Baggy Wrinkles

Baggy Wrinkles
S/V Nautica, Hull #614, Built at Whitby Boatworks Ltd., Ontario, Canada 1977, one of the most recognizeable Carl Alberg designs. A masthead sloop displacing 9000 lbs, keel hull, Yanmar 15 hp diesel, LOA 30.27 Beam 8.75, Draft 4.29, roller furling headsail, tiller, berths for 4, interior teak bulkheads, teak cap rail and cockpit teak coamings, 12 volt lighting, aluminum mast support, Harken self tailing winches, in its day was designed for customers as a Cruiser-Racer, the Alberg 30 remains a Classic design of the modest Alberg inventory.

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Monday, February 19, 2018

Chasing Old Hoses

The last 6 months has been a slow period of adjustment for Nautica and me as I've put my attention on updating a few things, fixing some others and sailing less than I had hoped.  Some fellow bloggers have been in the same cycle of work.  It's like anything else, there is a lot of detailed work and fixing of stuff behind the beautiful images of sea and sail.  It's not always a sublime lifestyle.  There's a lot of work behind any vessel, and especially behind one which is in her forties.

And with each "fix" there is a period of detective work which takes place as we ask ourselves, "Why did they reroute these hoses and disconnect the portside leaving the starboard connected?" or "Why is there a large bulge in the starboard hose located just between those bulkheads?"  And, "I wonder if this Whale Pump is even going to work once I refit it with 'o rings' and reconnect after these many years?" 

Sometimes these slow periods are good times to take stock of the status aboard, concentrate on doing the "maintenance" which few of us want to do.  It's slow, hard, and frustrating.  And I don't have all the particular expertise needed for each item or event.  Lately, has been reconnecting the head and galley to freshwater.  The hoses are quite old it seems, very stiff and cracked, and simply stuck on fittings.  I often wonder when they were last used without having any idea.

This was how I found the water hoses after purchase in 2016.  Altered to feed the Galley, itself disconnected.  These hoses are a bit larger than the 5/8ths replacements, and these don't seem to fit anything without jury-rigging.  I hope to remedy that with the new hose replacements.

The head had been redesigned by a PO (previous owner) to operate only on a "contained" basis as the waters in which she sailed (Maritimes of Canada) prohibited dumping of human waste into the sea.  The hull sea cocks were removed in fact and discharge was sealed shut.  Other intakes are open but turned to off.  Discharge of grey water is still possible with a couple of thru-hull locations which I intend to use from time to time for hand washing etc.  The forward water tank is still operable and I think, though am not sure yet, has no leaks.  This will not be potable water at this early stage however.  The tank does have some grit and needs a good scrubbing which I am not sure is going to happen or can happen.  I did stick my head down and investigate the tank a year ago and determined it a low priority.  

Now, that we are at that point in the refurbishment, it seems natural to enable my Williams-Sonoma sink to fulfill its purpose in the head by providing a water source for routine hygiene.

Looking pretty smart and ready for action the head's sink will be for hand washing only.

This procedure of chasing hoses, is somewhat of a daunting challenge as they reach down between the liner and the hull.  To re-put the hose, I used a vinyl safety tape to tie the old and new hose together and coerced with caution, pulling the old and pushing the new until I was able to completely replace the water hoses port and starboard.  This came with the usual amount of blood and sweat that accompanies this work.  

The current assortment of connectors looks to be in good shape.  So my method will be to work with the platform of connectors I have and simply gain a system that is air-tight and provides good suction for use.

On the other end of these hoses are two manual pumps, one is a Whale Pump, the other another brand.  After internal examination, they appear to be quite serviceable though the Whale gives evidence of corrosion you would expect with salt water.  I suspect it was used at one time for the same purpose, hand washing or dish washing.  I resorted to my vinegar technique to clean and burnish a bit and then refitted both pumps with appropriately sized o-rings.  The Whale pump is about $70 bucks around the "net" so if it cannot rise to the challenge I will bring in another product to replace this one.  

Meanwhile, I've had Lee Sailcovers  sew a mainsail cover for the Berg.  I chose to sustain the current design of a cover which snaps underneath and changed colors from historic blue to more subtle sand just to be different in a sea of other boats.  They were very efficient and had the cover on the way after only a week of work.  The USPS however also participated in holding up the UPS shipment for me, just to attempt to frustrate the old sailor.  But little do they know I'm used to "set-backs" and can wait a few days for it to get out of postal-purgatory and an additional day for the holiday weekend to boot.  

We'll get back on the water quite soon.  Weather is warming, winds are coming with that weather, and the Alberg has new sheets and headsail, ready for some practice as I replaced the stiff and fat 5/16ths with 3/8ths lines for mainsheet and genoa.  Her new life-line is ready for service too.  Getting there.

Winter colors aboard.  Tools on the dock await the ride home as this afternoon "glance-back" reveals the simple beauty of this classic design.