Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Are we done yet?

Unfortunately we have only just begun, and we were getting into a rhythm before we had to stop again and handle some of life's stuff. Some of what we have been working on is the teak decks as there are several spots we had leaking. Dirk sealed the chain plates on the aft deck which stopped several of the larger leaks but we still had some of those mystery leaks that appear and like others we are having trouble tracing them down.  One of the worse ones was in our aft head cabinet and we really didn't realize how bad till we started removing the shelf and carpet. We ended up tearing the inside of the cabinet out and we are letting it dry thoroughly before rebuilding it.

When Dirk rebuilds the cabinet I will post it

To stop the other leaks we started the teak deck caulk removal and replacement along with scraping and sanding in the cockpit as it seemed the easiest place to start. Also since this is the first time for us trying this we figured if we were gonna practice it should be in an area that had cockpit cushions covering them most of the time in case it didn't look the greatest. I spent many hours scraping the finish off the teak, in some places it was so thick that it resembled molasses and was gummy, other places it just swiped right off.
The general condition of the entire deck
Once that was done, the task of scrapping out the old caulk began. Again in some places it was so gummy and seemed wet turning my skin black and sticky making it a real mess. Other places I could just vacuum it out as it was so dried out and crumbly. Someone in the past on this boat decided that it would be easier to just take a router and rout the joints out. I wish they hadn't, what a pain as the lines are not exactly straight and they made them so deep now which allows for more water intrusion.
The only reason we are spending so much time on the decks is we would like to get a couple seasons out of them before spending the time, energy and money to pull the teak up and have it replaced with a new fiberglass deck. I have pretty much been the destruction person and Dirk is doing the final sand and caulk replacement which has been the cause of much hate and discontent to the caulk. Usually he ends up wearing as much as went down on the decks. We thought about leaving the decks bare once the caulking was done and let them gray naturally so they would be less maintenance, but after talking to a couple people we decided to give TeakGuard a try. TeakGuard is not an oil, nor a sealer but it penetrates the teak and protects it from the black mold and mildew that likes to grow on teak and it keeps it with that wet look. Below is a shot I took of before, during and after.

On the far right of the photo is what the deck looked like when we purchased Renegade with several layers of something on her decks that was peeling and chipping with every step and gummy and gooey in the areas that didn't get any wear. To the left of that is the deck with the caulking removed and sanded, ready to have the caulking replaced, wood cleaned and guarded. On the far left is one of the cockpit seats that have been completed and TeakGuard applied. From what we understand if you reapply a coat about twice a year it will stay like this. No sanding when its time to apply again. About as maintenance free as you can get and still get this look. It goes on very easy with a foam pad or foam brush and cleans up easy. I will keep you posted on how it holds up. I'm wondering if I want to do my bright work with this or if I should varnish it. Varnish will look nice and shiny but there is a lot of it and it will need to be maintained. I have also been hearing a lot lately of people using epoxy and varnish on the bright work and I am doing some research to see if that would be a good route or not. 3 coats of epoxy and 3 coats of varnish sound a lot better than 12 coats of varnish. The jury is still out on what to do but once decided I will let you know. Any thoughts? Input would be appreciated.....On another note we have been doing a bit of work down below getting our new digs up to par. We have moved to the aft berth since the last posting and since we are the types to watch TV before heading to bed we decided to mount a television at the foot of the berth and took the extra DVD player from the salon and mounted it under the shelf.
shot from the galley looking into the aft berth, as you can see the covers on the seat need to be done over, hummm its been a while since I have sewn. Time to relearn.
The television mounted on a swivel arm so we can enter the closet behind it with the DVD player mounted under the cabinet to the right.

I love our aft windows, waking up to scenes like this
and if we are really tired seeing the sunset before heading to sleep
When we first got Renegade we noticed there was a TV antenna mounted on the mizzen mast but when Dirk followed the wires he noted they had been cut and left to dangle. Hummm guess it doesn't work anymore. Since we are in a marina that doesn't provide cable that meant the only television we were watching were shows and movies that we had on DVD. After tracing a few wires around and re-connecting them Dirk found that we indeed did have a working antenna. Yippie, 40 channels to watch and nothing notable on. Oh well, we have a choice now at least and I get to watch my home make over shows I love so much when I have a moment that I'm not so tired that I fall into bed as my eyes are closing. I'm still cleaning a lot, wiping down headliners, walls and everything else while Dirk has been taking care of maintenance issues and in general getting to know the boat. What switch turns this on, what does this switch do? Whats that noise when I flip this switch? So many things to learn when you purchase a different boat. One item Dirk has marked off his list was to clean the fuel filters as they seemed to have a bit of crud in the bottom of them. Once he got it drained, and taken off to clean it was amazing how much gunk there was.
That doesn't look good
Wondering how long it had been since it had last been looked at. So after cleaning it up he got it reinstalled and moved on to the next project which will be covered a bit in the next post hopefully if I remember to cover it. One project we knew we wanted to get done when we bought the boat was to have the canvas redone on her. I don't think what is on there now is too old but the zippers are are pulling out and when you zip or unzip it the teeth fall out left and right. Besides that, it is an unattractive gray color and we want to match the cockpit cushions and the back deck cushions that are Burgundy. So were looking at having a full cockpit enclosure done with strata glass enclosure for those cold dreary days and 3 new sail covers done plus the UV lining of the Gib done all to match. We have a quote given to us that is expensive but I think about what others would charge so to put our minds at ease Dirk requested a 2nd quote from someone else. Hopefully this project will get started soon as the weather is slowly beginning to change. We did find out that we have just about a full sun cover for the boat. Sweet.....We had the main section up and it gave lots of shade to relax under and will help to keep the boat cool in the dead of summer. We also found other assorted canvas items that even we aren't sure of where they go. As I said at the beginning of the blog about taking care of life's "stuff". Well when we first started cruising several years ago we put all our "stuff" into storage units in Alabama. We wanted to make sure that we enjoyed the lifestyle and if not we had all our "stuff" to start over on land. Well as you have guessed we love this life and cant imagine moving back on land any time soon. Once one retires from the military you are given up to 5 years to make your final move that the military will do for you. Well our time is up this year so we took the opportunity to drive up and empty the units out. We sold some furniture while there and now our "stuff" is on a truck and on its way down to Florida here to deal with. I see garage sales, donations, and garbage days in our future. Its amazing what we hold on to thinking we need it all and once you live a life with minimal items you realize that all this "stuff" is just distracting and you can really do without it. Oh sure we will hold on to our sentimental objects that have a place near and dear to us but the longer we did without all that other stuff the easier it is to part with it. Hopefully soon I will have a new post talking about redoing the rigging, batteries that need attention very soon and new toys for the boat. Till then.....
Here is Capt. Butters enjoying some time on deck. I think he spotted a fishing bird on a rope here.