Saturday, April 30, 2016

Checking the mooring

Today was a bit of a mixed day... I started by taking a walk at nearby Longwood Gardens before heading up to Keyport for the evening.  I checked with Pedersen's where Gary confirmed that SEAS THE DAY will be ready once he has confirmation that my mooring has been inspected.

A bit of background... there have been an increasing number of incidents where moorings have broken loose in the KYC mooring field over the past couple of years, so our fleet captain ordered an inspection of the whole field.  The first step is to have your mooring set up and then the inspector comes out and pulls it, checking the entire set-up.

Underneath the ball and pick-up stick, is this system...

A bit about our moorings... under the "balls" out in the harbor, lie a complex system designed to hold the ships in place, but still allow for a fair bit of movement as tides, winds, currents and yes, storms have their way.  The diagram below is borrowed from Chapman: Piloting and Seamanship (more on that another day).  On the seafloor lies a mushroom anchor, a several hundred pound hunk of iron shaped like a mushroom (which unlike the diagram, usually lies on its side and digs into the bottom). Attached to that is some heavy chain and some lighter chain.  Here at KYC, attached to the top of the light chain are two pendants (ropes with eye's in them) that get attached to a boat.  If done right, the light chain is the depth of the water at highest tide and only extreme wind, storms, etc., can lift the heavy chain and if all else fails, the anchor can drag slowly along the bottom. 

Since I was at KYC for the "After The Boatyard Party", and today was the first day of launch service, I decided to catch a launch and head out to see what was there.  With hope, everything would be installed and ready for inspection.

I walked out on the KYC dock and saw that they had replaced the dinghy line that was lost in last Fall's storm.

 I caught the launch (Deliverance) with Ray and headed out.

Looking back, I could see the Harborview Condos on the left.  (I happen to know that one of these is for sale... please let me know if you're interested.)

Once we got out, we found my mooring ball!  So everything is set up.  Hopefully the inspections will go smoothly and we'll be in the water sometime this week.

Only one other boat has been launched...

So we headed back to the dock, and I went and visited John (my son) before heading home.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Starting the third season... Removing the cover.

April means it's time to start getting the boat in order for the upcoming season.  We lost a couple of weekends to windstorms and cold weather, but yesterday was calm, sunny and in the mid 60s so I headed up to Keyport and found Seas The Day waiting patiently to get wet again.

I went to Pedersen's boat yard armed with a folding ladder and a pair of diagonal cutters and began cutting the wire ties and untying the ropes holding our canvas cover in place.  Without Vicky's help this year (she is in China for a few more weeks), it took longer than expected (and trying to fold one of these things by yourself results in just a heap o' boat cover), but I was successful.

The cover was removed!

Gary Pedersen stopped by and we discussed the work the yard was going to do.  My philosophy on "boat jobs" is that if its a job I don't know how to do and/or don't like to do and someone else makes their living doing that job, then God & Karma (covering both bases) require me to share my blessings and pay the person to do it.  So I put the cover on and take it off... that's a job that's fairly certain of success and gives me a great sense of accomplishment.  

Pedersen's will handle tightening the halyard (Seas The Day has in-mast furling), varnishing the door and washing and waxing the hull and topsides.  We had the bottom painted last year (after plowing through the mud on our delivery trip), so we didn't need to have that job completed again this year.

While unwrapping the cover around the mast, I came across this doohickey which I don't remember being covered in ASA 101 or 103... a quick post on Facebook came back with the term "leech line" which is used to tighten the leech (back edge) of the mainsail and keep it from fluttering (which weakens the fabric).

I guess you learn something new every day.  

With the cover off, it was time to look below deck.  

No, we were not robbed...

The disarray is by design.  Boats can be "moist" environments, and by leaving all the doors ajar and cushions turned on edge, you allow for maximum air circulation (the vent hatches are in the "vent" position under the breathable winter cover) which should (and evidently did) prevent mildew.  (A few well-placed cans of Kanberra Gel probably helped, too.)

I closed the doors, leaving the mattresses and cushions for another trip, and after a short nap, buttoned Seas The Day up for a few more weeks.  All boat trips - even those that never leave dry land - end up at the same place (the KYC Bar) where my son met me for a quick beer before heading back to DE. 

Oh, my face started feeling warm during the drive home and sure enough... even in April, I need to remember to slather on the sunscreen...

So I now have a few weeks to finish my winter reading...