Back in the Water … but Something’s Missing

<Written by Rachel>

Well guys, we’ve been back in the water since March 31st. But, yeah, we’re still missing our mast… It is now the 25th of April and the mast JUST got into the painting shed at the boatyard.

Fuji 40 sailboat - family preparing to go cruising

Our “3-4 weeks” in the boatyard turned into nine. They’re telling us the mast should take two weeks … we’re hoping it doesn’t turn into four or five! We’re coming into May next week and we need to get that mast back up for some sailing!

But we’ve got big things happening this weekend: we will be moving back aboard our beloved Mosaic. We’ve been ‘land-lubbing’ for three months and it is time to get back to the water.

Here are some photos of our trip back to our slip from the boatyard. We lucked out with a BEAUTIFUL day and some great friends aboard for the trip.

mosaic voyage - family preparing for sailing and cruising

mosaic voyage - family preparing for sailing and cruising

mosaic voyage - family preparing for sailing and cruising

mosaic voyage - family preparing for sailing and cruising

mosaic voyage - family preparing for sailing and cruising

mosaic voyage - family preparing for sailing and cruising

mosaic voyage - family preparing for sailing and cruising

mosaic voyage - family preparing for sailing and cruising

Here’s what we’ve been up to in April

Just because we got the boat back in the water, didn’t mean we were ready to move back aboard. Nope! Several big boat projects needed to be finished before we move the kids back aboard. Are they all done? NOPE … but we’re getting closer.

And we’re impatient to get back aboard.

And the bedroom our kids have been living in at Brenden’s dad’s house is about to be reinhabited by his brother, Cameron, who’s coming back into town from his most recent professional disc-golfing tournament tour.

So, our time’s up here … well, we could stay, but it is a good excuse to get the heck back to the boat!

First Major Project: V-Berth Cleanup

The kids live in the v-berth. Before moving back aboard, we needed to DEEP CLEAN and organize the storage spaces underneath the v-berth bunks. The space was full of old spare parts from the previous owner, junk, miscellaneous tools and all sorts of crap. Literally, we threw away about a dozen garbage bags full of junk. Admittedly, some of the stuff wasn’t junk when it was put in there .. rather, it turned into junk over the last year and a half of living in a seldom used or aired space in a boat in the Pacific Northwest.

Yeah, I’m ashamed to say there was quite a bit of mold in there. I hope to god that it wasn’t that bad when we moved off the boat for the yard work. But, I found some stuff called Concrobium which is supposed to be the bee’s knees for killing mold. So we deep cleaned the storage spaces and sprayed this stuff all over the place! Not sure yet if it works … will have to get you an update on that in the future!

mosaic voyage - family preparing for longterm sailing

mosaic voyage - family preparing to cruise

mosaic voyage - sailing family

mosaic voyage - family sailing and cruising

mosaic voyage - family preparing to cruise

General Deep Cleaning & Organizing

We intended to go through every storage locker and space and clean and organize before moving back aboard. We have not come close .. but we did get a good start. Obviously, the v-berth was the most important place because we wanted that space super clean for the kids and because once the kids are back aboard it will be much more difficult to open that space up. Yeah, the boat was a mess when we had the v-berth opened up.

mosaic voyage - family preparing sailboat for extended sailing

We did make some progress in the main salon storage spaces with organizing and moving Brenden’s large stash of tools to another space in the back of the boat, under the starboard side quarter berth. This opened up some premium storage space in the salon for other things.

I also did a really good deep clean in our fridge. We actually accidentally threw away the old mini crates that we had used for storage previously and I need to find some more of those asap … or some other option. Our fridge is top loading (and we have no freezer) so having small stacking plastic crates to easily be able to manage the storage in the fridge is essential. Unfortunately, the ones we bought when we first moved on we bought at Target during a back to school/college event and they don’t seem to have them anymore. I need to just get online and try to find them.

Chainplate Project

Have you been following our saga trying to get adequate new chainplates fabricated? We had to reject the ones made by the boatyard as they had several ‘deal-breaker’ issues.

  • The holes were too big for the bolts
  • There wasn’t enough ‘meat’ at the bottom of the chainplate between the last hole and the bottom of the plate
  • The hole at the top, where the pin will fit to attach the sailboat’s standing rigging to the chainplate, which holds up the mast, was far too large and would cause dangerous friction and uneven wear

mosaic voyage - family preparing for sailing and cruising

mosaic voyage - family preparing for sailing and cruising

mosaic voyage - family preparing for sailing and cruising

So, having rejected those, we instead opted to have our rigger work out getting new chainplates fabricated rather than trying to work through the boatyard again. So we had several meetings with Butch, the rigger, on the boat for him to plan and then test fit some templates.

Mosaic Voyage - sailboat rigging

Mosaic Voyage - family prepping sailboat for cruising

Mosaic Voyage - sailing family preparing to cruise, sailboat rigging

Awesome part is, though we haven’t seen the finished product yet, we have confidence that Butch will get the chainplates made correctly so that we can be confident in the product and, therefore, the safety of the standing rig. And, bonus, they’re actually more affordable than the ones the boatyard tried to use.

So, a little bonus project, as we all know that boat projects can’t just happily go through the stages of needing to be done and then being completed … this project spawned a new project for us. We need to widen our through-deck chainplate holes to allow for a really good seal once we install the new chainplates.

We started this project last weekend and I’m happy with the progress we’ve made. It would have been really nice to get this done completely before moving back aboard but isn’t necessary and we will actually have more chances to work on this since we’ll be on the boat every night here pretty soon.

The process is as follows:

  • Clean up old caulking from around original through-deck hole
  • Dremel the hole to widen it, checking for fit as we go (we used the new-reject chainplates for fitting as they should be OK for this purpose, dimension-wise)
  • Seal entirely the new hole with epoxy so that we’ll have a watertight barrier
  • Drill and Dremel out the hole again to fit new chainplates

Mosaic Voyage - boat projects preparing to cruise

Mosaic Voyage - boat projects preparing to cruise

Mosaic Voyage - boat projects preparing to cruise

Mosaic Voyage - boat projects preparing to cruise

Mosaic Voyage - boat projects preparing to cruise

By the end of the evening, we had completed the widening of 3 of the 6 holes. We haven’t done any sealing yet and will need to figure that process out.

Our deck is foam-cored and, thankfully, does seem to be pretty nice and dry around the chainplate holes.

Installation of New Stove & Propane Line

OK so our last big project which we really want to get finished up before we move back aboard is removing our old stove (original to the boat and without a functioning oven) and replace it with our beautiful shiny new Force-10 three-burner propane stove. We will be running new propane line and I’m super excited to finally have a functioning oven aboard Mosaic!

As you’ve probably guessed, we haven’t gotten to this project yet! In fact, the propane hose that we needed for the install just arrived yesterday so we’re hoping to check this project off the list on Saturday before moving kids and everything else back aboard on Sunday!

Mosaic Voyage - boat projects preparing to cruise

Mosaic Voyage - boat projects preparing to cruise

Odds & Ends

Of course, in addition to all of these boat projects, we’ve also been spending money like crazy upgrading and replacing old gear, running and standing rigging, sails, electronics, etc.!

Mosaic Voyage - sailing family preparing to cruise

Mosaic Voyage - sailing family preparing to cruise

We had a new mainsail designed and made for us, through Jamie Gifford of Sailing Totem. If you’re not already following this cruising family, you seriously need to. I’ve bragged about them before but there are seriously just no better people to be our role models. They’ve been living the dream, sailing the world with their 3 kids for the past decade and just recently completed their circumnavigation. These guys are the epitome of a cruising family and beyond helpful to anybody trying to get into the lifestyle.

Mosaic Voyage - sailing family preparing to cruise

Mosaic Voyage - sailing family preparing to cruise

Of course, we still need to find and purchase a new jib since we decided to go with hank-on for our foresail. We won’t be able to fly a jib or genoa until we have one that we can use without our old roller furler. We can’t start this process though until the mast is back up and the new rig set.

Sailing season is coming. Summer is coming … I can’t wait to get her out on the water and get the wind in her sails!

As always, thanks for reading! Hope you’ll follow along for up to date info and pictures on Facebook and Instagram @mosaicvoyage. Cheers!   ~Rachel

Mosaic Voyage - sailing family

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