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post #1 of 2 Old 05-24-2011 Thread Starter
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For anyone who remembers my thread from last August about a lifeboat conversion (Anyone know what model this cute double-ender is?) well ... we splashed her! It was a long and crazy day - left Thornhill (=just North of Toronto) at 7:30am after soldering up a new light connector on the truck, which belongs to Jonathan, one of my accomplices for the day.

Lots of work awaited us in Hamilton, where the boat has been covered for the winter...

We had to load the masts and all the other gear and paint the bottom, and install a new light kit on the trailer. It took us till after noon. Here we are ready to go:

Hamilton is a long way from Lake Simcoe, and this trailer had never been further than down to Hamilton harbour, and never faster than about 60 km/h. We kept things moderate, no more than 80 most of the time and never more than 90, and sometimes a lot slower. The truck (a Ram 1500 with 5.7L) didn't notice the extra work accelerating, but braking was definitely slow. When things got bouncy the two tons of boat really pulled the truck around hard.

Our first big excitement for the day was a blown tire on the 407. I am living evidence that heaven watches out for fools and lunatics because I was taking one of my frequent looks in the mirror when I noticed we had a flat in one of the front trailer tires. It was a total failure:

Pretty scary if we hadn't noticed it right away, and I dunno if we would've been able to see a failure in the rear tires. We got the spare on in the rain (only rain for the day, most of which fell while we were driving, which worked out amazingly). This was my view in the mirror while things were going right:

Here we are finally parked at the marina at Jackson's Point on Lake Simcoe, about 2:30:

We were very fortunate to have the builder's grandson Chris come meet us up there, he's the one with the most experience launching and stepping masts. This fellow was watching from next to the boat ramp:

Getting Mowe (means "Seagull" in German) off the trailer required some nudging but nothing too bad. Unfortunately for us, the outboard didn't want to start, so we borrowed some paddles from our slip neighbours (thanks A-2!) and made it through the marina out to the sailboat section

You can see the masts still down on the cabintop - we had to make it under the low footbridge you see, so stepping first and sailing out wasn't an option.

Jonathan really liked these unique boat houses, which are something you're definitely not allowed to build any more:

This was actually the first time ever stepping in the water, they always stepped on the trailer before launching before. It went very well, with some help from the Sail Georgina regulars (hi guys!) hanging around. I unfortunately don't have pictures here of the stepping process or Mowe as she's sitting now, just this one:

We didn't step till after 6, by 8 we were all done and still had to drive way around the other side of the lake to where I had a parking spot for the trailer. Didn't get home till 10:30, after being up at 5:15. One of my longer days in recent memory

I will try to get more from Jonathan tonight (all the good looking pictures are from his SLR, the lousy snaps are my phone).

I was up again yesterday cleaning her off (she's very dirty, still more work to do there) and completely forgot to take more pix. Next Sunday hopefully. At least I found one potential culprit why the outboard didn't want to start: the gas line is bad! I cut off a cracking section and re-clamped, but it still doesn't pump - the squeeze-bulb might be bad. I only had two hours up there before I had to bring my wife back the car, and the mechanic was on lunch (yes, he was working on Victoria Day weekend!), but hopefully next week I'll borrow a known-working line, make sure that was the only issue, and hopefully we'll be good to go.

More to come...
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post #2 of 2 Old 05-26-2011 Thread Starter
Doesn't sail enough
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A few more photos from splash day:

Here's right after launch, hard to beat that warm fuzzy feeling of, "Hey, she actually floats!"

And here we are hanging the booms once the masts are up. You can tell it's starting to get dark already - this is on a day I started before sunrise...

Hoping for good weather this weekend and a cooperative outboard...
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