Week 2 on the hard at The Boatworks, Coomera

Tuesday morning (8 February) we were up early and did our first coat of Awlgrip paint on the bootstripe. We found it relatively easy to apply and were pretty pleased with our efforts. Phew, that was a relief.

Then we headed over to visit our mast which was being dismantled in the shop. It certainly looked very different and, of course, much bigger because some of it is usually hidden inside the boat through into the hull. We discussed service items and agreed for some items to be installed – such as a new windvane and VHF aerial. We also asked them to reroute the radar cables into the conduits….that will get rid of the annoying slapping inside the mast when rocking and rolling at anchor.

Back on board, Richard started taping up under the capping rail in preparation for varnishing. While he was doing this I worked on the stainless steel fittings that had been exposed by the mast coming off in readiness for it being reinstalled.

Later on we headed to the chandlery for supplies and organised a scissor lift for the weekend so that we could start working on the hull. The evening was spent, yet again, in the BBQ area with other cruisers living here in the yard.

Wednesday we applied the second coat on the bootstripe.

Then Richard sanded down and started varnishing under the capping rail plus he also gave the stainless steel in this area some care and attention.

During a short break, he then removed the teak steps off the companionway and I scrubbed them down with a special two-part teak cleaner. Was very surprised how dirty they actually were….

Whilst the teak steps were drying I picked up a courtesy car and headed out for a haircut and some more supplies. I’m tending to shop every few days at the minute as I do not want to take up too much room in the shared fridge in the liveaboard facilities – as we have no refrigeration whilst on the hard. And, yes, you guessed it, we had another social evening in the BBQ area as we all recovered from the working day. One thing I particularly love about this new area is the access to washers and dryers so we never have to have dirty clothes on board after a days graft – we wash them directly after showering each evening.

Thursday we did the third and final coat on the bootstripe and Richard finished the varnishing and stainless steel cleaning before starting work cleaning the stern. I then started servicing all the ports and the peek-a-boo blinds down below. After another busy day we had a BBQ dinner in company before retiring for an early night.

Friday morning the scissor lift was delivered to us. So first task was to remove the masking tape from the bootstripe now that it had completely dried. Using the scissor lift we then started on cleaning and compounding the hull. It was hard work but we managed to get most of it done by the time we called it a day.

During the day Nikki from the Boatworks had grabbed us from our work to deliver a complimentary meat tray to the BBQ area for the liveaboards for that evening. So we cooked and tucked into that along with Barbara and Russell’s granddaughters who were really funny plus others of course. Oh yes, and my hair really isn’t that short, I had just got out of the shower LOL.

Saturday we had another really early start and finished cutting and cleaning the hull. Then we went round again and waxed and polished it too….. This is hard physical work so we took some time out to have a late lunch at The Galley – obviously in the ‘cafe’ side rather than the ‘restaurant’ whilst pretty scruffy in our working clothes.

On return I continued on the ground level waxing and polishing the new bootstripe whilst Richard continued on the hull alone. I had had enough but he pushed on and managed to finish the job. We were both delighted with the results of our hard work. Morphie looks absolutely beautiful! Antifouling is next…..

Whilst I was in the cockpit and Richard was still working on the stern we were treated to the arrival of some Yank Tanks for a Garage 25 car meet. Was great fun to see them all from our elevated position, although someone should tell the owner of the beautiful VW beetle that he didn’t quality for this event LOL.

That evening we headed over to the BBQ area for a few drinks before bed – the area was really busy and all the BBQs were full of food so just as well we had eaten earlier… On the way we stopped off to check on SV Hurtle Turtle’s repairs and it certainly looks good. Never realised that this type of catamaran was plywood based under the gelcoat.

Sunday, finally, was a day of rest. Yay! We had been working really hard all week and needed a break from the physical labour of it all. So we had a leisurely start and then headed out to meet Sandra and Nigel at The Galley for a delicious lunch before returning to the liveaboard area for more drinks along with others so a fun time was had by all.

At one point the sky turned orange and then a torrential rain storm came through – the noise as it hit the tops of the metal sheds in the yard was truly incredible. Will never get used to the extremes of the Australian climate LOL.

Monday, I finished servicing the ports and peek-a-boos whilst Richard serviced the winches on the mast in the shed. It is really looking very nice with all its new stainless wire and fittings.

Richard then reinstated the saloon steps before cleaning the mast area on deck in preparation for the stepping of the mast the following day. So I headed out for more provisions whilst Richard painted the additional thru holes on the stern. They originally matched the cream gel coat colour but have worn back to their original white over the years so he decided to make them match – and they look amazing! Great idea….

Again, dodging very heavy rain showers, we headed to the BBQ area for our dinner before retiring to bed. And here it comes again….

Tuesday morning the mast returned to sit alongside Morphie on the hard. We closed hatches; took down the canvas; made sure the deck was clear and uncluttered and waited for the crane to arrive.

It turned up right on schedule at 9am and the team started to get ready to lift and install the mast. It was tricky and fiddly in places to get the mast into position as they had to line it up through the hole in the deck down into the keel (through the heads) – but they finally got it in place and then reinserted the pin through the mast into the deck.

Where the mast goes in the heads…
…having passed through the coachroof first

As the crane was finally detached from the mast they smashed our mast-mounted steaming light but they will replace idc. Next Monday (21 February) we are due to ‘splash’ back into the marina and, right now, it looks like we are on target so fingers crossed for only a few more days up the stairs.

This morning, Wednesday, the riggers returned to do a few more bits and pieces, and they reinstated the genoa and the staysail so Morphie is starting to look like a sailboat once again!

Richard is currently underneath the hull preparing the antifoul for it’s spa treatment whilst I’m blogging in the saloon. My next job for the day is to clean the mainsail before it goes back on tomorrow, fingers crossed, if the wind behaves….

So that’s it for now – please take care and continue to look after each other. Sending lots of love and hugs home to you all. I decided against an Australian cutie this week because I thought it was time you met more of Australia’s weird and wonderful critters instead. So today’s offering is an Aye Aye, which is a long-fingered lemur with rodent-like teeth that perpetually grow and a special thin middle finger. Who knew that lemurs – even ugly scary looking ones – lived in Australia too? Definitely a face only a mother could love LOL.