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  march 2008



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01/03/08   A warm sunny day with a gentle southerly wind.......which means we are more than likely to get rain tomorrow!  I fitted my new wi-fi antenna to the gantry which should give me better reception than the small netgear transceiver aerial that I am presently using.  Just need to complete the wiring for it now and fit the special connectors - not quite as easy as it sounds.   Astrid invited me to dinner onboard Storm Dodger where her crew has grown with the arrival of daughter Danni and grand-daughter Sophie (aged 9 months), who are here for a holiday.

02/03/08    As expected.....woke to rain!  I have a problem with the fresh water pump in that it is pumping but no water is reaching the taps, so it's going to mean stripping out the lockers again and looking for leaks/burst pipes which will have to wait because today is Sunday......and time for our monthly excursion to The Three Bells in Icmeler for lunch.   There were fewer of us today, only a dozen, including Jan, Gina, Roger, Astrid, Leah, Danni and baby Sophie.  As usual the dinners were excellent (photo's) and big enough to make you want to curl up after and have a nap, which is exactly what Sophie did!   That aside, Roger, Gina, Astrid and I managed a couple of drinks in the marina bar during the evening.

03/03/08   Started work at 0700, running the two 10mm solar panel cables from the gantry through the four lockers in the aft cabin along with the LMR400 cable for the wi-fi antenna.  Macit the electrician turned up about 3pm, just as I got the last cable through into the nav. berth, but to my dismay it was only for a chat about remote control starting of the engine - which I do not want!  The solar panel will not be here until the 10th March and I am due out of the water on the 15th....it's going to be tight getting everything sorted out in readiness for the lift out.   I then stripped out the lockers in the saloon and found a burst fresh water pipe in the most forward locker.   I hadn't been able to work out why the water hadn't appeared in the bilge when the pump kept running.....now I knew....it had all gone into my 'airing cupboard' and all the towels etc were soaked!  Hey ho, wash all the towels, hang them out to dry, mop out the cupboard and repair the pipe, now I have fresh water onboard again.

04/03/08   Hamsi night in the restaurant saw Storm Dodger's crew and myself enjoying another evening of chatting over dinner, followed by a couple of drinks in the bar.

05/03/08  I am gradually getting the boat back in order....after cleaning out the after cabin lockers and hoovering up the dust from the last few days of hole drilling, I packed away some of the gear and can now see the cockpit seats again!  Astrid came round, closely followed by Roger, then Danni and Sophie, Kev and Karen.....and the rum came out for a sociable afternoon!

06/03/08  A hot and sunny day......is summer coming back?  Great weather for Roger and Astrid's twenty-sixth wedding anniversary - congratulations to you both.

07/03/08   All the windows removed from the boat in preparation for yet another set of new ones to be fitted.  Constant attempts to stop the minor leaks all end in failure, so it's time for drastic measures!   Welcomed back Mike and Sam (Master Spy) who have been in the UK for some months and are now anti-fouling the boat in readiness for re-launching.   Liveaboard night in the bar......went along there after dinner onboard Storm Dodger and had a good evening.

08/03/08   Okay, .......now I know what the inside of a Turkish Hospital looks like!   Sometime after midnight, Gina became unwell and collapsed in the bar, an ambulance was called and Paul, Karen, Roger and I went up to the hospital where Gina was admitted for observation.  We returned to the boats just after 4.30am.  Fortunately, the doctors didn't deem it necessary for Gina to remain in hospital, Paul and Karen (Antigua Lady) collecting her in the car around noon and returning her to the marina.  During the afternoon, a group of us went to the Portofino in Marmaris for fish 'n' chips and to watch the rugby, England losing to Scotland - much to Suzanne's delight!

09/03/08  Marmaris Yacht Marina Boat Jumble started around 9.30am in the restaurant gardens - 35 tables of 'one man's junk.....another man's treasure,' which was very well attended, helped no doubt by the glorious sunshine.  There was a BBQ during the afternoon when the tables had been cleared and yotties had carted their purchases away, wondering where they were going to store them, or why they had even bought them!  I decided to have  an early night after watching a DVD, as tomorrow could be a long day - a combined birthday party at the Orange Bar in Aktas for Jamie (Esper) and Terry (Reality).   Gina, who has her birthday on Wednesday is also supposed to be having her party with Jamie and Terry, but I'm hopeful that she will continue to rest and not attend on this occasion.

10/03/08   I went into town this morning for some heat shrink material, new inner tube for the bike, sausages and various other bits, catching the 11am dolmus back to the marina.  Said farewell to a tearful Danni and baby Sophie in the afternoon, as they flew back to the UK (and the storms!) before catching the courtesy dolmus to the Orange Bar at 6pm.  Another great evening, with good food, live music and the obligatory karaoke session - and free transport home again.  Gina did turn up at the party!!  (photo's)

11/03/08  Into town again, with Kev (Nisroc), this time for battery bus bars, diesel and anti-foul paint, returning to the marina in time for the lecture on celestial navigation given by David of Sunshine.

12/03/08  Happy Birthday to Gina!   A change of weather today, high winds (53 knots) from the south brought thunder, lightning and heavy rain - and problems with the boat to pontoon distance!  I put a line from my genoa winch to Calidore's mid-ship cleat and another from bow to bow which held me safely off the pontoon....but made it impossible to get on or off the stern!  Things calmed down during the afternoon and thankfully, the temporary polythene window covers had kept the interior of the boat dry.  Early evening saw Gina, Astrid, Roger, myself, David of Sunshine and John of Chagazee onboard Destiny with owners Nigel and Debbie for a great dinner to celebrate Gina's birthday....followed of course by a few drinks!

13/03/08  Summoned to the marina office this morning!  What have I done?  Who have I upset?  No worries, it was only to ask me if I could be lifted onto the hard tomorrow instead of Saturday....nothing like a bit of pressure to get the boat ready for moving!   VS Marin came along and fitted the new windows during the afternoon, so hopefully I will get no more leaks and they will be back in two weeks to check.    Roger, Astrid, Gina and myself went to The Orange Bar during the evening for dinner, talking of all the jobs that we all need to do whilst our boats are out of the water.

14/03/08  Lift out day!  Up at 6.30, took down the cockpit coverings, removed all extra lines, replaced the stern ropes and springs with slipping lines and ran up the engine.  The joker boat came round for me at 8.30am and I moved round to the hoist, was lifted out about an hour later and the hull power washed before being transferred to a cradle and moved to my new home for the next fifteen days.  A cursory look at the hull showed no immediate disasters, but electrolysis and/or galvanic corrosion of the propeller was evident.   Impulse was lifted out shortly afterwards and parked directly in front of my boat....again no obvious hull damage to Gina's boat.

15/03/08   Close inspection of the propeller showed it had de-zincified and will have to be replaced.  The cutless bearing is also worn and will need replacement at the same time as the prop.  The sacrificial anode had totally gone, which has obviously left the prop exposed to galvanic corrosion.  Some fibre glass work is also needed on the very bottom of the keel, so I'm going to have a busy couple of weeks.  Sami, the carpenter chose today to turn up, which extended the chaos onboard as he fitted new window and hatch frames.  I spent most of the day scraping the underwater area, loosening the prop and cutless bearing bolts and trying to find anywhere that could supply, or cast a new propeller.  Went to the Orange Bar in the evening with Astrid and Gina but returned fairly early to get some rest.

16/03/08   I managed to remove the propeller after a little difficulty, then tackled the removal of the cutless bearing housing.....impossible single-handed!  Roger came over to help, unscrewing the housing from ground level, whilst I held the stern tube - hanging upside down under the aft cabin flooring.  Sami finished the carpentry work, so I now have smart new hatch and window surrounds which can be varnished in a week or so.  Another early night!

17/03/08   St Pats Day....seems like ages ago when we celebrated the last one in Gibraltar.  I gave Demir Marine the job of pressing out the cutless bearing from it's housing and fitting new.   They are also to make a teflon spacer to fit between hull and housing.   Marmaris doesn't seem, at this moment, to have any prop specialists and I may have to get one from Istanbul or Izmir, and given the time factor of being out of the water, I will need to order one fairly quickly!   Also discovered a minor area of osmosis in the rudder which I opened up by drilling a series of holes to allow air in.  Colin and Tricia (Moody Time) returned from the UK, good to see them again after almost five months away.   The bar was packed during the evening, all wearing silly hats and dancing to jigs, and as usual a very good time was had by all - including the bus load of yotties who came over from Netsel Marina.

18/03/08   Demir Marine are unable to do anything with the bearing housing, they say they can't get a new one of that size and are recommending a new propeller shaft, so I am trying to source the correct cutless bearing myself.

19/03/08    Completed all the underwater area scraping and sanding with the help of Roger, and started the filling of the keel and rudder with epoxy filler.  The propeller remains a problem, the Istanbul specialist faxed back a recommendation of a 55cm diameter prop - quite how I am supposed to fit that into a 40cm hole is anyone's guess!  New drawings were faxed to the company but Turkcell have decided to go on strike, so all computer connections have been lost until further notice - which is just what I needed right now!   Astrid very kindly invited me to eat on Storm Dodger (again), after which we had a couple of beers in the marina bar.  Another early night in preparation for tomorrow's work on the hull.

21/03/08  Happy Birthday Rachael.

22/03/08  After two days of hard work on the hull, interspersed by telephone arguments with the propeller manufacturer in Istanbul, the boat is now looking much better and I await delivery of a new propeller - promised for the 28th.  I just hope it fits the shaft!  I'm not impressed with the service so far given by Demir Marine, so I've given the cutless bearing to Cetin Marine, who will also make the new teflon spacer.  The underwater area of the hull now has it's first coat of primer  paint - pink!!  I also have the same paint colour on me!

23/03/08   Easter Sunday - and unlike the usual English rain over a Bank Holiday, we have a lightly overcast sky and 23oC temperature.  Netsel Marina were hosting an Easter gathering, with free running buffet, drinks, kids Easter egg hunt and an Easter Bonnet parade, so around 150 of us piled onto 4 coaches and descended on the hosts like a swarm of locusts!   Later, back at the marina, a bit of a panic when John from La Gabriella lost his cat overboard and a dozen or more of us searched the dark waters by torchlight.  Luckily, a rather wet, embarrassed cat climbed back onboard somehow and was found shivering in the saloon of John's boat.

24/03/08  Completed the pink primer coating before 10am.  Chased marina staff for supply of water, the nearest tap is so far away that even two hoses together will not reach it and I have been without a water supply since being hoisted from the water.  Each time I ask for water, staff turn up, have a look, mutter something in Turkish and disappear again!

25/03/08  Started applying the blue anti-fouling, shame really, I quite liked the girly pink!  Completed the first coat just as it started to rain, so I went to the office to ask about water again......3 times today!  The guy who turns up on his scooter just shrugs his shoulders and tells me I need a longer hose, (Doh! I know that!).  Fortunately, an American chap nearby had borrowed a hose and by coupling all three together, I managed to fill my water tank.  Took the 'out of water opportunity' to fit an earth grounding plate for SSB radio (should I ever get one) and Cetin Marine turned up with the spacer and cutless bearing - milled from some sort of fibre (suspect it's 'tufnol'), before taking it away again to make another for me to carry in reserve.

26/03/08  Happy Birthday to my brother Clive!  Woke up feeling awful, full of a cold, bunged up, light-headed, shivery, dizzy when I lean forward.....typical 'man' flu! That isn't quite right.....maybe 60% of the yotties here have been unwell over the last few weeks, some really badly affected, so I guess I'm lucky to have fended it off for so long!  Tried to get the second coat of anti-foul on in between showers, but  gave up around 11am with 90% of the hull painted and went over to Gina's boat for a coffee and chinwag.  Had several attempts to complete the painting during the afternoon but showers meant my overalls were on and off continually and I finally abandoned the job until tomorrow.

27/03/08  Finished the second and third coats of anti-fouling by 9am.  Mehmet of Cetin Marine fitted the new cutless bearing for me (dropping the bolts into an inaccessible part of the bilge in the process) and Roger helped me polish the white area of the hull.  I had to decline an invite to Storm Dodger for dinner as I was now feeling very nauseous and shivering badly, though my skin felt 'on fire'.  Went to bed very early!

28/03/08  Woke feeling no better, made worse by chilly wind and rain again.  Today is launch day - and my propeller is still in Istanbul,  having the taper reamed from the centre.  They promise it will be here tomorrow but I wonder if that is 'Turkish time?'   Not able to do much today because of feeling so rough, so I cleared it with the office to stay on the hard for a day or so longer, then had a bit of a tidy up in the cockpit and stowed some of the gear away but I need to keep the floor open in both the after cabin and the saloon, where work has been done below the waterline, until such time as the boat is safely afloat again.  Went to bed before 6.30pm.

29/03/08  Little change, still feeling rough despite 12 hours sleep, still drizzle, still overcast - not really a day for being in the rain at 0800 to move the boat out, allowing Eagle Ray behind me to launch.  Just as I was being moved, the chandlery lad came to me with my new propeller but alas, despite three different people measuring the shaft taper yesterday, it had been cut wrongly and the chandlery sent it to Demir Marine (?) to have the taper re-cut.  Two attempts later, it was returned to me and I completed fitting the locknut and pin at 16.20pm - just about time to be launched before the staff knock off.  However, it was now raining again following a mostly warm and sunny day and I was not feeling up to scrabbling around on the ground, painting the keel where the blocks had been, so I didn't tell them I was ready to launch until it was too late.  Hopefully I will be launched on Monday.  In bed again at 7pm, dosed up with Beechams, Benylin and anything else I could think of!    Pity to miss Pete's stag night, but there is no way I could go to that.

30/03/08  Welcome to summer time, did everyone remember to put the clocks forward?  I'm feeling a little better today, aided by the warm sunshine - I even managed breakfast and a cycle around the marina, but no-one was up, it seems most did forget to put their clocks forward!

31/03/08  Urghh....yesterday's health improvement was a flash in the pan - I woke feeling worse than ever!  Readied the boat for launching just in case they came for me early, then went to the office to see what was happening.  Office staff could not give me a time, but when I returned to the boat, it was already on it's trailer and on the way to the hoist!  Painted the patches where the pads have been and re-launched successfully, Roger coming with me around to India pontoon.  I'm about ten berths down from where I previously was, which will be a worry should we get any more gales but right now, it's wonderful to feel the gentle rocking and creaking instead of the dust, mud, and noise of the hard.  I filled the water tank, then went into town, primarily for medicines from the chemist.....this is getting me down big time!  In bed by 9pm suitably dosed up with everything.

Haul Out Photographs

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