The cat is out of the …..shed. The windows are not installed yet so for now the boat is out in the carpark covered in tarps to keep the rain out. It virtually hasnt rained for 3 months and the day we moved the boat out it rained for 3 days solid.
The reason for the move is that I share my shed with a couple of boatbuilders and they have a few big jobs coming up and needed a little more space in the shed so they asked if they could move my boat to one side to make that space. I agreed then realised that although my timelines are continually blowing out, I really am getting close to launch and in a few months I would be asking them to move all their stuff out of my way to move my boat out and they might not be as ready to do that for me as they are now.
In other words I used their motivation for the extra space to make one of my major hurdles happen, and with their help. In fact they made steel dollies and moved the boat out. I paid for contractors to take the rollerdoor down and take some of the shed side down. Quite expensive but worth it for the end result.
The original plan was for the shed side to come down on Friday and the boat to come out on Saturday but the shed guys started at 5am (yes I was up at 4am so I could open up for them) and were finished by 10am so the guys decided to pull her out while I was at work in the afternoon. So unfortunately, no pictures of her coming out. I wasn’t even there. I worked until 10pm so it was 11pm by the time I got there and she was out and parked at the back in position for her next move. The big one. The launch truck. I wont predict the date, but its soon.
The shed has no roller door and no sides and lots of expensive stuff inside. So I decided because it was so late anyway and I had a heap of clean up work to do inside the shed the next day, I would stay the night on the cat, my first night spent aboard. I set up a mattress in the aft cabin and slept the night.
When I got there the tarps were just draped across the boat, not tied down. It was a calm night so and I was tired so I decided to tie the tarps down in the morning. My first lesson on weather and the boat isnt even launched. At around 3am I was awoken by a noise. It scared the bejesus out of me. It sounded like people walking on the boat. I waited and listened and heard it again. Only this time I knew what it was.
The wind had shifted 180 degrees and could now lift the tarps and drop it back down on the deck making the sound of someone walking on the deck. It wasnt raining but I realized that perhaps it would. It was forecast so it was a matter of time. I decided to tie it down then. So there I was at 3am tying stuff down on the boat. Wont be the last time! My heart rate was back to normal and the tarps wouldnt keep my up all night flapping so I fell back to sleep.
It did rain in the night. The tarps kept the bulk of the water out but they do leak. (I have about 6 various size tarps and each one has a hole in it!) So does one of my hatches, not the hatch itself but the sealant I applied, so good to find that out now rather than later. Another job to fix.
The boat is in position for the truck to back under it when we launch. Its the third time a cat has been in that position, long time readers will remember 9lives, then Terry’s cat was painted in the shed and launched and now finally Yikes is in position. Its a narrow driveway the truck has to back down but these guys are experts and have no trouble. The fences are removable and the hulls overhang over the sides.
The next step is the get the windows made. I have settled on a maker. I got 3 quotes and chose the cheapest. I had to. I cant really afford any of them but the boat cant launch until windows go in. My guys are charging me $5100 including tax for 10mm tinted acrylic. I had considered 6mm but when I saw first hand how flexible it was I decided I just had to go with the 10mm. (it isnt made in 8mm). I had for years thought I would go with clear and then silver tint it. And every day I see cars with bubbling back window tint. Some prestige cars only a few years old. So as much as I like the logic, I cant risk it.
I had a few people email me with suggestions for cheaper alternative manufacturers because they paid so much less. I rang one and got a quote that was $7100. I could not understand why they claimed to have paid so little compared to mine. Then I realised why. I made my windows so big that only one can be cut from each sheet. My windows are 900mm high x varying lengths. Sheets come 1200 x 2400 or 1200 x 3600. So I can only get one window per sheet, whereas had I made them 600mm high I could get 2 windows per sheet. I cant think of any other reason that they would get them so much cheaper. It is what it is. I have satisfied myself that I cant get them any cheaper than I am.
So they have my molds. I did take the advice of my reader that suggested in order to make my cutout parts into molds large enough to be the molds (the windows are larger than the cutout and molds must also be 50mm larger than the actual size because the edges of the heated acrylic curls up and needs to be trimmed back). I was originally going to add kerfed parts to the edges of my molds but Andrew suggested all I needed to do was to add a layer of 3mm mdf to the front of my cutouts to the overhang size I needed and it is flexible enough to form the exact compound curve of the original cutouts. Easy!
The delay now is payment. I am back to $0 in the bank after the move out. It will take about 3 pays (6 weeks) to pay for the windows and the silicon adhesive. So I think about the end of November I should have the windows in. In the meantime I will also have to pay my outboard guy to finish tuning and then fit my outboards (he is also going to fit all of my hydraulic steering and autopilot in). So lets say mid December the boat will be launch capable.
The next and final launch hurdle is paying the truck to put her in the water. Some time next week I expect to get my first quote. On Thursday I made a phone call I have dreamt of making for near on a decade. I was given launch video of a 43ft cat and the name of the trucking company and have kept that number ever since. When the person answered I thought I had a wrong number because they answered with “Hello”. I expected them to say their company name first. I said is this “Amy boat transport”. It was. So Ken is quoting me next week. Fingers crossed it is within my reach and you never know……(I cant say it!). Its close though. Its very close now.