Thursday, January 31, 2013

Approaching a corner

Wow, we are having a really busy January.  I was just uploading another set of photos which became named Impetuous January 2013 part 4... so I looked and we've taken 500 pictures!!!  Don't worry, we're not going to post them all!

This is because Impetuous is finally really taking shape and each time a new bit gets stuck on,  brightened up or working, then it deserves another picture.  Though we like her simplicity and like to keep her reasonably minimal; it's pretty exciting when anything can go on that we can look forward to using in the not so distant future.   Examples are that the main track got bolted down this week and today we bolted on our bronze fairleads.
Since we wrote last, we have done an awful lot of little painting jobs.  We have painted the traveller.  We've painted the rudder white and then added red stripes.

We've filled, sanded, filled again, sanded again, primed and painted our winch pads.  We've re-painted the top red stripe; there had been a little accident where the masking plastic had blown up into it last time.  We've repainted our cockpit well, locker, drains and lid (feature to follow about how we made this cockpit locker from scratch).  We painted our non-skid patch; if you want to read about how we chose to do our non skid, we have entered a more detailed description on the restoration page.  
 I'm afraid to tell you that whenever we say, 'lets 'just' paint the...' time gets eaten up and we wonder what on earth is going on. This may well be because we have chosen to use fancy and expensive paint (under good advice) and using it is commensurately tricky, to achieve the professional looking finish. We're using Awlgrip paint. This expensive material is certainly teaching us a lot, though I'm not so sure if it is chemistry or alchemy.

We need to consider all elements whenever we prepare and mix up a batch including (but not exclusively) sanding grit; temperature; humidity; particular (non melting) roller; how well the surrounding area is masked - having painted the top red stripe and covered the whole deck with tarps and masking paper we still discovered the occasional fleck of red in the most improbable places; and dust - on the surface, in the wind, near the surface, being blown up by the criminals doing comunity service in the police car park opposite (leaf blowing) - it's everywhere!
So far we have been pleased with the effect the paint gives; the boat looks shiny and new, however the flaws when you inspect carefully are tricky to prevent. MANY times I have said to Duncan, "we could have just come and slapped on some standard gloss paint over the cracks and gone sailing... it would have taken a few days!"  

 Most excitingly a couple of days ago we dry fitted and then epoxied down our cockpit teak.  It was a real eye opener sanding back the cover paint we'd added when we had some spare, before we got ready to do this job and remembered that before we started, the whole boat looked like this! 
After finally glueing the beautiful deck down we needed to then clean back the epoxy before we could put the caulking between the teak slats.  Before a false start yesterday when the forecast said no chance of rain and thunder clouds hovered the whole day we caulked most of the deck today though we ran out so it's a cycle over to the marine dealership tomorrow.  We are so lucky to have the use of Roger (Impetuous' landlord)'s trade account; most things are around 40% off.  A more detailed run down of how we chose to do the cockpit deck will be added in the near future to the restoration page.   

So we're having fun, and really gearing up to the final straight; the boat is FINALLY looking quite different and like she might just go.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Why we love Sundays

what a start to a day
Sunday is our favourite day here in Dickinson, Texas and today was another corker. The sun was shining, the birds were tweeting and the day started with boiled eggs!  Explaining the breakfast to our lovely neighbour Claire a while back we got a response that has stuck with me...

       "We cherish our soldiers, we couldn't dip them in eggs"

The special thing about Sundays here is the ambient sound.  There is radically less of it.  For one thing the school buses stay put in their bus barn at the end of the street. The road traffic is much quieter from all directions though the ever present freeway hum remains.  People seem to stay in their houses even more and all around you see peace and emptiness.  It's lovely!

Over the past few days we've been enjoying the cool sunshine and trying to crack on with the cockpit teak.  The margin trim has taken rather longer than anticipated.  I just keep thinking that as soon as this is done the rest of the deck will just fall into place with minimal resistance... we'll see.  Each and every job seems to throw up unforseen complications.  Often the tasks' timeprint unfolds after we've discussed it with Roger (our yacht carpenter landlord) and he's gently guided us to the more professional, considered and tricky way of undertaking it. 

This happened with the margin trim.  I'd drawn it out, having considered that the outer edges were curved, but not accurately depicting this and going for the ruler approach to the plan.  Then after much deliberation of how much spring and curve could be achieved we'd decided to have the outer boards stay straight and simply to run out along the curve.  Roger's classic diplomacy comes in here

"well that's a valid and proper way to do it, but, you could also do it like this...."

So three days of gluing up wood to an approximate curved continuous thickness then shaping it and we are two planks in to the hour or so's task...  Since then the rest is taking shape but we still await eagerly the day the margin trim is done and we speed through the minor task of laying the whole thing.

First a pattern

 Then a whole load of borrowed clamps

 After initial resistance to something that is marketed as and enthused about for being "the permanent solution" I now love using 3M 5200.  Perhaps not the most environmentally sound choice as once cured it is pretty much indestructible but there is something very pleasing about the knowledge that once it is on, good or bad job that's it.  You can't mess with it anymore, the job is done.

New winch pads for our stupidly big bronze winches.  The originals were made of teak and too small and rather worn.  These we made from ply wood stuck together, shaped then covered in Fiberglass.


We're trying to intersperse a few of the plumbing and engine rigging jobs as we go.
Duncan is very happy with his new door made from old broken bits and some old boards from a project Roger was working on, all planed up and carefully crafted

One of the non skid patches didn't work out as we were trying to be thrifty and reuse the fly screen so we're redoing it.
The new Cutlass bearing is in and awaiting the prop shaft.

Thanks for looking in on our blog.  Hope you'll come back for more!  Any feedback or advice gratefully received.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Rain stops play

Well the weather is still looking sketchy and likely to remain so for a while yet.  Our current job; we're trying to concentrate ourselves on just a few at a time; is laying a new teak deck in the cockpit but rain is making this impossible. We are generally catching up on inside jobs and i have been making a start on conecting all things engine wise. If the weather remains poor we're going to embark on main hatch building;  one of the items washed away during the Ike storm surge.  We can do this under the relative cover of the cocktail bar ( the work bench )

 Hastily built when we first arrived to shelter from the sun, the parasols had a tendancy to blow over; not the best for those precision jobs.
The cocktail bar mkII. The sides drop down giving us shelter from the weather and enabling us to close up 'shop' when we're done for the day.

We did manage to attach the cockpit coamings today, for good; important as the outermost teak plank needs to follow the coamings shape.

Ruth Sands prior to glueing. 

5200 the permanent solution! almost complete

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Impetuous in January

Here we are, once again in Texas in January.  Since it's been raining and threatening downpours of a torrential nature for several days we've decided it's high time we commence the impetuous blog.

Hope you'll like it and follow us along the way...