Busy days. Aching backs. A brief update, with the half-hearted allegation that the long-winded, more detail-oriented posts that seem to find favour among the small band of nautical shut-ins that likely comprises the bulk of my readership will resume...after I finish some last-week on land jobs.That keel tank space has been left open (there's a 18 x 12 inch rectangle of steel cut from it now) for drying purposes. The engine's installed over it now is ready for a test fire once I rig fuel service and get my filtering sorted. While I had hoped to power away from the slings, the five days of snow, wind and freezing rain in the middle of April hurt our painting schedule, which of course had to precede the bolting-down of things.
Here's the aft bilges "Metal Prepped". The Ghost Tank mentioned previously has been cleaned out (thanks to Mrs. Alchemy) for this nasty and dirty job) and has been similarly and laboriously twice coated with "Rust-Lok".
Lined with rubber, this might make a nice wine cellar.
The fate of the ghost tank will be thought of no more until the fall. I have to get lead ingots out of the forepeak and the new batteries in at the center of effort amidships before I can tell what is the best course forward.
I have, however, a sort of "compromise" idea. Next fall, I will hoist the engine again, and fully cut out that ghost tank lid. I now know, as does my leg, that it will take about three 4.5 inch cutting wheels. I will also redo the rustlok as I can see that certain spots are lifting away...it was probably too cold to apply it. After I know that I have proper "lock-up" and adhension, I will topcoat the tank with truck bed liner or whatever (maybe two-part Amercoat) will seal it up but good.
Here's the compromise solution for that space: If "static trim observations" at dock suggest it, I can get about a thousand pounds or eight lead ingots down there and still have room for a thick-walled, likely HDPE, diesel tank held down by bolted steel strapping. I estimate that could be 20-25 gallons, and it would not, being low and on the centerline, require an internal baffle. It would sit upon and effectively confine the lead ingots, which I would NOT likely cement in, but might well epoxy in place or simply stack right-side-up and upside-down to make a nearly solid mass. I will have to do a bunch of measurements to confirm this, but that's the likely way forward. Any reader contributions would be appreciated as I am still open to suggestions...October is the next time I will do a thing about it.
Hull bottom painted and topsides Metal Prepped (too cold to top coat yet!):
The needful cove stripe cleaning and topsides touch-up will wait for warmer weather.
Ad hoc but functional bilge pump power and switching installed:
Something safer and better secured will follow. This is purely to power a single bilge pump at dock.
PSS unit supplied with relief hose and bolted in:
|This hose is secured well above the waterline. Eventually, it will be "teed" into the engine cooling system.|
Engine bolted down and drivetrain/Aquadrive connected (thank you, Cap'n Matt). The fuel supply, waterlift and exhaust setup will have to wait until it's warmer. That large wooden engine gantry is getting taken apart today. I will stow it in the forepeak, as it is a very awkward load of lumber to shift on even my sturdiest bike cart:
Gantries in the picture are not as bendy as they seem.
Variprop and Shaft Shark bolted on and rudder serviced and restored:
|Note to self: "Lubriplate 130 AA". Yeah, it's cryptic, all right.|
I have to fix one wiring issue and tighten a few hose clamps. I launch next Saturday. It's been a long time coming. For those keeping track, much of one season was lost to a bad shoulder injury, another to the decision to change engines and tanks, and another to the missus becoming a full-time student to obtain a teacher's degree, meaning Daddy having difficulty getting sufficient downtime for boat rehab. The rest of the delay is purely on me being an unhandy handyman and a nautical know-nothing. Things have somewhat improved. They could have hardly gotten worse. Now, it's about maintaining momentum, enthusiasm and cash flow, sometimes goals which are at odds with each other. But I don't need to tell you that.