After three years we finally got around to hauling out Red Roo for some much needed care and maintenance on her hull.
Phil had a weeks head start before Maree arrived back from the UK following her exile as part of the ongoing Schengen Shuffle.
A few days were spent getting organised ready for the work, multiple trips to the hardware store, the paint shop and even a trip over the border to Spain for paint supplies. A HUGE thanks to our friend Reg who lives nearby for his assistance in driving Phil to Spain.
I must also compliment Phil in his set up of the boat ready for yard work. It doesn’t take much to get into a hell of a mess with paint, thinners, dirt, grease, gravel etc and before you know it you have it up on the deck and inside the boat. He set up a two door mat system, one at the bottom of the ladder on the ground, and a second door mat on the swim deck as you arrive on the boat off the ladder. Ladder I hear you ask, yes the boat was lifted high and dry it was a 3 meter climb up to get on board. It was also a strict shoes off policy once you hit the the second mat. He had dedicated himself a set of “dirty work clothes” and clean boat clothes to ensure he wasn’t contaminating the boat with his clothes, he even went as far as each night showering at the marina in his work clothes cleaning them before washing himself, and hanging them up over night to dry ready for the next day.
He covered the saloon seating with towels, he definitely scored points for that as the cushion covers are a pain to wash (well the actual washing is easy it is getting them off and on the foam cushions which is the difficult part – it’s like wrestling Elephants to get them off and then trying to fit an Elephant into pyjamas that are 3 sizes too small getting them back on).
He had also rigged up a hose and bucket system to keep the fridge working. Unlike a house fridge where the surrounding air is used to remove heat from the refrigerant our fridge uses seawater to remove the heat from the refrigerant. This works very well when the boat is in the water and not so much when out of the water so an alternate method for suppling cooling water is required.
And after all that he got stuck into the preparation for the waterline paint. Some of the red paint near the waterline was peeling back and it was quite a job cutting it back and feathering by hand sanding in preparation for new the new red paint system.
I timed my return well as it was time to start layering on the new waterline paint system and Phil is the first to admit he isn’t a great painter. That’s where I come in, with a steady hand and even pressure on went the primer (grey), two coats of it followed by two coats of undercoat (white), and then finally I rolled and tipped on the top coat red, or to be exact “Rochelle Red” a suitable colour for a French boat. It came up well, and so it should have as we followed the instructions religiously ensuring we waited the correct temperature and dew point range and drying times for application of each coat. This included light sanding, washing and drying between coats.
Then came the bottom job. As part of the crane lift out the boat yard crew high pressure washed the bottom of Red Roo, this removed the weed and growth and showed what was left of the blue anti foul on the bottom but that’s about it. First pass was Phil getting his muscles out and using a steel paint scraper to scrape the entire hull removing the many small calcium rings left from the barnacles. Second pass was using the new electric sander to cut back loose and flaking old antifoul and clean any residual grime from the hull. Then it was time to get painting again, we were also raising the waterline by 25mm which a lot of the preparation work for this was done with the waterline repaint. The hull painting was a lot easier all being done with a roller. Firstly Red Roo went spaceship silver with two layers of primer. Followed finally by antifoul, brilliant bright blue, we got 3 coats on all over, 4 on the waterline and 5 on the keel and rudders.
It was also fantastic to be able to visit our cruising family John, Kara & Dean who were anchored 130km away in Portimao, we got an early morning coat of paint on Red Roo then caught the lunch time train to Portimao. We had to collect new anodes for the boats centreboard from the local chandlers there, after which we went out the anchorage and spent the afternoon with the Sentijn team swimming and sinking a few cold beers. With heavy hearts we said our farewells knowing that they were off on a different course to us in the following weeks, and we left for the train station to return to Faro. Two hours later we were back on board Sentijn and staying the night! The trains had gone on strike and there were no more trains that day to Faro, further more by the time we had found this out the last bus had also left. Thanks Sentijn for having us for a sleep over. We made a few phone calls the next morning to make sure we could get back to Faro and were assured the trains were again running, only to make our way to the train station to find out that the next two scheduled for Faro had been cancelled again due to strike action. We were promised that the last scheduled train for the day would run … we were nervous but alas it did and eventually we got home well after dark 24 hours later than expected, but with the required anodes for Red Roo and with a lot more lovely memories made with J, K & D 🙂 worth it even with the hangover Phil had.
Despite the above journey and train frustrations we did venture out on the train again under similar circumstances. We put the days paint coat on then this time headed east from Faro to Olhão to say our thanks and farewells to Reg and Joan at their lovely home. They had helped enormously by allowing us to use their mailing address to received some important mail from back home in Australia, Reg also took the time to show us around his town and home. Again, we are so lucky with the friends we have met and made on our journey.
We ended up being out of the water for a whole extra week (7 days) due to missing one coat of paint on one day due to rain. The boat yard doesn’t work weekends, and our plan was to get hung back in the lift slings of the travel hoist on a Friday afternoon before knock off in order to be able to scrape, sand, prime and do 3 coats of antifoul on the parts that had been sitting on the 2 x hard beams under the boat over the weekend before being dropped back in the water on the Monday morning. Oh well not to worry, we hadn’t put in all that hard work to slap and dash at the very end, at least we did the whole job properly.
Red Roo finally went back in the water without any issues, mind you my heart was in my mouth a few times while she swung around in the travel hoist.
Finally a shout out to all in the boat yard at Faro who made our time their enjoyable. I had a great morning out in town doing the rounds with some of the ladies off other boats in the yard, we hit the laundromat, the hardware shop (with list and instructions for parts from the blokes), the market and then the sewing shop for supplies (I am making a mozzie net for the companion way hatch), not to worry despite having the morning off I did get back in time to put another coat of antifoul on the boat later that afternoon and had great delight in telling Phil that they had told me that their husbands had commented to them on how much work I was doing on the boat and the ladies suggested I eased off a bit as I was setting an unrealistic standard and their men were getting expectations that would not be met!