Time for a vacation

I have two weeks here until I head back to the states on a three week R&R.

It’s been a long winter and I have been tallying up the boat projects I need to to to get underway in September.

The first project is to remove the shrink wrap on the boat so that the sail maker can bend on the new sails! This will probably be the only one I get to on this trip since I have only a few days in Annapolis before I head to Florida to see my sister and Texas to see my folks.

Here;s the working list, though:

  • Dinghy – I have to get a new one. Hopefully the engine can just be serviced
  • Wind Generator – My goal is to be a energy independent without the generator as possible
  • Solar Panels – See energy independence above
  • Solar Controller
  • AIS – Don’t have one
  • Batteries – Complete new set of house and starters
  • 12V Refrigeration – – See energy independence above… 110v needs a genset
  • Sails – Complete!
  • Life Raft – Existing one is ded dead
  • Canvas – TBD… depends on my sewing skills
  • Chain – Existing is rusted through
  • Watermaker – Existing one is old and 110v
  • Provisioning – A mans gotta eat!
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Making time

Since I am out here until August of 2014, I have been taking the opportunity to visit potential cruising destinations in this par  of the world. One of my favorite spots is Thailand, so I took a side vacation in October to Phuket. I did a LOT of scuba diving, and got to see my first HUGE manta ray in the wild. The diving in Phuket was awesome, and I plan on spending quite a bit of time there in the future. I also did a few cool tours. and saw some tigers and did a kayak tour of those tall islets in the bay.

Once again, the trip was too short and I had to head back to Afghanistan

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Back Online

Looks llike the site is back online after a LONG hiatus due to the hosting company’s shenanigans. I actually had to use my information security skills to track down the new owners and get a real live contact to unscrew the login issues. So without further ado here’s whats happened in the last year since I could post.

The boat is just about finished. The bow thruster, graphics and all the rest have been completed. I got to come back and sail the boat a couple of times. Once was a single hand sail out on the Chesapeake and another was taking my sister out.

The visit was too short, but it was extremely productive. I had the great opportunity to have the previous owner come down an go over the boat systems for three days. Since a lot of the systems were custom. and the previous owner extensively cruised with the boat,  the education provided was invaluable. My time back in the states was very short lived, though and had to come back to the desert WAY too soon. I put the boat on the hard and came back to Afghanistan at the end of May 2013.

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Graphics and bow thruster

The graphics and the bow thruster on on the boat! Here are the pics. More in the Gallery

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Getting closer…

I have the graphics folks spun up and getting ready, and the main sail cover is also in the works. I would have like to have done the sail cover myself, but the timing is way off and I want one without the old boat name on it when I sail. The internal work is progressing, but the engine guy is AWOL for now. Hopefully this will get resolved before I get home.

Most of the extra work is waiting on the shrink wrap removal, but the weather still calls for 6″ of snow in the near future.

The bow thruster has been purchased, and it being installed by Port Annapolis, and they assure me it will be good to go by launch date.


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Long Distance Frustration

Some of the work has been going well. Pat Teeling has been working on survey required items, and the bow thruster has been bought and will be installed by Port Annapolis Marina. Karl and Gale Force Blasting as AWOL, though. Neither of them are responding to emails or answering their phones. Being stuck in Afghanistan and wanting to sail the boat when I come home on leave is causing some serious frustration. Well, it is sailing after all 😉


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First Projects

The first things I’ve started on by remote control are:

  1. Dinghy checkout – The rub rails are delaminating and I’m having it checked to see if its worth it to get fixed, or just replace it. – Annapolis Inflatables
  2. Bottom paint removal – I’m going to try the soda blasting on this one – Gale Force Blasting
  3. Bow thruster – I’ve going to go with a Yacht Thruster and have Port Annapolis Marina install it – Yacht Thruster/Port Annapolis
  4. Essential mechanical items from the Survey – Karl’s Marine Engine Service
  5. Winterizing/Shrink Wrapping – Pat Teeling

All of the vendors come highly recommended by people I trust. It really helps, too, to have Jennifer Hines and Dave van den Arend as friends to help coordinate on the ground. The goal is to have the boat in the water by the beginning of May so I can enjoy it while I’m on leave. I’m kind of torn between having people work on the boat, and wanting to do the work myself. I would rather do the work so I’m saving everything but the essentials or very time consuming projects for later.

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Finally! I am the proud owner of a hole on the water I can throw my money into! Although I’m a few thousand miles away in Afghanistan, I can now start working on some of the boat projects:

Here’s the little list so far:


Allow easy access to the cockpit scupper drain valve 
Boat Graphics
Bottom Job
Confirm condition/integrity of forward fuel tank prior to returning to service
Confirm oven burner function, service as required
Evaluate shaft strut, reinforce as required
Install GFCI outlets as required
Inventory all hose clamps and replace/supplement as required
Repair electric bilge pump
Repair generator fuel leak
Replace stuffing box hose clamps-Service dripless stuffing box 
Secure leak in water pump under forward head sink
Secure starter cable from chafe
Tune and secure lifelines
Upgrade battery installation
Upgrade/replace anchor chain
Deck re-caulking
Shrink Wrapping

Some of the stuff I will be doing for myself, but some f the work I will farm out. The criteria I am basing the decisions are the fact that I want to sail the boat while I’m on leave in May.

The Boat

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Still closing?

Wow… I never figured it was going to be this hard. We’re having a huge amount of drama surrounding paperwork. First, it was the lost Coast Guard paperwork. Now the seller is refusing to honor the contract in the either the correct amount of bills of sale, Dinghy title, and boat documentation. It really seems like this is a pissing contest from the seller broker, not an issue with the seller. You would think that the broker would want to get paid and getting notarized copies would be the simplest of solutions to money in the bank. I have an option of backing out of the deal since the seller is in default. I would get back all of the money I put in. But I would lose a great deal on a boat.

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The loan came through and the check deposited in the nick of time to make it for the contract closing. Now we’re on a hold because the Coast Guard doesn’t have a record of the boat belonging to the seller. He does have the documentation and the bill of sale, so it appears to be just paperwork snafu. Already started on the winter work planning.

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