Saturday, March 31, 2018

March 2018 | MONTH IN REVIEW

Here's a quick summary of what we were up to this month.

  • 3 years ago, on March 2nd, Raptor was hauled out in Power Boats, a boatyard in Trinidad of Trinidad & Tobago. She's been sitting at that very same spot since then. Click here to see us on google maps!
  • Of course a lot has happened in the last 1,095 days (read our past posts); loads of boat projects (repairs/maintenance/upgrades) completed and some still underway. 
  • The light at the end of the tunnel does seem a little closer and maybe even slightly brighter, but of course we were very hopeful to get her ship-shape several Caribbean seasons ago..
  • Our blog has, as a result, been more about boat repairs than travel. Guess it's all part of our journey.. How many more months to go?
  • Well, at least four more till my contract ends in August, and there's no chance of launching before that! Unless Alex finishes all the boat projects and finds some friendly neighbours in the boatyard or crew to launch? :)
  • This month, Alex worked on the step at the front deck. It turned out to be the cause of a mysterious leak in the port cabins. He removed it and re-enforced it with wooden ribs and fiberglass and properly re-sealed the edges. Let's hope there'll be no more leaks.
  • He also attended Donald Stollmeyer's farewell dinner. After 37 years of being the Managing Director at Power Boats, Don is finally going to set off on his own sailing adventure (later this year we're told). Very happy for him. Read his story here.
  • On the entertainment front, I continued my k-drama fever with Emergency Couple and Strong Woman Do Bong Soon, while Alex watched 6 seasons of X-Files (Season 6-11)!

Step removed by carefully cutting around the edge with an oscillating cutter (which operates a little like hair clippers, but with just 1 vibrating blade)
Added ribs to re-enforce the step
The sides properly sealed with more foam & epoxy, and several layers of fiberglass on the wood at the back also
The old & fragile step - not 100% sure, but suspect the water was leaking right through the step itself, via cracks in the gelcoat (the whole step flexed a lot when it was stepped on)
Re-enforced with plywood & a layer of fiberglass on either side of it
The new and very strong step ... the rib was added after laminating on the plywood to help keep its shape, as we found the step's wall was a little bowed inwards at the centre of the step - possibly due to the laminating he did, or just because it had bowed when it was thin & fragile &  adding fiberglass just fixed it in that bowed position. Either way, the rib helped to force-straighten it back up.
Re-sealed the step with epoxy bog & another 2 layers of fiberglass all around
Held down with lots of C-clamps till it set ... Alex was hoping its weight alone would hold it down, but he was wrong!
Close up of the C-clamps over long strips of wood both top & bottom
All sanded and ready to be painted

Thank you for reading! :-)

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