So much has changed on Sampanena from big things such as a new engine to small things like the addition of a bottle opener on the bulk head (definitely the most essential change for me!). Here are a few of the things we've done on the boat in the past few months....
The old chart platter was still functioning but only showed minimal data, enough to travel with but we felt more comfortable updating it. We bought a second hand Raymarine C80 and Dad kindly made a frame and hanging arm for it so it could swing out into the companion way when we needed. After a lot of research we felt this was the best setup for us as we can keep down below for route planning and long passages but then in unfamiliar inshore waters we can swing it out to help with navigation.
Engine: new propeller and shaft
After a professional service resulted in our engine no longer working we were forced to invest in a new one. We settled on a 38hp Beta Marine Diesel engine after lots of good reviews and the hopefully user-friendly servicing. We needed a new prop shaft due to the old one having some unusual holes and dents in (for some reason it had a hole for both a key and a nut all the way through and both very close together leaving the prop shaft very thin in one area) and a new propeller as the new engine rotated in the opposite direction. This was the main reason our departure date was postponed....we needed to work longer to earn enough to pay for the engine rather than using our savings set aside for our time travelling.
This problem seems to be ongoing for the majority of Westerly owners. We decided to try different methods to fix it in different areas of the boat. In the stern cabin, we painted it with white outdoor plastic paint; the first attempt to spray paint it didn't dry but after using a brush (thanks Ben!) it seemed to work better and now looks clean and fresh. In the hanging cupboards, we pulled the headlining down and painted them with white bilge paint. For the headlining that was attached to boards on the ceiling, we took the boards down and tightened them as much as possible using a staple gun. Around the galley and edges of the main cabin we fixed thin pieces of dark wood along the edge of the wall to hold the headlining to the side and stop it sagging. The side berth will probably used for storage but could also be a visitor's bed so we decided to take the headlining down and put carpet tiles along the wall for insulation; we fixed the tiles using velcro so that they can be removed if they get wet or if we decide it was in fact a terrible idea!
When the boat was surveyed before we bought her, the lovely surveyor told us we should be able to get her back to St Peter Port in Guernsey and somehow we did! After a better inspection of the steering system and taking it apart, it turns out the majority was rusted through, not tightened properly or generally not fit for purpose! We think various adaptations had been made which resulted in random bits being cut away and added....this included may washers being wedged in gaps to stop movement! Thankfully Dad has redesigned this area and welded a new plate for the steering system to sit on, not a quick job but definitely a necessary one!
Home comforts - clothes shelves, bunting, map, bottle opener
Sampanena will be our home for the next however many months so we need to make her homely. We've added some hanging shelves for clothes in the cupboards as we're not really coat-hanger people! I've made some lovely orange bunting (that Harvey sadly can't see the benefit of!) and have hung solar powered fairy lights wherever I'm allowed to! Harvey bought me a scratch off map so we've put that on the bulk head as extra large scale navigation...Finally my bottle opener! This has been attached to the bulk head above the sink so you can use it from both outside and inside and the lids will fall into the sink - perfect!
We've added 1 new domestic battery and replaced the starter battery so we now have 3 domestic and 1 starter batteries. We now have 400ah of power in battery form.
Window seal and deck gland leaks
We had a couple of leaks which is obviously not ideal! These have now been re-sealed.
I seriously don't know where to begin, Harvey's Dad seems to spend the majority of his time on the boat holding a wire or two! In general, the wiring has been tidied up, simplified and labelled.
Paint bilges, lockers and mast support
We cleaned the bilges and repainted them to make them oil and dirt stain free, this will hopefully help us to identify if any new stains appear so we can find the source! The lockers have mainly been repainted too, clean storage will make it feel more homely. The mast support was covered with rust at the bottom and had been painted over so we chipped off all the rust and repainted the bottom of the support.
A few more indoor jobs to go, one main one being:
- holding tank - as she's an older boat, there's no holding tank so obliviously we need one!