Charlie may be making more progress than I... - SailNet Community

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Old 05-19-2009
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Charlie may be making more progress than I...

The keel work is going. Bovas Marine (Sailnet contact) sent me a ton of pictures of his keel. While he has a Barberis 34, they share almost identical design patterns. I think the biggest difference between a Barberis Show 34 and 38 – is the 38 has aft lockers past the two aft staterooms. I could be wrong, as all I wanted was pictures of the keel. After seeing the damage after the grounding and how the keel is structurally composed – I have been leery of the fact that the previous work done by the PO may have been not done to par.

Mind you, this is just what goes through the mind of someone that understands the keel was re-faired before I purchased her. As always, trying to understand why the kind of damage we sustained occurred, and circumstances that contributed it. In the end, I compared the full on bow shot of his keel and it had the same 4” girth mine has, so I think the fairing job was cosmetic prior. Which is good to go – because as a sailor we are always looking for the reasons our boats do not “go as fast” as we would like!

I haven’t spent much time in the yard. The interior of the saloon and the two aft berths are gutted. As well as a portion of the galley. I was up last Saturday and visited Grady who had his boat hauled out for a bottom job. Checked on progress, and it looks like sometime early June we could be splashed again.

Meanwhile – I have been working on the boat. I have all the interior pieces in my three car garage and been re-creating the interior components using balsa and fiberglass.

Heresy, you say – to remove all that teak veneer!

Simply put, previous work done prior to my ownership contributed to a rapid rot problem to all the cabinetry. Both water tanks have hoses that run through the bilge. The access holes allowed for bilge water to flow out of the bilge when heeled. Constantly soaking the flooring and interior bottom sections in water. All it takes is a few times for the wood to get saturated and start rotting because the veneer is just surface – the rest is plywood. The casual observer would not notice but I always have. Also over time where the woodwork is secured to the fiberglass – the holes enlarge due to stress – allowing water saturation.

Some examples:



You can see the damage that occurs.

I have a stockpile of all kinds of fiberglass cloth, balsa wood, and resin from my intial desire to fix the Catalina and do the same to her. It is just a time consuming process, and regardless how much room you think you have – it is not enough. I have been using my decks, garage, and living spaces to re-create the pieces. A lot of mistakes made here and there but I think I have the formula for success nailed down.

Here are some spy shots of the new pieces:


This is the galley section – the original was severly soaked in oil from the “incident”.


This is for the port side saloon seating. One difference of the original and the one I made is I recreated it with an additional 3 inches of height. More storage being the main reason, however, guided by a secondary need to house two Waeco AC/ DC coolers. I wanted them housed as near centerline as possible; however, secured in a compartment to prevent them launching. The enclosed areas for them will provide additional insulation and keep the energy use down.



This is the starboard side settee recreation. Mind you, this are is no longer going to be a settee and instead this is one half of the longitudal section that comprises storage and an additional galley. I had to weigh how the area was used – and if I do end up living onboard then I wanted a few options:

1. More storage. Rarely has the starboard side been used for anything other than the occasional guests, but usually just for throwing junk on, that later finds itself in one of the aft berths.
2. Wanted an additional sink. Reason for next.
3. I want an AC powered stovetop. Cooking with propane is great and I actually prefer it. However, if docked at a slip with electricity – I want to use the electricity and save the propane usage for underway or when there are no AC facilities. Now I can have the best of both worlds, and if seriously entertaining – by golly jove – I can do it. The other reason for the AC over propane is that burning propane expels a ton of moisture into the boat.

The drawback – I do lose the seating and “openness”, and honestly – the original styling of the Barberis.

However, she is 20+ years old – and updating, increased storage, and flexibility – priceless.

The teak though!!!

Being an artist, if there are two skills I have they would be – design and artistic damnation. There is a technique called Faux Bois that an artist can use to simulate exotic wood graining. I’ll be using this introduce a more exotic interior than previously obtained with the teak and also get a chance to update and modernize the styling.
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