Month: December 2017

The Saga of a Swim Platform, a Ladder, and a Dinghy

Christmas came early this year by a day and a half. With the help of my friend Tom, we were able to complete the final phase of the swim platform, aft deck ladder, and dinghy saga. It has indeed been an epic journey from start to finish. Over a year ago, we discovered that our swim platform would not support the weight of a dinghy due to the rotting away of the wood beneath the fiberglass. Thus a plan was developed to replace the swim platform during haul-out at Pitman’sIMG_3027 in 2017 in preparation for the The Great Loop trip beginning January 2018. One of the first lesson’s learned was that when you make a repair, replacement, or upgrade, a host of other item’s must be repaired, replaced, or upgraded.
I knew where I was going to have the swim platform constructed; I did not know precisely how the process would unfold, and, I was still searching for a davit system for the dinghy. One impacted the design of the other. Once I decided on the DinghyRamp system for the dinghy, we could move forward on the swim platform. Once the dinghy ramp system and the swim platform configuration was agreed upon, the next modification was the “aft deck ladder to the swim platform.” The challenge on the ladder design was IMG_3026that the dinghy took up most the available space on the swim platform and did not leave much room for the downtubes of the ladder. We were able to reverse the pitch of the current ladder and with a few “tweaks” and reverse engineering, attach the ladder securely to the swim platform and aft deck. A new ladder was out of the question at this stage of the process. The result, after a year of some sleepless nights, helpful friends, and a lot of patience was a system where the swim platform, dinghy, and ladder now fit as “snug-as-a-bug-in-a-rug”!!

A Month To Go

IMG_2877Jean and I are in the final phases of preparation for the Grand Depart on January 6th.  A few of the items in the final stage include; installation of the y-valve in the forward head as we replace the old hoses with new ones.  We have been painting shelves and bulkheads as well as floorboards in the engine room.  We are changing the forward berth curtains and bunk spread with something lighter in color.  Left to the last few weeks for completion are a custom dinghy cover, a Furuno 1830 radar plug adaptor, chaffing gear for lines, minor fiberglass repair, and porthole sealant.  We continue to sort out the clothes we will need to take and where they will reside.

We took Makin Memories over to River Energy on the Anclote River near the end of the sponge docks and fueled her with a hundred gallons.  The day was so beautiful that we went on a cruise out to Anclote Island and back.  I am happy to report that the new swim platform and the dinghy performed flawlessly.

Jean and I plan on moving on board right after Christmas as the couple who will be living in our house while we are away, begin to settle in.  We look forward to having the time to settle in ourselves aboard Makin Memories and still can go back and forth to the house and make sure we are relatively set for our departure on January 6th.

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