Well, I think next month is it…when I’ll be back in the water and headed south.  Like really far south.

And the sooner the better, since I no longer have any reliable sources of income and will need to start the nomadic lifestyle, where I won’t feel obligated to buy “things” while living in & around American cities & towns!

For those who have been wondering where I’ve been, here’s an update.

Getting ready to cut an access hatch where my wheel pedestal was. This hatch will make it easier to inspect my rudder stuffing box.

I finally have this living in a boatyard routine figured out.

I wake up just after sunrise when the inside of the boat is still cool, and work on projects on the inside of the cabin.  Around ten, once all the morning dew has evaporated and the humidity has decreased, I can work on sanding & varnishing my exterior teak.  This gives the varnish time to dry enough to get covered up before the afternoon storms.

By late afternoon/early evening when it’s ridiculously hot & humid, I sit comatose in front of my laptop watching a movie with my fan right in front of my face.  Then as evening hits, I can get a little more work done outside after soaking my skin with copious amounts of DEET.

After stripping the old varnish with a heat gun, sanding, and cleaning.

Over the past few weeks I’ve removed my bowsprit platform & restored it, and while that is off I’ve sanded & repainted my bowsprit spar.  I’ve sanded the teak caprails that run the length of the ship on both sides and will start varnishing those soon…I need to finish those before reinstalling the bowsprit platform since the platform covers some of it.  Be on the lookout for descriptions and before/after pictures of all my exterior woodwork.

 

Dug the hole to lower my rudder into, giving the rudder post clearance from the hull to remove it.

I’ve finally removed that beast of a rudder.  This was the reason I hauled out of the water in the first place; I needed drop the rudder and have the tube extended so that I could convert to tiller steering.  This was a lot of work, and I’m glad I did it myself because it’d cost a hefty chunk of change to pay someone for all those hours!  I’ll be covering that job on a separate page, along with the DC air-cooled refrigeration system that I’m almost done installing, as well as installation of my new batteries and solar charging system.

And yesterday I received my Cape Horn wind vane self-steering system, which will be my second set of hands to pilot the boat so that I can take a break or do other chores while sailing.  That installation will also be covered on another page.

I just want to get back in the water, and some of the big projects that I planned to do while out of the water may be accomplished once back in the water.

These projects include making new cushions for my cabin, polishing all of my hatches & portlights, refinishing my cabin sole, installing a new septic system, building a proper propane locker, polishing/waxing my deck, and finishing my beard.

But before I get back in the water, I’ll need to get my rudder back, finish the tiller installation, install new engine controls (they were on my wheel now removed), put my mast back up after polishing the spar and replacing the rigging, and polishing & waxing the hull.  It sounds so easy!  But each of those projects are broken down into dozens of laborious sub-projects that surprise me every day.

Not much has happened on the photography front.  I’ve started sending mailers out to editors and photo buyers of some publications that might be interested in my work, planting the bug in their ear and hopefully getting a few more followers.  I finally finished an article that is now on YachtImage.com, which is a collection of nautical photos & articles for sailing magazines.

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