Monday, 26 November 2012

Weekend progress

The weekend saw some good progress.  Two more portholes are in and there are two more to go.  That will complete the first 8 in the master cabin area.  Its quite a milestone.  A few minor issues for Dave to complete this week.  The air vent in the wheelhouse sprung a leak (it turns out that its good to have the ship being converted in bad weather.  If the leaks occur latter on we will have a lot more damage).  A few other air vents are to be restored.  They are useful things.   When we are not on board it is useful to be able to have air circulation without opening portholes.

The seaport values (huge bits of bronze) have been removed.  In their place two pipes will be fitted to run down through the floor of the cabin (they are in the wardrobe) to make the breathing pipes for the waste tanks.  The plan is to have one as air intake (pushing air into the tanks with a small fan) and one as an outlet.  This air circulation will prevent the build up of gas and smells (so I am advised).

Further planning work has been undertaken.  The wiring looms for the ring mains now identified and the consumer unit number and location identified.  I am going to go against the advice of the electrical industry and fit 4mm ring main cable rather than the standard 2.5 mm as they are being fitted in conduit in insulation and I prefer the extra capacity breathing space current wise.  The extra cost is minimal.  So why not.

The use of multiple consumer units will mean a huge reduction in cabling but I will need some hefty cables to feed them.  That is still to be identified.  It will mean that if a circuit trips it will only isolate a small area of the ship

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Spray away

The prep of the ship continues but at the back of my mind there is still the problem of insulation to sort out.    I have written about spray foam and looked at the do it yourself kit.  But there are a number of challenges with the DIY kit and that is around heating the tanks.   The alternative is a professional company with a van.  The trouble with that is that we (and the ship next to us) is too far from shore and the van they carry the kit in will not be close enough.

I was checking the web again last night looking to see if the world has moved on.  It had.   There is a new machine out which fills the gap.  Neat.  Its a bit heavy at 70kg but it has many advantages.  The main one being that it will heat the tanks.   I could get one of these, do the whole ship and then sell it.

Crunch time

Now that things are starting to progress well again I though it was about time I sorted out new toilet facilities.  This is not as easy as one might imagine.

There is starting to be a common theme emerging.  Nobody who sells stuff really is able to explain anything useful about what they sell.  Nobody even seems to be able to advise, if you do buy something, what else you will need.

I did manage to pick up an all in 1 toilet from Screwfix.    Nice and cheap and comes with all the parts.  I then bought a macerator.  What parts that comes with is anybody's guess.  The idea is to plumb that in with a single 22mm plastic pipe with no joints.  It will do for a while.

Monday, 19 November 2012


Well, maybe a bit strong for a blog title but blasted they have been and the first set of big portholes are looking good.  Turns out they are not brass.  They are bronze.  Sand blaster bronze (purists with probably cry that one should not sand blast bronze but there really was no other affordable way to get 50 years of paint off) looks strange but the patiner will return.

The newly fitted cabin portholes look good.  A few pictures below.  The cabins now feel less like dark cupboards.  There is not a lot of light (obviously) through them and you will still need interior lights during the day were you to sit in there but the daylight makes a difference to the feel.  Less claustrophobic.  They also look superb.

The last set of portholes were taken up to the engineers this weekend.  They will be blasted and cleaned up and ready for refitting in the next few weeks.  The challenge of the bolts to fit them though turns out to be an interesting story.  It turns out that the bolts needed to fit the portholes (the old ones were all but destroyed to get them out) are rarer that hens teeth.  What else should I expect? So I will be getting the spec and doing a planet wide search for the right ones.  Otherwise they will need to be custom made at a cost that will make one think they were bought in Harrods individually wrapped in silk and hand delivered by an X-factor star.

The new ones look great.  Fitting to be completed but they look the part.

They are hard to photograph.  The rooms are lighter but the picture exposure works for the light outside and make the rooms look darker than they are.

This is probably the first daylight these rooms have seen for 30 years.

The big portholes look strange.  They are big lumps of bronze.  They will age nicely (so I am told) and will go back to the darker colour one would expect bronze to be (and the colour they started off as under the paint that had already come off).

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Mushrooms and light

The mushroom is fitted!  This is the jammed air vent fort the wheel house (clearly no longer jammed and nicely restored.  The wheel house has no opening windows so the restoration of this vent was vital.  A simple screw thread allows it to be raised and lowered (shut).  Good job Dave!

The first portholes are in and they look amazing.  The first light these cabins have seen for probably 20-30 years.  I cannot wait to see them for real.

The picture below shows the gantry that Dave built so he could access the ship side without scaffold and mud!  Its going to be useful when it comes to painting the ship.  At some point.