What do you do when you visit your boat on the hard? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 51 Old 02-13-2017 Thread Starter
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What do you do when you visit your boat on the hard?

Looking for interior cabin ideas while weather is still wintry.

Right now I don't know what needs upgrading, and probably won't figure it out until sailing season well underway.

So, what do you do? Cleaning, polishing, airing?

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Re: What do you do when you visit your boat on the hard?

As little as possible. It's simply miserable to work inside a cold damp boat. Climbing up and down a ladder for every little thing.

I charge batteries, measure things for spring commissioning supply lists, etc. Hands on wrenches is no fun until ambient is in upper 40s+
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Re: What do you do when you visit your boat on the hard?

I first check the stands for tightness and plumb, then tarp tie downs, then cockpit scuppers, then inside for mold, drips or anything out of place. Then spend a few minutes thinking about what needs to be done when it gets a bit warmer.
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Re: What do you do when you visit your boat on the hard?

If there is a project you can take home to fix, or make at home. If I were going to re-do my table in the cabin, I would take that home. When I refinished my coaming boards, I just took them home. If you need to do work on the head, winter is a great time to do that. Much less yucky. You may need a heater to bend stiff hoses. Otherwise, I try to get away from the boat for a little while.
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Re: What do you do when you visit your boat on the hard?

AJ,

I think I know where you're going with this. For us, winter is spruce up time. Our boat was a jewel in 1975. 42 years later some of the luster has left, but a little at at time we're turning her back into the little princess she once was. Right now, as I type, my lovely bride is struggling to put the vents into the bottom of the cushions that I've been making for the past month. Are they perfect? No, but pretty good for a guy who has never made any cushions before. I'll post pics when I get further along. A couple of years ago we made a new mainsail. Other things that I've done over winter

Replace shrouds and standing rigging
Rebuilt gin pole for stepping mast.
Replace running rigging a line at at time.
rebuilt motor.
Made a new tabernacle for the mast
Made new support posts for the mast (transporting)
Practiced (and failed miserably) splicing StaSet.
Cleaned and dried all lines (gets salt out of fibers)
Trailer part upgrades.

The benefit is that Sparrow is about 12 feet from my side door. We don't go in much because it is a pain in the back to climb in under the cover and tumble into the cockpit. I do it when needed. Just yesterday, I climbed in and knocked 12" of snow off the cover to make room for the 18" we got last night, this morning and right now.
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Re: What do you do when you visit your boat on the hard?

1) I do a quick check of the two solar panel controllers. One for the 12 volt house bank and the other for the 48 electric propulsion bank. I then turn on the battery chargers. Not really needed for charging but, I like to make sure the four 8A4D AGM batteries that make up the 48 volt propulsion bank are in balance and charging at the same rates.

2) Then I check the bilge and remove any water from it using a wet/dry vacuum. The boat is pretty tight but, even condensation over the winter can find it's way into the bilge. After I remove the water I splash some antifreeze back into it. I do this to keep any water from freezing until the next visit.

As I have gotten older like others have mentioned working on board over the winter has lost it's appeal. I wait for warmer temperatures of Spring to tackle most on board projects. Meanwhile at home I wash lines, work on boat sewing projects, work on items that are easily removed from the boat and think about what projects I might want to do when things warm up.

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Currently: Fixing things and waiting for Spring

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Last edited by mbianka; 02-15-2017 at 07:57 AM.
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post #7 of 51 Old 02-13-2017
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Re: What do you do when you visit your boat on the hard?

I removed the frozen six-pack of Oktoberfest that I forgot to take out in the fall. Really glad they didn't burst and spray all over.

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post #8 of 51 Old 02-13-2017
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Re: What do you do when you visit your boat on the hard?

I have been visiting my boat most weekends, no matter how cold it has been. Sometimes, it take a while for the space heater to get going when I arrive, but once warm enough, I am able to do a few things. Not too long ago, I installed new batteries, and a battery charger. This allowed me to keep the Airhead fan going for ventilation.

When I arrive, I connect the extension cord, get the space heater going, then pretty much go back to whatever project I'm working on. Last winter, I had the engine removed, took it to the house for part of a rebuild. Another boaty project could be redoing the interior cushions if needed. If you're looking to install a "composting head" now would be a good time as the cold will keep the smell from the old system from getting too bad when you remove everything. Changing lighting to LEDs is simple enough... if not expensive bulbs, then maybe some LED strips for additional/accent lighting. Pre-Season commissioning items, like changing out whatever filters on board.

Just some ideas.
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post #9 of 51 Old 02-13-2017
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Re: What do you do when you visit your boat on the hard?

I should add, also, that there are some projects that can not be done in cold weather. Painting and varnishing require a certain minimum temperature. However, some of the prep work can (theoretically) be done before the temp gets high enough to paint. The year we painted our deck, we took all of the woodwork and deck fittings off while the cover was still on the boat. As soon as it was reasonable to take the cover off we started sanding. By the time we got done sanding it was warm enough to paint. By the time we got the toe rail back on, it was the middle of the summer, but, that is a story for another time!
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Re: What do you do when you visit your boat on the hard?

John usually naps. When the boat is in the water he does like one or two days to go down by himself and "commune" with the boat shortly after it's launched. I suspect lots of napping is involved.

When we go down in March (it will still be in the yard) while I attend a diesel workshop at a nearby marina I have a list of small things for him to do:

Install new fresh water hoses
Measure the V-berth for new cushions and upholstery
Install new cockpit locker hinges
Change the zinc
Install a new light in the head

That should keep him busy until it's time to pick me up for lunch. Then he can nap after lunch. He climbs hundreds of feet up and down factory stacks for his day job so climbing in and out of the boat isn't an issue for him.

He prefers to bring the batteries home and rotate them on and off a charger in the garage so that isn't on the list.
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