Dream Away Update 23-Sep-2003
I am finally getting the time to send out an update to let everyone know of progress on boat projects and plans to start the cruise.
It has been June since my last update. I have not done an update to the WEB page. I hope that I can get the WEB page updated with in the next couple of weeks. This update will be a written update.
When I was working on the boat I found a completely rotten bulkhead between the garage and the head. This was not good news! This added about a month to the boat time line. To get to the bulkhead I had to remove everything in the head and the holding tank. The bulkhead was so rotten that I vacuumed the bulkhead out of the boat. I replaced the bulkhead with sheet fiberglass. I put in a new working surface in the head which includes a new sink, new faucet/shower fitting and added some shelving under the working surface and a freshwater foot pump. Since I had everything removed from the boat, I throughly cleaned the holding tank and added a tank tamer. This device just lets you know when the holding tank is getting full and the time has arrived to make a decision. I also rebuilt the LaVac head and got the spares. I rebuilt the electric pump that flushes the head and the manual pump that pumps out the holding tank. I now have on hand a complete set of spares for each.
During the month of July a good friend of mine, Steve Meidell (master rigger) came to Houston to help me with the re-rig project. He was a great help and we were able to get the main mast and the mizzen mast re-rigged. I was able to add a new intermediate stay on the main mast for the stay sail. I also added another upper stay on the mizzen mast. This stay on the mizzen is a forward leading stay so that I could remove the triatic stay from the main to the mizzen mast. All of the new rigging has new chain plates that are now outside the hull, easy to see and inspect. All of the rigging on the main is 3/8 inch 1 X 19 316 stainless steel wire rope. All of the rigging on the mizzen mast is ¼ inch 1 X 19 316 stainless steel wire rope. All of the terminals are Norseman fittings. I also added a new roller furling system on the forestay. This is a Furlex system that should be more reliable then the old system.
We have also worked in a three week vacation. We have some friends in Miami that we have known for over twenty years. Each year they have invited us to the Bahamas to join them on their summer cruise, but we have always had something else going on, or just not enough vacation time. This year we finally said yes. It was a wonderful break for us. I had been working on the boat 12 to 15 hours a day, seven days a week and just needed the break.
Needless to say it was wonderful. We flew to Nassau and got on the boat there. We went diving at least two times a day, and had lobster, conch or fish at least two meals a day. It was great, but I wanted to stay or I was more determined to get back and get Dream Away finished, so we can get to the Bahamas on our own boat.
The bottom line with all of this is that the Dream Away departure date is postponed again. Before we leave the Texas area I wanted to be sure that all of the new stuff that I have put on the boat worked and was tested under way. With that in mind we will not be leaving until the February/March time frame. This will give us enough time to check out the boat and verify all of the systems. This will also change the cruising plan a bit. When we leave the Texas area, it will be in the February/March time frame. We will leave Texas from Port Isabelle (Brownsville) and cross the gulf to Tampa. From there we will go around Florida and head up the US east coast to Newport, Rhode Island. We will leave Newport, Rhode Island, in September of 2004 to Bermuda. After Bermuda we will spend the winter of 2004/2005 in the Bahamas.
I will be updating the WEB page as we get closer to the departure date.
Stay in Touch.