Monday, 23 February 2015

Sunny Saturday and a grim Sunday.

Saturday dawned bright and sunny and I got some tidying done on the Heron as I continue to hope to sell her. I also took the chance to take some photos of the locker lids for the benefit of Steve on his blog, 'Yacht Sparrow'

I hope the pictures are pretty self explanatory, the wooden tongues go in under the back of the locker moulding so there is no need for hinges.


Fly was enjoying the sunshine too and we had a good wander along the shore seeing what the spring tides had washed up. I should really have taken advantage of the weather and got the LHT out for a cycle but I was in no rush as I had a plan for Sunday when using the bike would work out perfectly. Unfortunately the weather changed and by Sunday afternoon it was snowing and as the day wore on the rain hammered down.

Bit of a disappointment, but there's always next weekend.

Monday, 16 February 2015

More progress on the Sona - Jaguar 23

It's about time I did a cycling post..., but not this week. I'm still busy with the Sona and as always seems to  happen, the more I do, the more jobs I find to do. 

First a quick diversion.  The above pic is of the remains of Dunbar Castle which is looking even further undercut by the winter storms. There could be some homeless Kittiwakes when they come back to nest this year.
But back to the Sona. Last weekend was a little warmer so I gathered some useful tools together (see below) and got started on the the ever growing list of jobs.

 I removed the forward bulkhead to check the anchor-well drains. I was pleased to see decent hose and stainless hose clamps, and also that they were crossed to allow the drain to work when healed.

But then the bad news when I gave the hoses a tug and the drains sheared off. Still, they're not too expensive to replace and it's better they fail on dry land.


Another task was to replace an area of the sole (technically, a floor in a boat is a rib). This had been removed years ago to re-glass an area around the keel box and never replaced.

The woodwork had to be removed, the mould treated, and then I stuck the section back down with big blobs of silicone. I'll fill the cuts with silicone too. Only problem is that it shows how dirty the rest of the sole is.

Up at the bows, and I've noticed that the fore-stay fitting seems pretty loose. It is near impossible to access but I managed to fit a camera into the void behind the water tank and this is what the camera saw. 

The long stainless eye bolt is the one causing the worry, but after seeing this picture, it looks like there is some resin to stop it coming undone and there is a reasonable backing plate. A Jaguar 23 is supposed to have a fixed fore-stay with no bottle screw, so perhaps it is intentional to have a bit of movement in the fitting. I'll ask about.

Whilst I had the camera handy I opened the access hatch on the water tank and took a picture of the inside. Oh dear. It looks like its going to need a lot of scrubbing with Milton fluid and even then I think it will just be for washing water rather than drinking.

On deck I've resealed the eye bolts the the chain plates and tightened them up against each other.

I also opened up the keel box to check the lifting mechanism which, although it looks dirty, is actually quite well lubed and seems good for another season.  So that at least was put back together and left alone.

I also fitted a new battery but this just highlighted that a complete re-wire is needed. So things are slowly getting there and the cabin is slowly filling up with odd tools and cleaning materials and I am quickly running out of time.

 Good thing I have plenty of willing helpers!

Sunday, 1 February 2015

Some progress with Sona

For the last couple of weeks I've been stressing over a piece of formal coursework and wondering what on earth I was doing studying again.  It was finally submitted on Wednesday and I had booked a couple of days off work to relax but frustratingly got called in on the mornings. So here's a quick summary of what I did manage to get done.

One of the first jobs was to give the Sona a good scrub. There was a lot of grime and a worrying amount of mould and mildew which can be tough to shift. Stuart was happy to lend a hand and the first scrub was with Bilgex and some sort of liquid detergent we found in a locker. 

It was freezing with the occasional flurry of snow and, despite some good progress, we didn't stick at it for long.

So it was back into the cabin where I ripped out the corroded gas stove and temporarily fitted the stove from the Heron.

Ahh, heat! and a working kettle!

Inside is also needing a bit of a clean where some standing water must have collected. This was sprayed with some mildew remover from the local pound-shop with little effect. I'll need to get something a bit stronger for cleaning (bleach and oxalic acid) and I also need to get the sails out of the boat and properly folded.

And whilst I am on the subject of sails, we opened up the spinnaker bag to find this. can make up your own mind about the colour scheme.

Back in the workshop, and I have cleaned up the mast foot and freed off the halyard blocks. I reset the m6  stainless studs but the aft stud had stripped so I tapped an m8 thread into the back of the alloy casting.

After re-threading the halyards, the whole assembly fitted back into the mast. The 50mm sq plates that I'd carefully engineered (bent in the vice with an m10 bolt for a former) look like they will be just the right size and I now have to make the decision to rivet it all together or to use screws.

 If I rivet it and something doesn't work, then it will be a real pain to strip down. However if I use screws, there is a risk of them catching the halyards inside the mast. I still have to fit the narrower alloy plates fore and aft on the mast so there is no rush.

Busy busy, but the sun is getting a little higher in the sky each day which means longer daylight hours and hopefully some warmth, but also means that I'm another week closer to launch!