the one who got back to me when they said they would and followed my directions more precisely in providing the quote. I’ll divulge the yard and all those details after the work is over and I have a better feel for their work. But the choice has been made and I’m excited to get going.

In meeting with both yards (and when you meet with your yard manager) I think it pays for you to have an opinion about everything and let them try to influence you. For every item in my list, where I had a good idea (wrong or right) about what I wanted done, I could have an intelligent conversation about the plan and they could provide real feedback and cost projections. For every item where I was still very open ended the conversation was really poor. I didn’t really know what I wanted, they don’t know me yet so didn’t really know which way to direct me. Unless I (or you) are willing to just let them do the work how they want with little input I think it behooves you to have your own plan and ask them to review and correct or modify the plan based on their experience. Be organized is the mantra. I have the word doc I mentioned and a spreadsheet of a 160+ items listing all the major parts I’ll need. Another thing that has been helpful is to be open minded, put in the wish list have a decent ideas of your priorities and then let the costs drive the cuts. Also think about what you have to do now (like while the boat is out of the water or while the rig is down) and what can wait or be added later on your own dime at the slip.So, given all of that I think you see a bit more about how I go about things.

In today’s meeting with the yard we discussed the windlass installation a bit more and they are recommending not doing a big fiberglass project, but instead using a 1/2” stainless steel plate to mount the windlass to the deck. He penciled up a drawing of the plate being bolted through the deck joint, but I’m not sure now as I write this how that would work on my bow where the deck joint is the toe rail. That big stainless plate might look great though and I’m sure there’s a way to mount it securely. The real next step on that project is to get the windlass here, set it on the deck and figure it out. We’ve decided to go with a Lofrans Tigres windlass based on the good SSCA reviews, but it’s not ordered yet. The yard is going to dig up some pics of similar installs for me to review.

In addition to making a little progress on the windlass the big thing I've done today is work on the parts spreadsheet. I’ve been going through an finalizing items so I have a make and model for every item that needs one and I'm looking for prices online. I’m comparing Fisheries Supply, West Marine and Defender. Fisheries doesn’t carry Maretron so that is limiting their usefulness quite a bit and their prics are coming out roughly the same as West Marine; Defender’s prices are coming out cheaper almost across the board. There are some tricks to use at Fisheries I’ve not tried yet, but it might not be worth it if they carry very few of the items I want.

On the boat I pulled down all the sails, running rigging and the booms. The booms are in the workshop and I’m removing all the hardware from them in preparation for them to be refinished. I was using a lot of hand power tools, but last night I bought a Ryobi 12” Drill Press and it has been awesome. It’s way more powerful and doesn’t tire me out as fast as using a hand drill. For all the screws that aren’t coming out after an overnight soak in PB Blaster (99% of them) I use the drill press to remove the head of the screw. Once that is off I pry the piece of hadware off the mast and then use a pair of vie grips to unscrew the screw from the mast. This works 95% of the time. The the other 5% the screw snaps off flush with the mast. For those I need to go back and drill out the screws.