Still Hard At It

The work on the boat goes on at a steady pace. The old saying that life is what happens to you when you are making plans is all too true. Our original plan when the boat was purchased was to be on our way to the Bahamas by now. Things obviously did not work out that way but maybe that is not such a bad thing. In as great condition as the boat was when we bought her, she is in need of a LOT of work before she is able to comfortably do any long distance cruising. It appears that we will be here in Beaufort until at the very least next year. That might seem like a long time but with the work we need to do and the need to raise enough money to pay for all of the improvements and keep the cruising kitty intact, the time will fly. When we left on our previous boat to cruise from Houston to come here, it might have been the first time the boat was completely equipped and tested and we were not still working on projects as we headed out. It was a nice change from the past and we would very much like for this boat to be in that condition when we next leave the dock for a while.

The refinishing of the teak is moving along albeit slowly. The previous owner, in an effort to protect the wood used a deck stain on all of the exterior teak. It has been harder to remove the stain than it would have been to just sand the wood if left alone. But we, or should I say, the teak master is making nice progress. We are adding some interior lights at the entry to the forward and aft cabins so we don't have to feel our way around in the dark to turn on the cabin lights. We are using LEDs so that we can use them at anchor since they draw very little in the way of amps. Caulking on the exterior is far from finished but the areas we believe leaked in the past have been done and we wait for the next rains to verify that. As we re-caulk we are also replacing all of the original fasteners which are all showing their age. Regarding leaks, the problem in the forward cabin caused the teak parquet to separate from the sub floor. The sub floor itself is still intact so removal of the parquet, sealing the sub floor with West System, then re-gluing the parquet with epoxy should take care of the problem for some time to come. We also took advantage of the repair to refinish the parquet in the forward cabin. Eventually we will get to all of the flooring. We choose Ultimate Sole to do the refinishing ( because of our past experience with the product and the fact that even with a high gloss finish it is not as slippery as most other high gloss finishes.

Our water tanks consist of two 75 gallon stainless steel tanks in the stern of the boat. They are connected together by a crossover pipe at the bottom so both tanks maintain the same level. Filling the tanks meant moving the hose back and forth between the two tanks until they were both full. It is not that difficult but I am always looking for a better way to do things. The solution turned out to be very simple. I went to the local hardware store and purchased a drinking grade 25 foot RV water hose and three female connectors and one male connector. Total cost was $27.24 and about 20 minutes of my time. For our purposes the rig consists of a short piece of hose about 3 feet long with a male connector on one end and a female connector on the other. This is attached to a Y valve that has a cut off in each leg. This is commonly used to connect two garden hoses to a single hose bib. I then cut two more lengths of the hose about 4 feet long and attached a female connector on one end of each. These two hoses are attached to the Y valve and the ends with no connectors can be placed into each of my water tank deck fills. Once the hose is turned on, both tanks are filled at the same time and with the same water flow. With the cut offs in the Y valve one hose can be turned off if one tank fills faster that the other or both can be cut off when the tanks are full. For folks with deck fills on opposite sides of the cabin trunk, you can still use this system, just attach longer pieces of hose off the Y valve to run down the deck from the bow on each side or adjust to where ever your deck fills are.

Cleaning up wiring and just cleaning up the boat fills a lot of time in between these little project. We just found out we have cable TV on the dock but the boat never had a inlet for phone or cable TV so that means an inlet will get installed and the cable will need to be run from the inlet to the entertainment center. So that just got added to the list. And oh what a list it is, so stay tuned.


  1. Don't forget to get some of those caps to cap off your hoses when not in use....

  2. That is an excellent idea for filling both tanks at the same time!

  3. Hi I am in the process of cleaning up a 1975 Trader 34 and am having problems sanding out the black in the Teak the wood has not been taken care of very goo by the previous owners and I was wondering if may have any tips. I was thinking of teak cleaner ?? Thanks Dom

  4. Dominic, If the teak is truly black instead of weathered gray you have your work cut out for you. The black may be mildew so I would try some bleach and a stiff brush first. With any of this stuff you need to be careful with any adjoining paint and gelcoat. Be sure and rinse everything extremely well. If the bleach does not work, try oxalic acid, again being very careful. We have had good success with Te-Ka teak cleaner in the past. It may take a combination of some or all of these to bring it back. Sanding should be a last resort after everything else has been tried. Good luck. Chuck

  5. Hi Chuck, I have found another solution for the tank filling problem.....
    I extended our aft bunks by cutting the aft bulkhead and building an extension box for each bunk.
    This meant that I had to move the deck fillers further aft as they were now located directly above the bunk extension and I would not be able to access them from the underside any more.
    In doing so, I have decided to just get rid of one of the filler points and make the t-connection to both tanks below decks!
    No more filling separate tanks, and one less place for possible water ingress in the deck.
    I will blog about it one day as it was not that simple. Given I still have teak decks, it means replacing 5 short planks....ho, don't we love em! :)
    Tony - Trawler Nostra Signora

    1. That's a great idea Tony. Maybe even considering a Y higher up instead of a T to help the tanks fill faster. It might not matter. If our system wasn't working so well, I sure would consider this. Chuck

    2. Hi Chuck, good idea.
      If you are bored, you can see the progress here.

  6. Nice work Tony. I am adding a link to your blog in our Links list. Chuck


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