HB's 'new' boat thread

Hike Bitches!

Super Anarchist
7,362
156
Solomons, MD
OK, What I thought would happen some day has happened. I tried and tried and tried, but I just could not in good conscience let it go.

This is both a blessing and a curse and I might as well get on with it.

The short story is my father (not the step-father with the Tartan 3000 I usually chat about on CA) is starting his transition to a more permanent, warmer climate in his land yacht. He's decided to start unloading assets and other cumbersome things from his life as his blood thins out. This means I have been 'given' his Catalina 30. It is an old one; 1977, hull #511, to be exact.

Much like the 'holding tank thread' from the Tartan, I plan to use this thread to ask for help and bitch and moan about being a boat owner (since I got the registration & stickers in the mail in my name this week), I guess it is official, I am the proud owner of a Catalina 30.

The list is looooooooooooooooooooooooooooooong. The boat has been neglected. I do not like sailing neglected boats. I like to sail well maintained boats, that I can drive to, toss some beers in the cooler, head out for some sailing, and enjoy without worrying. I have a log way to get there with this boat..I may never get there :unsure: , but I am gonna start on that process.

Here's the short list, or maybe the items of higher importance, along with some Q's thrown in...feel free to throw anything at me, because for sure I've sat back here at SA as an armchair quarterback long enough that I deserve it:

Motor - original Atomic 4

  1. Only been drowned twice
  2. Runs like shit
  3. Has some odd, ghetto wiring (thanks Dad!)
  4. It still runs and will push the boat out of its slip (I think)
  5. Must replace exhaust hose soon. Wires sticking out of the hose
  6. What are these seacock things with thumb screws? Rubber seals?! Are you fucking serious?!?!?!?!?


Bottom - She's pretty wet, (since it was new)

  1. My Dad liked his boat in the water ready to go..362 1/2 days a year (he pulled it out over a long weekend to scrape and paint)
  2. blisters - oh yeah - at least there were the last time I saw the bottom 5 years ago, and for the last ten years, he's only hauled it every other year
  3. Question - Do I haul it and block it for the winter? Pops says it might get worse if I let it dry out. :eek:


Bilge/Keel - Uh... :unsure:

  1. Jesus, is that a bilge pump?! Does it actually pump water?
  2. Oh, you mean the bilge is actually white underneath all the sludge?
  3. Hey check that out..those protuberances are keel bolts!
  4. what happens when the nuts on the keel boats rust away enough so as to be almost indistinguishable?
  5. whoa...what the hell did the shop vac just suck up?
  6. Jesus! did you ever wipe or sponge this thing? <_<
  7. :unsure:


Interior cushions

  1. Mmmm, that's a nice gas & oil smell, yes dear, the garage smells like that from the cushions
  2. Uh, Dad, did you notice that every bit of teak oil that was ever on the hatchboards is now in this one cushion under the steps?
  3. Oh boy, do these smell
  4. Of course, they're 30 years old, don't touch the zippers!
  5. Yes honey, we'll get new ones someday..you do realize each piece is custom, right?
  6. Steam Vac, here I come!


Rig/sails - Don't get me started, I am afraid to pull up a sail right now...let's get the engine running enough to haul the boat, we'll sail next spring.

OK, so that should get us started. The engine I am OK with, as I have enlisted the help of Indigo & Moyer Marine (and the Moyer forum), however, suggestions are always welcome. I've been working on it that last few weeks as it is much easier to test run & repair in the water than on shore.

The biggest looming question is the bottom. I really want to haul it and store it on the hard for the winter to assess the thing. It must have 2,000 lbs. of water in it. Are the blisters really going to get worse?

Remember, this is a cruising boat. I want it in as good a shape as I can get a 32 year old boat, but I won't be wet sanding the bottom or anything. I still don't like blisters though.

 
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Hike Bitches!

Super Anarchist
7,362
156
Solomons, MD
Oh..and don't tell me about 'you know a free boat is never free'...I am well aware of this.

I have known this boat my entire life, the time has come for me to save it from my own father! :lol:

 

SemiSalt

Super Anarchist
7,730
259
WLIS
You can not dry the bottom in the cold. If the water is not actually ice, it's still too cold to turn to vapor.

 

Dan33

Super Anarchist
Hike...piece of cake, my to-do list is 3 full pages long, and 90% is done.

Make your list by priority, and cross things off (very gratifying). Also sprinkle in some lower priority jobs that bring visual gratification, like a good cleaning.

Also calculate all your costs, and double it...tell me in two years if I'm wrong about this.

Congratulations

Dan

 

Hike Bitches!

Super Anarchist
7,362
156
Solomons, MD
Roger that Dan. I have a list, and so far my boat bucks expenditures are just breaking the $100 threshold (edit - aw shit...$126 counting the registration sticker..does boat beer count?) I plan to track it closely, as one of the reasons I pulled the trigger on this was because I figured I could buy a (slightly) newer boat and put a little money into it, or put all the money I was budgeting into a 'free' boat.

Before I even started the motor, I spent the entire day with bleach, simple green, a scrub brush & a hose inside. Not very satisfying, as it is hard to drink beer while hanging in the v-berth locker scrubbing the inside of the hull..but the boat already smells better. I figure two or three more of those sessions and we'll be making progress.

I think the majority of the oil/gas smell came from the Atomic 4 with no PCV system. Universal used a slash tube (rubber hose sliced crooked) hanging out near the fire arrestor/carb intake, expecting that to suck the fumes in. I think 30 years worth of crankcase gases are laying in the bilge and all the cushions. I know it seems like a low priority deal, but that was the first item on my list. That'll keep Mrs. Bitches happy if I can make the boat smell better...and make me happy if the engine runs a little better B)

Incidentally, that list was just from memory, my 'boat binder' is on the nightstand at home :blink:

I didn't bother with things like the lack of a regulator in the charging circuit, holding tank, pieces of misc. foam hanging out, lack of a fuel filter Don Moyer says should exist, chipped gelcoat on deck...blah blah blah.... :lol:

 
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Dan33

Super Anarchist
Hike

I would want to see a very good reason for NOT hauling her.

My understanding is haul her, open the blisters, wash the goo inside off repeatedly as it will not evaporate...let her dry all winter...leaving her in the will not help the situation.

Fill the blisters and seal the hull.

Honestly, I think this is an exciting project...you can make her as good as you want, and in time you have breathed life into a tired boat. Be sure to take before and after photos.

If you want to avoid hundreds of mistakes, call me, I've made them all.

Dan

 

Burnsy

Super Anarchist
3,140
0
Milwaukee, WI
Welcome to my world.

Do as Gatekeeper says. If your list is not at least 3 pages long, you're probably not being honest.

I don't see how the blisters could possibly get worse. Pull it ASAP, clean the bottom, and mark all blisters with a Sharpie or something right away. Often they will lose swelling and you can't find some 6 months from now.

Use the backside of a screwdriver to tap & listen for funky sounds. I have had superficial blistering on mine that is undetectable or nearly so with this method though. Only sanding all the way to gelcoat revealed things.

If you can, grind open any blisters right after haulout. Rinse them out & let them air dry for as long as possible. More water outta the hull = better. Removing old antifouling or other coatings will help with this.

 

ryley

Super Anarchist
5,429
621
Boston, MA
Hey Hike, do you have another boat you can sail on next season while you're getting this one ready? The blisters definitely need to be examined, though you may be 'lucky' in this regard. My last boat was a polyester boat, built in 1980, and it had a lot of blisters - not 'boat pox,' which is thousands of little ones, but probably 75 - 100 good sized ones. Fortunately, none of them had penetrated the entire layup and into the core - usually they were in the 2nd or 3rd layer. Depending on size, you may be able to get away with epoxy only - no extra glass.

However, that being said, there are two approaches you can take. Either you can haul the boat, grind out a bunch of blisters and let them dry out over the winter and spring, then repair them in before launching - lather, rinse, repeat - or you can do the nasty job of grinding them all out, taking the boat down to bare gelcoat, let it dry for a season or two, and then filling, barriercoating, and painting. some of that depends on how long you plan to own this thing.

Of course, whether you decide to do blisters or not may be dependent on the condition of those keelbolts. You sure you don't want to just say 'thanks, but no thanks, Dad?'

 

Hike Bitches!

Super Anarchist
7,362
156
Solomons, MD
Thanks Burnsy & Ryley, I've done the blister mark/grind/dry/fill/sand before..on a buddy's J/36. Those were pinholes, and we were making a racing bottom. If I recall, most of these blisters were dime or nickel sized, so I suspect more of the "100 or so good ones."

I think I'll haul and dry out toute suite. Hopefully the engine will run well enough to get the 25 minutes to the marina where I am hauling...she starts missing under load, and I suspect there are plenty of barnacles on the prop too, further reducing efficiency.

Too late on the 'thanks, but no thanks.'...Title's been transferred, and registration in my name already came in the mail. I think I'll have this 'til we sink it, because I don't think it'll be worth anything to anyone but me..at least with old cars, you can find a guy in town that'll haul the piece of junk out of your driveway and give you $100.

 
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Innocent Bystander

Super Anarchist
11,749
755
Lower Southern MD
HB,

Congrats. Play with the engine for another couple of weeks and then haul it out for the winter. Use a dremel with a gtrinder tip to open up small - medium blisters. A once over with 80 grit and a DA as soon as the bottom paint is dry wil reveal much. Not that much surface area on a 30.....If it's bad, start at the bow and do as much as you can this winter. Barrier coat what you do and slap some paint on it and sail next season. Finish it next winter.

A set of OEM sails (M and 150) will run you about 3500. Max might be able to find you some used rags (or might have some) to get you through a couple of years.

IB

 

SailRacer

Super Anarchist
3,521
87
Sounds like a great project!! Good for you.

Make it so !

and WHAT DOES IT RATE??

Sail safe!

 

Dan33

Super Anarchist
How to avoid blisters...do this 6 months a year. Piss poor solution, but it seems to work quite well.

DSCN1644.JPG

 

PHM

Super Anarchist
1,048
51
This probably sounds obvious, but if it was me, I'd try to break the list into "absolutely must do to get sailing" and "everything else" and would try to get the "must do" done so I could be sailing next summer. That way you can start enjoying the boat as you continue working on it. We sailed my Dad's Ericson 35 for several years with the interior ripped up (nothing structural) and big ugly patches all over the deck where the deck had been opened up to dry the core and resealed. He's now gotten the deck resprayed and it looks great, but hasn't gotten to the interior yet. Meanwhile, we've had a lot of great coastal cruising trips with our kids that we would have missed if all of his boat time had been spent working on it rather than sailing it. If your "must do list" seems like it can be done by January you'll proably just make it by June.....

 

mrgnstrn

Super Anarchist
1,375
4
Herring Bay, MD
Hike
I would want to see a very good reason for NOT hauling her.

My understanding is haul her, open the blisters, wash the goo inside off repeatedly as it will not evaporate...let her dry all winter...leaving her in the will not help the situation.

Fill the blisters and seal the hull.

Honestly, I think this is an exciting project...you can make her as good as you want, and in time you have breathed life into a tired boat. Be sure to take before and after photos.

If you want to avoid hundreds of mistakes, call me, I've made them all.

Dan

Dan's right.

Open the blisters right after hauling, wash them, and let them dry all winter.

Even if it's cold, water will sublimate off.

And winter is typically very dry, so it will help the sublimation process.

-M

 

stuck in the middle

Super Anarchist
1,299
0
Chicago
Definitely haul the boat and make this your dedicated second job. Don't put it back in the water until you get the to do list so it's not overwhelming. If you put it in before that you'll end up in the same spot as now. Even with a short list(oh yes you will always have a list) you have to keep at it, new things pop up at a regular stream. If you go out sailing and something comes up it was still a good day sailing, if nothing breaks it is a great day.

Welcome to boat ownership.

PS for your sanity and your marriage never add up the costs.

 
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