Welcome to the Maunie of Ardwall blog

This is the blog of Maunie of Ardwall. After a six-year adventure sailing from Dartmouth to Australia, we are now back in Britain.

Sunday, 25 April 2010

Minor changes in the galley

Whilst we were waiting for the water to recede and return during our antifouling weekend this April we made a couple of relatively minor changes in the galley which will, we hope, prove beneficial when we're cruising.

The first was to fit a 'Seagull' fresh-water filter for the galley sink. Even though we cleaned the water tank out, there's always been a slightly 'tanky' taste to the water. These filters are used in aircraft and the advertising promised 'bottled water taste' and the screening out of any harmful microbes in the water.

As a result, the galley sink now sports no fewer than four taps!

They are (left to right): Salt Water (for washing up when conserving water on long passage); Filtered water; Pressured hot and cold water; Unfiltered, hand-pumped fresh water. To conserve water on long trips, the pressurised water gets switched off and everything is hand-pumped.

We're delighted that the filter does all that was promised!

The second change was to move the hinges on a locker door, so that it hinges from
the bottom, and fit a new waste bin onto the inside of the door. Much neater than the old system!

A major modification below decks

When we bought Maunie there were quite a few urgent jobs to complete below decks. She'd languished untouched for about 3 years and smelt fairly unpleasant to be honest! A couple of leaks from deck fittings and from one of the pilothouse windows had allowed rainwater to seep in so everything was pretty damp - just as well that we didn't love the upholstery!

The main modification before we launched last year was to build in a new navigation table - the previous owner had specified a very comfy settee in the starboard side of the pilothouse but this meant that there wasn't a permanent area for charts. Working with the team at the Berthon yard in Lymington, we designed a stand-up nav table, based on the design in our last boat and we're really pleased with the result.

We've replaced the old 'green screen' radar with a new Raymarine combined colour plotter and radar so we can have the current paper chart on the nav table, the digital chart on the plotter (visible from the cockpit) and the digital instruments mounted at the front of the pilothouse ceiling, relaying information such as boat-speed, position, water depth and windspeed from the main set of displays in the cockpit.

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

A weekend of scrubbing, polishing and painting - Part 3

All of the antifouling jobs completed, we returned to the safety of the mooring just as darkness fell. The following morning was another bright and sunny one so here are a few pictures of Maunie taken on Sunday morning..

Thankfully that's the biggest annual maintenance job done for another year!
P.S. Sharp-eyed readers will have noticed the absence of the extra rudder on the stern by the time the photos were taken on Sunday morning. As the water rose at the scrubbing post, we opted to remove the Wind Pilot (aka Winnie- a wind-powered self-steering device, great for crossing oceans but not used as much for coastal sailing). This involved Graham precariously balanced in the dinghy and Dianne removing bolts from inside a locker. Finally, having managed not to drop bolts into the water, we were ready to winch this heavy contraption onto the shore. We will carry out the reverse procedure when we need Winnie but for now we will benefit from not carrying such unnecessary weight.

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

A weekend of scubbing, polishing and painting - Part 2

Saturday morning dawned bright and sunny again - perfect weather for this job! So with confidence we returned Maunie to the scrubbing grid, this time starboard side to the quay wall, and waited for the tide to drop. Her natural heel to starboard meant she rested nicely against her fenders and as she touched down we got on with the job of fitting a new water filter in the galley.

Ten minutes later, a routine check on deck and, to our horror, we discovered that a rogue wave must have lifted the boat and we were now settling down with the mast pointing firmly away from the wall! The results could be disastrous (a possible boat-flooding opportunity if she was allowed to lie down on her port side) so we had to move fast, rig a spinnaker halyard from the masthead and winch ourselves over 'top-dead-centre' to get her firmly back against the safety of the wall. Once achieved we paused to let our heart-rates recover!

Anyway, after this moment of panic, the rest of the day went well and we gave the hull a full coat of antifouling, added some noxious, anti-barnacle red grease to the propeller and polished the rest of the hull just in time before the water returned.

A weekend of scrubbing, polishing and painting - Part 1

We've had a busy weekend - the annual clean of the hull below the waterline, followed by a fresh coat of antifouling paint, plus a polish of the propeller and the blue hull.

Rather than the expense of being craned out of the water, use the old-fashioned but very effective scrubbing grid alongside the Dartmouth quay. As the tide recedes the boat settles onto her keel on a raised grid of wooden timbers - it's just vitally important to make sure she leans into quay, against her fenders. Maunie has a slight tendancy to list to starboard so on Friday we had to move anchor and chain onto her port deck and rig a line from mast-head to a bollard ashore to get her to go the right way; she settled down without a bump on the very smooth water.

As soon as the water level began to drop, Graham had the pressure-washer on deck with the hose and lance down in the dinghy to clean 12 months' of slime and weed from the hull as it emerged. You get about 8 hours of no water on the scubbing grid so you have to move quickly to get the hull clean, dry (easy with the sunshine and light wind) and paint a first coat of paint on the high-wear areas around the waterlines and on the leading edges of the keel and rudder.

Friday saw us manage to keep to schedule and we floated off at about 8.00pm to return to the mooring.

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

A quick introduction to Maunie

Maunie is an ocean-going sailing yacht designed for comfort and seaworthiness. She's manageable for a crew of two but can sleep 6 in comfort. Her vital statistics are shown above.

The first post

Some of you will have seen the blog we ran for Gentoo of Ardwall's Round Britain voyage in 2008.

The Sampasite blog website is sadly no longer operating so this is a new version - hope that you'll find it reasonably user-friendly!

We have a new (to us) boat - Maunie of Ardwall - a Vancouver 38 Pilot launched in 1997. We'll update you with sailing news, starting with our plans for a trip to Southern Ireland in May 2010.