Friday, December 31, 2010


I'll get back into the habit of updating more regularly, soon.

I spent the x-mas holiday on the boat, I was able to complete the install of the second layer of 1/4" battens on the overhead in both the forward and main cabins. I also finished the cabin sides in the forward cabin. All of these areas are now insulated with 1/2" foam sheets.
I made paper templates for the cabin sides forward, cut then out of some 3/16 ply I had at the house. I've not installed them yet, I'm holding off to be sure all the water intrusion is fixed.

Speaking of water; I knew the port seals were leaking. I found a source online for the seals, and hope to start replacing them this weekend. the seals It took a long time to find these. I spent a lot of time online, ffollowed by walking into random window and glazing retailers.

I found another source of water, the hull to deck joint. Both the prior owner and myself had taken time to seal the edge of the joint where the balsa core is exposed with epoxy, but in several places the upper and lower flange of the joint had separated enough to let water seep in to the interior of the boat. During the few heavy rain storms we've had, this added up to a good inch of rain pooling at the foot of the forward berth. Last week I was able to grind away the paint and get down to bare fiberglass, applied a coat of neat expoy (fast cure) followed by a coat of thickened epoxy. I used the spreader to force some of the expoy into the gap (when there was one) and then smoothed the whole mess out.
It still needs another coat to fill in small voids, but.... wait for it, no water in the forward cabin!
I hope to place the order for the foam for the mattress next week.

Lastly, I began some engine work; The seal that goes around the output shaft leaks, letting oil get onto the rotating prop shaft/ coupler and flings oil all over. I got the whole mess taken apart, but forgot the new seal at the house. I should have that installed tomorrow night, New Years Eve.

Lastly, I plan to move the boat to her new slip on Saturday morning.Not a bad way to ring in the new year.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Back too it.

Big changes around here over the last 2 weeks.
I've been heading down to the boat every few weeks, but not really doing any work on it just stopping in to admire how much work is really left.

I've been spending most of my time on home remodel projects.
But, I'll be moving the boat back to Lake Union at the end of the month. I've secured a live aboard slip back at AGC, where I was living on the old boat.
Sometimes life doesn't work out the way you planned. In that case having the boat was a nice safety net. It looks like I'll be able to watch New Years fire works from the boat this year.

Anyways, the move aboard to-do list is huge. I have parts on order, hoping they will be in today or tomorrow.
I finally found new seals for the windows. The Northwest has been getting record rain and all the weak spots in the boat are showing up. The windows were fine where I bedded the frames to the hull, but the factory seals in the frames are shot. 4 of the 8 ports leak. Bad enough to make for a really wet interior. It's bad enough that I need to remake the overhead panels as they've warped beyond repair.

Since I'll be taking the old down, I have templates witch will make for a faster install of new material. I don't plan on using the mdf, even though it is still looking new in the old boat. I'll go with a paint grade wood, like Poplar this time, just in case.

At the same time, I'm also going to add another layer of 1/4" battens over the current ones to allow for an increase in insulation to 1/2". this should help with heat and condensation further.

I've begun to mill Mahogany stock for the ceiling (not above, but along the sides of the hull). I've milled strips from reclaimed shipping pallets (pallets coming from the far east are often nice wood like Mahogany!) they are 2" by 3/16" thick and 4' long. This will work fine for most areas, but I'll need to offset some of the longer areas in the main salon for a nice finish. But, I'm really excited about this project. I love to use reclaimed goods, for the $ savings, but also because they were trash to someone and after some love with a table saw, jointer and router they will make for a beautiful new interior.

I decided on the new lights too. I'm very unimpressed with the Dr. Led's. For the cost they were garbage. So I'll give these a try: LED lights
A live aboard and long distance cruiser I met showed me how he adapted a refrigeration unit from a 110 dorm style fridge to work with his ice box so I'll be working on that soon too, seeing as I have yet to install the counter tops.
I've decided on bedding foam too: Memory Foam
The size is just about prefect. All I need to do is some cutting and sew a a cover.
depending on how much I love or hate the it I may order another to cut the sette foam as well.

The list of to-do's is pretty long. I still need to properly install the hose for the bilge pump. I was having trouble running it under the sole so it's currently running above and makes walking around a pain. I need to install a new blower motor for the bilge exhaust and run the hose, right now there is nothing.

One of the bigger projects is replacing the seals around the output shaft of the Atomic 4. They have failed and oil is leaking onto the prop shaft. As the shaft spins the oil is flung all over. The job in a aft mounted boat would be a nightmare. Might need to pull the engine, but being that the Yankee is midships I can simply undo the coupler and slide the shaft aft gaining access. I ordered the seals for under $10 from Moyer Marine, Ken is the greatest! I spent more on the tool to press the bearing than the seals and shipping combined but it should make the job faster and easier.

Well that's a brief overview of the current project, The minor projects are too numerous to list. I'll do my best to keep the site up to date. If you're in the hood, feel free to drop by.

Fair Winds,

Sunday, June 6, 2010

hosting pic here for forum help

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Floating, in the water.

Splashed the boat on Saturday morning during high tide.
She moved under her own power to the guest dock where she stayed for a couple days while I tended to some loose ends.

-I got all the turn buckles free, they were seized up good.

-Instaled a Y pipe at the transom thru hull so I can run two seperate bilge pumps, on auto and one manual.

-Measured the rig for bridge clearance. 46 feet (no antenna).

-pulled out a bunch of old wiring.

-washed down the decks

-installed the bow pulpit.

Mostly busy work just to be on/ near the boat. She's far more stable then the Westerly. Just walking in the cabin would make that boat rock. Winterhawk is really stable.

I made a list of to-do's now that she floats. I need to block the mast, looking at spartite, but will go with wood or rubber until I get a feel for the rake I'd like.
I need to replace the halyards, currently they are wire/ rope splice.
I need to put new grommets in the Genoa. Bed the genoa track and main traveler, but then I should be able to hoist a sail.

Blake Island here we come!


Before (Feb 09)

Friday, May 28, 2010

the rig is up

All went good. The mast was not fitting into the step base well. There was room for/aft, but side to side was really tight. We fussed with it for a while.
The cure was to use a C clamp and give the sides a light squeeze. The mast slide down and into place.

Most of the turn buckles are hard to turn, which makes the process a little slow, but they'll work for now.

We launch tomorrow morning


Monday, May 24, 2010

Engine runs, going in the water!

It’s been a whirlwind of activity at the boat over the last couple of weeks. The big tasks had to do with the engine. It sat idle for a couple years, maybe more. I had a few hiccups along the way. 1st I didn’t know much about alignment and how important it is in boats. So when I planned to align the engine to the shaft I was surprised/ disappointed to find that while I have 2 adjustable motor mounts on the starboard side, I have two fixed ones to port. This by itself was not a problem, but the lag bolts went into really soft wood. West systems has a series of booklets with tons of step by step instructions. Using their guidelines I potted new bolts. Basically you drill out the bad and fill it with thickened epoxy then put a bolt coated with grease in the mix. Let it cure and the next day the bolt unthreads and you’re good to go. Sounds easy, and it is, but it was time consuming. Once I had something solid to work with I needed to make new rubber mounts for the port side. Someone in the yard had a roll of ¼ fiber re-enforced rubber mat. I cut new pads and drilled out the center so the bolt would keep them from wondering off. Once all this was done aligning the engine was fairly straight forward. Then I went about replacing all the hoses for the cooling and fuel system. New exhaust hose was ran, the stand pipe was installed, new gaskets here and there. The fuel tank had gas in it but the deck cap was not in place for some time and water had to have gotten into the tank so I went about draining most of the tank, enough to be able to lift it out and down the ladder. So now I have a ¼ full tank and 3 jerry cans to take to haz-mat. During a spark plug change I found the #4 pug wire had a worn/ melted spot. Time is running out so rather than ordering a new set I found one at an auto parts store. It’s too long, but it works for now. The rest of the crucial engine wiring was gone through. All connections were cleaned or replaced and a new battery installed. Lastly an oil change adding a quart of marvel mystery oil. Not sure what it is but everyone on the A-4 sites swear by it so I’ll be a sheep and follow. So, with much maintenance out of the way I ran a temporary fuel line out to the cockpit (fuel tank still needs to be cleaned out) and into a small gas can. It was with great pleasure that the good old Atomic 4 fired up without much fuss at all! After a short period I was not satisfied with the lack of cooling water coming out of the exhaust so I shut her down. Between the all the new hoses, standpipe and exhaust hose, I expected the engine would have to run for a while to fill up the cooling passages and then the stand pipe but it was not really taking much water from the buckets. After a phone-a-friend, I removed the water pump impeller, looks ok but I’m going to replace anyways. I used a hose barb fitting to flush the engine with a garden hose. At first I only had a trickle of water coming out the exhaust end, but then a whole mess of black yuk came out. It took a while for the water to run clear. I tried to reinstall the impeller and it did take more water, but I think it could be better. So, I have a new impeller on my list of parts to pick up tomorrow. I had some trouble finding a locking nut for the stuffing box. There was no nut installed when I got the boat. Finding one was a real nightmare. The only option was to order one; it could be here in a week. (more on why that will not work in a minute). So, I stopped by Second Wave, a local marine store that sells used and consigned stuff. No luck finding a locking nut but they did have the end cup in a bin of loose bits. I purchased that for $2 and went back to the boat to cut both ends off leaving only a threaded nut. And now all is well. I also had to order a new nut and monel pins for the folding prop. That’s all installed and greased up. I had the shaft coupling faced at Seattle prop down the street, they had it ready next day. So the boat is ready to float. The engine was the big issue. If I couldn’t get it running I was going to side tie the dinghy and get someone to help maneuver her to a slip. Looks like that’s not going to be needed now. And on that note, the boat yard is pretty empty and there were lots of give-always when people were leaving. I got a new dinghy, just what I wanted! I was not looking forward to towing the 9 foot Avon around. I wanted a lighter hard dinghy that could be stored on deck, so something like 8 feet tops. The one I got is about 8 feet, has a dagger board and rudder, and outboard mount. All I need to do is rig a mast and boom and I can have a sailing dinghy too! Maybe Lilli will be able to sail it when she comes out this summer. So, the big news is the boat is going in Saturday morning. Friday morning the truck is coming to load her and bring her to the other side of the yard where the crane lives. Friday morning I’ll step the mast and secure the shrouds. I’ll get some paint on the keel where the blocking was and tidy up some loose ends. Then Saturday we’ll launch with the tide, around 8:30.I ‘m going to keep the boat at the marina in South Park until Monday, just in case something leaks and I need to haul out. But planning for the best, on Monday I’ll motor down the Duwamish to Winterhawk’s new home. I spent a lot of time trying to find some place to keep the boat without spending a pile. I thought about dropping the hook in Quartermaster Harbor on Vashon, I looked around for a private mooring ball without luck. But thanks to Google maps I found two places on the Duwamish where there are boats moored but not really in a marina. The first turned out to be a real dump. I decided to visit the second and if I didn’t have luck Elliot Bay marina had one available for $360. The second place is in a very industrial area. There are 5-6 boat houses with a couple open slips behind an industiral machinist place. I knocked on a couple doors and spoke to a nice lady. Turns out she had room for one sailboat for $150 a month. It’s a no frills place, but it’s down river of the 1st ave bridge so unless it’s a really high tide I don’t have to worry about any bridges (the Harbor Island Bridge is going to be really close if the tide is in). Best of all, its 5 minutes from the house and Alia can walk there from work. The next few days are going to be busy finishing the cooling system, installing cleats so I have something to secure dock lines too, installing the bilge pumps, some hoses, fuel tanks and prepping the mast. Can’t wait!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Putting deck hardware back on

Hosting a picture for a forum. I don't know what this is... thoughts?

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Pics worth a thousand words.

the boat: Yankee 30 MKIII
power: A-4

Trying to get this boat back together and in the water, installed the cutlass bearing and shaft that came with the boat. When I slid the shaft in, it comes close to meeting up with the center of the engine shaft/coupling. If I give it a little pressure it lines up fine. I can blot it in place but see the rubber hose on the stuffing box flexes a little.

Not sure what the acceptable tolerances are, this is my 1st inboard.

Question is, should I align the engine to get closer or it this OK?

not sure what the exhaust thing on the left is for, I have a complete spare engine. Will not fit in the Yankee.

Standpipe. I like the idea, and I have all the parts. Going this way rather than the waterlift. At least to get her in the water.

Adjustable motor-mounts.

not sure what this hose is, crankcase breather?

Tuesday, April 27, 2010


My new work situation, that of being semi retired has allowed me to get in some quality time in on the boat.

The bottom is now 100% painted, even the spots where the stands were. The boot stripe got it’s final coat yesterday. Now the tape is off, the boat is really looking nice. Getting the waterline on really makes the topsides look sleeker.

I’ve been slowly knocking out the thru-hull upgrade. The boat came to me with ball valves screwed onto the thru-hulls. While this seemed to work fine for the last 30 years, I wanted to make sure they were as bullet proof as possible. Most of the ball valves were heavily corroded and took some serious leverage to open/ close. This created some noticeable flex at the base of the valve/ hull.

Due to time and money, both lacking. I chose to make my backing plates out of white oak. I’ve used it for exterior bits before on the Westerly’s companionway. I know it holds up to the environment fine. It’s also cheap, and easy enough to cut/ drill.

Originally I planned to have a single block, but once I looked into it closer, the hull has this sort of nipple due to the thru-hulls being flush mounted. So, I ended up making a second block, ½ as thick and making the center much larger. I used the grinder and the flap disc to form the back side of the block to fit to the nipple. Adding a single layer of mat when each was epoxied to the hull, along with epoxy thickened with 406 filler made sure each thin plate was sealed on the backside and had a good surface area to bond.

Once the first plate had cured I put the bolts in through the backside of the main block. When I counter sunk the blocks the counter sink was just a hair smaller than the bolt head which turns out to work really well. By threading the nut down the bolt was pulled into the counter sink and locked into place.

Now working with wet epoxy and thru-hulls is not the best one person job. Lacking a personal assistant, I had to make it work. 1st off, doing the main block after the thin one had cured made the job simpler. I tried to do both blocks once and it was a stressful endeavor. Thankfully I got another guy in the yard to come over and start the thru-hull while I held the mess in place.

So after the thin block was cured, and the bolts in the thick blocks I would insert a thru hull from the outside. The thru hulls are too long and will need to be cut, but I wanted to wait until all the blocks are in for fear of cutting them too short. The thru-hulls being too long meant I could steady the thru-hull with a finger while threading the thick backing plate/ seacock/ 406 thickened epoxy combo on a few threads. Using any means necessary to steady the seacock I would climb out of the boat and give the thru-hull a few more turns from the outside, hopefully until it bottoms out. Then, back into the boat and I would begin to unthread the nuts. (I skipped telling you I threaded in the nuts, then slipped the thru hull over the top) by unthreading the nuts equally the thru-hull pulls against the hull and compresses the thick block into the thin one. I let that cure over night and the next day I have one hell of a solid base for the seacock.

The head inlet was a bit trickier. The hull liner made is so there was a 1 1/2” gap between the hull and the liner. I opted to cut the liner out so I could install the plates like I have been. Once the plates are in place I can add a filet of thickened epoxy and then the entire sole can get a coat of paint. I cut the liner, (more like drilled it) today. I got the thin plate in place, but missed taking a photo.

The next step is to epoxy the hole, so if the thru-hull leaks a bit, the water won’t soak into the oak. One good coat should do. Then each block will be coated in some Pettit 4700/4701, which is their epoxy barrier coat. I’ll use this simply because I have some left over. The bilge will get a good coat too.

I’ve begun to read more on the Atomic 4 and am creating a mental check list on how to put some things back together (prop, shaft, coupler). I need to re-wire it, install a battery, hook up the throttle and shift cables. A good tune up would be nice, plugs, oil, filters. Then there is the whole exhaust thing. There is the stock standpipe and a water lift. I don’t know enough yet, but if anyone has knowledge of either system they want to share feel free. Better yet, come on down to the boat and I’ll feed you beer!

I brief update. Boat should be in the water in a few weeks. Not sure where she’ll be moored just yet, someplace with direct access to the sound and cheap.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

thru hulls

The Marleon was proving a hassel.
long story short there were too many special orders. got bronze.
thank god for my Fisheries discount.
To keep it simple and uniform I'm going from 1/2" to 3/4: for the raw water intake.
and from 1 1/4" to 1 1/2" on the head overboard discharge.

I also ordered the thru hull transducers for speed/temp and depth. They should arrive in a couple weeks. I'll wait on the display unit for cost reasons. but at least the holes will be filled and the boat can float.

It was raining good this morning so I'll wait a couple days until lI get the next 2 coats on the bottom.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

I'm still working.....

Finally after week s of fiberglass work, sanding and sore arms the bottom paint is on, well at least the 1st coat. Above the waterline is black and white, classy like a tuxedo. But when she heels over, sexy!

But let me back track a bit. Work did stop on the boat for a long time while we did a major bathroom remodel at Alia’s place. But, nothing lights a fire under your pants like an eviction notice. The city/ state still don’t know what their doing or when. I was told I had to be out by the 28th of last month. But, a couple other boat owners were told May and June. So My plan is to work on getting the boat float ready and keep working until I get a notice taped to the boat.

Then I’ll just put her in the water and get the rigging set up and go from there. I can sail just fine with a less than finished interior.

Over the last few weeks I spent a lot of time re-doing the hull to keel joint. I was undecided on this, because I had to get out of the yard I thought about just letting it be, but I had a bad feeling about it. I was proven right when I took a grinder to the filler. The boat has been out of the water for 18+ months but there were still pockets of water in there. Also the leading edge was 100% filler, and the whole thing had minimal cloth. I re-did the joint with cloth and mat and filler, but less than what was there before.
I feel confident that the joint will have a long waterproof life.

The next task was to decide what I was going to do about the thru-hulls and lack of proper seacocks.
I knew I needed to install backing plates and real ball valve seacocks but I was undecided about the backing plate material and seacock material too. For cost and time reasons I’ll go with wood plates sealed up good with epoxy. For the seacocks I was set on bronze…. Until I tried to get the old ones out. I’ll go with Marleon. All the ball valves were so corroded it took a lot of leverage to get them to open/ close but they still moved. Getting them free from the thru-hull was another matter. I was able to get the thru-hull nut off which let the thru hull head drop down far enough to get my trusty sawz-all in between the head and hull and I cut out all but one thru-hull. One did come out, just like it should but this was enough to sway me to “plastic”. No corrosion or grounding issues.

I still need to go pick up the new thru-hulls and seacosks. Then buy lumber, and make up the plates. But I’m getting close!

Yesterday I applied two coats of Pettit’s epoxy barrier coat, followed this morning by one more coat and then this afternoon, the 1st of 2 or 3 coats of bottom paint. I went with Pettit’s Vivid red and wow!

I’m starting a new job so I’m not sure what my schedule will be like over the next couple weeks, but here soon I think(?) I’ll be working part time so my mornings can be spent down at the boat, or working in Alia’s next project……

This is what happens if you can't move your boat......