Ranger Dinghy Refit Continued

Kurt down at Rich Passage was incredibly kind and helpful with getting us a new daggerboard and sail for the little boat. He’s been making Minto dinghies for the past few years & is a delighful resource. Our trip to his workshop was a fun little road trip. My, that gel coat on a new boat is shiny!

Natalie and I got ready for bottom paint. People have asked why we’re painting her; the 40 year old gel coat is just too tired to really bring back. I’m excited to try Awlgrip on the main part of the hull.

Brock finished up all the new tigerwood. We’re going with an oil finish. Easy to maintain, very warm and great feel to it. I’m a fan of  varnish in many applications, but this feels right for this project.

Rigged her with the aluminum mast that Brock had previously devised. The transition between the two pieces will require a little bit of modification to make it easy, but overall it worked great. I’ll be putting Awlgrip on that too, just to ‘prettify’ it.

And then came the lovely moment when we got to take her out on the water. There wasn’t a lot of wind, but then, she doesn’t need a lot of wind to make her move. We were mostly checking the waterline so I would know where to end/begin the bottom paint. The christening ceremony will be this coming weekend out here at Lake Roesiger. And then the summer of sailing can begin!

Replacing Upper Deck Wood

This is a project which Magic Brock has been avoiding for a couple of years, knowing it was inevitable, but dreading it just the same. There’s some bad wood on the main beam of the upper aft deck and the whole thing had to come out. So one day, I heard the Skilsaw. (This was prior to haulout; I’m just way behind on blogging, because…well, we’ve been working way too hard to have time to write) It was all due to those tiny drains that had been in the decks previously; they would clog with debris and then water would sit. Which is a very bad thing and will always come to rot.

Destruction is always the scary part; Magic Brock likens it to the can of worms. How bad will it be? Is it much, much worse that you think? This situation turned out to be pretty much par with what we were expecting.

Which still isn’t a lot of fun. And once again, I was armed daily with the ShopVac trying to keep up with the incredible amount of sawdust and debris generated by this type of project. Brock really works hard when he has something like this going (especially as the calendar dates for haulout and first two week charter were looming), so it’s a consuming process. Things like laundry, eating, and sleeping become secondary to the Do It Now principle.

Marine bedding compound. I had never worked with such a large quantity of it before. It’s like a can of  toilet bowl wax ring, only goopier. Fun in a kindergarten finger paint way, but wayyyy stickier.

Eventually though, she started to come back together and look like our familiar boat.

The new plan for getting the water off the boat can be seen here. I designed (and Brock implemented) a channel that is wide and long enough to make the water clear the lower decks. It can be easily swept and there is nowhere for the water to accumulate. Brock put a fiberglass layer in that area so that the water won’t lurk in the seams. The idea is that we won’t ever have to do this particular project again!

Haulout Complete

Haulout is complete for the year. Bottom paint, hull paint, new zincs, a little extra added to the rudder tab.

We completed all of it from out of the water Friday morning at 9 to splash back into the water Monday at 4. The only time Brock really annoyed me was when he called me a “slow painter.” I was much more gratified when the crew at Port of Everett came back on Monday after their weekend off and did a double take at how much we had accomplished. They kept talking about how incredibly efficient we are. THAT’S more like it! We were all pretty much beat by the end of it, but had some great help from friends of ours: Kris, Rachel, Katy, Karen, Natalie – hey, do you notice the female theme here? My friends ROCK!


And of course, Danny on his longboard underneath scraping was a welcome addition.

Dean was there too, of course – can’t have a haulout without a Dean!


Long week

It’s been a long week. But she’s looking great. Out on charter again soon, so I’m off to continue cleaning!

It’s that Haulout Time Of Year

Katherine Jane Out of the Water

So we get out the four sling device (less than that and we would risk squishing KJ’s great bulk) and haul my darling up and out onto the hard. It’s funny, I remember clearly how utterly nerve-wracking and intense this was the first time. Now it’s much more relaxed & feels like a “normal” event, although still exciting. Brock thinks it’s mostly exciting because there aren’t any bad spots that will rack our bill up into the 10s of thousands.I appreciate that too, but mostly I fall hopelessly in love with her all over again when I see her curves and beautiful lines.

Getting the perspective is one of the fun mind-twisting things. I usually consider our anchor quite beefy and tough, esp when compared to most anchors on boats around here. And yet when I look at it in relation to the entire boat, it looks more like a little Tinker-toy anchor. Wouldn’t want one any smaller, that’s for certain!

Great tools make all the difference. We’re working with some good sanders and it is going quickly. Speaking of which, I need to get my butt back out there and up on the scaffolding! Can’t wait until the After pictures are ready – she’s so pretty then!