Tuesday, 12 January 2016

An intense week's progress

Last week Christophe a good friend of mine decided to lend a helping hand and thrust the project forward as my april deadline is starting to loom higher above my head.... It is nice to be able to count on a friend like him.
With his help, many things were accomplished. The keel and homemade inboard "saildrive" have been installed. The saildrive's built into the skeg which needs to be about 60mm deeper than originally designed by John.
This extra height is carried along the whole boat's hull, and at the bow the original height is reestablished.

The laminated stem profile has been installed too, then followed a quick hull sanding and turn back upwards.
Since I'm pressed with time and wanted to maximise the opportunity of having some help at hand I decided to turn the hull unpainted and concentrate on finishing the inside of the boat.
I will paint the hull turned upright scheduling the coats and drying times in the evenings leaving it to dry during the time I'm away for work.

Progress on the inside of the boat saw us first paint light grey the underneath of the bunkflat and cockpit lockers. The paint has been painstakingly slow to dry, perhaps down to cold(ish) weather, incompatibility with the epoxy underneath or bad initial stirring. I might be responsible for the latter two possible causes....
Once the paint dry (ish) we installed a flexible water tank that will be used to store fresh water; an electric pump draws water from the 55l tank and feeds a small shower head.

I also built a small compartment for an electric bilge pump. Pathfinder is not designed with provision for a bilge pump but I decided to install one for when the boat is sitting at a mooring in case of rain. Also since in the summer we tend to jump in and out of the Mediterranean waters all the time, quite a lot of it is splashed back into the boat.... that plus the fresh water shower makes for some water to get rid of.

The bilge pump compartment is built at the center of the boat and uses the centerboard case side and  bulkhead  3 aft as confining walls;  two extra sides are added to provide an enclosed chamber where the pump sits. The inside is epoxied and fiberglassed. The bilge collects water from a strainer in the bunkflat and from the cockpit through a pipe in the main twarth locker.
It is positioned were according to the drawings the lowest (deepest) part of the hull is located. Since it is the first time I see this done on a Pathfinder I'm not entirely sure it'll work as intended, we'll see.

The teak strips have been glued to the cockpit floor, as well as the starboard bench.

Finally I had a go at installing the inboard motor now that the saildrive and its drive belt are firmly in position ....

.... a long week, I was well exhausted on sunday evening. Thanks Christophe for all of your help and time!


  1. Wow Lorenzo, Lots of progress. She is looking nice. I wish I could come over and help you finish her. What is the vertical shaft/box starboard of the saildrive engine for?

  2. Hello Rik,
    your help would be greatly appreciated, lets keep that thought. Perhaps on a trip to Europe you could come down to côte d'azur to give me a cash course on sailing a yawl :)
    The little well that caught your attention is an idea I had to access the propeller from inside the boat. You can see it both in the photo with the motor and the one of the upturned hull. The well is normally blanked off with a plug that fits its geometry closely. When the plug is removed from the inside of the boat I can access the propeller by hand to clean off fouling or to remove the propeller altogether. I have devised a quick lock/unlock system that will allow to remove and install the propeller with one hand. Going for the inboard solution I was concerned by the drag that the propeller will bring being constantly in the water. Since a folding propeller uses its mass to unfold open I could/would not fit a heavy bronze propeller on such a small shaft. I therefore developed the idea to remove the propeller altogether when I'm sailing for performance.
    We'll see how that works!!!
    Best regards

    1. Aha! That makes sense. With your skills you could couple the prop to a dynamo to charge up batteries during sailing...

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