2013-12 Boat Maintenance and Other Travels

December 26, 2013

Since hauling the boat out of the water in early November, we have continued to spend time on land while working on many boat projects. Those boat projects will be summarized at the end of this post. 

Visting Jordan at Thanksgiving

Visting Jordan at Thanksgiving

We spent Thanksgiving in Saxapahaw, NC (near Durham) visiting our dog Jordan and his “Aunt Meg”. You may recall that our good friend Meg adopted Jordan two years ago when we sold our house in Virginia. Jordan is nearly 15 now and still happy and healthy. He has a bad left shoulder and hip but he is still mobile and playful. The whole neighborhood loves Jordan and watches out for him. Our Thanksgiving visit was a lot of fun, with two turkeys, one with neighbors on Thanksgiving Day and one two days later that we cooked. We also celebrated Hanukkah along with Thanksgiving, a rare timing that won’t occur again for 79,000 years!

Colonel Theodore Rosenberg arrives for his "Final Assignment" at Arlington Cemetery

Colonel Theodore Rosenberg arrives for his “Final Assignment” at Arlington Cemetery

In December we traveled to Washington, DC for the interment of Bradley’s father, Theodore Rosenberg, at Arlington Cemetery. As a retired Army colonel, he received the full honors ceremony, complete with horse-drawn caisson, riderless horse, honor guard, band, and 21-gun salute. It was an awesome ceremony and he received the send-off he wanted and deserved. The event was well attended by family and friends and it was nice to have so many together in one place. Bradley gave a wonderful and touching eulogy and a 15 minute video tribute to Ted, created by his daughter Aldee, is available here. We had several family get-togethers, including a trip to the Kennedy Center to see Shear Madness (the play) in their newly refurbished Theater Lab. The show was even funnier than we remembered and one of the actors from our wedding performance in 1999 was still there (actually there again as he has not been there continuously, but off and on). This time he played the murderer while at our wedding he was one of the detectives.

The Rosenberg family and friends attend Shear Madness at the Kennedy Center

The Rosenberg family and friends attend Shear Madness at the Kennedy Center

While in DC, I also hosted a reunion for my old company, Landmark Systems. Although Landmark was acquired nearly 12 years ago, we had over 70 people attend and many more who wanted to attend but were not able to join us. For many of us, Landmark was the source of so many great memories and an experience that really shaped my life. Photos from that event are posted here.

We have returned to Sea Gate, the community where we are living while the boat is out of the water. Sea Gate also has a neighborhood dog, Jenny, who we met two years ago, She has come by several times to visit and continues to act at the “Mayor of Sea Gate”. She patrols the neighborhood, stopping in for visits and attending any neighborhood party or get-together. We attended a couple of Sea Gate parties where we caught up with many of our old friends. Cathy from Crystal Coast Interiors hosted an oyster and pig roast – a wonderful night of fabulous food and a chance to meet some new friends. Dave and Doreen hosted a party at their new house – when we left two years ago they had been starting to renovate an older home but eventually decided to tear it down and start over. The result is an amazing and beautiful home right on the Intracoastal Waterway. At their party we reconnected with most of the folks we got to know two years ago and had a great time catching up. And our friends Gary (who crewed on our last passage) and Patti stopped by for a visit in their Land Yacht on their way to Georgia.

Gary and Bradley with the Land Yacht

Gary and Bradley with the Land Yacht

Aside from the boat, our other major project has been converting from Windows laptops to Apple MacBooks. We ordered our new Macs and just before mine was due to arrive, the hard drive in my Dell crashed. What a pain! Fortunately I use an online backup service so all my data is safe, but the restore process is very slow. Why couldn’t it have waited just another week or two?? Oh well. As it turns out, ALMOST all my data was safe. The exception is video footage I took of the haul out and ongoing work which had not yet been backed up. So no new videos for now. Bradley and I are both taking classes at the Apple store to ensure we can make the most of our Macs. So far, we are muddling through, though I know we are not using them to their full potential! This blog is actually my first use of Mac Pages, which I am hoping will work well enough that I don’t have to install Office for Mac!

On another note, I am pleased to report that our blog has now been read on every continent. Here is a comment I received after our last post from our friend Simon, who lives in Tasmania but works for the Australian Antarctic Division:
“have just enjoyed reading your update whilst i sit at McMurdo Station Antarctica waiting for my flight back to Christchurch and then back over to Hobart”.
New book reviews are available here. Scroll down below first set of photos to see details and photos of the work we are doing on the boat. Click any photo to enlarge. We wish everyone the very best for the coming New Year and hope we will have a chance to re-connect with many friends and family in 2014!


Boat Projects

Unlike two years ago when we were doing repairs due to a lightning strike, this haul out is for routine maintenance. Among the projects on the list:

1. Engine service. Our engines now have 5000 hours so were due for servicing. This included valve adjustment, replacement of both fuel pumps and transmission coolers, and new Walker AirSep filter units with new replaceable oil filters. We also purchased a spare raw water pump. We sent oil from the main engines off to be tested and the results came back normal, showing no problems. 

Servicing the main engines

Servicing the main engines

2. Bottom paint. It has been 18 months since the last bottom paint. This paint held up well but it is ready for a new application. This involves a light sanding of the bottom and application of Sea Hawk Cukote Self-Polishing bottom paint (undercoat) and Cukote Biocide Plus for the top layer. Bottom paint is meant to prevent growth of organisms on the hull and needs to be re-applied periodically. In addition to the hull, protective paint is also applied to the propellers, thru-hulls, rudder shoe, and any other underwater metal surface. This time we are using Pettit Prop Coat Barnacle Barrier which has been recommended by several Nordhavn owners

Applying bottom paint

Applying bottom paint

3. It’s also time to replace the zincs on various places on the hull. Zinc anodes are placed in strategic locations to prevent the corrosion of other metals. To read more about how sacrificial anodes work, click here. We had some pretty good wear on several of our anodes – that means they are doing their job!
4. Rub rails. We have stainless steel rub rails on the outer side of our decks. These needed to be removed, polished front and back, and re-installed with new screws and sealant.

5. Bow plate. Similar to the rub rails, the stainless steel bow plate had some water leakage behind it, causing some staining. It had to be removed, polished, and re-installed.

Removing bow plate

Removing bow plate

6. Auxiliary battery charger. Our primary battery charging system consists of three Mastervolt 100 amp chargers. We have a separate, auxiliary charger which is supposed to put out 80 amps, but was actually only providing 40 amps. We replaced it with a brand new Mastervolt 100 amp charger. Now when we are off shore power and run the generator to charge the batteries, we will be able to produce 400 amps rather than 340. That will result in faster battery charge time and less time running the generator.

7. Tender. We have several projects on our tender. First, we decided to remove the radar system as it is old and we rarely use it. The eliminates weight and height on the aluminum arch. The arch itself was removed and (blasted) to remove the previous paint, which had some bubbling. We are going to leave it in its natural aluminum state. While working on the tender, we also discovered that the floor where our new leaning bar was mounted had a rotten spot in the core. It had to be cut, reinforced, and replaced. The leaning bar is now extremely solid -previously it had been a little shaky. We have also replaced the steering wheel lock which had broken and are investigating a possible leak in the hydraulic steering system as well as a problem with the port engine hydraulic lifter not staying up when set.

Steve checks the bonding system

Steve checks the bonding system

8. Electrical Bonding System – we have tested the electrical bonding system by checking connections at each through hull fitting to ensure it is properly connected to the bonding system. This is important because unless the metal surfaces are properly bonded, the zincs will not offer protection, putting the metal piece at risk of failure. We found several loose wires at grounding bars. We replaced the grounding bars with terminal strips.

9.  Life Raft Servicing – on our way to DC we dropped one of our Switlik liferafts off in Norfolk to be serviced. We watched as the raft was unpacked and inflated. We reviewed all the contents of the raft and were pleased to learn that it even contains a portable watermaker! We always make it a point to be present when the liferaft is inflated – we like to be sure we know what it looks like and how it works. The service facility will perform some tests and replace any expired contents or components. We have provided an upgraded flashlight and some of our favorite sunscreen to be added to the contents.

10. Captain’s Chairs. We are upgrading one of the Stidd chairs in the pilot house to a high-back and replacing the cushions on both chairs with an ultra-leather finish in a lighter color. This is done through Stidd, who will send replacement cushions and a new back for the upgraded chair.

11. Other Interior projects. Crystal Coast Interiors is doing several projects. They have made a new cover for our kayak, one which should hold up much better than the off-the-shelf type we had before. They are also making all new cushions for the tender, modifying and re-covering the sofa in the salon, and making mattress covers and new sheets for the guest and master cabins.

  1. #1 by Ron Whynacht on January 6, 2014 - 8:21 am

    Hello Kathy and Bradley,

    Nora and I would like to wish you both a very happy and healthy New Year.

    We have followed your posts and blogs and are overwhelmed with ALL that you two have been up to. What an interesting life you lead!

    Our deepest sympathies to Bradley for the loss of his Dad and what a man he must have been. Quite an honor at Arlington Cemetery.

    To you both keep on “trucking er Boating”!

    Very best regards,

    Ron and Nora


  2. #2 by Wendy Bent on December 26, 2013 - 1:25 pm

    Hi Kathy & Bradley Sorry to hear about your Dad Bradley. I know you don’t know me but hope we can change that next year. Merry XMAS to everyone and a Happy New Year With good health and no problems. Love reading your post on Shear Madness. Kathy have you heard from Rob and Tish since they got back. Don’t forget next summer at our place for Supper scallops if you both like them i know Rob and Trish do. Have a good winter and hope to see you in the summer. George & Wendy Date: Thu, 26 Dec 2013 17:06:38 +0000 To: wendy.n.bent@hotmail.com


  3. #3 by r. michael knipp on December 26, 2013 - 12:21 pm


    So sorry to hear about Bradleys father! He obviously had a great career and a lot for the family to be proud of.

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and Bradley.

    Mike Knipp Chicago


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