A 20-minute project, from searching for tools to tested and cleaned up.
Tender Revamp. She's 8 years old and looking a little tired, so I took her home for a spa treatment.
Paint. She had been slowly loosing air, So I started with a good scrubbing and a soap bubble search. Nothing. She stayed hard as a rock in my front yard for a week. I had purchased paint (MDR) with the thought that perhaps the air was simply leaking through the PVC, but I don't think it was. I painted her anyway; simply done with a trim brush and 4-inch foam roller. It looks fine, but in retrospect I would not recommend it, unless appearance matters to you. A few thoughts:
- Don't paint on a hot day or even a very dry day. The second day was 78F with a good breeze and unusually low humidity; the paint dried too fast to self-level properly. I would shoot for 65-75F and some humidity. It is a latex paint.
- I'm a little afraid the dark gray is going to increase sun induced pressure fluctuation. I expected a lighter color. Chose white.
- Bow handle. The tender had a big molded PVC bow handle that snagged EVERY time we hoisted it out of the water. A hacksaw and disk sander removed it and 3M 5200 smoothed the edges. It has rings for a towing bridle; we leave a light bridle in place, and that works better than the handle anyway.
- The fabric was thinned a few places. We built it up with 3M 5200.
- So far the paint is staying on fairly well. The product reviewed well in Practical Sailor. It did stay on and did not stick to itself when I rolled it up, left it in the car for 8 hours, and re-inflated it at the marina after 4 days drying time. Rev. By November it was starting to peal here and there. However, it got no worse in the next year, so perhaps there were spots of wax that the TSp did not remove. Still good sunscreen, but 1/2 thumbs-down on the paint. Rev. By October 2011 the paint has worn a bit more, but not too much. It's still protecting the tender, though a fastidious owner might not like the look.
The transom is easy; just clip the fitting installed for this purpose. The bow is tricky. The weight must be carried by both the tubes and the floor. The PO installed loops in the tubes for a bridle and I added the loops through the floorboards. At first I had only the center loop but that caused the floor to bow and once, when the tubes were quite flat, pull part-way out; the outside loops solved this. I replaced the chafe pads above the rings--don't forget these or you will wear through the tubes. We leave the bridle attached to the tender most of the time; it is not in the way.
Other Tasks. There is always more....
- Replace remaining two Hella fans with Boras. Strange wiring was found, again. Odd, since most other PO wiring was impeccable. Must have been hot and in a rush. I can imagine a hellish July install. OR perhaps I am looking at a mix of contractor and PO work.
- Replaced line guides on a trolling rod
- Took the Cruise-N-Carry AC home. Sucker is a heavy and a pain to maneuver in the salon on daily basis (where it must be stored). I love it at night sleeping and hate it the rest of the time. Summer is over so she goes home and won't be missed... until it hits 90F again.
- Stowed the bike rack under the bunk.
- Painted numbers on the tender
- Measured for some future projects
- Replaced hatch (broken lens) in roof of salon. Since I had a spare (thank you, PO) and it was bedded with butyl tape, it was a 15 minutes job. Since then, I have replaced the broken lens and thus still have a spare. They arn't difficult to re-glaze... at home with a full shop!
- Lubed the hold down latches on the engines; they're getting stiffer and I am getting concerned.
- Cleaning. After 3 weeks on the boat, she was due. The last few days were too rough for cleaning and the sailing was too good!
- Replaced a spent propane cylinder
- Swapped a few Fall vs. Summer items from the boat
I followed-up this work with an hour of floating mindlessly in the tender, just outside the break water in a fish-infested cove. I found a gloriously comfortable posture in the bottom, head propped on the bow tube, feet splayed, and arms... heck I forget. I fell asleep. And then some insensitive damn fish woke me. It's enough to make me take the bait off the hooks.