Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Power it, Rig it, Splash it

Peponi at the Final Stage
As I write this, Peponi is days away from being ready to launch. I know this because the invoice from the yard just came. Ouch. 

The engine is fully installed, the drivetrain is finalized, the wiring is done, and the rigging is being put together. We had her trucked to Port Townsend and the yard at Sea Marine, where after being passed off from mechanic to mechanic, we finally got some things rolling along. 

I love Port Townsend. Sure, it's a little too obviously "hip" and the artist/craftsman/hipster vibe is a little overwhelming most of the time, but there is something about the shipyard and maritime industries in this historic seaport that just feels right. Plus, on any given day you might see ships from The Deadliest Catch out for refit or even something like this...

Cinephiles Like Michael Bolton Might Recognize this Ship

That is Lady Washington, which has been used in a couple of the Pirates of the Caribbean films and, weirdly, on Star Trek. Seeing this tall ship out of the water and being worked on my a team of about 50-60 people was impressive. In two days they had her out, cleaned, repaired, painted, and splashed. If only we were so efficient.

Our other neighbors in Port Townsend aren't nautical celebrities. But I do love boatyards. There are two or three boats in the yard that I wouldn't kick out of the marina, if you know what I mean. Hidden in here somewhere are two really nice Etchells  30s. Sweet.

Some of the other neighbors

The bottom paint took a little abuse in the delivery

Final installation of the engine required some more modifications to the stringers I had built up to lift the engine into alignment. In order for the oil sump plumbing and the shifting to have enough clearance, the stringers had to be carved out, as can be seen in the next two photos.
Modifying the stringers for the final engine fit

Ready for the final installation.

I claim poverty on the prop choice. In order to match the engine output we needed a three-blade propeller. The dimensions of the aperture made a two blade unfeasible. Plus, a two blade prop with the full keel design would be a nightmare for maneuvering around marinas. But the three blade prop will create a lot of drag under sail. I'll save pennies for a feathering prop on the next haulout.

The old cutlass bearing was so comfortable in place that it had to be ground out. A new prop shaft was made for us at Tacoma Propeller. Once it arrived, the rest of the drivetrain could be finalized.

Here is where we almost hit a dead end. There is not enough clearance in the aperture to slide the prop onto the shaft. The guys in the yard and I stood and stared at it for a while. After several very expensive ideas were floated (pulling the engine again, removing the rudder...) Someone figured out that with the rudder hard to starboard, the prop could be feathered around it and into the space.

At least we don't have to worry about the shaft backing out of the boat if the set screws give way.

What's the greatest, most utilitarian invention in recent boating history? That's right, it's the PSS shaft seal from PYI Technologies. I installed one on our last boat and would never think of having a sailboat without one again. They are relatively cheap, very easy to install, and maintenance free. And on a boat like ours with almost no space to work with behind the engine, there is value in only having to squeeze into the lazarette once to install it.

Elton working on some final alignment details

Below you can see the PSS Shaft Seal installed with about 3/4" of clearance. The flexible coupling on the engine is also a nice addition. The black hose you see is for the heat exchanger connection to the hot water heater, which is yet to be finalized.

The Driveshaft and PSS Shaft Seal
As we creep toward finally having a functional boat, and I look forward to a "Before and After" post here on the blog, the best late summer in recent memory is trying to slip away from us. It's still warm and sunny here in the Northwest despite the calendar changing over to October. We have reserved our slip at the Everett Marina and are on the waiting list at a smaller marina closer to home.

We're ready for Peponi to be in the water! But in the meantime there's always the Typhoon sitting in the garage just waiting to be taken out.

Meanwhile, there's always this

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