Wednesday, 24 December 2014

Some interesting video links

Next best thing to being out on the water is armchair sailing. Video embeded the infamous Rodger Taylor and Ming Ming 2.

Fancy More?.....

A Dinghy On The French Canals: some mirror dinghy cruising

Land Sailing: A yacht attached to a trailer which is sailing down a main road!

Mirror Dinghy Cruising
Poole to Yarmouth, Isle of Wight, in a Mirror Dinghy

Keep Turning Left : Download the full resolution KTL videos via Vimeo

Saturday, 20 December 2014

Quest update: foredeck hatch part

I have epoxyed the wooden frame into place for the forward hatch and today I cut the plywood top to shape. I'm pleased with it bit it all needs fiberglassing into place.

Thursday, 18 December 2014

Forepeak mockup

I have spent a lot of time thinking of how I want quests interior to be, my aim is to have a functional, safe and strong cabin. Today was the first time I got a flavor of that when I put a few of bits together.

I am hoping to start fitting the forward deck hatch in the next few days.

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Fiberglassing forepeak

Due to heavy sanding inside quest I am relining the hull with a couple of layers of 400g cloth and epoxy. I am hoping this will strengthen the hull and ensure longevity of the existing GRP.
It was easy enough to do but requires a lot of expensive epoxy! The cloth with red strips in is peel ply and makes a huge difference to the smoothness of the GRP once its cured and the peel ply removed.
Next jobs are to fix a watertight hatch to the foredeck and fit a watertight bulkhead with hatch.

Monday, 15 December 2014

Foredeck support

The last few weeks has seen a little bit more progress on quest. The support for the foredeck is in, i am going to do this throughout the underside of the deck throughout the boat as the fiberglass is very thin, the blocks will have cleats/padeyes attachments for securing loose items. I have also started prepping to fiberglass the inside of the hull.

Sunday, 14 December 2014

Filling a hole

Even most laymen would agree that a hole in boat is not a good idea, so why is it that sailors pepper their boats with holes to resemble swiss cheese?
Of course some such holes are essential, owing to a boats major flaw - anything thats not screwed down is going down (to the seabed).  Whilst this is the case, the real art form of boat restoration is working out what is an essential hole or a mere black and decker after thought.
One such hole on quest is the anchor chain inlet, I intent to get the anchor warp out a watertight compartment when I need it and keep the anchor lashed down on the foredeck.
I used the extensive west system repair guide (available as PDF download from there website) to fix the 7cm hole. Essentially I sanded a 12:1 bevel in the surrounding GRP and cut out 6 layers of tapering fiberglass to fill it from the top and 2 layers from the bottom. I used peel ply to keep it smooth and save on sanding.
But thats enough from me, a picture says a thousand words and it that's not enough read the west system guide.

Monday, 24 November 2014

New Fairleads and cleat

Today my new polished stainless (316 grade) 150mm cleat and 112mm fairleads arrived. A total of £22 including delivery off eBay from jay Wolfe. Just waiting for the bolts and washers and I will get him fitted, sealed with sikaflex and then wrap them up so they don't get damaged!

Monday, 17 November 2014

Bulkhead pattern version 2

Today I cut out a new bulkhead pattern from some thin plywood. Its by no means perfect, but unfortunately I don't have the skill to do much better! I'm hoping that west system epoxy filler will fill any gaps that are in my final  draft of the bulkhead.

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Finished bulkhead pattern

Today I finished the main bulkhead pattern, not sure what to make a mock up out of: cardboard, MDF, or thin plywood? Please to say I got it out the boat in one bit.

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Bulkhead pattern

This morning I removed and resealed the remaining 8 keel bolts. Once the sealant has cured  I will tighten them up. I also started to make the template for the forward bulkhead too. The other way to get the correct shape for a bulkhead is by flagging off, which is well documented here.

Friday, 7 November 2014

Sealing keel bolts

Today I removed half the keel bolts from quest and added large quantities of sikaflex 291i to them before returning them to there bolt holes. I have left them loose at the moment so I don't squeeze out all the sealant by tightening. Once the sikaflex has a chance to cure I Will torque the keel bolts to 28nm of torque. Which is recommended for M8 bolts.

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Some old footage of sailing Quest on the nene

Looking back at some old pictures of Quest today (in an attempt to rekindle my desire to continue with the restoration), I found a clip of us drifting down the river Nene. The boom was a 100% carbon fiber section off a windsurfing mast that I was testing out but it was a couple of centimeters to short to be useful.

Sunday, 2 November 2014

The blog is 3 years old today!

I haven't always had the time to regularly update the blog, with a lot of my posts having to be back dated, but 3 years and its still going. has had 15,927 hits to date.  

First ever Post (new boat)

Saturday, 4 October 2014

Windsurfing at Hunstanton

With 20mph winds forcast and myself and laura wanting to get away in bertie bus, we chucked the
windsurfing kit on the roof and headed to hunstanton. I of course decided I needed some adventure so windsurfed out as far as I dare into the wash.... or until I run aground on a sandbank!

the wind picked up on the way back in and I got a maximum speed of 26mph! not bad!

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Kayaking from Wells to blakeney

Myself and Ryan have completed our first ever sea kayaking passage! Wells-next-the-sea to Blakeney
intended route = blue, actual route = red
Harbour is a total of 10 miles, 5 of which are on open sea. We were treated with some beautiful scenery and sun. Unfortunately we had to paddle into 10 mph headwinds, although the tide was with us and we decided we would rather go with the tide and take the waves head on--- a wise choice in huindsight because paddling out of wells harbour over the sandbar was not for the faint hearted, I am not sure we could of turned back even if we had wanted too!

Friday, 8 August 2014

Taking some time away from the boat refit

Having brought bertie bus, focus is now on completing a couple of jobs on that so myself and Laura can get away in it. Unfortunately this means the already slow pace of the refit on Quest is going to grind to a halt for a couple of months. I will finish Quest (I have no other option!) and I am missing not going out sailing on her, however I must prioritze the work on bertie first as its almost complete.However,  I still hope to update the blog with my usual kayaking trips in the mean time!

Friday, 1 August 2014

Brought a mothership

Not technically sailing but worth including on the blog. Myself and Laura purchased a VW T4 1.9TD campervan, which is to be know as bertie bus. Not a rushed purchase as we have wanted one for years, I am hoping it will further enhance my sailing and kayaking adventures by giving us a base to work from. It came almost complete aside from needing a roofrack, towball and 12v auxiliary electrics fitting.

Thursday, 24 July 2014

Keels back on Quest

Since my last post on quest both the keels have come off have been mounting surfaces cleaned
so I can seal the keel to hull joint. I have faired both the keels using west system epoxy which has reduced the pitting on them dramatically.  I have also redrilled all the keel bolt holes in the stub keels after filling them with epoxy, this will ensure a tight fit with the new metric M8 keel bolts which are 1mm narrower than the old imperial keel bolts. I used a home made jig to ensure the keel bolt holes were in the correct place and I am please to say it worked perfectly!

Monday, 14 July 2014

Kayaking Oundle to Peterborough River Nene

I have long nagged Ryan about wanting to do some more adventurous paddles in our
kayaks and he had very kindly obliged last month by coming sea kayaking. However this wasn't enough! I wanted more! So a 30 mile paddle from Oundle to Peterborough with a wild camp stop over was needed!

Monday, 30 June 2014

Kayak Snettisham

Myself and Ryan went for a cheeky paddle on the wash at Snettisham, great views accross the wash (I could see the boston stump with the binocs over 20 miles away. Whilst the weather was nice, there were some small waves due to the northerly wind direction although Ryan did a fantastic for his first ever sea kayak session. 

Friday, 20 June 2014

Quest is off her trailer (again)

Quest is off her trailer again, it was very easy to slide her off the trailer with the aid of my metal ramps (really glad I invested in them!) . I have removed the port side keel today so it can be cleaned and then faired with epoxy. Then I will undertake the daunting task of sealing the keel -hull joint using west system gflex epoxy and 3M 5200. At the same time I have continued to make a mess in the garage whilst working on the deck-hull joint.

Thursday, 19 June 2014

Sailing an RS Vision on Rutland Water

It has almost been a year since I last went sailing and I have started to find it really hard just working on the boat without getting out sailing so yesterday myself and Ryan hired out a boat from Rutland Watersports  and went for a spin. 

Sunday, 15 June 2014

Testing West System epoxy

I got a spare hour today to get the garage set up ready for doing a lot of GRP work and had a go applying some glass fiber tape to the deck hull joint.

Friday, 13 June 2014

Fiberglass delivery

So this is what £400 worth of fiberglass supplies look like. My first thoughts are that I don't have enough resin, I have to much filler and the fiberglass matt weights a tonne. Good job I'm not a quantity surveyor by trade!

Sunday, 8 June 2014

Fiberglass on order

It has definitely been an expensive month as two major bills have been paid for, the sails and now £400 from east coast fiberglass supplies. I am hoping this will be enough to do the following jobs:

- gflex epoxy in the keel hull joint ready for 3m 5200 sealant
- seal the hull deck joint inside and out
- reline the inside of the boat with new fiberglass (for strength and water integrity)
- sheave new bulkheads and tab them into place
- fix small holes/blemishes
- attach additional wooden deck supports

Determining the quantity need for the above jobs has not been easy, epoxy resin is not cheap but I am hoping I have slightly under ordered! I will need to make another small order when nearing completion of the boat. Thankfully as it is the start of summer this is the ideal time to be doing fiberglass work!

Wednesday, 4 June 2014

New sails

Look what arrived in the post today! Some shiny new sails from Jeckells. The quality looks great but of course I will reserve final judgment until I get them hoisted. Cost was £494 for main and jib including delivery. I would have had them in blue but it would of been more expensive.

Thursday, 22 May 2014

Interior sanding

Time pushes on and so does the work with Quest, the last 4 weeks have involved sanding all of the interior surfaces of Quest to remove carpet residue and excess fiberglass. Sounds easy enough but it has involved approximately 50 sanding disks for the angle grinder and countless hours with the wire brush drill attachment!

I hoping to have all the prep work done in the next couple of weeks so I can start fiberglass work in the summer months. 

Included some before and after shots:

Sunday, 27 April 2014

A quick update on Quest refit

finished paint removal!
I have been slowly working away at the Quest refit when time allows. The current state of the boat is that the hull has been sanded back to gel coat as has the coach roof and work has started on removing carpet residue/old paint from the interior (more on that another time).

Saturday, 26 April 2014

Tabs Head & Fosdyke at HW

Took another cycle to tabs head and then went for a walk around fosdyke yacht haven. Just a quick post of the photos I took. 

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Testing Nikon Binoculars

The last few times I have been out and about walking, kayaking, biking and sailing I would have benefited if  I had been carrying a pair of binoculars with me. This week I treated myself to some Nikon ActionEX 7x50CF bins and took them out on a 6 mile walk.

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

A walk out to Tabs Head

Well I am still trying to get my head around the fact that there will be no sailing this year as
Quest is still undergoing a refit. Difficulty is with such a long project is that you can loose focus as to why you started it in the first place. At times like that I enjoy going out for a little recky trip (eg: wells, fosdyke, nenewroxham) to vist a place where I might take Quest in the future, so I grabbed the camera and went to Tabs Head.

Saturday, 15 February 2014

The Holy Trinity: stripping, scraping, sanding

Now that Quest is back at my house, the hard work really begins. The current paint job isn't in to bad condition, its only 2 years old and international yacht paint was used. However in order to undertake the GRP work on Quest the paint should be removed first. 

I haven't ever removed paint from GRP before, only wooden boats, fortunately I looked through some copies of Practical Boat Owner (no.558, no.548 & no.533) which provided me with some tips. 

Thursday, 6 February 2014

Refit keels and moving boat (again)

Today was another big day on Quest, myself and Ryan refitted the keels, winched the boat back onto the trailer and towed it back to my house. 

Monday, 20 January 2014

keel bolts

You can see from the photo that the old keel bolts and washers were very corroded. The rubber gasket is also perished. I have just brought new bolts, nuts and washers from seascrew for £45. Not cheap but nothing ever is!

Saturday, 18 January 2014

Quest Refit Album

I take lots of photos of the ongoing work I am doing on Quest. Not all of them make it onto the blog so I have decided to share my refit album on google drive. You can view it here:

Quest Refit Album

This can be access on the links section of my blog.

Wednesday, 15 January 2014

Trailer Ramps & chainplates

I have recieved back my chainplates and trailer ramps from Fabtech today. Whilst costly I am very pleased with there work, everything is laser cut and exactly to the measurements I gave them. The chainplates are made out of 3mm 316 Grade Stainless Steel, whilst the trailer ramps, which should allow Quest to slide off her trailer easier are made out of mild plate steel and will be galvanized at a later date.