Thursday, October 23, 2008

Hauling out

Time for Papy Jovial to clean its underwear. And to have a good look at the steering system before installing the windvane.
After disconnecting the quadrant and the hydraulic piston of the auto-pilot, it was very obvious that the problem was with the rudder. At first, I though the "gudgeon", or shoe, was the defective part. But even after we had taking it apart, it was still very difficult to turn the rudder. So we dropped it and found that the rudder post was almost glued by old lube to the bronze sleeve. We cleaned everything real well, put some new grease, a new delrin bushing in the delrin and the steering came back to life.
Then the windvane was installed, the cutless bearing changed and a new coat of antifouling applied and it was time to put her back in the water and to get back to Scotts Creek and get on with completing all the changes what will make her an ocean crossing boat.
You should know by now how to find the album photo for Papy Jovial.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Churning along

Churning along

Sometimes I wonder why I keep this blog running. Nothing really interesting happening worse telling anybody else than myself. But I know that come next June, then a few more people will be looking for infos, so let's keep it going.

Last month was the first tropical storm for Papy Jovial. Nothing much to it. On Sep 6, 2008, Hannah came west of us and did not cause any flooding or surge, just a few gusts of wind in the 60 knots range. I had doubled the lines and made sure that I was staying on the boat during the height of the storm. No problem.

Then two weeks later, I finally embarked on a bicycling week-end on Eastern Shores, as we had planned for quite some time now. We left from the car park at the northern end of the Chesapeake Bay bridge tunnel on Friday, Sep 19th around 8:00 a.m., with a very strong northeasterly wind, gusting at more than 25 mph.
We first rode to Cape Charles, as I wanted to check out the city marina from shore before attempting to get there with Papy Jovial, Although it would require some mode of transportation (probably a bicycle) to get from the marina to the town, it looked nice enough to me, with all the facilities needed and more than enough water for Papy Jovial.
After breakfast at the "fountain" of the local pharmacy, where I heard for the first time of "scrapple", sort of messed up sausage, we left for Olney where I had made a reservation at the hotel there since I could not find anything suitable in Onancock. Again, we rode against the wind but got to the hotel early enough for a second breakfast at the restaurant across the parking lot from the hotel. Then, shower, power nap, and we got back on the bikes to get to Onancock, only 2 miles away. This place is as nice from the view point of a bike than it was from the boat. And tody was Harborfest in Onancock. We rode around the town before dinner at the Wharf. Very nice evening.
On Saturday, the wind had not abated and we laboured quite a bit on the way to Chincoteague. At some point, we were about to be chased by a dog. However, the goose in charge of the household went after the dog and restrained him. Very funny incident. On the way, we noticed that the part of the Eastern Shores (west of Highway 13) was very very dirty with a continuous line of trash on the side of the road. Once we crossed 13, the situation improved significantly.
The approach to Chincoteague is very disappointing. Advertising billboards all the way for 4 miles, with one board every 100 yards or so, electric lines up in the air, no facility for biking on the causeway . . . . This is my first visit to Chincoteague, but certainly my last too. The island itself does not offer anything special, and I guess that nothing else than the ponies swim in August happens here.
On Sunday, I was looking forward to a strong tailwind to push us back home. Alas ! That day, the wind deserted us and did not help us at all. Nice ride anyway on the east side of 13 all the way down to the parking lot at the bridge tunnel, with a short stop in Exmore for a quick pizza.
Back on Papy Jovial, the weather really got nasty with a no name storm hovering around the area for almost two weeks, causing strong winds and flooding, with the wharf at Scotts Creek covered with water. For two weeks, I could not do much on the boat in terms of the preparation, whether for the sails, the bimini or even the electronics. I was only able to move forward in terms of emptying the house and move most of my stuff to the storage.