Saturday, 21 July 2012

Bobbin Head.... Empire Bay Marina


It is Monday , 16 July 2012 and LAST WORD  is ready to be lifted , cleaned and antifould for the trip north.
The staff at Empire Marina, Bobbin Head, under the guidance of general manager, John Lawler,  are very organised and professional, and i am sent a reminder SMS the day before reminding me of the lift out and time .
At the designated time , staff explained the procedure and crew boarded LAST WORD  to assist being pulled into the travel lift.
Attached is a pic of LAST WORD  in the ravel lift , which has a capacity of 50 tons.
LAST WORD had plenty of shell on her running gear and probably two many anodes , as some seem not to be working , but the paint was lifting/bubbling on the trim tabs and rudders (which i understand in the black art of electrolysis MAY..... indicate that there are to many anodes).
This is a little weird as i have had two different alleged experts look at LAST WORD and her berth, and both could find no issues, and thought all was well.
LAST WORD'S hull received a wax , and prop speed was applied to all the running gear (except the trim tabs), even the underwater lights were propspeeded and had clear silicon painted on the glass lens.

LAST WORD  was lifted back into the water Friday 20 July , and the rest of the day i spent chasing a leak in the larger tender (hopefully the valve ) and fixing one of the MSR bedroom double  doors ( the hardware has jammed in the locked position).

As the weather is looking a little suspect,(2 to3 m seas and 25 kt winds )  , we decided to stay in the Empire Marina for the w/e, then on Monday journey to RMYC Broken Bay, Newpor,t where i will meet with Ray Gent and discuss stopovers along the journey and bar crossings and have a light  lunch, and pass some time , i have booked in for  a course on coastal navigation by Marine Rescue .....never too late.

Well Saturday 21st July started ok , and then something completely unexpected occurred.....

i was on the boarding platform when....BOOM.... an almighty explosion shook the Marina.
I thought a boat had fallen off its blocks on the hardstand.

i grabbed my phone/camera and took some shots.

it seems that two of the shipwrights were using an angle grinder in the shed and some sparks ignited some vapours from some nearby  venting solvents. The back of the shed went up very quickly , and there were several further explosions as other solvents ignited. End result was that several fire crews attended the scene , but could not stop the fire consuming approx. 40 feet of the adjoining heritage buildings.

We have lost power and water at the marina , and may have the services reinstated tomorrow.

The 50 ton travelift was in the shed with the drivers  platform in the left rear corner next to the fire. One wheel has punctured and who knows what other damage to the electrics and hydraulics as a result of the heat and fire.

It is a good thing i decided to put LAST WORD   back into the water yesterday morning , otherwise LAST WORD  may have been stuck on the hardstand for several  weeks waiting for the  travelift to be refurbished and operational.

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