Tuesday, December 18, 2007

sail logo design

I think everyone who buys a sailboat wants to personalize it in some way, besides just changing the boats' name. I guess I'm no different. The design that was on the original mainsail of the Laguna Windrose 18 looked like this:

I have the original mainsail that came with my boat, and it has this design on it. Or did have this design on it. All it has now is a brown, sticky 'leftover adhesive' outline of the design above. At first, the plan was to simply paint the old logo back onto the mainsail. But after putting in all this work I've decided to go ahead and get new (or at least refurbished) sails for Wahoo. So then the question is do I leave it blank, paint the same old lame and dated Windrose design that was on the original sail, or redesign it and make it look cool? I like the idea of it looking cool and personal.

So taking the original logo and the windrose name and an actual windrose, I combined them to make this:

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The 'N' needs to be bigger. Still have some minor tweaking to do, but I like it much better than the original. I also like the idea of getting it as a tattoo. But I shall refrain, for now. :D

Monday, December 10, 2007

The keelson that wouldn't die

Okay, so that keelson didn't want to come out. All of the rotten part came out easily, but about half of the aft keelson is still in tact, and it's not cooperating. And because of it's location (between two berth supports) there is no way to get close enough to it to use heavy tools like a grinder to remove it. So I spent about half an hour with a hammer and chisel trying to chisel it out. Very slow going and it really twinged my back. Mom came up with the best idea so far for getting it out - cutting it up into small squares with the dremel to make the chiseling go quicker. Ugh. So I can just scrap that part about having the keelson out in one day. Ha!

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Also, I spoke prematurely when I said there was still one piece of good wood in the boat. When we removed the berth tops, revealing the bottoms of the main bulkhead, we poked with an icepick and found good wood there. I guess we never checked the other side, though. Well, we checked it yesterday. And there is a big spot along the bottom that is rotten. So it will have to be replaced. It had to come out anyway in order to replace the transverse support underneath it. The main bulkhead in Wahoo is actually two pieces, so I guess technically, one piece of wood in the boat is still good. :D

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Actually, that's not completely true. The berth supports appear to be okay as well. So that's three pieces of good wood. And I lost count on how many bad peices of wood. Who could count that high? :D

Also, while working on the keelson I noticed the missing cockpit support. When I got the boat there was nothing supporting the cockpit - the main bulkhead had been removed and I noticed no evidence of any support at all. I just didn't see it. Because it's not there.

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So for now, we're using some plywood pieces to support the cockpit.

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More later.

Monday, December 3, 2007

the funky keelson is just that

ffff funky, yo!

Got a lot of work done on Saturday (officially known as "boat work day"). Got almost all the sanding done for the forward section of the berth supports.

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Next up for the berth supports is a good cleaning with acetone and then one more go with some sandpaper, a final cleaning with acetone, and then our first big fiberglass project as we reinforce the bottom of the berths with new glass on both sides of each berth. We were going to glass in the new keel winch support first, but since that will have to be glassed in underneath the cockpit floor and therefore will have gravity affecting it the whole time, we decided it would be best to keep the first ever fiberglass project a simple one. And this one should be pretty simple. I'm stoked. I can't wait to start doing some real fiberglass repair. I mean, I have so much to do, someday I'm sure to be an expert on the subject. :D

While Mom finished up sanding on the berth supports, I began removal of the funky keelson with the dremel. After about 45 minutes and 5 heavy duty dremel cutting wheels, I had about 1/4 of it out.

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Still have to figure out how to remove the cockpit drain through-hull before I can remove the entire keelson as the cockpit drain runs right through the end of the keelson. It is plastic and isn't budging. I'm not sure if we are going to try and salvage it or just get a new one. It looks like you can just put a large plumbing wrench on it to take it off. I hope it's that simple. If it comes off easily, meaning without destroying it in the process, then we plan to reuse it. Either way, it must come out in order to remove and replace the keelson. I suspect the cockpit drain leaking is one factor in the poor condition of the keelson. The worst rot is where the cockpit drain is. So many places in my boat were stuffed with silicone and painted over when something leaked, that it will be very satisfying to reseal the cockpit drain myself. To know it's been done right. (I love when 'been' and 'done' are next to each other in a sentence "Man, we been done had Puff Daddy." is an especially fine example of this.

Removing the keelson itself was enlightening. The wood was black and actually wet to the touch in some places. Hmmm, we obviously needed to do this job. :D

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For those who don't know the keelson is a piece of wood that is fiberglassed into the bottom of the hull (on the inside) to provide structural support. After removing a bad section it became apparent that Wahoo's aft keelson (and most likely the one up front as well - more on that in a minute) had deteriorated to the point that it was basically nothing more than a hollow channel with some rotten wood inside. Not providing much structure there. :/ I'm now very happy just to have discovered the problem in the first place. I could have easily listened to what some people said and just fixed the few obvious problems and gone on about sailing it. Instead anytime I had any question at all I just picked up an icepick and soon the problem was revealed. And finally, I'm running out of places to poke. :)

Another interesting thing about the funky keelson is the thing that gave it the 'funky' name in the first place, the smell. The black pieces (in the pic above) smell almost like gasoline. I'm guessing the smell is whatever they treated the wood with (maybe gasoline?). And now that it's decomposing it's releasing the smell in a serious way. I had actually thought that maybe at some point a significant amount of gasoline was spilled in the boat. No, it's just the funky keelson. Can't wait to get that mofo out of my boat, man! Get some new, fresh wood and fiberglass in there. Yes, new and fresh sounds good!

Another interesting thing about that smell: In the V-berth there is a cutout in the top. You can lift the piece out, revealing the space underneath the v-berth. It's full of foam (for flotation) but has a strange, gasoline-like smell. As soon as I removed that piece from the aft keelson and smelled the petrol smell, I knew it was the same thing in the front. So now don't even have to remove the V-berth tops to know there is rotten wood there. Hell, I can smell it! And seriously, almost every piece of wood in the boat is rotten, so it's not like this is unexpected. And it's nice to know it's something I can remove and repair.

At some post in the not-too-distant future I hope to have finally revealed all that is in need of repair on Wahoo. Until then, I'll look like the Michelin man. Wahooooo!