The Hard Life

Things have changed dramatically since out last post and it’s finally looking like we’re going to be getting out of St. Maarten in the next few days! We are currently on the hard (hauled out and placed on dry land) and have been able to get a tonne of things ticked off our to-do list and a few little extras that have showed up.

Our boat getting lifted. That man is controlling that massive crane. Scary stuff!

Our boat getting lifted. That man is controlling that massive crane. Scary stuff!

So, since being on the hard, we have been able to:

  • Wire up our inverter so we can charge our laptops
  • Install our solar panels (finally we can charge our batterys without running our engines!)
  • Connect our freezer and put it in its place (the thought of being able to have ice cream is a welcome one for us)
  • Install our watermaker
  • Fix our rudder which had a bit of play in it
  • Change our saildrive (where the propeller mounts) seals

Haul Out-1

Waiting for the epoxy to set. Goodbye rudder play!

Waiting for the epoxy to set. Goodbye rudder play!

Our solar panel bracket taking shape

Our solar panel bracket taking shape

Markus doing anything possible to speed up our departure

Markus doing anything possible to speed up our departure

Clearly, we have been able to get a lot of things done whilst we’re on the hard, which is good, but there are also little surprises that rear their nasty heads once the boat’s out of the water and you get a good look at the hulls. One of the major problems is one concerning our antifoul – the paint that stops nasty little animals and plants from growing on the hulls. Basically, our antifoul was in a much worse condition than we anticipated and if it wasn’t fixed very soon, it would go from a big problem costing enough money to a massive problem costing a lot of money. We thought about waiting until we were further south but we added up the costs and it was better to do it now, so, we bit the bullet and went for it. It takes about three days in which they sand the hulls back, apply primer then the antifoul. I’m sure you’re thinking that it doesn’t seem so bad considering the problems it will avoid, but, every day we spend stuck on the hard is a day we could be spending in the BVI’s. Also, typicaly, what should be a three day job will inevitably end up taking longer because, they started work on a Thursday and they don’t work on the weekend which adds two days and to rub salt into the wound, it has started to rain everyday and the forecasts don’t show any sign of a break until mid next week so work will probably be postponed until then.

In the back of our minds, we have the mast track problem which has been causing us grief for weeks! Markus has found a guy that will fix it, but of course, he is highly sought after and our job is tiny in comparison to the other jobs he gets, so, any help we get from him is appreciated.

Despite our problems, we are slowly getting closer to our goal of leaving St. Maarten which is definitely something to look forward to and to be celebrated when the moment finally comes!

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