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    february 2017


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02/02/17 Thurs.  All the lads in the yard had a get together this evening with a BBQ and beers in memory of our friend Bob.




03/02/17 Fri. Ana and I went into town today to the docs, to get my supply of tablets for the next two months, and for another orbital sander - we've now burnt out two!  On the plus side....we finally found a shop that sells Cheddar Cheese!!

05/02/17 Sun.  No workers today of course and yesterday was a wash out with rain all day.  Bright sunshine all day today and we managed to get a few jobs done, like replacing the anode bolts and one of the seacocks, along with sanding of the door from the cockpit to the saloon.

06/02/17 Mon.  Jeff didn't show up for work again today - I got a few jobs done before the rain started once again and Ana cycled to the town market.

09/02/17 Thurs.  I found a couple of broken bolts at the foot of the steering pedestal yesterday - today I managed to get hold of some more in town and replaced the damaged ones.....they are 304 not 316 stainless but will have to do for now.

10/02/17 Fri.  Seacocks are all in now, all the electric connections made to anode bolts in the engine bay, shaft in, stern gland in, shaft coupling on......tomorrow we will put in the engine (weather permitting) and I just hope it lines up with the shaft!

11/02/17 Sat.  We put the engine in before breakfast!  After some refreshment, I bolted the gearbox up to its mating flange, moved the engine to stbd. a little and offered up the shaft flange minus the coupling.  Much to my relief, it wasn't far out and I could adjust the mounting bolts (after cutting two spanners in half) until it was almost in line.  Tomorrow, I will tighten down the engine mounts and make required adjustments until the gearbox and shaft are aligned as they should be.


12/02/17 Sun.  Semi-tightened down the engine mounts.  Brought the prop shaft forwards to the gearbox rigid half coupling and checked the alignment, adjusting the mountings until I had just four thousands of an inch difference in the rotary positions.  Then I bolted in the coupling and rechecked the alignment after tightening the engine mounts down - the clearance on the test bolt only differed by three thousandths of an inch at all four opposing check points, so I would say that is in line!

15/02/17 Weds.  Just when you think everything is going well......  My visa expired on the 14th, Ana's expires on the 21st, so we thought OK, hire a car and drive down to Brunei and back, have a couple of days in KK and we both get new visa.  Wrong!!  We drove down to Brunei on Monday...at the first border (Sabah/Sarawak) there was no-one on the booths and the traffic was going straight through, so we did the same.  We drove right across Sarawak to the Brunei border, only to be told we had missed a check point and to go back, even though I told them there was nobody there when we came through.  OK, so we drive all the way back across Sarawak into Sabah again where we were then told that Ana could not enter Sarawak because her visa was for Sabah only!  Right, nothing for it but for Ana to wait at the border while I returned to Brunei, get my chop and come back for her.  I repeated the drive across Sarawak, entered Brunei and got 90 days, came back into Sarawak and got 90 days, entered Sabah and was told I can only have 7 days because I had already been in Sabah for 90 days.  Now I don't understand that at all - after 90 days, I left the country and returned, I should have another 90 days visa.  But no, the immigration officer said I would have to go to the enforcement officer in Kudat.  Today, we've been to the immigration office here in Kudat and were given a load of bullshit by the officer there about the boat being in Sabah over 90 days.  THAT has nothing to do with my passport entitlement!!  Now we have to supply proof that the boat is undergoing repairs and the officer in charge MAY extend my stay or may not.  To say I am fuming is an understatement!  We have had nothing but problems since coming to Sabah and I will be glad to leave.




As a distraction (and because I've never been, despite many visits here), we drove up to the Tip of Borneo, took some photos and then came back into town and had some lunch.  Tomorrow we start work again - after going back to immigration.



16/02/17 Thurs.  Into town first thing, to immigration and see the big boss man.  He listened to our problem, then said he would have to go to Penuwasa and speak to the office there, so off we all troop again - in company with two other immigration officers who had nothing better to do, and inspect Rhumb Do, see what the jobs were.  Also he spoke to the office here.  Afterwards, he said he would speak to his superior and see if it were possible to extend both our visas (I should have had 90 days anyway, but they would never admit one of theirs made a mistake!)  Quite why they had to look at the boat I do not know, because they had no idea what they were looking at.  Anyway, Ana and I reported back to the immigration office at 3pm and were told to fill out several forms, get Penuwasa to fill out some more and we would both be given another 30 days (for a fee of course).  It's all such nonsense and it irritates me immensely that I have to pay for their mistakes.  Have to go back with the forms tomorrow!

17/02/17 Fri.  The visa saga drags on!  This morning we went to the Post Office to buy two stamps for our completed visa forms.  Wait for it................the Post Office had no stamps!!  You just couldn't make this up.  So, we go to immigration (who know us by first names now) and tell them, and they say "go to the income tax office and maybe they will rubber stamp your application without stamps."  Of course, they wouldn't do that, "we don't have the authority" they say, "Go to the agency and get stamps there."  When we eventually find this 'agency', they only had ONE stamp - so back to immigration and tell them that we cannot get stamps until Monday, possibly Tuesday.  After much discussion, they decided to process our applications and give us our visas, providing that we buy stamps on Monday/Tuesday, get them stamped and bring them to the immigration office.  It really is ridiculous, that's five days wasted now trying to get visas........and another half day at least still to come.  Nothing done to the hull for the last two days because of rain.

18/02/17 Sat.  Rain again all day, we rigged an awning over the cockpit and I spent the day fitting the new raw water pump and associated pipework.  It took me a while to figure out just how it was supposed to be mounted - it's some months since I took off the old one!  Power cut at lunchtime again, once more traced to Bob's boat, which has now been isolated.  When I have time, I will have to look at the reasons why.

19/02/17 Sun. Fitted the starter motor today, along with the heat exchanger hoses and electric connections for revs, oil pressure etc.  Connected the stop cable, throttle linkage and gear change.  Been wondering how I will get the fuel through the empty pipes from the tank, through the filters and up to the fuel lift pump;  I have read of others fitting a rubber primer bulb (the sort used for outboard engines) to the filter inlet, but I don't fancy that, and I haven't got one anyway.  So, this afternoon, I took out the fuel tank dipstick, connected the dinghy pump to the dipstick hole, blocked the vent pipe and pressurised the tank - worked a treat, fuel came through the lot, right up to the lift pump!

20/02/17 Mon.  The last bits of filling are being done on the hull now.  I fitted the alternator, belts, wiring, exhaust elbow and hoses and the remaining electric connections, so now the engine reinstall is complete. Tomorrow, I will remake the battery connections, fill up with water, check the oil again - and see if the engine starts.  We also went into town (post office, tax office, immigration) and have now finally finished our visa extensions, although it's a bit embarrassing when you walk in and the immigration officers say "Hi Ian, what can we do for you today", and you jump the queue of waiting people!

21/02/17 Tues.  Had a little trouble with the batteries this morning, or rather the Smartbank connections and it took me a little while to find the problem (in the fuse holders).   Rigged up a temporary water connection to the raw water inlet, turned on the ignition and pressed the starter button.........engine coughed, fired and started.  There was no vibration, no leaks and all seemed good.  Just one little thing...the alternator was not charging (a problem I have had before), checked the 'exciter' wire and that is showing 13 volts.  I will investigate further tomorrow between other jobs!


22/02/17 Weds.  Worked all day with Ana  and Jeff, we got the hull covered with one coat of epoxy resin, one coat of Jotamastic and a coat of red anti-foul.  We also painted the blue line down the starboard side.  Not long to go now before we are ready to re-launch, just a couple more coats of anti-foul and a few other jobs to do.



23/02/17 Thurs.  Second coat of anti-foul on today and the blue line painted along the port side.  Also painted the rudder of the Aries.  Tried to clean out the mainsail cover but another nest has appeared inside with 4 chicks - they will have to go, but not sure just yet what we will do with them.

24/02/17 Fri.  First coat (3rd anti-foul) of blue applied to stbd. side this morning, then rain stopped play for 3 hours.  Fitted the hoses from heads to the new seacocks.  Painted the port side in the last 2 hours of daylight.

25/02/17 Sat.  Two more coats of blue anti-foul applied.  Into town for a polishing disc for the stainless steel and 10 litres of petrol, which I thought expensive at 22 Ringgit, but when you think the equivalent price in UK would be 67 Ringgit, I suppose it's not too bad.  Intended launch day of Monday will have to be postponed until Tuesday at the earliest - cannot draw out the necessary funds from the bank by Monday!  We removed the nest and chicks from the mainsail cover and put them in a cut down oil can, under cover on the adjacent boat where happily the Mum started feeding them.

26/02/17 Sun.  Polished the topsides today as well as stowing some gear away, went into town to the bank and a little lunch before getting some more shopping.

27/02/17 Mon.  All the stainless polished today and a load of gear stowed away.  Back to the bank in town again and paid off the remaining yard bill.  Had our lunch while in town.  Tomorrow is launch day........but I have told the office I will not go if the wind is up like today, it's difficult to reverse out of the concrete pen here and Warriors are renown for doing their own thing in astern!

28/02/17 Tues.  Launch postponed again because of strong winds.  Watched a flat bottom barge launch this morning and the wind and waves took him to stbd,......crunch into the last steel and concrete pile!  At the moment, it's looks like Friday is going to be the calmest day.

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