Work with our various contractors continue- the rigger (who is replacing our rigging), sailmaker (new sails), welder (building a custom radar/VHF/GPS pole mount), canvas/awning maker (making the full enclosure and sun awnings), and upholsterer (interior upholstery). 4 year-old Ethan had a busy week with Halloween activities, and we had our first haul out to do bottom paint, and other bottom repairs or prep work.
The trip to the boat yard went well. We were in unfamiliar waters with no depth sounder because the electrician doesn’t make an appearance for another two weeks. Luckily, a wonderful local sailor, Annie, came along for the ride to provide the local knowledge we needed. Ethan was also on board for the trip.
Thanks to our tide app, Tide Graph Pro, which allows you to plan your trip according to the tides. We are in a canal with a shallow spot in one place, so you don’t want to leave at low tide or else you are likely to run aground in the mud. You also want to time your leaving to coincide with the bridge opening times on the hour and half hour, upon request.
All went according to schedule and we came within site of the Seventeenth Street bridge here in Fort Lauderdale, FL. Joe called on the radio to politely request a bridge opening. Interesting, the bridge operator tried to talk Joe into just motoring under the bridge. However, the documented height for this bridge is listed as 55 feet, and our mast height is 63 feet. Even with the falling tide, we decided it was better to be conservative and so requested that the bridge be opened. The photo shows the bridge closing behind us.
Once through the bridge, I took over the helm, motoring slowly past the cruise ship docks, container ship docks, tug boat docks, and over to the canal which would take us to the yard. The boat handled nicely, and I found myself wishing we were heading out to sea instead. Joe replaced me at the helm so I could arrange the lines and fenders for the haul out well. Once arrived, we all needed to grab our stuff and climb up our of the well to dry land.
As we were leaving, I was able to snap a few pictures showing you how a boat yard hauls out a boat. They use a very large travel lift with slings to carefully lift the boat out of the water and deliver it to where it will sit.
Here is where the workers deposited the boat onto stands. The boat is now ready to be cleaned, sanded, primed and painted. We also had other work done, replacing the zincs, adding Prop Speed, a special coating that keeps your propeller nice and clean, to the propeller, cleaning barnacles off the through hulls, and similar work. A Prop Speed side fact- my sister, Yvette, and brother in law, Dave, were the first US distributor of this wonderful New Zealand product.
For the bottom paint, we decided to go with an old tried and true cruiser favorite- Pettit Trinidad SR with 2 coats of black. Black was chosen for practical purpose- hides a grungy waterline if the boat is in dirty waters.
Last night, we took Ethan trick or treating, the pizza costume was a hit everywhere we went. I would like to take credit for this cute costume, but the reality is that we bought it at Target.
This next week will be busy- we relaunch Mahi on Thursday and take her back to the dock, my birthday is happening, and the start of the Ft. Lauderdale Boat Show. Getting closer to heading off!