Chip Ford's 1974 Catalina 22 Restoration Project
Sail #3282  l  Marblehead, Massachusetts

The never-ending project to fill my hole in the ocean while bailing it out

Preparing for Sailing Season '10
The Post-Season Bottom Project

Click thumbnails for a larger picture


I trailered Chip Ahoy down to the boatyard this morning. The plan was to get the bottom pressure-washed, the many coats of bottom paint sanded down smooth, a new coat of bottom paint applied, the water line and boot stripe raised aft. This plan would have Chip Ahoy ready to launch from the trailer come Spring 2010.  (Nov. 20, 2009)

I met Ralph, owner of the three boatyards in town, down there. He talked me out of raising the water line -- suggested instead that come spring I rearrange weight aboard, move as much as possible more forward. He thought I'd permanently ruin the boat's lines if I changed its water line -- suggested that I get a lighter motor or a bigger boat! That's not going to happen, but weight aboard can be shifted somewhat even if I must leave ashore a lot of things I don't often need or use, at least until my extended cruises.

When I arrived at Marblehead Trading Company's Beacon Street boatyard this (Saturday) morning I found that sometime yesterday Chip Ahoy had been moved into the yard to the crane, taken off its trailer. The bottom had been pressure-washed.  (Nov. 21, 2009)

It still needs a good sanding of many layers of old bottom paint to reach smooth, then painted. Just cleaned -- that beard of growth and barnacle acne blasted off -- it looks much better already.

The weather's been less than ideal for working outside; frost overnight, high-40s during the day with relentless drizzle and showers. This has been the weather pattern since I dropped off Chip Ahoy, but the boatyard has managed to get the bottom sanded and painted nonetheless. It's looking good, but they're waiting to lift the boat, lower the keel, and finish the job.  (Nov. 24, 2009)

Thanksgiving Day, Chip Ahoy still sits waiting for completion of its bottom. The rain showers let up long enough this morning to run over and take a few better photos of the progress, before the turkey dinner was served.  (Nov. 26, 2009)

When I arrived at the boatyard this morning Chip Ahoy was again hoisted in the sling; the swing keel had been lowered, the bottom had been completed. Such a big crane for so small a boat!  (Nov. 30, 2009)

The keel looks great, though the trailing edge that winches up into the slot still needs a coat of fresh paint. The bottom is vastly improved from when I delivered the boat.

I inspected the keel slot and it was clean and painted. From what I could see of it, the keel cable and its eye bolt (replaced new in the spring of 2008) still look to be in good condition. The zincs on the keel were pretty deteriorated after two seasons. After all the work Tommy did to eliminate the keel thunk, and my cost for having it done, I arranged with him to have the zincs replaced.

He told me Chip Ahoy would be ready to trailer home as soon as the new zincs were trimmed down and installed.

Chip Ahoy's bottom is now ready to be launched, come spring -- one step ahead of where I usually am in November.  (Nov. 30, 2009)

Yesterday I trailered Chip Ahoy home from the boatyard, the bottom job completed, ready to launch in the spring. The new zincs (port and starboard side) again were cut down to clear the hull when the keel is lowered.  (Dec. 1, 2009)

Chip Ahoy with its bottom ready to splash come spring, parked in its usual off-season location alongside the house. Next I'll remove the window frames and glass, bring them indoors for this winter's inside project. Once I have them out, it's time to get the boat covered before the first snowfall.

Moving on with Season 2010 improvements
It's never-ending ... bring on Sailing Season 2010!

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