Load out

by Chuck June 18, 2009

Hauled all the gear out of the barn rafters and loaded it up on Odyssey tonight. Since she's tucked into the barn it went pretty fast, didn't need to walk across the property or anything like that.

Spread the sails out on the front lawn, they're still OK -- not great, the jib is 30 years old after all, but serviceable for the coming year. For some reason the outhaul wasn't attached to the main sail, even though there was a loop still tied in it. Strange, that. I tied the old outhaul back on, but I think I'm going to buy a new one for this season. It's only 3 feet or so long, that shouldn't break the piggy bank.

Only a couple, three more things to do: attach the new anchor chain and rode to the new anchor, mix up some fuel for the outboard, and test the outboard to make sure that it works this year. Won't be sailing this weekend (need to go to Eastern Washington for my brother's 40th birthday party) but maybe the weekend after.



Late spring cleaning

by Chuck June 14, 2009

Trying to get Odyssey ready to go this weekend so I can go sailing next weekend. Usually I try to get ready on Saturday and sail on Sunday. It's usually too much.

I tried to finish the new hatch, but I can't get my epoxy to go off, and I'm about out of ideas. Instead I just bolted all the clean teak on and slid to original hatch down into the slides.

After everything was bolted back together and the dirt was all swept out, I hauled her over to the other side of the place to spend some quality time with a hose and a scrub brush. Earlier this year I heard about a product called "Purple Power" that's supposed to do a good job of cleaning the fiberglass. It does. It didn't get rid of the water and marks and streaks, but it did get the everything else. Dana says it's the cleanest that she's ever seen Odyssey.

I slid her back into the barn at the end of the day, next I need to load the gear aboard, rig my new anchor chain and rode, and re-rig the mast. It's not much more than half a day's work, so I'm betting I actually get out next weekend, weather permitting.



Backing up

by Chuck April 8, 2009

I started cutting a new back for Odyssey's hatch tonight. The first one was about half an inch too narrow at the top, and since I've only got half an inch or so to work with the darn thing doesn't fit. This time I'm cutting and fitting each piece individually, and it seems to be working out so far.

I cut the two sids, they are just slightly different angles. Not enough to make up all the problem at the top, but enough that I needed to reset the miter gauge on the saw before I cut each end of the bottom piece. I had to go in to make dinner before I cut the top, but I'll do that tonight and see what it looks like after I glue it up.



More work on Odyssey's hatch

by Chuck March 5, 2009

Sorry, no catchy title. I did try...

I've continued working on the hatch over the last week and a half, I just haven't got around to writing about. It hasn't been too exciting actually. Most of the time I've been waiting for glue to dry.

On the 26th I made it out to the barn to epoxy the inner hatch together. I mixed up a pot of epoxy from the same cans of resin and hardener that I used to repair the transom -- they've been sitting around for a couple, three years but I figured they still be good. Anyway, I spread the glue, stuck in the biscuits, and after a little jiggering, I clamped the whole works together. And started waiting for the epoxy to kick.

Two hours later, still nothing. Great, I thought. Now I have to clean all that mess off and start over. Yuck. I couldn't take it. I walked away.

On the 27th I stopped a Schuck's while I was out running errands and picked up a new syringe of 5-minute epoxy. That way when I got around to cleaning up and starting over I'd have epoxy to play with. While I was putting the epoxy on my workbench I eased the clamps on the hatch -- still gooey. I tightened them back down (hey, it could still kick I thought) and went away.

Until Sunday.

Sunday (the 1st.) Almost a week later. I eased the clamps and the wood didn't split apart. The epoxy had finally gone off and stuck the pieces together. Yay! I got out my belt sander and my palm sander and spent some time sanding off the squeeze-out and generally cleaning and smoothing the frame. It looked great. Life was good.

Until I test fit the frame in the hatch. The *%$)@ thing didn't fit. The bottom was fine, the top was a quarter in on both sides from the frame. Looks like it's really 3 degrees, not 4. I'm not sure if I'm gonna to to the trouble of starting over, but before I do I'm gonna get one of those bevel gauges that other people have so I can take an accurate angle off the hatch. This is good enough for now though.

With one thing (baseball practice) and another (being lazy) I didn't get out to work on the hatch again until last night (the 4th). I used a router and my router table to cut a rabbet for the plexiglass window to fit in. I cut biscuit slots, mixed some epoxy, glued it up and clamped the whole thing together. Now I just have to wait a few days for the epoxy to kick and I'll be ready to cut and fit the window and bolt the whole thing together.

While I was out in the barn I picked up a scrap piece of hemlock and tried out a different way of milling the hatch frame. I cut what is essentially a long tenon on one side and then turned the piece over and cut a slot. Two quick milling operations and I had a piece that would have worked perfectly. Next time I'll know...



Finishing finishing

by Chuck February 18, 2009

Put the second coat of teak oil on tonight.

Most of the wood looked good, but there were a couple of spots on one hand rail and one hatch slide where the teak had absorbed all the oil and left the surface looking like I hadn't put anything on. Not surprised, after 30 years I suppose the wood was pretty thirsty.

I waited 20 minutes again then rubbed the oil off. The wood is pretty dark now, so I think it's about done. Now I just need to re-attach them.



Finishing teak

by Chuck February 15, 2009

Made some time to go out to the barn tonight after work to put the first coat of oil on my teak.

Went smooth as... greased teak?

Well, not quite that smooth. As soon as I started using the foam brush I bought the plastic inside the foam shattered so I had to use it like a rag to apply the oil. Then I knocked over the bottle of oil, spilling it across my work bench. That wasn't so bad, actually, I used the foam brush to pick up a blob of oil that I then applied liberally to the teak. I probably used more oil on the teak this way, 'cause I'd already used it, so to speak, and that worked out better for the teak.

While I waited the requisite 20 minutes to rub the wood down I climbed up on Odyssey and finished cleaning under the hatch slides on the poptop. It was really warm up there, now I know where the heat from the propane heater I use in the barn actually ends up.

Anyway, I rubbed the teak down with a towel. It looks fabulous. Well at least compared to the way it looked before.



Out for supplies

by Chuck February 13, 2009

I've been needing to make a trip to West Marine for supplies. Today I got to make it.

And I got to ride my motorcycle for the first time this year. As usual I was loathe to start riding, but Dana insisted and as usual she was right. I had a beautiful ride, and I'm looking forward to my next opportunity.

Anyway, I get to West Marine. It must have been a slow day because as soon as I walked through the door an employee was right there asking if he could help. As a matter of fact, I replied, he could.

He listed three options for re-finishing my teak: Oil, Cetol, and varnish. Oil is the easiest, he said, but varnish done right makes the teak look like fine furniture. The rest of the conversation went like this:

"I'm not sure I need to use varnish. My sailboat is like a Catalina 22..."

"Use teak oil."

No hesitation. Pretty much means that's what I need to use. So I picked up a bottle of teak oil and a sponge brush to put it on with.

While I was there I also picked up a '09 tide book, a West Marine catalog (Yay! Toys!) and a new wind fly. I broke the old one working on something or other this winter. It was a little spendy, but I figured I should pick it up while I was there and West Marine had one in stock.

Next -- putting the oil on the old teak and admiring my handiwork.




by Chuck February 13, 2009

I've been listening to Furled Sails, a sailing podcast produced in Florida. Listening to the podcasts has inspired me to go back to work on Odyssey, so tonight after dinner I headed out to the barn to get back to work.

The first thing I need to do now that I have the new winch installed is put the bulkhead back in under the bridge deck. This piece of 3/4-inch plywood is the only support the front of the cockpit has. The bridge deck has the main sheet pulling up on it and the keel winch pulling down; there's a lot of stress in this location. Most of the weight of the 900-lb keel is supported by this bulkhead when winching keel up and down.

And of course something this important doesn't go in easily. Oh no, it takes time and thought and my 14-year-old daughter coming out and saying "What you need is a crow bar."

So I grabbed a crow bar.

And popped the bulkhead right in.

After that it was a simple matter to put in the screws and brackets that hold the bulkhead in place. While I worked on the inside of the boat Katie was on the outside with a scrub brush cleaning up the worst of the algae around the lip of the poptop. A couple more sessions like that and the boat might be close to clean...

Next up is getting something to put on the teak I've been cleaning and putting the wood back on the boat.

(While I was writing this entry I couldn't get "Fish Heads" out of my head. Except it was "bulk heads, bulk heads, laughing happy bulkheads... I'm a sick, sick man.)



Still working

by Chuck February 13, 2009

I'm still working on Odyssey. Slowly, but things are happening.

Here's what I've done since my last entry:

  • Finished drying out the cabin.
  • Removed the bulkheads from the back of the cabin so I could get to the winch.
  • Bought new hardware for attaching the winch.
  • Attached the new winch using new stainless hardware and larger fender washers.
  • Removed the teak companionway slides, the cabin-top hatch slides, and the grab rails.
  • Scrubbed all the teak with fresh water, Oxy-Clean, and fresh water again.
  • Sanded the teak smooth.

That's pretty much it. I've got a few pictures that I took when I started, so hopefully I'll be able to show the difference when I'm done. The difference between the teak when I started and when I finished is hard to believe. But boy will it look good when I put it back on.



Hatch: a new plan

by Chuck January 23, 2009

Off and on for the last week I've been working on building a new hatch for Odyssey. The old one is three pieces of yucky wood screwed to two other pieces of yucky wood with dry wall screws. Not the most "yachty" looking hatch I've ever seen.

I have a picture in my head of what I want the new hatch to look like, but I wasn't sure when I started if I could get anywhere near that picture. Now that I've been working on it for a week I'm thinking I'm gonna get pretty darn close.




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