Always look on the bright side of life…….

Unfortunately was unable to get to ‘vagabond’ this weekend,currently got a bit of a health scare going on and am waiting on an urgent appointment with a specialist who will hopefully put my mind at rest and tell me it’s something minor,despite all the indications to the contrary.

Part of whatever is wrong is extreme fatigue so I just didn’t have the energy or inclination to do much at all over the weekend. Will be going next weekend,however tired I feel. Even if I only  ‘potter’ and drink tea!

I’m still busy acquiring bits and pieces for her though,she’s still very much a big part of my life. Absence makes the heart grow stronger and all that. Feel the same about my estranged wife as well……..

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Making up for lost time pt2

Saturday continued.
On my first ever visit to ‘vagabond’ it was decided to remove the Honda outboard (before some thieving toe-rag did!) and take it to work for testing and servicing.
It was secured with a hefty chain and padlock and no key!
The chain and padlock resisted all efforts to remove, bolt croppers and a hacksaw didn’t even mark them.
The padlock had been threaded through one of the eyes to which the split backstay was attached,so that was cut instead. Took all of a minute with the hacksaw.
So obviously the eye now needed replacing. Once again eBay came up trumps,and a pair were ordered. Different design and fixing arrangement and a lot stronger.
The remains of the old eye were soon removed.Initially I tried to use the outermost fixing hole for the new eye, but the GRP was so thick there i could barely get a half turn on the nut,so after an hour or so getting myself in all sorts of strange contorted positions(i could only gain access via the cockpit locker) i conceded defeat and tried the inner hole instead. Success first time.
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The old cut eye
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And the new.
I’ve still got the starboard side to do at some point,if only to maintain the symmetry!
Talking of which,’vagabond’ is nearly 40 years old. Am i the first person to realise that there are 2 starboard fairleads on the foredeck instead of 1 port/1 starboard?

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Spot the difference? No? There is none! This is old photo from 2/3 years ago when she was last sold,i think. And here are a few more.
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She was loved once!
The rest of Saturday was spent doing a bit more cleaning,taking measurements and making paper templates.All will become clear soon!
I brought the NASA target 2 depth sounder back with me to test as I’ve not got a battery on board yet. Another good result,works a treat!
Don’t know if budget will allow me to go down this weekend,if i can possibly manage it i will and an update or two will follow.

Making up for lost time pt1

Moved into my new flat a week ago and before the first box was unpacked i had made plans to get to ‘vagabond’ the following Saturday.
Was up at stupid o’clock Saturday morning and made the train at 6! 2 hours later i was on board and raring to go.
First job on the list was to make her secure,all the locks had been forcibly removed before i became her new owner.
The main companionway hatch was a doddle,a new hasp and staple and a fairly hefty padlock were easily fitted. For now I’ve fitted only one,on the port side but it will have a matching one on the other side. I know if someone is determined enough they’ll get in,but I’m not going to make it easy for them!
The cockpit locker lids will be attended to in the near future,once I’ve decided whether to replace or refurbish them. I have a cunning plan in mind but more on that next time!
The forward hatch doesn’t have a lock as such,just a
threaded clamp bolt arrangement to secure it from inside the boat.
Unfortunately the piece of plywood that the retaining lug is fixed to was totally rotten and delaminated. I removed what little remained and cleaned up where it fitted. Half an hours work with a saw,a surform and lots of trial and error and i had a new piece of ply shaped up. This was then glasses in place and i now have a secure boat.
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A final bit of filling and sanding to do when i paint the interior.
Next job was a trial fit of the mainsheet and blocks i got from eBay. Perfect,just need to get a couple of meatier shackles.
The handle for the roller reefing boom was missing and a new one is £30,a ridiculous amount of money for a bit of bent bar and a plastic knob! Made one at work instead. Raided the scrap bin and found the handle of an old caravan jockey wheel. A short length of bar and i was sorted. I guesstimated the size of the square section that fits in the boom and got it slightly wrong! Spent an hour with a file and lots more trial and error but i now have a fully functional roller boom and handle. Will have to dive in the scrap bin again and get a spare made up for when i kick the handle overboard! Its bound to happen!
More to follow soon……