21 April 2022

Hull blasting: Finally done and back in the water

 We drive up to the Cleanlift fairly early. While we're waiting for the transporter to be free, we sign the paperwork and pay the bill. Then we're ready to watch them pick up Nahani drive her across to the pen and lower her gently back in - we climb aboard as she goes down.

Once she's back in there's a flurry of preparation - turning on seacocks, getting the fenders out of the lazarette, removing the engine cover and then we're ready to start her up, back out of the pen and set off down-river. There's a stiff southerly but it eases a bit as we enter the marina. It's our first entry to the new pen and we don't get it quite right, but John Casey is there working on Grace, so he gives us a hand and we are soon safely berthed. We're just about to shut down the engine and finish sorting out lines when we realise that our new neighbour Black Label is about to come back into her half of the double pen. It's a big stinkboat that hasn't moved all summer, so we thought we could leave dinghy and kayaks tucked behind her. It obviously hadn't hampered her when leaving the pen, but we think we should get them out of the way before she tries to come back in - another flurry of activity to lift one kayak off the dinghy, pull the other out of the water and then move the dinghy across to our side. We give them a hand with their lines as they come in. Only when they are tied up do we realise that our engine is still running. Turn it off, adjust more lines, paddle the dinghy round to the stern and pull it up on the davits, paddle the kayak round and remove the bungs. Finally we're ready for lunch and a return to the Blichfeldts to do our washing and pack up our stuff.

20 April 2022

Hull-blasting: Day 10

 Another trip to the Cleanlift, arriving just in time to farewell Ashish and Saurav, and see the great job they've done on the bow.

Tomorrow she will go back into the water. Before heading out to the Cleanlift, we spend the morning preparing her new berth for her return.

19 April 2022

Hull-blasting: Day 9

 After the Easter break, we're back to see what she looks like with the second coat of anti-fouling done. Answer: very sleek. And the raised water-line looks perfect.

Especially at the stern:

Today they have removed all the protective covering from the topsides and started on the paint repairs there. You can see where they are working on the bow, now smooth and free of dints caused by close encounters with jetties.

We're expecting/hoping that it will all be finished tomorrow, and she will be put back in the water on Thursday. Today we checked out the pen we are supposed to be moving in to, and the current occupant tells us that he's leaving Wednesday morning. We'll be down to take possession, even if only with the dinghy and kayaks. We plan to set up our lines so we're ready to go straight in on Thursday.

14 April 2022

Hull-blasting, Day 8

 We go mid-afternoon on Thursday to see the boat before the Easter break and arrive just as they finish spray-painting the first coat of anti-fouling. They are using two different colours - blue first, black second. They tell us they will wait for the blue to dry, then do a black coat before the end of the day. Next week there will be work done above the waterline, and possibly another coat of anti-foul.

13 April 2022

Hull blasting, Day 7

 One interesting challenge in all this painting is that the boat is propped up on stands. To coat the entire hull, the stands have to be moved regularly.

When we check in today, no one is working on the boat. But there are interesting ochre stripes on the hinges of the rudder and all along the chine lines, and you can also see that they've moved the stands to do the patches that were covered by the stands when they spray painted yesterday.

And we can see that the cost of all the different paints is going to be considerable...

12 April 2022

Hull blasting, Day 6

 Build coat day.

There has been an ongoing issue with a tiny oil leak from the keel. After the cleaning and blasting, there were a couple of spots along the front edge of the keel where the weld had broken, and oil was seeping out (the keel is filled with lead and oil). This had to be fixed with a new weld, which proved very tricky with oil trickling out all the time. But today it is finally fixed.

11 April 2022

Hull blasting, Day 5

 After the weekend, work continues on Monday, getting the hull as even and smooth as possible before beginning the build coat.

08 April 2022

Hull blasting, Day 4

 When we check in on Friday, we find that all the hull has been primed, but there is work to be done to patch some tiny pits and dips where the steel is welded. This is done with grey stuff called bog.

07 April 2022

Hull-blasting, Day 3

 The actual blasting gets done, and it's clearly very hard work getting all the layers of anti-fouling and paint off. But when we see her, there's just dull grey steel, which they are starting to cover with olive green primer.

06 April 2022

Hull-blasting, Day 2

 A quiet day - lots of preparation by the ABC boys. 

They wash down the topsides with acid. The boat is moved into the blasting bay. where they mask off and cover all the upper part of the boat down to the waterline. We are raising the waterline about 3cm, so there is work to be done to measure and mark off the new waterline. All this is in preparation for the actual blasting. Captain is pleased to find that they won't need to remove the rudder - that can be blasted in situ.

She's in there somewhere behind the curtains.

05 April 2022

The hull blasting project: preparation, waiting, and Day 1

Hopefully this is the last major project that we undertake on Nahani. Not that we are actually doing much of this one apart from emptying our bank accounts, but it still occupies our time.

We are in Melbourne in early March as we both have commitments in late Feb/early March. We arrive back in Hobart on Sunday 13 March, hoping that we will be starting the hull blasting project in the following week. We have a couple of days of preparation - taking things off the deck, removing the dinghy etc and taking clothes and other gear to the Blichfeldts, where we plan to stay while the boat is out of the water.

We are due at the Cleanlift on Wednesday. That morning we decide to drive the car up to Prince of Wales Bay for a look at where we have to bring the boat in, intending to leave it there and return by taxi to the marina to get the boat. We chat to Glen at the Cleanlift, then call a cab and we're about to jump in when we get a call from Stuart (Abrasive Cleaning & Blasting) to say that the weather forecast is for we weather, and we'll have to cancel. We send the cab away and return in the car. It's annoying, but it would have been much worse if we'd been half way up the river when we got the call. 

The next possible start date is 6 April. We rebook and we then have two weeks of waiting, watching the weather, hoping that by some miracle it will improve and we will be able to start earlier. But it doesn't and we just potter about doing other maintenance jobs. The weather is intermittently wet, which is some consolation, and as we get into April the forecast for the period starting on 6 April looks very promising.

On Monday we contact the Cleanlift again, and get agreement that we can bring the boat up and have it lifted out on Tuesday afternoon. Tuesday is the Captain's birthday, which makes a nice present for him. And we have time to repeat some of the exercises of a fortnight previously, packing up clothes and gear, removing dinghy and kayaks. We're all done in comfortable time to take the boat out of the pen around midday, but have a lot of difficulty getting out of the pen in a quite strong southerly. As soon as we release our lines, we blow across the pen towards Eclipse. But on the third try, we get out safely and head up through the Tasman Bridge to Prince of Wales Bay, the first time we've been this far upriver. We slot Nahani into the cleanlift dock without an drama and watch with some amazement as she's lifted out of the water with slings, then trundled across for a washdown.