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10 February 2018 - Pangkor Marina, Perak Malaysia
Diane’s brother Henry will be here on Monday, and then we’ll be travelling around Malaysia on a two week road trip. We’ve earned another holiday, because we’ve been busy doing boat work, “on the hard”. I’ve heard that they don’t call it “on the hard” for nothing …..
When we hauled the boat on 9 November, we had the goal of finishing our work in 6-8 weeks. Unfortunately, one thing led to another and this ended up expanding to 12 weeks and 2 days. Oh well, we figure that’s not too bad. Our painting contractor took 42 days to paint the hull, just the green above the waterline, not the anti-fouling or even the deck. We’re aware of another boat, a Canadian sailboat, that was hauled when this marina opened nearly 8 years ago, and the boat is still here, still on the hard! Apparently the owners are here regularly, and do go back to Canada, but the boat isn’t ready to launch. I built our boat, from zero to finish in 7 years, working on it part-time, 23 hours per week. Go figure!
We are NOT on the hard anymore, our boat was launched a week ago, and we’re now neatly tucked into a slip on the inside of the fuel dock. This is where we expect to stay for “some months” as we continue to do more maintenance and improvements. We’re no longer “living in a treehouse” and we no longer have to take a long walk to the toilets in the middle of the night.
We’ve finished a number of projects, some improvements, some repairs, and some maintenance - as usual. We did indeed fix our leak (the reason that we interrupted our voyage and hauled in the first place), and replaced 3 mechanically fastened through hulls with welded versions. They should be stronger and more water-tight.
Our Volvo engine had some TLC. The starter was removed and over-hauled. Our transmission was removed, and the seals and bearings were changed - as well as the shifter fork and sliding sleeve (aka clutch).
I’ve installed a new shaft seal, as well as a carrier to hold a spare, in place seal. I also replaced the thrust bearing.
We sent our primary anchor (Rocna 40kg) and chain (250’ of 3/8” G4) away for double, hot dip galvanizing. We are very pleased with the results. The chain and anchor look like new.
We have seriously upgraded our solar power by adding MORE POWER. When I first built the boat, I installed two 75W panels in 2001 and then added another two 75W panels in 2002. So, when we sailed away from Kingston nearly 9 years ago, we had 300W with 4 panels. Less than a year later, I added another two more 130W panels, giving us 560W. Normally, that should be sufficient for average cruising needs. However, we use a lot of energy, and have not only a big fridge but a freezer as well, and ultra-sonic anti-fouling (that uses about half as much as a fridge) and an electric/hydraulic autopilot - not wind driven self-steering gear. We’ve also discovered the joy of cooking with an electric rice cooker at lunch time under solar power. Yes, we’ve also got two wind generators and a towed water generator - but solar prices have come way down. We’ve taken the plunge and added another 800W in semi-flexible panels to the hard top / Bimini area. That has increased our solar power to an incredible 1360W. The new panels and controller are currently undergoing testing, and although the controller circuitry limits the solar output to match the house bank battery “thirst”, the results are very promising.
When running the wires for these new panels, I had to drill a new hole in the underside of the deck. I was very pleased when I scraped away the foam insulation and saw that the painted underside was “like new”, and there was not a speck of rust to be seen.
We also bought a new radar and installed the radome in the same place as the old one.
We replaced our 18 year old Raytheon SL72 radar with a new digital model by Furuno, an 1815 colour display radar.
The removal of the old radar, in particular the 1” thick cable that ran nearly the length of the boat, and the installation of the new one - took over a week. It was quite a job and very satisfying when completed. The radar needed a separate heading sensor, because it does not integrate with our older systems, the Raytheon Sea-Talk bus. This radar also displays AIS and was a bit of a challenge to wire up.
This jumble of wires was neatly improved when stuffed in a Tupperware container and closed up.
With the extremely high cost and lacklustre performance of “Prop-Speed” on the propellor and shaft in these warm waters, we decided instead to paint these surfaces with International Tri-Lux (bright blue), as it seems to do well here inhibiting marine growth. We’ll see.
Yes, there is still maintenance to do, as we crawl over and under every surface on the boat - trying to fix things that are broken or don’t behave well, or trying to prevent them from breaking. We even had two cockpit cushions re-upholstered. Its a never ending chore as we try to keep our boat looking and behaving like new, but probably not much different than a house. The difference though is that our “house” moves, and brings along its own power systems (solar, wind driven, water driven and diesel engine driven) and has a number of complex navigation and control systems. Oh, and I shouldn’t forget the washing machine! This is our life, and for the most part - we enjoy it. Investing the time and money in our boat is all part of it.
The next part will have no boat maintenance, but all tourist information!
To see previous log entries, just use the tabs at the top of this page.
SV Joana is listed for sale at this site with Sailboatlistings.com. Our boat and home, is always "for sale", and we are always open to new "opportunities". The price is substantially below the actual built cost (over $500K for materials alone, not including any labour cost) in recognition of the fact that the hull and systems are getting dated - although well maintained.
Countries Visited since we left our home, Canada in May 2009, and detailed in the Log:
(35 countries by boat - to date)
Antigua: May 2011
Australia: November 2016 - July 2017
Bermuda: June - August 2009
Bonaire: February - April 2014
Bahamas: December 2009 - March 2010, December 2010 - February 2011
Barbados: March 2012
British Virgin Islands: May 2011
Colombia: October 2014 - December 2014
Cuba: March - May 2010
Curaçao: May 2014 - September 2014
Dominica: May 2011, April 2013
Dominican Republic: March - April 2011
Fiji: September/October 2015
French Polynesia (Marquesas, Tuamotos, Tahiti and the Society Islands): April-July 2015
Galapagos: March 2015
Grenada: June-November 2011
Guadeloupe: March 2013
Indonesia: July 2017 - October 2017
Malaysia: October 2017 -
Martinique: March 2012, March 2013
New Zealand: November 2015 - November 2016
Niue: July/August 2015
Panama: December 2014 (San Blas Islands), (Portobello and Canal) January/February 2015
Puerto Rico: April 2011
Singapore: October 2017
St Lucia: May-June 2011, December 2011 - February 2012, December 2012 - February 2013
St Martin /Netherlands Antilles: May 2011
St Vincent and the Grenadines: June 2011, February 2012, December 2012, April-May 2013
Tobago: March-May 2012
Tonga: August 2015
Trinidad: May - December 2012, June - November 2013
USA: August - November 2009, June - November 2010
US Virgin Islands: May 2011
Venezuela: November 2013 - February 2014
Vietnam: January 2018
Before we went cruising, we also "had a life" and did our fair share of visiting (or living in) other countries.
We've also been to a few other countries, but just not with our boat. (36 countries so far)
Austria, Bahrain, Belgium, Bosnia Herzogevinia, Bulgaria, Canary Islands, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Egypt, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Hong Kong, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Kuwait, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, Norway,
Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Syria, Switzerland, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, United Kingdom (England, Wales, Scotland), Vatican City.