On Wednesday morning it rained like crazy. This very heavy rain is bad news as there is no self draining system in the cockpit and it fills up very quickly. The great danger is water pouring into the engine compartment. I get to the boat just in time, the water level is just an inch below the engine compartment lid.
I think I will rig another automatic switch under the grating and use Gulper to empty the cockpit when the water reaches a certain level.
The rain stops on Thursday so I try to make progress with the dive ladder installation. It is a hellish job. As I mentioned, access is terrible but add to that trying to engage nuts on the bottom of bolts that you cannot see, whilst also trying to keep heavy dive ladder in place on the transom. I fail.
Kiyuna san shows up and says he will do it. I watch. His approach is a masterpiece in practical problem solving. He cuts a large backing plate from the teak plank that my friend at the woodyard had given me.
Next he produces special nuts that have serrations on one side so you can hammer them into wood. This he does onto the underside of the backing plate. This means the nuts are all in place and all we have to do is screw down the bolts from above through the carefully measured holes and they should engage.
It is still not easy due to the restricted access but it is much easier dealing with one object, the backing plate, than lots of fiddly loose nuts and washers. He succeeds in getting all 4 bolts screwed down tight. Hooray! But wait, he has forgotten the ladder
“Only a test Neil san.” grins Kiyuna san. He then marks the position of the centre of the backing plate on the transom, drills through and screws the plate in place. It is tightly fixed in the correct position. He removes all the bolts, slaps on lots of sealant, places the ladder and bolts it down.
The whole process took less than an hour. It was a privilege to watch.