Black Bottom

So, to all my faithful readers, a small but distinguished group, I send all my best wishes. Okinawa is untouched by the Myley Cyrus and it is difficult for me to conceive the awfulness that many of you are going through. Hang tough.

So, here is a happy story to make you all feel better. I try to raise the center plate of the boat but all that comes up is lots of cable. Ouch! This means that the center plate has conspired to free itself from the cable and wants to hang loose. This has to be fixed and in conjunction with the need to generally scrub her bottom I decide to haul her out and give her a good makeover.

Dirty bottom
Short Sutherland

So, the bottom of the boat is covered in weed and shellfish of various denominations.

Very pretty but must die.
Out, out foul spot!
You get the idea

So, first I scrape and then I spray and then I paint on new anti fouling. I work in glorious sunshine with the encouragement of all the boatyard boys with whom I have become close over the the duration of the Norfolk Gypsy project.

Hmmm not so good. The hole in the center plate, through which the center plate cable was threaded, has decayed into uselessness.

Oh dear

I scrape off all the weed and barnacles and limpet-like things. I then hose her down with high pressure spray gun, Yay! Ginowan Marina.

Then I paint her bottom with a chemical brew of awfulness that will keep the creepy crawlies off for another year, one hopes.

Get lots now, panic buy!

I then apply compound to the hull. This is the most rewarding work. What was dull suddenly becomes glistening.

Front bit before compound treatment, back bit after.

I then paint teak oil on all trim and bolt on two new anodes.

Anodes make me feel good
Look how sun blasted the trim is.

This is all very well but the main problem is the center plate. Kiyuna san slices off the end of the decayed plate and welds on a shackle.

Unchain my heart

After three days of glorious work amongst friends in a Japanese boatyard, we drop her back in the water with a black bottom. Yay Norfolk Gypsy!

Look at amateur video.

Thanks all

I hope this makes you happy. Stay well.

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7 Responses to Black Bottom

  1. Rachel Claus says:

    Happy Happy Joyous for you and those with you there! Well DONE!!

  2. calderi says:

    We are certainly cheered to hear of these great works. I hope your stern gland is fully greased.

  3. David Matthias says:

    Hello Neil. We have never met but have in common- Norfolk Gypsy. # 21 Sanderling. Lives at Wootton Isle of Wight. She is recovering from hard times helped by Bill Mitchell san of Bembridge. Her plate is rough but fixable (I hope) Best wishes, and hope to hear from you, David M.

    • Hi David,
      Great to hear from you! I have had the greatest fun restoring my boat Gypsy# 32 here in Japan. I have been helped enormously by many wonderful Okinawan boat people.
      I thought the center plate was the end of the project as it was horribly corroded and jammed solid with rust and shellfish. However we, well really an amazing character, Kiyuna san, fixed it. The story starts somewhere around here and goes on for a few months in the blog. The boat is now fully operational and tomorrow I am going on a major sail up the island.
      I wish you the very best with your restoration. If you think I can help, please contact me as everything was wrong with my boat and I have probably faced the difficulties you may have.
      There is also this Facebook group.
      I hope you and yours are keeping well!

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