standing over open floor

Odds & Ends Projects

Wednesday August 12, 2015

Matt varnishing cherry

So we go through all the work of ripping apart the galley, ready to get ourselves started on it so in a month or two we’re able to cook meals on our own boat instead of the marina’s grill, and it turns out we can’t do a d&^n thing in that area.  What we couldn’t see behind the cabinets and wall was that there is a large area of pitting in the aluminum that is going to have to be replaced by our welder.  And until that gets done, this area is basically untouchable.

In the meantime we’re now looking around to other little things that can be done.  The good news is the welder has started this week, but we know it won’t be any time soon before he can get to the area in the galley.  Just like us, he’s starting forward and working back. We’re thinking it will be a few weeks before that area gets touched.

Trying to do what we can, we’ve thought about making the Eurolite pieces for the wall and then removing them once the welding gets done, but there’s only a few areas we can because wherever we decide to put the new fridge (we’re debating leaving it where it was or moving it to the back corner) we’ll be using foam instead. Unfortunately the whole galley area is turning into ‘We can’t do this until this gets done, and that can’t be done until the floor is installed, and we can’t install the floor until the welding is done’.  Which is why I’m still in the frame of mind that we should have scrapped August in the boat yard and went back to Michigan.  Not that it would have helped with the welding though, because we still need to be here for that.

So now we’re scratching our heads and coming to the realization that what we can do at the moment are a lot of the finishing touches we had been hoping to put off until we could either A.) Do a larger area at one time, or B.) Hopefully won’t make a mess of while we’re still using the area as a construction zone.  We still don’t want to do the final coat of paint to the walls since based on what’s happening to the primer that’s already been applied, it will become extremely dirty and have to be done again. This has now left us with varnishing and working on a small area of the floors.

First job was the varnish.  We haven’t done incredibly much yet with the cherry, although with the hours we’ve (Matt has) put into it by now you’d think that there would be piles and piles of wood to be varnished instead of only the cabinet doors in the v-berth and the fronts to the settee in the forward salon. The debate is still on for if we want them to have a gloss or a matte finish in the end, but we know that it will be a total of about six coats and we needed to get something on it soon to protect it.

After hours and hours of research on Matt’s part we landed on Epifanes Clear Varnish with an ultra UV filter to get ourselves started.  If we decide to go glossy we’ll stay with that and if we want to go matte we can change it for the last few coats. From what we have seen, the varnish is taking the cherry and almost turning it into a honey color.  Not what I was expecting it to look like at all, and honestly not exactly what I’m hoping it will stay like.  To me it looks a little too much like oak.  But Matt tells me that with time the wood will darken and maintain more of a cherry color.

The floor has been another fun project and something we know won’t be finished until the interior of the boat is 95% done.  When everything is finished we hope to have a 1/4″ maple wood laying on top of 3/4″ marine plywood, but we won’t be adding the maple until the very end. For the moment though, we can go ahead and lay down the 3/4″ plywood.  Originally to me this seemed like the easiest project we’ll have taken on yet because I thought we could take the existing pieces, trace them on to the new board, cut it out, and voila!, new floor.

Turns out things aren’t exactly level on our frame though and there was one good day Matt spent on his hands and knees, measuring, leveling, moving around the fronts for the settee, and basically getting everything to perfectly match up.  I felt so bad as this part was a one person project and all I could do was sit on the ledge for the centerboard and watch, while singing along to Pandora.  Which I’m sure really helped his concentration. Have I mentioned lately what a great husband I have and how much work he’s putting into this boat as I usually sit on the sidelines?  There’s no way anything would get done around here without his knowledge and focus, that’s for sure.

What did end up happening is he found out how to take the original floor boards that weren’t fitting perfectly, where to add a little extra oomph on some sides, and where we might have to add a few wedges below to level things out.  Then we did trace the existing boards onto the new ones, added the extra where it was needed, cut a little big just in case, and then fit them into place, sometimes shaving off an 1/8″ here or there.

While they may not still fit perfectly until we can work with all the surrounding boards, but it is a huge improvement from where they were and it no longer sounds like a 300 pound man is lumbering toward us when Georgie walks across them.  No joke. It scared the hell out of us the first few nights on the boat.  Cheers to small improvements!

Matt varnishing settee front

panels waiting to be varnished

Matt measuring floor space

construction zone of boat

standing over open floor

Credit Card Statements

It’s a good idea to check your credit card statements against your receipts to make sure you don’t get charged incorrectly.

Pay Your Utility Bills on Time

Don’t let late fees get in the way of your bills. Make sure to pay your electric bill on time every month so you don’t get penalized by a late fee when you do.

Maintain a Credit Score

Your credit score is your overall financial health. You can improve your credit score by making payments on time and paying off debt on time. Paying off your credit cards can boost your credit score by hundreds or even thousands of points. And if you want to know a good way to make a few extra dollars, take a look at forex trading on VT markets to see if it’s something you want to do.

Pay Off the Maximum Amount You Can on a Credit Card If you have a balance on a credit card, your credit limit is the total amount you can borrow for that card each month. If you have an average credit score and a credit card with a $10,000 limit, you have an average credit limit of $2,500. In the example above, a 20% interest rate (12%) would add $5,000 to your credit limit. If the 12% balance continues to grow as a result of late payments, it would be reported as a new overdraft. You can learn more about how to calculate interest rate on credit card here.

The other option is to put it into a new card. The good news is that if you’re going to make multiple purchases or pay for the account in installments, you’ll generally want the balance to be low enough so you can pay off the entire amount in the next month or so. If you have a new credit card with a $200 annual fee, you might end up paying the full $200 in your next month’s bill. If you have a credit card that charges an annual fee of $300, you might end up paying $60.

A few things to keep in mind when determining how much to charge, or how much you’ll pay for the account in the next year:

Your Credit Score: Your credit score can affect how much you pay for credit cards, but this is largely determined by your FICO score. Most people have a score of 580 or higher.

According to my friend, who works at Credit Sesame, your credit score can affect how much you pay for credit cards, but this is largely determined by your FICO score. Most people have a score of 580 or higher. Your Age: Age is a major factor in your credit score. The younger you are, the less impact a negative credit score has on your credit limit. Your age will also affect your average payment.

Age is a major factor in your credit score. The younger you are, the less impact a negative credit score has on your credit limit. Your age will also affect your average payment. Your payment: This is the average of the total amounts you owe at the time of the application. Your payment will affect your score. A higher payment indicates higher income and lower delinquency rates. This is the average of the total amounts you owe at the time of the application. Your payment will affect your score. A higher payment indicates higher income and lower delinquency rates.

Filing your credit application

To apply online, complete the FICO Score Application and mail it to one of the FICO regional offices or use our online application tool.

World Beer Tour - Super Bock - Portugal

Jessica’s World Beer Tour

Monday August 10, 2015

World Beer Tour header photo 2

It’s probably no big secret that I like to enjoy a beer every now and then.  I’m sure I’ve splashed it all over random posts, ‘Had a cold beer with friends’, ‘Sat back and enjoyed a cold beer on the boat’, but honestly, sometimes a nice cold beer is the next most refreshing thing to an ice cold water, at least in my mind.

Matt will tease me since he actually doesn’t care for the taste of beer, and even though we both shunned it in our early 20’s and only began drinking it when we were too poor to afford rum and vodka anymore, I’ve actually grown to quite enjoy the taste. That’s not to say that I don’t still love my wine or other mixed drinks, sometimes a gin & tonic is exactly what you need while watching the sun set in a pretty harbor, but beer definitely has it’s ranks up there.  And with all the hot climates we usually find ourselves in or after a long trek through a trail, along a beach, or even though a big city, sometimes you just want to sit down afterward and enjoy a refreshing cold beer.

Which is why I have taken it upon myself to start my very own World Beer Tour and try to sample as many different beers as possible from each country we visit.  The list isn’t as long as it could be if growing my tour were one of my only focuses for each stop and if our kitty was a little deeper, but I’ve managed to squeeze a few in from nearly every country we’ve stopped at.  Camera in hand, I snap a photo to document my success.

Through our 16 countries I’ve sampled about 45 different beers.  I only let it count toward my tour though if I’ve actually been to that country and try to drink that beer only when I’m in said country.  That Presidente I had in St. Maarten?  Doesn’t make the list yet because it’s actually brewed in the Dominican Republic and we haven’t been there yet.

I’ve started a page for my World Beer Tour as part of our About Us section and you can find my entire list here. (Some countries are still getting updated, it’s taking a long time to go back and find all my beer photos!)

Something came to mind though as I was working on finally getting around to publishing this page.  I live in a country of so many different beers yet I’ve only sampled a small few.  Just because I live in the US shouldn’t exclude it from my tour since you’d think there are no new beers for me to try here. Heck, I come from one of the Top 10 Beer Cities in the country. There’s just too many wonderful hop filled throughout this nation not to sample as many as I can and grow my tour including my home country. And this is the part where I’m going to ask for your help.

It turns out that when I ranted on about how poor our living conditions have been while we’re working on and simultaneously living on the boat, jokingly putting out a request for beer, some of you truly wanted to! I’ve received just a few messages and emails from readers asking if they can send some beer our way. Normally I would turn down this kind offer and thank the person for thinking of us….but this time I kind of want to accept.  I like beer.  And we’re living in Florida while remodeling a boat.  In the middle of summer.

So here is my challenge to you.  My birthday is coming up in 2 weeks and I would love to add some good ol’ US brews to my tour. The tricky part is, if I can, I’d like to sample ones I’ve never had before.  This shouldn’t be too hard as we live on a Miller High Life budget, but I’d like to get away from the Miller and Budweiser family that I’m used to drinking and try some unique and local beers.

Take for example my last visit to my parents in Arizona.  While we were out to eat one night I felt like trying something different and ordered a pear cider which I immediately Fell.In.Love with.  So much so that I forced my parents to ship back half of my belongings to Florida in a box just so I could smuggle some of these drinks in my suitcase.  This was because I’d found out they only distribute on the West Coast and there’s no way I’d be able to get it again back on the East Coast.

These are the kind of new and different beers I would like to add to my tour.  Beers I probably wouldn’t or couldn’t get on my own. Or really any beer you want to send I guess since I’d probably drink whatever you put down in front of me, haha. Ok, not really.

So if you were one of those people who had wanted to send a few cold drinks our way, here is your opportunity.  All packages can be sent to us at the marina, although I’d check with your local postal carrier to see what restrictions there are on sending alcohol.  I think liquor has to be shipped ground, but I don’t know about beer.  And don’t worry about sending a whole case, just one beer is fine.  Heck, if you can only pick up a 6 pk, keep the other 5 for yourself and smile while drinking them, knowing that just the one will make my day.  Or if it’s not convenient to send beer, feel free to send a gift card to Publix or Total Wines with a suggestion of what you’d like me to try.

All packages can be sent to:

Jessica Johnson  s/v Daze Off   16300 SW Famel Ave   Indiantown, FL 34956

To show my gratitude for receiving these new beers for my tour I’ll make sure to add your name to my tour, next to the beer received. And this will let you know I received and enjoyed it.  🙂   Example:

United States

  • Ace Pear Cider – gift of Mike & Barb Gorman

Now just to leave your mouth watering as much as mine has been while getting my tour up, here’s some shots of my favorite beers around the world so far.

World Beer Tour - Grand Cayman - Caybrew

World Beer Tour - Barrilito - Mexico

Eclipse - Bahamas

World Beer Tour - Jamaica - Red Stripe

World Beer Tour - Super Bock - Portugal

Anthyllide & Serendipity, crews together again

Buddy Boats Reuinite

Saturday August 8, 2015

Anthyllide & Serendipity, crews together again

(Photo courtesy of s/v Anthyllide)

Daze Off has officially had her first overnight guests!  These guests may have actually been sleeping in their Jeep parked next to the boat instead of inside her since a vehicle happens to offer more sleeping room than she does at the moment, but I’m still going to count it.  In fact, this may be the closest thing we’ve had to overnight guests since our trip from Muskegon to Milwaukee back in 2010.

The cool part about these semi-overnight guests is they happen to be Serendipity’s very first buddy boat!  Scott and Kim from s/v Anthyllide.  Matt and I first met Scott and Kim in Cape May, NJ after they spotted us wandering down the road in flip flops and with backpacks (an obvious sign of a cruiser), and invited us to their boat for the evening for a few glasses of wine.  They also found another couple to invite, whom turned out to be our longest lived buddy boat so far, Brian and Stephanie of s/v Rode Trip.

With our very first guests coming out to see us now that we have Daze Off in the work yard and not in storage, we cleaned up as much as one can do while as my friend Tasha puts it “Living in a work space of a boat”. From this angle she looks fairly presentable, but that’s also because you can’t see the massive zone of clutter and chaos right behind me.

Daze Off, cleaned forward salon

 As soon as Scott and Kim arrived we gave them the grand tour and talked about how all of our projects were coming along since they have an aluminum as well and we’ve been shooting Q&A emails back and forth for the past 5 months now.

As Matt and Scott dove really deep into boat talk and welding, Kim and I decided we couldn’t take the 95 degree temperatures anymore, inside of the boat and out, and went to the air conditioned kitchen to enjoy some of the Black Box wine they had brought along.  Between a bit of girl talk we caught up on how things were going along with the boat and with my wild hand gestures I managed to fling my glass of wine on the floor, shattering the glass and spilling red wine on my dress.  Time for me to be cut off.  I swear, you can’t take me anywhere.

On a short hiatus from the wine, we hopped in her Jeep where I showed her everything that Indiantown had to offer in less than five minutes, and we swung by the grocery store to grab fixing for dinner and also the Circle K because they offer the best specials on beer. $3 saved on an 18 pack?  Yup, worth the extra trip up the road.

Getting back to the air conditioned kitchen we found that Matt and Scott had also succumbed to the heat and were already on their second beers.  Now needing a cold drink myself, I popped one open as well.

Through the night there was never a shortage of things for us to talk about. Going all the way back to when we first met them and had only one open water passage under our belts, to the stories they’d told of of salvages in the Caribbean as we sat wide eyed in Annapolis.  We relived when they hopped in a rental car and came to see us in St. Augustine along with Brian and Stephanie, after we were stranded there for months after our accident.

After our old memories together it was time to catch them up on what had been going on since we’d last seen each other in the Bahamas last spring.  I do have to say that Matt and I shoved a lot of sailing and new places into that 10 month period. Then it was time for us to hear about their boat restorations and what it was like spending time in Green Cove Springs, FL.  Once again, it actually did make us feel better about our decision to rip apart a boat, and live in it, when you hear the same stories from someone else that is doing something just as crazy and stupid as you are.

I’m sure we could have stayed up until all hours of the morning talking and having fun, but a trifecta of too much heat, too much work, and one too many beers had me literally falling asleep inside the kitchen, trying to sprawl myself out as best I could in a wicker love seat with my head rested in Matt’s lap. I was the party pooper that shut the party down.

Scott & Kim

Matt & Jessica

(Above photo courtesy of s/v Anthyllide)


Luckily for us, Scott and Kim didn’t have to run off first thing in the morning and after enjoying a coffee on the marina’s patio we went out for a nice big breakfast at one of the local restaurants.  The kind where the shirts read ‘You kill it, we grill it’.  I still have no idea if they are serious or not.

Too soon though, although we did get to enjoy a nice leisurely two hour breakfast, Matt and I had to say our good byes to our friends.  We’re so happy they were able to take time out of their schedule to come see us.  A few familiar faces and some good laughs were exactly what we needed right now.  We hope it won’t be too long before we see them again. And hey, if we can find a rental house on the water with a dock large enough for two boats, maybe we’ll end up doing all of our boat projects side by side!  Share a house and share a dock. I think I may have to go check some real estate listings.

Scott & Matt

Kim & Jessica

Jessica & Matt on Daze Off

(Above photos courtesy of s/v Anthyllide)



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Throwback Thursday: A Three Hour Tour – Day 2: Roger, we Have Stingrays in Our Sights

Now that we’re sitting in Indiantown Marina and it’s obvious that we’re going to be here for quite a long time while we fix up Daze Off to sail, I don’t want to bore you with stories that are only related to boat work (but don’t worry, they’re still coming).   I know that’s what some of you crave, but if you’re like me, you also need a little fun in there.  A little travel and a little adventure.

So for the foreseeable future while we are doing nothing much more than boat work I will be adding a Throwback Thursday post in every week as well.  Cataloging our trip so far, giving you that needed sense of travel and adventure, and for those of you that haven’t started with us from the beginning, catch you up on some of the most important or memorable parts of our travels.

In this weeks post we have left Cuba and moved ourselves over to the Island of Grand Cayman. After just coming from Cuba (and having spent 6 weeks in the Bahamas before that) it was like we were in the land of plenty again.  Grocery stores with fully stocked shelves of things we actually recognized and needed to provision with.  Electronics stores, marine stores, and even fabric stores so we could go about adding better shade to our roasting boat.

Along with our friends Brian and Stephanie of s/v Rode Trip, we enjoyed the spoils of going out for ice cream, enjoying a pitcher of beer over the waterfront, and experiencing some of the best snorkeling we’ve ever done.  With the whole of Grand Cayman being a protected area out to 80 ft depths, the shallows were teaming with brightly colored fish for us to gaze upon for hours and days on end.

With our days as buddy boats being numbered since Brian and Stephanie had changed their plans to an Atlantic crossing this season, we knew we needed one more epic trip before the four of us parted ways.  So it came to be that one afternoon Matt and I piled some of our belongings on to Rode Trip and we left Serendipity behind on her mooring in the West Bay to head up to the North Sound with Brian and Stephanie.

The reason we were headed to the North Sound is there is an area there called Stingray City, where local fisherman had spent so long throwing scraps into the water that groups of stingrays began to gather there and soon it became a tourist destination, groups of people getting dropped off in boats to swim with them.  Since it was open to the public as long as you could get yourself there, and hey, we had two boats at our disposal. we decided to make a go of it ourselves instead of paying an insanely high price for a tour boat to take us.

The ride up from our moorings turned into an all day adventure even though we thought it would take us only three hours to get there.  Storms, currents, and a setting sun turned this afternoon outing into an unexpected slumber party. None of us were sad about it as we had no place we needed to be, and the next morning we got exactly what we came for.  Swimming with the stingrays.

You can find the original post here.

Thursday May 30, 2015


There was something very strange about being anchored in the North Sound last night.  It wasn’t that we had four people packed into a West Sail, getting tipsy on a game of Settlers of Catan, that’s actually quite normal, it’s that we were on a boat that was absolutely still.  It was so calming that I almost told Brian and Stephanie that this would be Rode Trip’s permanent location until Matt and I decided to make our next passage, and hey, by the way, we’ll be staying here every night until then.  Having enjoyed ourselves way too much at our little slumber party the night before, alarm clocks didn’t go off until after 8, and even then we were rubbing weary and bloodshot eyes.

Brain took the remaining leftovers from the previous night of chicken and potatoes, and tossed them around in a skillet with a few spices and an egg on top.  I really must try this thing that people call cooking.  Spirits were high as we had full stomachs and the sun was shinning.  I think the words ‘perfect day’ were uttered too soon though, and as soon as that phrase fell into the air, more dark storm clouds rolled in overhead.  We’ve noticed that when the rain actually does come, it passes by fairly quickly, so we’d just wait it out in the cabin before traveling the few miles across the sound to the shallow banks of Stingray City.  Settlers of Catan was broken out once more, without the distilled sugarcane and molasses this time, but Matt decided he wouldn’t get suckered into playing again.

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Beautiful morning we’re having!

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I think Settlers of Catan was more than his brain could handle.


When the rain finally let up, even though the sun was never looking like it was going to make it’s way out, we upped the anchor and began making our way to Stingray City.  Visually we could see right where it was by the plethora of other boats packed into one tiny area, but we did still have to keep our eyes glued to the charts since the North sound is full of shallow areas only 5 to 6 feet deep (with the sandbars around the rays at only 3 feet).  Still keeping a safe distance, we dropped the hook in a patch of sand and lowered the dinghy in the water.  Maneuvering our way through jet skis, we dropped the much smaller hook on the dinghy and fell back into the water with our snorkel gear on.  For a few minutes we floated around only staring at sand and the occasional conch, until a few dark spots began drifting our way.

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It’s a stingray floating by us!


As soon as one came by, the rest of them began to swarm over as well.  Since we weren’t part of a group and didn’t get the ‘swimming with stingrays’ lecture, I was still a little unsure of what I could or couldn’t do around them.  Both the guys told me to keep my feet firmly planted on the ground so I wouldn’t accidentally step on one, but with the waves that were just rolling in enough from outside the sound, keeping my feet flat on the sand was much harder than I thought.  So I instead floated at the surface, watching the stingrays swim by and weave in and out of people like they were cones for a drivers test.  It wasn’t long before Matt and Brian wanted to go a step further than having the stingrays just swim around at their feet.  They wanted to feed them.  So pulling out some squid that Brian had picked up at the marine chandler the previous day, they wiggled the tasty treat between their fingers….until the stingrays came to suck it out of their hands.

I tried to hover for a bit with the camera as swarms and swarms of them came by, the whole time worried that I was going to accidentally kick one and end up with a stinger through my food.  In the end though, it wasn’t me who got hurt.  Brian had a nice little chunk taken from his hand when he let the stingray suck on it for too long.  Maybe it was more of a bite than a chunk, but it still looked pretty nasty, and we’re pretty sure he’s going to mutate into some kind of sea creature.  It didn’t keep Matt and I from feeding and playing though, and even I had my turn with a feeding, trying to hold my ground as the ray literally kept pushing me back with it’s force.  I decided I was better off with the camera than feeding them, and went back to taking pictures of the guys until one came up to me and basically suctioned itself to my back as I floated there.  Sneaky little bastards…



I’m sure I would have been stabbed by this point.

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Here fishy, fishy, fishy…


Like sharks being drawn to blood.

Stingray City, Grand Cayman

There goes Brian, getting his hand eaten off.


But they still ended on good terms.


Mmmmm, finger lickin’ good.

Swimming with stingrays, Grand Cayman

stingrays in Grand Cayman

Before long, another storm started making it’s way in and we made our way back to the dinghy so we could get to Rode Trip before a downpour let out.  It seemed like once more for our trip, we had to hide out for bad weather.  I thought this was supposed to be paradise?  I guess that’s what we get for staying in the tropics at the beginning of hurricane season.  When it finally let up we started the long trek back home, making a few light bumps on the sandy bottom while trying to get to the deeper waters of the sound, but clearing any coral through the channel this time.  Once all eyes were not needed on deck anymore, I was put below with a cup of tea, soon zonked out with the wonderful memories of our trip to see the stingrays swimming in my head.

North Sound, Grand Cayman

anchored in North Sound, Grand Cayman

Stingray City, Grand Cayman

boat graveyard of Indiantown

Storms Rolling Through the Boat Graveyard

Tuesday August 4, 2015

boat graveyard of Indiantown

There’s nothing I like more than sitting back and watching a thunderstorm come in.  The sky growing black, clouds that appear like they’ll swallow you whole, and best of all, the bright bursts of lightning zigzagging though the sky. This seems the complete opposite of what someone living on a boat should enjoy, and although I prefer storms not to come anywhere near me while on passage, I do still love watching them roll in even while we’re at anchor.

Being on land right now does happen to give me the added bonus of not having to worry about strong winds or dragging anchor, although anyone will tell you to stay indoors while there is lightning abound, especially if you live on a metal boat that is not grounded at the moment.  But I can’t help myself.  There’s just something about storms and dark skies that I crave and become as giddy as a child once they arrive.

When our afternoon thunderstorm came rolling through just on time today (always between 2 and 3 o’clock), I decided to grab my camera before the rains came pounding down and take a walk through the storage yard here.  Sometimes also known as The Boat Graveyard.  And once in awhile, Where Boats Come to Die.  Kind of like Daze Off when we found her.  During peak storage season there actually are a lot of good cruising boats sardined in there with the others, but when we first arrived the storage area had been turned into the valley of the discarded and unwanted.  The kids that didn’t get picked for dodge ball and were left to sit on the sidelines.

Singling out these boats with the stormy background gave them an extra sense of eerie abandonment.  Thoughts of pirates and stormy seas and all the childhood stories we used to get lost in.  One could sit back at stare at them for hours making up stories of it’s sordid past.

And then just like that you’re on to it’s shiny neighbor. A boat with a loving home and family that will be back to it shortly.  One that is always in included in all of the games and sometimes picked first.

Somehow we have, or are trying to, manage to get ourselves from the first to the latter.  Looking at our boat in the work area you’d think it still belonged in the graveyard.  If I were to walk by it unknowingly I’d say the same thing myself.  We’ll see what we can make of her though.  Sometimes it’s fun to bring the dead back to life.

thunderstorms in boat workyard

storms over boat work yard

thunderstorms in boat yard

boat graveyard

boat graveyard of Indiantown

boat graveyard of Indiantown

storms over boat graveyard

storm clouds over boats

storm clouds over Daze Off

torn apart galley

Mission Demolition – Galley

Saturday August 1, 2015

Matt ripping apart galley

Today we ripped apart the entire galley.  Which must mean that we’re close to beginning work on it, and that makes me very excited.  After having ‘planned’ for the v-berth and salon area only to take 4-5 weeks to complete, and here we are moving on to week 8, I need to see a noticeable sign that we actually are moving in the right direction.

The only issue I had with this is we’d just gone through the boat to make it presentable to guests since our welder will be starting any time now, and this means that all the pots and pans and tupperware containers that had been sitting all willy nilly throughout the pilot house were actually placed in cupboards and out of the way.  Don’t ask me why this took so long, I think I had issue with putting things away into these filthy spaces until I realized that we won’t be using any of them for quite some time anyway.  So my mixing bowls might get some dirt and grime on them.  That’s ok, it’s not like I’ll be pulling them out tomorrow to make a culinary delight!  Which means I had to once more find a place to put all of these things and they eventually ended up in the storage area in the pilot house that runs under the cockpit.  Out of sight, out of mind.

Once everything in the galley had been cleared out though it was time for demolition.  Not quite as fun as easy as the forward salon though since this area was a little more complex.  In fact, instead of handing me a screwdriver and letting me loose on taking things apart like had happened before, I was set to stand back and watch Matt as he began taking a crowbar to the cabinets and shelves, ripping them out with abandon.  Since none of these items of wood are going to be reused for templates, furring strips, or anything else we can think of, there was no reason to keep them all in once piece.  As soon as a piece was torn out it was handed to me where I then placed it in the cockpit for later disposal.

This first part went fairly quickly and easily although I was soon called into action to help with the removal of the fridge.  Once the counter top was pried off we still needed to get this chunk of metal out from the multiple layers of foam in which it was encased. The outermost layer was only sheet insulation, and with a few good stabs from a chisel was pretty easy to get out.  The real trouble came when we needed to remove all the sprayed in foam that was sitting between the back of the fridge and the hull.  Hardened over many years, this stuff did not want to come out.

Each taking a side, we attacked it with whatever tools we had at our disposal. Chisels, pry bars, and even a bread knife.  Which surprisingly did the best job of all. Slowly we made progress as the extra foam fell away and we were doing well until it came time to find the wires for the fridge hidden in the bottom layers of the foam.  After a long game of hide and seek between the foam and the Dremmel we did finally locate them and found out they had melted themselves into the material since they were not in any kind of casing.  Of course they had.  Why should we begin expecting now that there was once one good spot of wiring on this boat?

The good news is A.) We’ll be replacing it all anyway, and B.) after this point the rest of the galley became extremely easy to remove again.  Working aft we took out the rest of the cabinets, the kitchen counter, and even the sink.  Everything was dumped in the cockpit until we could decide if there actually was anything we’d like to spare.  The sink?  Possibly.  Cabinet doors? We’ll take off and save the hinges.  The rest though could be trash.

A trash I was hoping to get rid of the next day since it was now raining, but someone felt it prudent to get out of the cockpit right away. So through a light stream of water we pieced out the items in the cockpit and tossed everything to become trash over the side of the boat and onto the ground. When everything was sorted it was tempting just to run back inside and leave the mess for later, but I figured that I was wet already so why not bring everything to the dumpster at the other end of the yard?

Back inside and toweled off we went through the work of cleaning up the remnants of our mess.  Garbage cans full of foam pieces and lots of vacuuming of the floor and the areas underneath where the frame of the boat collected bits of our destruction.  Soon enough the area was spic and span, or as much as it’s going to be at this point, and we were staring at the blank canvas of what our new galley will be.  I’m sure it’s going to be a lot of hard work and a total pain in the butt to build, but we’re both extremely excited for this next step in boat building.

Matt ripping apart galley

Matt ripping apart galley

ripping apart fridge

taking out fridge in galley

ripping apart galley

torn apart galley

torn apart galley

galley ripped out