Friday, October 7, 2016

The dry dock grind.

After 3 days of driving our trusty 1991 Honda Civic (amorously named White Lightning) we arrived in San Carlos to start the work filled process of preparing the boat to move from dry dock to the water.  As you can see White Lightning carried more than her share of the load.  Many called the trip "The Clamplets go to Mexico" and indeed we did receive a fair amount of attention as we motored the length of California  on I-5 to SoCal then east through Phoenix and Tucson before making the last leg down through Sonora Mexico to San Carlos.  An added benefit of looking like homeless people living out of our car was that we had no "ass riders" following too close in the crazy southern California traffic, probably out of fear that something was surely to fly off the car and strike their "keep up with the Jone's" new Beemer or Cedes.  There were many who blew past us then hit the brakes, slid back next to us and either were taking pictures or videos, laughing hysterically and giving us the thumbs up.  We are probably the newest You Tube sensation.  

After 3 days we arrived safely in San Carlos, White Lightning performing flawlessly with no issues whatsoever, using not a drop of oil and all the while getting about 28 mpg while packing that massive load.  She is like a magic carpet, carrying us to our dreamland.  Arriving in SC we wore perma-grins for hours just so happy to be back home and ready to start the adventures of this season.

We arrived in SC on Sept. 30th and here we are on Friday the 7th of Oct., now 7 days into our dry dock experience.  Originally we had planned to be in the water tomorrow but with boat karma that turns one project into 4, that is not going to happen.  We have rescheduled our launch date for Tuesday.  We will see if that is attainable in the next few days.  Hopefully so, but we have 9 months down here this season and there is no need to rush, we want things done right.  When your home is supposed to float, you don't mess around with half assing it.  Do it once, do it right.  And with that here is a pictorial view of a few of the things we are digging no particular order...

 Newly galvanized chain and anchor. (More on this later)

 Jesus working on the through hull for the new wash down pump.

 Living in this mess requires patience and faith that it WILL get better, hopefully soon.

 The nav of the many collection spots.

 Putting up the genoa, one item off the deck, MANY more to go.

 Robert and the lovely Miss Virginia from S/V Harmony next to us on dry dock.

 Harmony heading out of Marina Seca.  Splash time for them.

 The captain prep sanding the bottom.

 ...and more sanding...hours and hours of sanding.

 Cappy and Jesus discussing the through hull.

 Not having a usable bathroom in the middle of the night has it's disadvantages.

 This started out as what I thought was a small project after seeing a small a small crack in the paint on the forward side of the keel. Moisture had gotten inside and delaminated the fiberglass.  So you chase it back until you find clean glass, then build it back up again.  During the process I got a piece of fiberglass dust in my eye and have been struggling with that.  Grrrr.

 Sealing up the keel joint is finally done and you can see some small areas of repair where the paint began to flake due to moisture. The lower, aft part of the keel shows the final part of the repairs to the lead keel that was damaged last season when I haplessly guided us onto the Swanee Rocks just outside of La Paz.  

 The work mess below the water line.

 We had to pull the boom and the lower part of the main furler in order install new Torlon bearings.

Putting new bearings in the masthead furler for the main furling system.

The new wash down pump that will supply us with pressurized sea water to the bow and stern.  On the bow it will be helpful to clean off debris from the chain when we are in anchorages with nasty, muddy bottoms, mostly in commercial harbors. The stern wash down will mostly be used for fish cleaning.

We will try to keep you up on the progress as we go along.

SV Liahona
Bret and Marne


  1. Wish I was there... the day you set sale.

  2. Wish I was there... the day you set sale.

  3. We are hoping that comes soon! It has been 8 days now in dry dock and I am assuming hoping that we can wrap it up by late this coming week. The delay is mostly due to unforeseen repairs.