Sorry for the really slow posts on my blog. It seems life gets in the way of me sitting and putting all this stuff down on the blog. Since the last post I've been busy working in NZ for five weeks and have only a week ago returned to Spirit here in the Whitsunday Islands. It's been great getting back as there was a pile of stuff I needed to do to get Spirit ready for our Christmas cruise to Magnetic Island. We plan to meet some close friends up there on there 49ft Cat and to do some sailing together, which has been a dream of ours since we were kids growing up together in Sydney.
After nearly two months of not cleaning Spirit's bum it was well and truly time to give her some love. A job I thought was going to be nasty turned out to be pretty easy. My father had some really great wide and flexible paint scrapers that we used. And as there was a fair amount or more like a carpet it came off really easy in one foul scrap! We had to be careful though not to scratch any anti foul off with the flexible blades but after a few goes it was easy. After the scraping we gave her a quick scrub as well with a green doodle pad.
Another of the big jobs was to install some new B&G 20/20's that I had bought from a great friend in NZ. He had a few spare so I was able to pick em up at a really reasonable price, which made replacing them easier. I removed the console that they're installed in and painted it along with the speakers. We used Jotun Pengaurd high build and then did a top coat of Jotun Imperite 300 white. Came up pretty nice considering it was a quick job with a roller. I've also removed all the varnish I had onboard. There wasn't a lot but it's such a pain to maintain so we now have oiled timber. I'm using organ oil and it's real easy to apply and looks great. I'll do a coat every month and see how it holds up. The water-maker has been put back into the boat. It's now installed in a much better spot under the fridge and the membrane is now under the sink area so none of it's in the way. It's really hidden and makes more room on the interior now.
There's two new solar panels on the floats where the old ones were. I've used some 6 gauge wiring from a mate good quality stuff as well as he said I was using to smaller wiring for the long run we had. It's great to be getting these small jobs done and things like the new solar panels and better wiring make all the difference. Spirit will easily run off the 240 watts of solar we have onboard. The panels easily run the fridge and stereo along with the autopilot while we are at sea. Other small things we charge through USB like the iPad and iPhone are easily kept in charged. We love being self reliant!
The autopilot connection was pretty crappy and needed a lot of attention so that's been upgraded and the two Bose speakers were replaced with new ones so we have some pumping tunes now in the cockpit ;-) We cracked the Prodder a few months ago so have now removed the track that ran up it and also all of the metallic fitting that were bolted or screwed to it. We'll now lash any fittings to the prodder and it'll be a heap lighter with out all the metal on it. It's also going to allow us to tack the light air sails further out near the end as the track used to stop a good 20cm before the end.
Next week we hope to leave for Magnetic Island and will try and do the 120nm run in a day. I'll update again soon with new from how the trip up went.