This is Just a note to let you know we're still here!
We completed our business in TN and now we are full time on the boat.
I'll tell more of the story later but for now we're BACK! It's so good to
be back on the water!
Date: Sat Apr 10 02:33:00 UTC 2022
Today we went to the Oriental NC boat show and had a wonderful time! We
looked at an Island Packet 42 and a Cabarico 38 and attended a class on
diesel maintenance and docking without trauma or drama. After the class
we talked with two other wonderful crusing/boating families and met a
wonderful doctor who owns a 1966 Bermuda 40. So I had to go out and look
at his boat which was simply beautiful of course! Yesterday we had lunch
with one of our friends at the boat show and Hannah had a Tuna steak
burger with jerk sauce and it was so hot it brought sweat to her brow and
SHE LIKED IT! This is a serious first. We talked to several people about
getting a dingy for Grace and perhaps have a few more options.
So, about the last couple months: Sam and Wanda stayed on the boat while
we went back to Tennessee to finalize the sale of the house and clean out
the estate. It was a terrible job and took much longer than we expected.
We sold the entire contents to an antique shop. We found a wonderful
couple to buy the show 1996 Jaguar XJ6 VDP and they sent a truck to pick it
up the day of closing. And that same day one of the mechanics who worked
on our other Jaguar XJ6 decided he wanted to buy it as well so we sold
both cars right on schedule! Then we took several days to load a 6x12
foot Uhaul trailer left a 10x20 storage unit and drove to NC. We unloaded
the trailer and returned it on the 8th. So now we have storage units in
two cities. Who knows if we will ever open them up again. We cannot
express how glad we are to be back on the boat.
Date: Tue Apr 12 12:51:00 UTC 2022
Mail and Taxes
Today we spent getting a little organized. We went to the post office to
check on several things we ordered and prepared our change of address. We
are keeping our residence in TN but since the house sold we had to put in
forwarding addresses to the Post office to some friends of ours where we
rent a room. Then we heard about Brenden's Isle mail forwarding service
in Florida. We will use them as a mailing address. There are
difficulties about being cruisers because everyone want's you to have a
home somewhere and when you live on the road or the sea then people think
you're some kind of vagabond. Well perhaps we are! But we're having
adventures! Anyway, there are ways to do things on the road and Brenden's
Isle is one of them. Check it out! One of Hannah's packages was sent
back when we sent it to the post office because we failed to put on the
unit number. Watch out for that. When you use the post office (we have a
po box) as a delivery location UPS and FEDEX need a physical address and
dont' like PO boxes. So you have to use the street address of the Post
office it's self. Then you must include the po box as a "unit#" like an
apartment. We didn't do that. The post office will return mail with
insufficient address if you don't include the po box.
There are many local services you can use if you're "homeless" lol... (Our
house costs as much as anybody's it's just floating.) One of them is
public libraries. They have computers available and internet for a small
fee or sometimes completely free. Stores have bathrooms if you need them
and resturants have free wifi ususally. One major problem is trash.
Please don't give us all a bad name by cramming tons of trash behind
stores and the like. Those are their trash can's not yours. Use places
that take public trash and keep it in small quantities. Gas stations, and
public parks and marinia's typically have trash locations for the public.
Don't abuse the systems! But if you're doing it right there shouldn't
really be that much trash. Don't let it build up Get rid of small
amounts daily. Most of our trash is bio degradable. We wash towels and
use hankies instead of paper towels. We don't eat a lot of packaged foods
and we wash and re-use most things. If you plan it right you typically
repackage everything into re-usable containers before heading out.
One other problem is repairs on your boat that require haul out. Finding
a short term rental can be expensive in water front areas. Plan these
things well ahead of time. And just incorporate into your repair costs
the cost of lodging. Check the local community and ask around. The best
deals are not in the news paper or on the web. Only haul out for those
things that are absolutely necessary.
We are maintaining a storage unit near the coast so we can drop by and
re-supply when we need to. There is not always enough room on a boat for
everything you need. However be aware that the cost of storage adds up
and it's easy to argue that it's cheaper and easier to buy new than to store old. Do
the math and don't let emotion guide you. If you can buy it cheaply then
use it, give it to a friend or a thrift store and move along. Buy it
again if you need to. how many hundred dollars will you waste storing
stuff you can buy cheaper than you can store for 3 months?
Remember crusing life is is simpler as a minimalist.
Date: Thur Apr 14 02:43:00 UTC 2022
Today was a success!!! I freed up 2 of my ancient through hulls. The
seacocks are pieces of art. They are 50 years old bronze barrel types.
There's no telling how long it's been since they moved and I had tried
initially to move them to no avail. Well I was waiting till we hauled the
boat hout to do the hull, not wanting to mess with 50 year old through
hulls while in the water. But today I was brave. The wind was out of the
south and we were sitting in the mud so there wouldn't be far to go if
something went awry. I got out the wrench went to the bolt on the side
and turned the jam nut. And it turned easy and smooth! Feeling
encouraged I put the wrench on the inner bolt and it also turned off like
it was new. I pulled out a hammer and hit the bolt one swift easy whack
and it moved just like that and a little water started seeping in. I
grabbed the handle and it turned! so I worked it a little bit back and
fourth and tightened it up again, set it so it wouldn't leak, and worked
it back and fourth a few times. Feeling really brave I attacked an other
one and it was just the same! I'm so glad. These pieces of mechanical
art are supper expensive new and these are simply beautiful. I love
proper equipment ment to last a lifetime! Now I'm going to attack the
others one at a time the same way. I really should pull them out and
re-build them and I might do that when we haul out but I'm feeling a lot
less scared that we're going to sink because I can't turn off a sea cock.
They have been well grounded all these years and don't show any signs of
errosion or degradation. I love this old boat! She was well made and
designed to last a lifetime.
For dinner we had grilled chicken and asparagus rice with friends at the
club house and sat around and talked till midnight. Good wine and good
friends. We met a new couple with a tartan 38. They are anchored out
about 200 feet from us.
Date: Fri Apr 15 01:23:00 UTC 2022
Today we did a lot of cleaning and organizing. I started by cleaning out
the cockpit.(since I had good cockpit drains again!)Then we started
cleaning the decks. After over 6 months wintering here in North Carolina
they needed a good cleaning. So out came the brushes and Sam and I spent
the day cleaning off the green and grey being careful always to go across
the grain and not with it. There are some areas that need caulking after
the winter but we will get to those later. For now things are starting to
shape up. We found a place to stow the spare fuel and water cans. Inside
the boat Hannah's sour dough is finally alive again after being 3 months
in the refrigerator un-fed. It took Hannah almost a week to bring it
back. For dinner we had 15 bean soup and oatmeal scotchies!
Date: Sun Apr 17 01:27:00 UTC 2022
This afternoon we had drinks and snaks with friends out in the cockpit! It
really doesn't get much better than this. We have met several new friends
recently and appreciate the time and companionship. This is one of the
main reasons we wanted to slow down our life. Connections with real
people in the real world are important and getting together over good food
is always a blessing. I can't express enough how glad we are that we have
had the time to spend with such wonderful people. I hope to see you all
in other parts of the world as well and look forward to more time
together! There are no goodbyes!
Date: Mon Apr 18 14:07:00 UTC 2022
Rainy days and Mondays
Tax day and rain make a recipe for sitting here quietly and updating the
web site. Outisde it's 65 and steady rain. The wind has died down a
little bit and the north wind has us riding high in the water as the wind
blows water up river. The problem with wind tides is they are not as
predictable as moon tides. Last night Sam and I put up the tent over the
cockpit/boom and so the cockpit is mostly dry. This time we pulled the
outdoor seat cushions indoors to stay dry.
Yesterday we spent the afternoon with new friends of ours who moved from
Colorado to get away from the crazyness. They came with their kids to
visit the boat and get to know us better. One of our goals with going
crusing is to spend more time in the real world with real people. real
human interaction is far superior to electronic and without it culture
dies. This is the time to unplug from the virtual and get back to the
The wind is howling gently through the rigging and as the boat rocks
I'm sitting here typing on my computer as we eat our morning
breakfast of eggs and crackers. The rain will be increasing throughout the
day so I think we will just sit here and stay warm and dry in our boat.
Date: Sat Apr 23 13:16:00 UTC 2022
Is there such a thing? Ha Ha! We are trying to get organized after
returning from Tennessee. Our days are filled with sorting items in our
storage unit, getting the boat registered for a new year, looking for
boat yards to do rigging and bottom paint and trying to get taxes done.
There's not much exciting going on at the moment. We spent the evening
with friends again and didn't get back to the boat till 3am. I guess this
doesn't help is get stuff done?!
Anyway, this morning we're going to the
opening of the farmers market. A couple days ago we found some new
cruising friends and tried to pick their brains about their last 8 years of
sailing around the east coast. Valuable information! We spent a couple
hours with Hank on the boat talking about upgrades and fixes and getting
his opinion on the boat. It was a wonderful time and he was a wealth of
information about the boat. It was fun to talk with him. Perhaps we can
keep him involved in the upgrades and maintenance we will be doing in the
next few weeks.
Date: Sun Apr 24 02:00:00 UTC 2022
Today the water pump failed again. This pump had only been in there 4
months! It was a Jabsco pump from West Marine. I had purchased the
extended warranty so it was a breeze. I took it back to the store and
they instantly gave me a new one. But there is something wrong with the
pressure sensor/switch. This is the second Jabsco pump that has failed in
just 7 months. I have a friend here at the dock who has had no luck with the
pumps and replaces his every year or so for the same reasons. So when I
went to buy this one 4 months ago or so he told me to make sure that I got
the extended warranty. I was glad I did. It took a bit to get it all back in
and then I found I was out of teflon tape so I had to run to walmart to
get some and didn't get back till after dark. So I had to put everything
back together in the dark.
Date: Mon Apr 25 01:18:00 UTC 2022
So today I attacked the teak middle hatch. I took it apart, sanded
it, steel wooled it, varnished it and put it back together. No problem
right?... WRONG! The hardware is custom made and no two pieces are
identical. After 30 min of trial and error I finally found which part went
where like a puzzle. But, now we have a much better looking hatch.
I also bought a plastic bin for a cat box and hit it with a heat gun to
custom mold it to the floor where we put the cat box. It was an
experiment. some of the plastic melted through and left a hole but the
concept worked. I'm going to try again later to weld the plastic back
Date: Tue Apr 26 03:40:00 UTC 2022
Today I shaved off the aft cabin door so it would close. When things get
humid and hot the doors swell just a little and it is enough they won't
close. So I sanded down the edge of the door till it fits again. That of
course left a lot of sanding dust everywhere so we had to wipe down almost
the entire boat! Then I oiled the interior teak on the steps. It was
really slick for a little bit till it soaked in. Things look much better
though. And Sam is glad the door closes now.
It was a beautiful day today with a wind out of the south so we are
sitting in the mud again. I'm really not sure whether to stay here or
not. We love the marina but it's just to shallow for our boat.
I am supposed to meet with Zimmerman's boat yard this week to schedule a
haul out and work on the rigging. I would really like to be out of here
sailing before hurricane season starts.
Date: Wed Apr 27 02:10:00 UTC 2022
Today was a slow wonderful day slowly sanding at the aft deck box. I put
in new bungs, expoxied cracks, and sanded the aft deck box lid. Then in
the evening just before it started raining I olied it. It looks amazing.
I put oil on the inside of one of the deck boxes where you can see the
original deck and it must have looked incredible in it's first few years.
I am still deciding whether to leave it all grey or to restore as much of
the teak as possible. So far now I have the three hatches done and one
deck box. There are three deck boxes and e dorades to go plus the
eyebrows along the cabin.
Today Hannah made two loves of fresh bread and is making cauliflower soup
for dinner. We sat out in the rain this evening on deck. Lilah came out to
visit us. She is always out at night but won't go out during the day. I
made a new cat box for her tonight from a rubbermaid bin. I got a heat
gun and melted it into place so it fits perfectly in the well between the
aft cabin and the head.
I talked today with David who lives here and asked about fishing since we
got our fishing licenses yesterday. He said that all we are going to
catch in the creek now is manta rays. We have seen them by the dozens
lately. They are stirring up the bottom mud and making the water quite
murkey. I guess they breed here. Yesterday one of the other boaters was
fishing and caught a couple of them but threw them back. Andy says that
they cook the wings in England but here everyone just throws them back.
Date: Fri Apr 29 01:46:00 UTC 2022
To the shipyard
Steve and Sam take Grace to Zimmerman's Marine.
Today we called Zimmerman's in the morning and they said to go ahead and
bring Grace over to have the rig inspected in preparation for re-doing the
standing rigging. We got the boat ready to sail in about 3 hours after I
took Hannah to work at Starbucks in Moorhead City, and we left the marina
at about noon. Mom took the car to Oriental and Sam and I motored Grace
over on a beautiful day to the ship yard. There wer two other boats with
their sails up probably wondering why such a beautiful boat was limping
along without her sails up... Upon entering whittacker creek there was a
boat leaving with a 7 foot draft. We talked with them on the radio but
they ran aground in about 5 1/2 feet of water and we passed them.
When we got into creek by Zimmerman's Mark was waving us in and took a
couple pictures with my mother's phone. They put us in a slip between two
other boats and it was tight. The first shot at it I was blown sidewise
by the wind and had to go around and do it again. This time with a little
more speed. We went right in and I reversed it and stopped right in the
middle of the slip. They helped us with the lines and we setteled in. I
left at about 16:30 to go pickup Hannah from work and now we're having
fried burritoes for dinner. It was a great day.
Date: Fri Apr 29 22:07:00 UTC 2022
Starting on the teak deck
Well I just spent about 4-5 hours on the teak decks. I started by washing
and brushing, across the grain of course. Then I decided to test teak
cleaner. It was amazing! I used Star bright teak cleaner brightner
combo. And for all you haters out there just calm down. I don't intend
to use this weakly. The decks had been left alone for several years. It
worked exactly as advertised and took off much less teak than if I had
used some other physical method to clean/scrape it all off.
The question of how to treat your teak is a very difficult one. Everyone
has an opinion. The bottom line is that UV light kills everything.
Dirt and moss and mold and the elements in general are going to dry out
crack freeze eat and rot your wood. If you leave it alone it will die.
if you scrub it it will die. If you put acid on it it will die. If you
varnish it it will be slick. And no matter what method you choose it's
a lot of work.
I have decided that the best way for the wood is also the most work. I'm
going to start with cleaning and oiling the wood. I'm going to varnish
the trim and cockpit and boxes, but not gloss. I'm going to preserve
the natural look of the wood and use an ultra thin varnish to soak in to
the wood deeply to seal it. The wood right now is super dry and the
first coat of oil I put on soaked up like a sponge.
I took 4 pictures showing some of the work. I think it's going to look
amazing when it's finished.
And of course the bilge pump clogged/broke/doesn't work again tonight. This
is the second pump we have lost since October/November!!! Cheap CRAP!
West Marine is going to get a piece of my mind! We also defrosted the
freezer and cleaned out the fridge with a hose (thus needing the bilge pump)
So we have food sitting all around and the boat is a complete mess! UGH.
Long day! I'm going to bed. We will deal with this mess tomorrow.
Date: Sat Apr 30 22:00:00 UTC 2022
Pumps and Teak
I pulled out the offending bilge pump this morning. I figured that before I
claim it's broke I better try to fix it. So I pulled apart the pump and
looked at the duckbill valves, cleaned it up and put everything back
together. I couldn't see any thing wrong but it still didn't work. So I
looked at the settlement bowl on the input side and it was dirty and but not
too bad. I cleaned it out and tried again. It pumped for a little bit then
stopped again. Then I noticed that the input side hose was collapsing...
Ok so I shortened the length of the input hose and re-routed the hoses a
little bit so that it wouldn't collapse. Problem solved. But the lesson is
use a hose with a wire in it
We also had a refrigeration man come and re-charge the freezer compressor.
After 7 years it was a little low. It might have been low the entire time
who knows. We will see how much better it works. The compressor is a
little small for the size of the ice chest as well. Both plates are getting
cold now and everything is back together. Last night we defrosted the refrig
and freezer and cleaned them out so that when he arrived this morning it
wouldn't be coated with ice.
We also cleaned out the bilge and sprayed down everything. So for the
moment we have a dry bilge. Then I spent the rest of the day scrubbing and
cleaning the teak decks. My arms are tired! There is a lot of dirt and
grime and green stuff in the gray. I think it's like a car that hasn't been
washed for months and months. But the wood looks amazing. I am finding
areas that need to be re-sealed and I've found the areas the surveyor said
had some water intrusion. They are isolated areas and small but we should
address them. I do not feel confident to do it myself.
Sam made egg salad for lunch and omlets for dinner. Hannah made it home
from work at about 8:30pm.
Any questions or comments may be directed to
info@SailingWithGrace.com Grace is one of only 8 48 foot Hinckleys and is loved by her family
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