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by Dan RogersĀ - Diamond Lake, Washington - USA


1- 2 - 3

New Year’s Day.  0900.

I sent the Christmas Elves packing a day or so ago.  At the moment, most of the normal recent winter domestic/household stuff is handled:  broken pipes repaired, sub-floor and hardwood floor replaced from water damage, hot water tank replaced, snow-crushed boatsheds repaired, busted trees bucked up and hauled out of the road, and of course, snow plowing.  Of course.  Sure, there’s always something else raising its ugly head.  But.

Today is the One-th of January.  The day we all start breaking our resolutions.  And, so far, I still have one resolution in place.  Well, maybe a couple.

This year:  I resolve to DO more boating.  I resolve to stop and enjoy the company and friendship and general well-being that comes from associating with like-minded people, engaged in a wholesome pursuit.  I resolve to put the tools down more, and pick up the charts and make real plans to go places and do things with this fleet of hulls that calls me “dad.”  But.

There’s barely two months until the first scheduled outing. 

So, I’m afraid the first step in keeping my resolution is to sort of break it.  Much, much yet to do.  Miss Kathleen has to be closed up and seaworthy.  Roadworthy.  And, a couple other worthy’s that I’ll think of in a bit.  Lotsa work to do.  Only about 60 days to get it done in. So, progress pictures will have to wait until after the night shift shoves off for home.  I do wonder how many of those lazy layabouts are gonna’ show up on New Year’s Day.  I’ll have to check with the foreman, on that.  Anyhow.

The list is getting down to where it just about fits on the surface of my shop white board.  Naturally, most of the bullets on that list represent stuff that was too complicated to already have gotten done.  Most everything must be not only invented as a stand-alone thing; it must somehow fit with what all the rest of the stuff does already.  This is a tough time for a guy with a pretty short memory for jobs-already-done.

So, I guess you could say, that once the Frankenbuild TODO list gets shorter, the level of cranial involvement goes up exponentially.  So.

Today’s punch list includes making and fitting some kind of a door on the tail end of the cabin.  We need some way to steer this yacht from inside the cabin.  And, I insist that I be able to steer and operate the motor from the cockpit, as well.  The port side of the cabin still is without that over-elaborate “badge” made out of short pieces of pine woven in a herringbone tweed pattern.  The boat has been shoved against the wall on that side, and rather impossible to get to.  I’ll have to move the boat, too.  Of course.  And, if the guys are really clicking; we’ll get some sort of forward window frame dreamed up.  And, finally, some sort of fairing pieces will need to attach themselves to the forward roof-support frame to make the variable slope of the side windows land amicably at that end.

We’ve got stuff to get done.


2300.  Well, both the day shift and night shift were pretty productive.  We’ve got a door frame that almost fits the hole, and swings pretty much as expected.

And, we took a vintage cable steering mechanism and found a way to mount it.  The cables will lead aft and go through a series of blocks that will actuate the rudder head fitting by way of the former sailboat traveler.  That will be pretty slick, as I expect to be able to steer with the tiller.  (Without disconnecting the steering wheel.)  We painted the wheel and it doesn’t look completely ugly.

I’ve got to make a wooden spinner out of some sort of exotic board for the center of that old, old steering wheel.  That should perk it up.  This whole business is hung from a chunk of aluminum channel that I brought home from the metals store, for something.  I hope that whatever it was, wasn’t real important.  Because I cut a big hunk of it off for this setup.  Best part is that the cables should hide pretty much completely inside the cabinets on the run aft.

Then, it got complicated.  I managed to lose the cir-clip off the end of the steering shaft.  That took a trip to town to get the special pliers and a couple of the clips.  Twenty bucks for the pliers.  Twenty cents for the clip.  I probably only need one of those tools about every ten years or so.  Certainly, the next time I need one I won’t be able to find this one.

And, the portside herringbone tweed thingie is clamped on, and awaiting a trip to the hardware store to get the proper length bolts.  Another couple to three hours and that should be getting close to done, as well.

We also got a forward window frame assembled, shaped, rabbeted, sanded, and awaiting a proper piano hinge and a few more hours of fretting and stewing.  And, the fairing pieces are shaped, glued and nailed in place, as well.

Not a bad accounting for a holiday.  I was in such an expansive mood, I knocked off the night shift early.  Happy New Year, guys!

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