The more things change, the more they remain the same. After 5 days in the yard we look almost like we did when we got here. Our big job today was to remove all the green paint on the bulwarks, prep the surface like we should have last year, and then repaint the bulwarks green again.
It all went quite smoothly. We snagged some scaffolding from the fishing boat next door which went back in the water about noon. The first chore was to mask off the wood that we had just refinished. On the caprail, masking tape was enough. But for the wood under the bulwark we needed masking tape and strips of wax paper to make sure no run-off marred out pretty teak. Then, Lulu used a chemical stripper to remove the bulk of the paint. I followed with the sander loaded up with 220 grit to remove whatever she left behind. Then we both attacked the surface with Scotch-Brite pads followed by a washdown with Comet cleanser. After rinsing, we rubbed everything down with denatured alcohol, added a little masking tape that I had forgotten earlier, and commenced painting.
Between doing the starboard side and then the port side, Lulu got a ride to town with our friends Jay and Judy to get a few groceries and to top off our propane tank. By the time she got back I was just starting to paint the port side. A half hour later I was done.
Besides painting, I also managed to change the tiny little fuel filter on the diesel engine. A few days ago I mentioned how the engine lost RPMs several times on our way up here from Newport. The other night I woke up with the sudden realization that I hadn’t changed that filter since Anacortes. Didn’t really need to since we were using such a small pore size on the filter upstream. However, after all the problems we had with fuel filters coming down the coast, it’s reasonable to believe that the little Westerbeke filter needed changing too. I also changed the pencil zinc on the engine’s heat exchanger.
I’ve mentioned zincs several times over the last couple of days. It occurs to me that not everyone who reads this blog is a boater and may not be hip to the concept of zincs. Here’s the deal as far as I understand it. Nitpickers are welcome to get their information somewhere else.
When two different (dissimilar) metals are in contact with each other in the presence of an electrolyte, they can act as a battery. So, in the case of the prop: the prop is bronze and the shaft is stainless steel. These metals, being different, are dissimilar. Salt water conducts electricity, therefore it is an electrolyte. Now, if we have someplace for the current produced by this alliance to go, such as a ground wire to the shore power cord, we have a battery and a flow of electricity. No big deal except that the electricity produced is caused by one of the metals (the less “noble”) losing electrons. Since stainless steel is more noble than bronze, my prop would be giving up electrons. Eventually, no prop. Even non-boaters can recognize that this is not a good thing. What to do? Well, if we throw a third metal into the mix, say one that is WAY less noble than the others, it would lose it’s electrons instead of my prop. Zinc just happens to be such a metal. So, to protect the stuff we want to keep, we install sacrificial zincs in various places on the boat where dissimilar metals come in contact with sea water. Places like the prop shaft, the refrigerator’s keel cooler, and the engine’s heat exchanger. So there ya go.
Weather was beautiful today. A wee bit windy a couple of times but mostly great. After we knocked off we started to walk down to the Mad Dog but our friend Charley who is restoring his Ingrid 38 a little further upriver, stopped and gave us a ride. Had a couple beers and a kielbasa, reconnected with one of the bartenders who we befriended last year (Joanne) and then walked back to the boat in beautiful t-shirt weather.
Tomorrow will be a totally skate day. One final coat of green paint on the bulwarks, remove the tape and service 3 seacocks ( the valves between us and the deep blue sea). The seacocks are for salt water to the galley sink, galley sink drain and bathroom sink drain. Whenever we’re out of the water it’s a good idea to inspect and lube them.
Monday we’ll do our bottom paint. Don’t want to paint ablative paint (the kind that sloughs off as you go through the water) on too much before it’s going to get wet. Tuesday we’ll load all the deck-stowed
crap gear back aboard and go back in the water Tuesday afternoon about 3-ish.
Here’s a shot of what our cockpit looks like when we’re in the yard: