It’s hard to believe ….

on the hard it’s that time of the year, when all things on the water come to a halt because of the inevitable winter, bringing snow, ice and high winds. Guess I don’t want to be out there for much longer anyhow.

FifthQuarter is at Royal River Boatyard in Yarmouth, Maine for the winter. I’ve never stored at a boatyard before since I could haul the narrower monohull boats to my shop for the winter. Royal River added a larger Travelift last year and can now handle things as wide as 5Q. There will be at least one more cat joining 5Q so she will have some like company, being among all those mono-cats (monohulls),it’s rather like the petunia in an onion patch. Everything I hear and everything I’ve seen so far indicates a good choice for storage. The best thing is – I can wave on my way to work since it’s visible from I295. Spring will most likely have the yard tackle replacing the “boots” that seals the drive systems from the sea. The manual says every seven years and, well, 5Q is seven, although the boots look to be in pretty good shape. It’s always a quandary – replace while out of the water or hope for a few more years to defray that expense.

It was a lovely day to work on it and I spent too much time talking to people about the catamaran from Madison, WI. That always makes for some good conversation.  The leaking aluminum port waste tank was ripped out and the new, PVC one from Triple M Tanks goes in next weekend. Both new waste tanks will be ready for many seasons of not leaking poop water into the bilge. I honestly do not know what possesses “good” boatbuilders to do something as stupid as to make a waste tank out of aluminum. Urine, salt water and aluminum make for a perfect corrosive environment and it’s just a matter of time before what’s inside starts to leak out of pinholes.

This is the first time the boat has ever been prepared for winter storage and lots of little ‘issues’ that could be a problem down the road are coming to light. For instance, the rubber impeller inside the raw water cooling pump for the generator has chunks missing from several blades, so that will be replaced. The drinking water system has been pickled, literally, with ten handles of Fleischman vodka. When the taps are opened in spring, well, you get the picture.  Working on that has discovered tank vents with problems and some missing o’ring seals.

Sharon is hoping the weather stays nice for a few days so we can have dinner on the boat, sitting high and dry but in a very nice, picturesque location. That would be a perfect way to end the season.

Be good.

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