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.

Saturday, 29 October 2011

The first views of the completed paint job

We've just been sent these first photos of the completed paint job. Quite a transformation, don't you think? Graham visited on Friday morning but that was before the blue stripes were added.

The shiny mahogany-coloured paint below the waterline is the Coppercoat antifouling and they have achieved a really smooth finish so we should be good for an extra half-knot of speed!

We'll get new graphics for the name on the transom, refit the boarding ladder and Windpilot steering system then she'll be ready to go back outside to have her mast rigged. We can't wait to see her for ourselves.

Friday, 21 October 2011

The repainting project moves on

The process has moved on from stripping old paint and sanding the hull to applying the first 4 coats of primer. It was all going too well, of course, until we received an email from the yard saying that, after the first coat of white primer, they'd found lots of pin-holes in the gel-coat. Apparently this can happen with older boats and the suggested solution was 3 more coats of primer, applied with a roller rather than sprayed on, to fill all the pinholes. This has been a success but has added cost (no surprise there, this is a boat after all) and has requred extra sanding down.

The first gloss topcoat will be sprayed on Monday, followed by a couple more. As you may have guessed by the primer colour, Maunie is going to look a lot lighter! She looked huge in the spray-bay!

Saturday, 8 October 2011

Ashore for some serious winter work!

Maunie's now out of the water for the first time in over 2 years (the odd inter-tide dry out for antifouling excepted)- we have a big winter makeover planned!

A couple of weeks ago we groped our way up the Dart in seriously thick fog to get to Baltic Wharf in Totnes at high tide. We were hauled out onto the quay by a very professional team and spent the weekend preparing for the next stage of what will be an interesting and expensive few months. We removed sails, boom and halyards then disconnected the mast cables to allow the mast to be lifted off a couple of days later.

After a bit of swearing and some hot water, all the seacock hoses were persuaded to come off and the seacocks themselves (probably the originals) loosened for later removal.

The big project ahead of us? Well, Maunie is about to get a smart new paint job and an anti-fouling system called Coppercoat.

We always planned that one day we'd have to repaint the boat - the original dark blue gelcoat looks lovely from a distance but, in previous ownership, Maunie's suffered a fair few scrapes and dings and we've probably added a couple since. The hull is also quite abraded in places where she's rubbed her fenders and we've joined the commonly-held opinion that dark blue's a nightmare to maintain. It absorbs the heat of the sun like mad, too!

So we're having her repainted in a new colour - won't spoil the suspense by telling you which just yet.

Once the mast was removed the first job was to blast the hull clean of many layers of old antifouling paint. The contractor did a brilliant job, taking 3 hours to do what would take painful days by hand, and the hull is in good condition; it's remarkably smooth after the blasting. We'll have 2 coats of epoxy primer applied to give it a good protective seal before the copper-rich Coppercoat paint (which does the job of antifouling without the hassle of annual scraping and repainting).

The work is being done by Baltic Wharf Repairs; director David Sharp showed me a SS31yacht he's just repaired and repainted after a very nasty collision with a fishing boat, so we're confident that Maunie will look fantastic when she rolls out of the shed in a month's time.

Will keep you updated..