Monday, May 11, 2015

We have splash down

Well as usual the boat launch doesn't go without issues.  Friday night I had the rudders installed and the props back on.  From there I had to finish attaching my shaft couplers to the vdrive.  When turning the driveshaft by hand, I noticed a weird vibration on my Starboard side.  We decided to get the boat in the water and see if it was present under load.  Saturday morning we finished adding anodes and attaching the couplers.  From there we hooked up to the truck and headed to the ramp.  Needless to say I was really nervous.  We had ripped everything apart on this boat this off season and had the potential for so many things to go wrong.  After almost forgetting my keel drain plug we splashed in and had no leaks.

When launching had 2 small but time consuming issues.  I replaced some fuel line on the port engine and we weren't getting fuel to that engine.  We finally got it siphoned up to the fuel pump and it fired up.  That took about 45 minutes.  After giving it some throttle to see if it was getting enough gas, the inside block drain plug shot out.  We threaded in a new plug to see if it would hold and we decided to go ahead and get all the way off the trailer.  The boat was pretty much floating on its on and just slid off the trailer with no effort.  After floating back into the inlet I decided to work my way over to a dock.  I wasn't able to steer the boat in any direction and I had a bad vibration on the port side.  After saying "WTF!!!" for a what felt like 20 minutes but was about 2, I realized what I had done.  My boat has a cable steering.  When I want to change stations to drive I have to turn a handle on my back wall and then go lock to lock on the wheel I want to steer from.  That will then engage that wheel as the active wheel.  When installing the rudders I tested both and tested the flybridge 2nd.  I even said to myself, I need to move that back to the lower helm and didn't do it.  After running back and swapping it over I was able to get to the gas dock without an issue.  The vibration had me worried from the port engine.  Let me give a bit of background again.  Apparently the boat didn't sit totally even in the boat. The starboard side appeared to sit lower.  The previous owner added weight to the port side in the form of cinder blocks and other heavy objects.  One of those cinder blocks was against the engine mount and vibrating on the hull just enough to be very noticeable.   Once we moved the block the vibration went away.

    Back to the stripped bolt.  After removing the vibration I revved the port engine and it shot out again.  We found out it was stripped out and we would need to tap the plug hole a size larger.  We headed to Lowes to look for a TAP set and then finally ended up at Sears.  That ate up about 4 more hours.  After taking about an hour to tap, we grabbed some gas and finally headed south around 6:45 pm.  Much later than expected. The way down was really trouble free.  I had to keep an eye on my packing gland and keep tightening or loosing the nut.  After getting through the dam I was able to kick it up and got up to 26 mph at 3000 rpm.  I didn't put the hammer completely down as we were still testing it out.  In the end the trip down was so great and rewarding.  It really made the last 2 1/4 months feel worth it.  I still have a number of items on my plate to finish.

    Saturday we finally got the hot water tank wired in and working.  I took my first ever houseboat shower.  It was interesting.  Not as much water pressure as I would have hoped for but we still have some kinks to work out.  I was lucky that we had a hand towel on board for me to dry off with.  I decided to start putting all my tools and interior stuff on the back deck for sorting.  I can't believe the amount of crap I had on that boat.

    Sunday I was up early and headed over to help build new steps to the docks as well as finish cleaning up the boat.  I have everything pretty close to organized and cleaned up.  I will finish up all that on Weds when I get back in town.  By the weekend I hope to wrap up the boat projects for this year.  It has been a really exhausting and trying process.  I will continue to post to this throughout the season with any updates.



  • Interior  (The items below are really some of the last things I plan on doing. They are really the finishing touches to the whole renovation)
    1. Kitchen LED Install
      1. Will complete 5/13
    2. Cut hole for microwave power cable
      1. Will complete 5/13
    3. Finish sink/faucet/counter installation
      1. Will complete 5/13
    4. Add edge strip to the cabinets
      1. Will complete 5/13
    5. Put trim in the rear corners of the salon
      1. Will complete 5/13
    6. Touch up the interior paint
      1. Will complete 5/13
    7. Empty/clean the cuddy
    8. Secure all wires
    9. Secure the toilet pump
    10. Hang Curtain over sink
      1. Will complete 5/13
    11. Install Carpet
      1. Will complete 5/14 
    12. Finish hot water tank switch
    13. Clean the upper salon flooring
      1. Will complete 5/13
  • Engine Bay 
    1. Mount component mounting board
    2. Mount battery charger and outlet
    3. Plumb the generator
    4. Run generator fuel lines and water separator
    5. Reinstall the rudder cutlass
    6. Install remote oil filters for engines
    7. Replace battery charging cables
      1. Will complete 5/13
    8. Replace generator starting battery
      1. Will complete 5/13
  • Driveline
    1. Paint strut
    2. Install rudder packing glands
    3. Install rudders
    4. Install shaft packing glands
    5. Install shafts
    6. Install props
    7. Perform and alignment
  • Exterior
    1. Clean up annodes
    2. Replaced chipped sink window
    3. Add more bolts to hold the hatch
    4. Seal the deck hardware
      1. Will complete 5/14
    5. Seal kitchen window track
    6. Replace flybridge wall
      1. Started. Old paneling removed.
    7. Fix horn
      1. Will complete 5/14
    8. Clean the exterior carpet
      1. Will complete 5/14
    9. Clean the flybridge
      1. Will complete 5/14
    10. Paint the front roof
      1. Will complete 5/14
    11. Rivet the loose rails
      1. Will complete 5/14
    12. Add new sticker and hull number
      1. Will complete 5/15




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