Tuesday, October 3, 2023

Lots of Little Things

I know I'm working on borrowed time right now and I'm trying to take advantage of the warm weather while it lasts knowing full well that the cold is on the way and direct work on the boat will come to an end soon. Over the winter I'll be rebuilding the Westerbeke 27 in the relative warmth of my shop, but for now I have to focus on the million little things that I want to get wrapped up.

When I bought the boat a little over a month ago, I put together a list of things I wanted to get completed before the cold sets in, and I'm happy to report that I think I'll be able to complete all of the tasks I set out to do plus a few more.  Over the past week I've spent time on the following jobs:

1. Seacock Installation: I dry fitted each seacock and backing plate multiple times, rehearsing for the actual install that using 3M 5200 sealant. This is kind of a holy war in boating circles. Many use 4200 which isn't as permanent, but new chemical techniques allow for removal of parts that have been sealed with 5200 so it isn't totally destructive, and 5200 has never failed for me before when applied correctly.

Before we even started dry fitting the seacocks, my son and I sanded down all the through hulls to get old paint and sealant out of the holes.  Next we dry fitted each seacock multiple times to make sure they would snug down properly.  In several cases we had to do some additional sanding inside and outside of the hull to make the flush fit through hulls seat properly. Once we were finally satisfied with the fit, we went to work on the messy job of actually gooping up the through hull fittings and installing the seacocks on the inside of the hull. 

In most cases we were able to apply the 5200 and insert the fitting into the hull while someone on the inside screwed the seacock on. Once hand tight, we cranked them down by inserting a piece of wood into the through hull fitting while the person inside really put their back into tightening the seacock.  After that, we did a rough cleanup and let the curing begin.  So far we've completed three of the five seacocks.  I'm waiting on through hull fittings for the final two that I ordered last week.

2. Install Scupper and Deck Hoses: One of the first jobs I did when the boat arrived was to install the above waterline through hull fittings for the scupper and deck drains.  Given that the boat is well covered and dry, I wasn't worried about things getting wet down below so I hadn't circled back to installing the hoses for them until this week.  This didn't take particularly long, but involved some interesting 'boat yoga' to access some of the hose runs and wiggle them onto the fittings. The hardest part was bending the heavy 1.5" sanitation hose through holes and around corners. I opted for using this for the deck drains because they travel through some electrically sensitive areas in the boat and I wanted something that would last.  For the cockpit scuppers I used standard smooth walled bilge hose (1.5").  I still have to add a few hose clamps to double up every connection, but I can check this job off the list.

3. Install and Secure Holding Tank: This job was not on my list of to-dos for this year, but when I got
into the vberth area to paint I decided it wouldn't be much additional work to get this done while I was in there.  The previous holding tank was a slightly different size than the new one and I needed to build a frame to support and hold down the new tank.  I started by painting the locker under the vberth where the tank will reside.  I let that dry for a day and then went back and built out a support frame that I also painted and then installed four stainless steel hold downs for straps that I ordered.  I finally got the whole thing installed last night and I'm pleased that the hold down straps keep the tank absolutely still, so I don't expect the tank to be bouncing around when pounding into headseas.

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