Wednesday, 5 December 2012


TUESDAY 27 NOV 2012;   12 + 12 (24 ) NM.

Hi folks, sorry it has been so long since my last blog, but things have been happening, and I am part way back to Sydney, (but more about that in future segments).

After spending 8 days (15 to 24 Nov )  assisting my brother recover from his knee and left leg surgery, Capt Barry flew home for 4 days to rekindle the hot romance with his long love of 33 years marriage, rear admiral Julie, (THE BEADER).

After several romantic dinners (all of which were ruined by the persistent showing of children seeking advice, free meals, guidance , financial relief and a good laugh), Capt Barry boarded his Virgin rocket and returned to the Gold Coast to represent LAST WORD's interest when she was lifted for her replacement starboard stabilizer.

On Tuesday 27 November 2012 Capt Barry returned to check in on Graeme's recovery ( and burn him another meal ) then get  LAST WORD ready for her fin replacement.

another burnt offering for Graeme,  cooked by Capt Barry

This included going for a swim under LAST WORD  to measure the remaining port fin, and to supply the measurements to MEC , so they could modify the fin they had so it would fit under LAST WORD without hitting the chines under the boat.

Capt Barry diving under LAST WORD to measure the size of the remaining stabilizer fin so the replacement fin could be cut to size to miss the chines under LAST WORD


As LAST WORD was booked for a lift at 8.00am Wed morning , Capt Barry organised Peter and Merrilyn to front and centre at Marina Mirage at about 4.30pm to take LAST WORD  up river to the Gold Coast City Marina , at Coomera, about 12 NM distance to spend the night on the fuel wharf  , to be ready for the early morning lift.

some boat owners taking advantage of the low tide to strand their boats on the sand so they can do some work on the hull

After being told that depth was not an issue as the channel had just been dredged, we set out at about a 0.5m tide , and managed to just touch the bottom around Sovereign Island, well inside the designated channel markers.

Whilst we did not feel the touch, we saw 00 m ( under the props)  on the depth sounder and the lift out of the water showed the new clean edges on the prop blades. Ouuuchhhhh, that was a $140 prop speed  touch up  that should not have been needed.

We arrived at the GCCM fuel wharf just on dark, and tied up for the night.

last word on the fuel wharf in front of this weird tug

the front view

We were soon accosted by enormous mosquitoes , so we closed the doors and windows or added the fly screens. Capt Barry went in search of and found a power outlet and plugged in the air conditioner for a more pleasant environment for the evening.

As there were no restaurants open we had ( notice I could have said "enjoyed" ) baked beans on toast, with several cups of tea, then I said good night to Peter and Merrilyn , who walked home to their ketch at Hope Harbour, about a 1 hour walk.

Capt Barry was up bright and early at 6.00am and met the fellows who would be working on the fins about 7.00am ,

LAST WORD was lifted in the 150 ton travel lift at about 8.15am and set down on the hardstand , ready for the several work orders Capt Barry had planned.

Well things did not get off to a great start as the first two power outlets did not work. Luckily Capt Barry carries all types and combinations of power cords and was able to plug into a 5 pin, 3 phase outlet , and split down to the required 32 amp single phase supply.

Next Capt Barry liaised with the head engineer from MEC, Michael Hardy, who was to supervise the fin replacement, and requested that;
1.  the old shaft, when removed, be spun up in a lathe to check whether it was straight , and
2.  a hole be  cut into the good fin , to check that fins weld ( and be ere-fibreglassed),
3. the anchor cradle and guides be straightened , and washers be added to tighten the whole assembly.
4. the rudder tie rod be investigated to ascertain the cause of the slight vibration and the vibration eliminated.

this is the shaft that the fin broke away from. It has been removed and will now be spun in a lathe to determine if it is true (in which case it is unlikely the fin separated from an impact

the hole through the hull where the shaft came from. Again no evidence of impact to the missing fin or shaft

hole drilled into the good fin to see what the weld is like (shaft to plate)

a close up of the weld in the good fin. Looks ok

the new fin inspection hole repaired 

the new replacement fin modified to measurements supplied and being prepaired for antifoul

fin inspection made good and antifould

work being done on the anchor cradle where Capt Barry bent it at Whitehaven trying to dislodge the over achieving anchor from sand/clay

anchor cradle being squeezed closer , so new nylon bushes stop noise when at anchor. The pin had a new hole drilled closer in to prevent the cradle guide opening again.

new rubber washers top and bottom to minimise the vibration in the tie rod, with big enough centre hole to allow tie rod to be clamped metal to metal

prop edge needs propspeed touch up. Notice that the turbulence from the prop has worn the propspeed off the rudders (3000 NM )

Capt Barry then visited Stella Marine and purchased a water filter and softener system. This unit plugs into the marina tap and removes sediment ( through a polyester - not charcoal, filter  ) and calcium and other minerals that make the water hard. The result is that the water tastes better, does not spot or leave a white scum in the lines and hoses and does not etch the glass and tiles in the a lot less cleaning.

Finally Capt Barry organised to have an electrician change the four blue underwater LEDs. Originally, only one was to be replaced. However, when the boat was lifted , it soon became apparent that all four lights were stuffed.

 Luckily Capt Barry had four replacements. These lights are the Briter Innovation Canyon type , and next to useless, as this is the third set in 20 months. Capt Barry will change them for a NON stainless steel set of lights  next time round.

electrician adding final touches to the 4 new lights, while the antifoul is mixed in the sidecar , to be applied to the props where LAST WORD touched the bottom on the way upriver 

one of the new lights with space for cooling behind

As the work took longer than expected, LAST WORD  was not able to be returned to the water that day, so Capt Barry organised a lift for midday the next day, reorganised flights ( to leave for Sydney ,  8.05pm the next night ), and  spent the night on LAST WORD , ON the hardstand. More baked beans and several beers, and a couple of phone calls to while away the time.

This presented a bit of a dilemma, ie as LAST WORD had her anchor on the hardstand (as they were part way through fixing the anchor  cradle ), whether to put the anchor light ON once the sun set.
After all , there is nothing in the regulations that says only put the anchor light on , IF THE BOAT IS IN THE WATER.

Capt Barry put on the anchor light.

anchor down , so anchor light on after sunset?????

while LAST WORD was waiting to be lifted back into the drink, this ferry was brought onto the hardstand, and was moved past LAST WORD . It was that tight they had to move LAST WORDS anchor chain to get past, then the front of the ferry wiped out a 15 foot tree when they swung it to get it into its parking spot.

The next day the work was finished and LAST WORD was splashed at midday. Capt Barry fuelled up ( $1.52 /L ) and when the fins were recalibrated , journeyed back down river to the Marina Mirage berth.

This was a little hairy , as Capt Barry was by himself, and it was low tide again. However, Capt Barry went a little wider a Sovereign Island, and saw 0.6m on the sounder ( under the props).

After tying up at  Marina Mirage, about 4.00pm, Capt Barry put LAST WORD to bed, for another extended spell, (as he was returning to Sydney for a wedding on the Saturday ) , and went Graeme's house for a quick dinner and lift to the Gold Coast airport.

Capt Barry made this flight in plenty of time, and returned to Sydney for three days , after which he was to return to the Gold Coast to begin the journey south to Sydney.

trips .  4 HRS ,  130 l , AV 8 KTS PER HOUR, AV 33 l/hr

No comments:

Post a Comment