Why is our boat such a mess? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 21 Old 06-03-2014 Thread Starter
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Why is our boat such a mess?

The way I look at it most people who live aboard boats are 1) "Mr Bodge it's", 2) "Mr Fix It's" or 3) "Mr I will pay someone else to do it"
I must admit to being a bit of the first two and as a very, very, very last resort when I have completed the first bodge it task beyond repair I have to resort to number 3.
Now, when I am trying to repair something simple I have to prepare. I get my tools out including anything I may need along the way. Half way through I find I need something I know I have aboard somewhere but I am dammed if I can find it. So I have to get everything out until I do find it because I know it is there somewhere.
By the time I have finished I have every socket scattered around the boat, everything I don't need out and the boat is a real mess.
Oh how I hate those people who know where everything is, can find the exact socket just by looking at the nut and put everything back in the right place immediately after using it.
I may have a boat with everything in a mess but if anyone comes round they can see just how hard I have been working.
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post #2 of 21 Old 06-03-2014
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Re: Why is our boat such a mess?

I know what you mean, and I am prone to do the same thing.....even on a small boat like mine sometimes I have to unload a locker to find the tool or part I need for a task, and sometimes while unloading the locker I'll discover a part I had bought previously for another project that didn't get done, so I'll start working on that, unloading another locker to find parts.....next thing you know my boat looks like a junkyard!
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post #3 of 21 Old 06-03-2014
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Re: Why is our boat such a mess?

Things on the boat know when you are planning to need them, and that is when we move in the middle of the night.
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post #4 of 21 Old 06-03-2014
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Re: Why is our boat such a mess?

We keep most tools under the nav seat and it's packed!! Seems I add something every few months to eternity.

I worked summers, when I was in high school, for a painting company that taught me to prepare everything I many need for the job in the morning and clean and put it all away every evening, even if I needed it again the next day. At 16 that just seemed like a pain. However, it really does save time. I pull out every tool I may need (ie metric and sae wrenches/sockets) and lay them out in a part of the boat I won't be working on. Often the salon settee. At the end of the day, it really only take 15 to 20 mins to repack everything so I can find them all the next day again.

Even psychologically, it really helps tackle the job the next morning, if it doesn't look like a bomb went off.

Another project tip I follow is proper preparation of the job itself. Again, similar to proper scraping and sanding to prep for paint. On a boat, everything is difficult to reach, with hatches, doors, panels, cabinets, etc, in the way. Before I try to dig in, I remove doors from their hinges and whatever cabinetry I can to help access the job. There is nothing more frustrating than have a cabinet closing on you while your head and one arm are buried in the hull.
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post #5 of 21 Old 06-03-2014
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Re: Why is our boat such a mess?

I am the same way. When it comes to a repair, I am very determined, and I will put forth a colossal effort to complete the repair.

However, once the repair is complete, I simply don't have the same energy and determination to put everything away all organized.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nostrodamus View Post
The way I look at it most people who live aboard boats are 1) "Mr Bodge it's", 2) "Mr Fix It's" or 3) "Mr I will pay someone else to do it"
I must admit to being a bit of the first two and as a very, very, very last resort when I have completed the first bodge it task beyond repair I have to resort to number 3.
Now, when I am trying to repair something simple I have to prepare. I get my tools out including anything I may need along the way. Half way through I find I need something I know I have aboard somewhere but I am dammed if I can find it. So I have to get everything out until I do find it because I know it is there somewhere.
By the time I have finished I have every socket scattered around the boat, everything I don't need out and the boat is a real mess.
Oh how I hate those people who know where everything is, can find the exact socket just by looking at the nut and put everything back in the right place immediately after using it.
I may have a boat with everything in a mess but if anyone comes round they can see just how hard I have been working.
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post #6 of 21 Old 06-03-2014
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Re: Why is our boat such a mess?

I worked for many years as a contractor. It is a fact, that a job will take you three to four times the amount of time, because of looking for the right tool. If you can find the tool you need right away, then you don't have enough tools. And when I had a helper put the tools away and setup in the morning and he would be out sick, I could not find anything in the truck and could not work at all. I found that if you own 3 of everything, you were bound to find what you need right away.

And of course there is the...I know I have that part, and it should be on the boat story...The last time my old man was one the boat for a sail, the wind died and we were far from home, started the engine and found the pump impeller was gone. I thought I had a replacement on board. could not find it. Had plenty of time to look for it. The wind came back up and I sailed home and into the slip. Bought a new impeller, fixed the pump and promptly found the spare one.
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post #7 of 21 Old 06-03-2014 Thread Starter
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Re: Why is our boat such a mess?

And why do they make nuts and bolts the same diameter at each end so you never have two of that socket or spanner?

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post #8 of 21 Old 06-03-2014
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Re: Why is our boat such a mess?

I HATE having to dig for tools! Last year I bought a "canvas" tool bag big enough to hold all my mechanics tools. It has pockets for everything and even if I don't feel like putting everything back in the exact pocket, at least tools get back in the bag. I've had solid tool boxes but they are harder to stow and can become flying projectiles. I have large under-bunk hatches for carpentry tools and have specific spots for related stuff like clamps and vice, etc. It really takes years of having stuff stowed in the same place all the time to KNOW where it all is.

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post #9 of 21 Old 06-03-2014
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Re: Why is our boat such a mess?

Quote:
Originally Posted by smurphny View Post
I HATE having to dig for tools! Last year I bought a "canvas" tool bag big enough to hold all my mechanics tools. It has pockets for everything and even if I don't feel like putting everything back in the exact pocket, at least tools get back in the bag. I've had solid tool boxes but they are harder to stow and can become flying projectiles. I have large under-bunk hatches for carpentry tools and have specific spots for related stuff like clamps and vice, etc. It really takes years of having stuff stowed in the same place all the time to KNOW where it all is.
Tool rolls are great. I made several myself out of cotton duck, it was my first exercise in sewing. Don Casey's book (This old boat) has great instructions for completely new seamsters and seamstresses.

But what about parts and supplies? Where to put the nuts, bolts, screws, shackles, tubes of grease, rolls of cable, ...? I have organized some things satisfactorily (e.g. my 'electricians bag' works quite well) but no general system. Ideas?
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post #10 of 21 Old 06-03-2014
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Re: Why is our boat such a mess?

Someone in a past thread suggested using a vacuum seal a meal system for parts. I think that is a great idea, buying one is on my wish list. It's Ziploc for me for now.

Eric
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