Projects / Maintenance – boat maintenance related news & photos by Cloudy Bay, Hallberg-Rassy 54 sailing yacht, cruising around the world. sailcloudybay.com
Sunday 3 Nov, HHN day 23: Polishing the hull and fixing the upper rudder bearing.
It’s going to be a wooly hat day again, Glen cheerfully comments as he wakes up determined to master the compounding and polishing technique. His mojo is back, maybe we will have a clean hull afterall. After a couple of hours trying different compounding products and different pads, he seems to be getting it right. Certainly looks much better than yesterday’s attempt. He ends up doing this activity all day till the light finally fades at 5pm. He almost got all the way around the boat. Just about 12ft left for tomorrow. It’s certainly been a good workout.
In the engine room, planning to reinstall the manifold leads to removing the feed-pump for the watermaker and, while the floor is up, scrubbing the bilge area around the prop-shaft. The feed-water pump looks pretty rusty at the pump end. Clearly a leak, so time to take apart, de-rust and grease it back up again.
While the engine room is drying from its mini-clean up, it’s time to do a long outstanding jog – place epoxy around the upper rudder bearing. In Oct 2017, while in Lanzarote, we removed this bearing and sent it away for service at SP3 in France. It had some sort of filling around it (between it and the glass fiber of the bulkhead), but this has fallen out when we removed it. When reinstalling we assumed the 6 massive bolts would hold it firmly in place. But in a big seas we can hear it clicking as it moves just a fraction of a mm or so each way, despite the bolts. It shows the extreme forces placed on the rudder. In the interim we had hammered thin wedges of teak into the gap, but these became loose after a while.
This bearing is under our aft berth, so that gets completely dismantled. Then the upside-down execution starts, with Glen kneeled on top of the bed and leaning down under. After a lot of carefully placed masking tape, a release agent (honey wax! Thank you, Ray) is brushed into the gap then Six-10 epoxy is mixed with a thickening powder and squeezed in. And with the help of one of my make-up brushes Glen pushes the paste well into the gap – oh, the lengths a girl will go to, to please her man! It’s quite a slick job for once. And with the masking tape removed, the bolts back in, our bedroom is reinstated. Almost a record – just 2 hours to tick a job off the list. Glen jokes that if it still “clicks” after this treatment, we will buy a new boat!
The clocks went back last night so the evening seems long. Tonight we really must be in bed early if we are to make the most of the shortened daylight tomorrow.