Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Repair and Refit of Sailboat

We brought the boat to the ranch on April 16. We found a few things of concern in our pre-purchase inspection, but because we were not able to put it in the water, we were not sure if the boat will even float. The first money we spent was on new tires for the trailer. The trailer appears to be very well built. We feel that it and the motor could easily be worth the $2400 we paid for the entire package. So, we are thinking we got the boat for free. 

We started the first day going over the boat and making a list of projects that are needed to be completed before we could put it in the water to see if we even like sailing. 

The first order of business was to get the boat as water tight as possible. We had a good forecast for the first week, with no rain. We focused on getting the water out of the boat and keeping it out the first time it rained. 

A strange thing happened the first evening. I had a terrible allergic reaction to something. We still do not know what it was. Kim thought it might be mold in the boat, so she spent her first 12 hour day doing a total clean of the entire cabin. When she was done the boat looked 100% better. 

I spent much of the first week working on the companionway hatch cover. I decided to make it out of some red cedar that I have had for many years. It has been strip stacked and drying for over 25 years. The hatch that was with the boat was badly weathered and made out of plywood. It was a problem, but the biggest problem was the threshold and the frame. The wood was cracked and rotten. I decided to replace the entire hatch frame. Here is the end result:

I would like to add a special THANK YOU!!! to my Dad. He has loaned me all of his woodworking tools to use. I was able to do some very intricate work with the help of many of those tools. 

We then decided to put up the mast. I have watched many videos about how to do this. We did this for two reasons. First to see how to do it and second, to get the mast out of our way. We did have one little incident when were we stepping the mast, but in the end we got it done.

You can see the stepping crutch I made out of some old wood.

The mast is 30 feet tall from the water line.

Here is our outboard motor. It is a  mid 80's 15hp Johnson
I did some testing on the outboard. It ran fine, but had a problem with the electric start. I found the problem and it now works perfectly. 

After working some very long days for about a week and a half, we went to Shannon's to watch her 6 kids while they were on a cruise. We really needed the break. I am not sure how much of a break it was. That family goes at full speed all of the time. We celebrated Isabella's 12th birthday and enjoyed our time with the grandkids. 

I stayed at Shannon's for 7 days and Kim stayed for the entire 10. We then got back to work and finished up the project. Here is a list of all of the things we have completed. 

        ○ Sand all wood on boat
○ Treat all wood
○ Install both side rail drains
○ Build companionway door
○ Install all wood
○ Install door and hatch
○ Hook up battery
○ Test interior lights
○ Install outboard
○ Secure battery 
○ Extend cables
○ Test outboard
○ Repair stancions
○ Repair mast light
○ Step mast
○ Remove and Repair Port deck rail
○ Replace halyards
○ Measure anchor line 
○ wash topside and hull
○ polish and wax hull and deck
○ repair trailer lights
○ new wiring
○ install depth finder
○ fix rudder = This turned into a 3 day project
○ seal hatch on starboard side
○ Fix front hatch
seal chain plates 
○ install new bow light
○ new light bulbs
Build leg for table
Buy battery charger 
Reinstall short wall
Install and test rigging 
Install hasp on door 
Check windex installation 

This was our list, but there were a number of other small projects that were not on the list.

On May 12, we were ready to take it to the lake. At least that was the plan. May 13th was a day that changed everything. That is a story all unto itself. I will write all about that day and what followed in my next entry. 


  1. What an exciting adventure, you two certainly have been busy. Now you have us wondering what happened on the 13th.... I remember that day we as I had several things go wrong and remember thinking that it was the 13th and of course several things went wrong!

    1. The last month has been a blur. Thanks for reading.

  2. Sailboats are quite complicated. I wonder what would happen if you put a motor on your boat. :) Keep up the creative blogging and living.

  3. Shawn you amaze me! I 2 look forward to hearing what happened on the 13th. I don't know if I can wait!
    Dick & Cathy