Living the Dream
Join Date: Jul 2005
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Hello to all & welcome to my world
I just spent a day reviewing the many and various comments posted here and can truly appreciate how these short bullet point reply's can help a person identify his/her potential options and if not at least they can steer them in a better direction; so kudos’ to you all. I'm glad to have found this site, even though it may be a bit late for many of my restoration projects. None the less I will gladly assist and question when in need in an effort to share my experiences with others. I guess I should point out that my restoration project is some what larger than most here, so my first point of input is to confirm the exponential rule about cost and it's relation to a boats size. My Stella Maris is 53ft at the water line and 72 overall so as the saying goes "BOAT" for Stella means to break out another tenthousand. This said, I would like to point out to all who wish to venture in purchasing any size or type of a boat to consider there knowledge, understand, physical and financial capabilities along with the standard what you expect of and routine how will you use the boat questions. I can state that Stella although she has shown me many ugly little and not so little secrets during our time together; is just right for me and my purpose, yes she demands a lot but I knew what I was getting into before I jumped and this is the most important aspect of boat ownership. Be honest with yourself when you buy and you be all the happier for it. Once again thanks to all for you comments, I look forward to being a part of this Sailing Community crew.
For those curious few… allow me to introduce Stella:
1977 John Alden Cutter Ketch; 70% sailboat 30% Motor Boat, she is a one off which I unfortunately found out to be more of a negative thing than good thing, she was custom built for Mr. Neil Tillitson, the then owner of Alden Yachts. She has a large pilot house and nowhere do I have to worry about bumping my 6ft high head. I’ve done 90% of the work to date by myself saving a lot of money in the process and I also gathered a great deal of insight about her construction and systems configuration. She was built by the Hodgdon Brothers up in Boothbay Maine and let me tell you something those guys are real world carpenters and craftsmen (hats of to you guys). I’ve taken the evaluate, plan, tear down, discard, rebuild and/or replace approach and highly recommend this approach as time spent dealing with, saving, cleaning and repairing too many components is both valuable time that can be invested in the project and/or better served with upgrades. I post and recycle those items on e-bay at a later date or continue to share them with fiends on the docks. She currently has no standing and running rigging and I’m prepping the sticks for painting; I sanded the Main and Mizzen in a day and it was not a difficult as many would think, with the proper tools that is. I am upgrading many of running rigging control layouts (internal halyards, reef system, outhauls, boomvang, genoa leads, etc) as part of the process and I hope to lead as many of the fordeck lines back to the helm station as possible; mizzen lines will remain on the mizzen mast. I initially focused on systems (Electrical, Mechanical, Plumbing, and Aux Engine) first this way I could move her should we have a repeat hurricane season being that we live in Miami. I hope to have that sticks, sails and all running rigging completed by late March 07, if e-bay and local weather hold out, I should make this goal. Until then I look forward to answering any question anyone may have about systems and/or Stella.
PS The number ONE most important rule about any repairs, restoration, etc is to “measure twice cut once”