You have to have faith when you embark on a serious clean up, because things look worse before they look better! But what a relief – after weeks of boat maintenance culminating in the haul-out and sitting at the shipyard for 8 days, Take It Easy is back in the water, looking good and ready to go. Phew!
This has been a particularly demanding boat maintenance marathon, not only because there was a lot to catch up on after skipping the task last year (the boat spent seven months in Queensland), but also because we are preparing our catamaran for full time cruising and are attending to absolutely everything that needs to be done.
Wade and our shipwrights James and Tim did the big push to complete as much of the task list as possible before our Summer Cruise, while I was finishing my last two weeks of interstate business consulting for the year.
The photos in the gallery show the extent of the work. During our week on the hard, the guys did a lot, from cleaning-up the mussel farm growing on the bottom and anti-fouling, to strengthening the stringers under the bridge deck, repairing the damage to the hulls caused by the chain or mooring lines rubbing and people running into us with their dinghy – you can’t get away from lousy drivers, even on water! This required grinding, fibreglassing in some spots, bogging, sanding, undercoating, more sanding, painting, and was by far the most time consuming job. And then there were things like making adjustments to the port rudder which was not totally straight and needed some welding of drill holes and a sleeve put in, preparing the wiring for our new Raymarine multipurpose screen and navigation instruments, servicing of the two outboards, fitting the newly made locker covers (the original ones were delaminating), and once back in the water, completing the cockpit floor and sugar scoops repaint and connecting all the electronics.
There are still a few chores to do, such as repainting the brightsides (the white uprights) and replacing the engine box lids which are delaminating just like the locker covers did, but that can wait till we get back in February.
Now all we need is for the weather to be kind to us so we can leave the Gippsland Lakes as planned next week, bound for Tasmania. We will be watching the forecasts and be ready to escape on 1st December or a few days before if we get the chance.