Buying a boat , fantasy or reality?............

Speaking of 'liveaboards', there's a chap in my marina who spends most of his week on his speedboat with his wife, day and night. We always wave at each other when I go past, but I've not said more than 'yo-ho-ho' on the pontoon, as he's usually a bit wendy and weavy to be honest. His boat is about 5m in length and has a small cuddy forward, with a big canvas canopy aft. Why the hell he does it I've no idea (other than the grunts and moans which occasionally emanate therefrom), but I do know that his engine's been knacked for months. Living the dream, I suppose.

Dicky eyes and feet have kept me from sleeping on board recently, but not from searching the coast for fish and occasionally just heading out, far from land, to drift, read and listen to good music. A pal gave me a bucket of crabs from his pots yesterday and minor injuries aside, have been delicious. He also advises me on basic seamanship, and ignores my experimental docking manoeuvres.
 

Even if the prices are now eleven years old, these still seem to have been a "Good Buy" for someone!

Where's my lottery ticket? ;) .

Originally published 14 APRIL 2007 . . .

" . . . the three ships - HMS Dulverton, Brecon and Cottesmore, which cost £35million each when they were built in the Eighties - are now likely to be sold to a foreign navy or commercial buyers for as little as £200,000 each".

View attachment 334953

For sale to a foreign navy, the British warships that could have saved hostages | Daily Mail Online
I posted on the The UK/European migrant problem thread, the reason I had/have been looking at a certain type of boat.

It would probably be appropriate to copy that post here . . . ;) .

I did enquire of our Govt about a "Letter of Marque". Got no reply :( .

Was quite happy then and now, to let the buggers spend all their money, wait, and then sink the inflatables - and even the NGO rescue "taxi" ships - off the Libyan coast.

I wasn't quite that explicit in my letter to the Govt . . . merely refering to "measures to deter the continuing flow of migrants". ;) .
 
The process of stepping a new mast:

New mast.jpg


None of yer polycarbonate nonsense, here: good, old-fashioned wood.

The boat is a converted gaff rigged drifter, which is now used as a live-aboard. The owner has not been able to accurately date it's build, but I dare say the beast will be around long after most of us have gone.

Which is nice.
 
The process of stepping a new mast:

View attachment 342744

None of yer polycarbonate nonsense, here: good, old-fashioned wood.

The boat is a converted gaff rigged drifter, which is now used as a live-aboard. The owner has not been able to accurately date it's build, but I dare say the beast will be around long after most of us have gone.

Which is nice.
Beautiful job. There are far too few gaff rigs about these days. I trust matey had an appropriate coin at the foot of said mast when it was stepped.
 
Beautiful job. There are far too few gaff rigs about these days. I trust matey had an appropriate coin at the foot of said mast when it was stepped.
He's looking to take it sailing, hence the refurbed mast-IF he manages to get it out this season, it will be a thing of beauty.

Mind, the damned thing is nearly 30t-which is a lot of boat going sideways at slow speed when a puff of wind takes it!
 
Back in the 90's on a couple or three canal boat holidays, I encountered issues with low water levels. One was probably due to other users farting about and missetting the locks. We had to wait until the pond had filled before we could move. If I recall correctly all was well from the Shroppy up to Chirk. Upwards of Chirk on the approach to Llangollen, it's not so much a canal as a navigable feeder on a very slight incline. We barely made it up part of that section. We also knew that the Oxford canal had water level issues so didn't go on that one. Every so often some boat or road vehicle will damage or block a section and that can last for weeks. Longer boats of 67' to 72' have more room but are harder to maneuver, (three point turns :lol:), catch the wind which is a PITA and are more prone to getting caught on lock sills :skull:. I did consider one day getting a 56' boat but thought about costs, moorings, mongs and water levels. Which leads us to one of the driest summers and the closure of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal due to drought.

Hot weather closes 55 miles of canal

1532220914926.png
 
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There are, of course, days when the millstone of boat ownership fades into the background and you can finally justify the eye-watering expense of it all: last Sunday was just such a day:

Dolphins off Angle Point-Sun 22 Jul 18.JPG


A pod of about 8 (including two young ones, who seemed to be bolted to the sides of their mothers) played fast and loose with us for nearly an hour.

I'm not sure who spotted who first: a dorsal fin was seen some distance off and before you knew it, the sleek buggers were playing chicken runs under the keel ('Get away from there, you stupid mammals! I have no wish to be offering Propeller Sliced Dolphin Baby, Served On A Bed Of Rice!') and then playing 'chase' in the wake as we passed by.

And all that at just 3 miles South of Angle Point, Pembrokeshire.
 
They truly are fascinating creatures.

With the engines in neutral, they seemed content to pootle around the hull for a bit and then, as if it was a group decision, decided, 'Meh. Booorrrring!' and off they went.

Only when I'd started to move at a bit of speed did they suddenly reappear and continue the previous game of 'Chase'.

Dolphins-again.JPG
 
This should remind me to lift the tender out of the water every month: barnacle growth after 2 months (admittedly, June and July were scorching down here):

Tender and barnacles.jpg


Sharp as razors, too.

Barnacles: Bastards Since The Beginning Of Time.
 
My tender has been in the water once, back in January when the pontoon was inaccessible otherwise. Gets one wet, and I don't like being wet.

My current angst-inspiring issue is something noted earlier in the thread by @FourZeroCharlie ; leaking stanchions, cleats chainplates etc. This photo:
IMGP1469.jpg
was taken last year of one of the guilty parties. I didn't take much notice then, as it seemed solid enough, but it became increasingly clear that water was worming its way down under the chainplate, through the wood, past the bolts and onto my "chart table". Unfortunately, reaching the nuts on the other end of the bolts is a nightmare; half of the cabin lining would have to be ripped out (and replaced) to get to it from there. Luckily, a few others who own similar Fishers have written about their solutions, some of which look reasonable (circular or rectangular hatch in the GRP inboard, next to the bolts for wrench and Sikaflex access). However, the Channel Islander (and carpenter) took one look and noted the obvious - the teak strake outboard is bolted on, so why not cut a hole in the GRP under it, sort out the chainplates and seal it all up with a hatch, to be used again when necessary. Naturally, he's offered to do the job at good buddy rates, the thieving, scheming git, but I reckon it's a job he can do better than me, so he's got it.

I'm hoping to take out for only a month or so, for items like this to be carried out. I do enjoy a night on the boat during the screaming gales of winter.
 
My tender has been in the water once, back in January when the pontoon was inaccessible otherwise. Gets one wet, and I don't like being wet.

My current angst-inspiring issue is something noted earlier in the thread by @FourZeroCharlie ; leaking stanchions, cleats chainplates etc. This photo: View attachment 347727 was taken last year of one of the guilty parties. I didn't take much notice then, as it seemed solid enough, but it became increasingly clear that water was worming its way down under the chainplate, through the wood, past the bolts and onto my "chart table". Unfortunately, reaching the nuts on the other end of the bolts is a nightmare; half of the cabin lining would have to be ripped out (and replaced) to get to it from there. Luckily, a few others who own similar Fishers have written about their solutions, some of which look reasonable (circular or rectangular hatch in the GRP inboard, next to the bolts for wrench and Sikaflex access). However, the Channel Islander (and carpenter) took one look and noted the obvious - the teak strake outboard is bolted on, so why not cut a hole in the GRP under it, sort out the chainplates and seal it all up with a hatch, to be used again when necessary. Naturally, he's offered to do the job at good buddy rates, the thieving, scheming git, but I reckon it's a job he can do better than me, so he's got it.

I'm hoping to take out for only a month or so, for items like this to be carried out. I do enjoy a night on the boat during the screaming gales of winter.
I can’t comment on the access issues but a good gasket between whatever the fitting is and the deck prevents the problem. By a good gasket, I mean rubber, accurately cut with holes snug on the fixings
 
I can’t comment on the access issues but a good gasket between whatever the fitting is and the deck prevents the problem. By a good gasket, I mean rubber, accurately cut with holes snug on the fixings

It does look like the angle is a little pissed........ maybe silicone first, then tighten down onto the rubber ?

I used to get the same hassle, as a plumber ..... if 2 surfaces aren't perfectly square, you can tighten a rubber seal, and the more open side will always leak
 
I can’t comment on the access issues but a good gasket between whatever the fitting is and the deck prevents the problem. By a good gasket, I mean rubber, accurately cut with holes snug on the fixings
It does look like the angle is a little pissed........ maybe silicone first, then tighten down onto the rubber ?

I used to get the same hassle, as a plumber ..... if 2 surfaces aren't perfectly square, you can tighten a rubber seal, and the more open side will always leak
That, plus Sikaflex, which cures all. Their latest offering , 591, has been the subject of a few recent late-night sessions in the darker parts of County Down, involving Black Bush and painful swearing-in ceremonies. It's apparently a revolution in the technology of stickiness in the marine world; previously, Sikaflex 291 held the title. There shall be much sticky plastering and sealing in a month or so's time.

That stanchion, and its oppos, will be rewelded to much larger and thicker stainless steel plates, on both sides of the wood. Other cleats don't need so much love, but will get the Sikaflex treatment.
 
They truly are fascinating creatures.

With the engines in neutral, they seemed content to pootle around the hull for a bit and then, as if it was a group decision, decided, 'Meh. Booorrrring!' and off they went.

Only when I'd started to move at a bit of speed did they suddenly reappear and continue the previous game of 'Chase'.

View attachment 343952
I don't think it is quite so much chase they like, more ' ride the bow wave'.
One memorable trip, me and 7 other blokes (women banned) took a hundred year old gaff-rigged Pilot Cutter named Jolie Brise down to Portugal, in no rush as it's paying Charter was a couple of weeks away in Lisbon.
Off northern Spain we headed out Atlantic way to catch wind that wasn't inshore.
The waves were huge , but with big gaps between each incoming wave. And as you beat towards them , they rolled towards you and this one time it was full of dolphins.
It was like watching a huge TV ,and it was higher than your eye level. And they were leaping out of the waves as they rushed towards our bow wave.
And when they hit the bow wave they did the tightest 180 you have ever seen, and rode it like an expert surfer. I got down into the netting under the bow and , and within touchable distance this dolphin rolled onto its side and looked at me.

A very special moment.
 
Just leave it to dry out in the sun for a few days, you will then be able to brush the lot off with a deck brush
No.

The bloody things need to be killed with fire and the smouldering ashes put to the sword.

That aside, I've not known a summer like it: because the marina shares the harbour with the commercial fishing and dry dock elements, the depth is rarely below 20 feet. That, plus the flow of water during lock in/out times and ('cos we're that far West) 2 hours of free-flow twice every 24hr period we seldom get the algae blooms that shallower marinas suffer.

This year it's resembled the Sargasso Sea at times.

It's also the first time that I've seen shipworm attack marine neoprene.
 
I shared a few litres of juice with a chap who'd lashed up to my pier the other day; he was motor/sailing a vast and very beautiful Colvic Watson. Everything on this boat looked like new, and it had every conceivable nav aid and luxury extra on it. Like me, he's wary of treading the deck while underway but said that his wife seemed to enjoy it so she got to work the sails when necessary (she was very quiet during this conversation, for some reason).

Anyhow, it turned out that he had previously had a much smaller boat - older, scruffier and far less well-set-up - somewhere in my 7m league, but had been tied up at Holyhead during the Unpleasantness. That boat ended up at the bottom, with a hole the size of its wheelhouse where the wheelhouse had been. His insurance company had paid out in full at the first telephone call (!) and he had upgraded. Ill winds, eh?
 

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