Saturday, May 12, 2012


Had to make a choice this morning .... IDPA or work on Spray, our 23' sailboat that we haven't had in the water for three years because we've been so enamored with shooting. Yeah we could have shot the match but as Mr WK when he's not shooting a stage runs around before during and after the match helping set up, paste and take down and I help with the first and last things and spend time when I'm not shooting a stage, filming the stages. So we would have been pooped and most likely NOT gone out to work on Spray today.

Spray won. Previously we'd been out and cleaned the teak with a brass brush, water and Simple Green and it looked good. So last week Mr WK put two coats of teak sealer on it. Mr WK is so good he didn't even need to tape the teak off. He just used a firm straight edge and as an edging tool.Yea! And the teak looks terrific!

Today we rented a generator so we could use a buffer on the hull.When we purchased Spray in the spring of 2005, she hadn't been waxed or polished EVER! In 2005 we did a little polishing on the hull but basically we just checked everything out and put her in the water ASAP. The next couple of springs we gradually rubbing compounded and polished the hull, deck and cockpit. After that all we've done each year is polish.

Even though the hull hadn't been polished in two years it wasn't that bad. It didn't need rubbing compound just a good dose of polish and elbow grease. As I mentioned we rented a generator. We had a buffer we purchased in 2005. The next year we bought a small generator. It struggled to keep the buffer going even though the HP and watts (and whatever else you need) listed on the generator said it would be more than enough to power the buffer. I think every year after that first year that we ran the buffer with the generator it under-powered the buffer and eventually damaged the buffer motor. 

I'd put polish on the entire hull and we were taking turns buffing if off with the buffer when Mr WK noticed that more and more the buffer was just vibrating, not doing the orbital thing. He remembered we had issues with it the last time (2010) but figured it was our under-powered generator. But it did the same thing with this really powerful rental generator. So I made the trip to Home Depot and bought another buffer. Such a difference.

While I was gone, Mr WK figured out that putting the polish on with the buffer was good but buffing it off by hand after it hazed up was superior to using the buffer. So that's what we did. Mr WK redid the areas we'd already done with the old buffer. Now the hull is shiny, smooth and glossy. It's not new boat shiny, smooth and glossy but we're happy with it!

Also, while I was gone, Mr WK had begun the seemingly endless task of taking the rest of the crap in the cabin out and organizing it so we could thoroughly clean it. When I got back, I finished hauling all the rest of the stuff out of the cabin and off the boat to take home so we could assess what would come back. Stuff like ... several hanks and miscellaneous pieces of line (there are no ropes on a boat), a couple of square cushions, several plastic bins of assorted sailboat hardware, several new paint bushes, a few brims, all the chemicals we'd been using to clean the boat, many of which we're through using for the year, tools and the porta-potty, which was clean but dusty — this WILL come back.

We had taken all the settee cushions and sails out two years ago. They've been cluttering up a spare bedroom all this time!

First I ran the shop vac and sucked up two years worth of tree and mud wasp debris along with all the dirt that drifted in and gets tracked in on your shoes. Spray's been parked next to the fence with the trees so some leaf pieces but mostly elm tree seeds have found their way in through the openings in the hatch. With sponges and a brush along with water, Simple Green and Softscrub I cleaned all the fiberglass and wood in the cabin except the storage area under the cockpit.

With an already icky sponge I also cleaned tree detritus from around the sliding hatch area and the lids of the storage areas in the cockpit. That tiny stuff was bunched up, moldy, crumbly and made a huge mess when disturbed as it flaked apart and blew everywhere.

Mr WK checked and aired up the tires. We made good use of that rental generator! They need to hold air for at least 30 minutes. That'll give us time to drive the 1/8 of a mile downhill to the boat ramp and then back up to the trailer storage yard. We plan to replace the tires, which have perfectly good tread but are badly weather checked with retreads before we haul the boat out in the fall. And the tires were OK!

Next up is to refresh the bottom paint from the waterline to the trailer bunks on the sides which deflected the water from the most difficult to get at areas. We'll have to crawl around a bit to get under the very bottom of the boat in the stern and around the bow. We have less than a half a gallon left but but thinning it a bit some acetone and doing under the flat part under the stern last we should have enough. If we have to leave something unpainted not much algae (fuel!) will grow in the darkness under the boat.

Mr WK also plans to check the wheel bearings and repack them if necessary. They have Bearing Buddies but the trailer has sat for three years. Hopefully all they'll need is a shot of fresh grease!  

We need to put the final coat of teak sealer on. After that it's a maintenance coat once a year. We need to finish polishing the deck and cockpit.

Somewhere along the way I am going to purchase several inexpensive flat sheets and make some cushion covers. I took off and washed the smelly cushion covers and they shrank! We had a new cover made for the V-berth cushion a few years ago and that was close to $300 back then. Shortly after we brought the covers home I'd washed the smelly foam with Febreze Laundry Odor Eliminator. They sat and dried outdoors for a few days. That got rid of the smell and they've been in the spare bedroom, not even smelling of Febreze any more, just foam. But we can but the boat in the water without all the cushions. 

Mr WK still has to put the tiller extension hardware on the new tiller but we can do that once Spray's in the water. We also need to try on our fancy-pants Omega life jackets. We're both a bit fluffier than we were three years ago.

After that, check and test run the auxiliary outboard motor with a motor flusher. It's new and has only one full season on it. It's been stored in our garage all this time. 

Then it'll be time to haul the boom, the rudder, the tiller, all the sails, the motor and anything else we don't want to trail all the way out to the slip on the boat and launch her. Maybe even as early as this NEXT WEEKEND or during the week before Memorial Day! We plan to be in the water over Memorial Day Weekend!

 blogging to: Memories 89 1 

reading:  Darker Than Any Shadow by Tina Whittle (a Tai Randolph mystery)

Parting Shot:

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

It's Still Purple

I haven't been knitting as much as other things have taken precedence. More on that in a future post. 

The project that's been getting most of my attention has been a scarf for my SIL. They moved several months ago and in the move she lost this purple mohair scarf that I knit for her. It was the second scarf I'd ever knit and the first 'serious' scarf. The first scarf was eyelash yarn and the second one was purple mohair. It was yarn my SIL chose. So I decided to reprise that first one.

I've been knitting on the new one
a double-sided garter stitch scarf for four months now. I cast on in early December, 2011. It wasn't initially going to be doubled-sided but somewhere during along the way that's what I decided to do. I had five hanks of Cascade Yarns alpaca lace yarn in a beautiful royal purple.

I'm using 6mm needles for the new one. I used 9mm needles for the one in the above photo. I held 2 strands together for the new scarf as the yarn is really thin stuff. When I finished the first 2 hanks I had 64" of scarf. Long enough for a scarf. Much longer would be a hassle if you didn't want to wind it around your neck a couple of times. But as thin as the yarn was, even held double I was worried it wasn't going to be very warm. So I decided to make it double-sided. The yarn is soft, light and lofty so twice the bulk was not an issue — 50gr (1 hank) of this is a whopping 437 yards.

As one side was already knit in garter stitch I decided to do the other side that way as unlike many other knitting stitches / patterns garter stitch looks same on both sides. I'm almost through with the second wide which will finish the next two hanks. The second side is 52" long.  

Once that side is done the fun really begins. My initial idea was to knit the second side to the first side at the bottom and at the end of each row as I knit the second side. But that didn't work very well. Well, it might have if I wanted to fight it the whole way. So I decided to knit the second side on it's own. Once both sides are done, I'll block them separately so the knitting will be stretched out. It'll be easier to match up row to row. Then I'll decide how I want to attach them together; figure out some way to knit the sides together, crochet them or just stitch them together. There will no doubt be some experimenting. 

Once the two sides are permanently mated, after awhile, being alpaca they will felt together slightly and become one piece of knitting, not two.

And I still want to come up with a more clever name than It's Purple.

blogging to: a quiet house

reading: Deadline Man by John Talton

Parting Shot: