Mystery leak(s) solved

Wasabi on the Grid

Wasabi on the Grid

Three holes in the boat!  NOT really big ones but a hole is a hole.  Hauled it.  Ground out the holes. ‘Glassed it.  Probably not fixed quite right.  Not really.  When you have a four hour window (tides in and out), it limits your working time, your f’iber-glassing set-up time, etc.

I used rapid set epoxy but adhesion is a problem.

And the whole damn schmozzle is a long way from your tools and supplies so all that has to be schlepped to the site first…down a cliff….along mud…over rocks.  Gensets weigh a helluva lot and they get heavier with elevation change. NOT fun. Necessary, but not optional and NOT fun.

No holes to be seen

No holes to be seen

But, it is done.

For awhile, anyway.  Wasabi is an old $500 boat (came with trailer, too) and it has seen it’s better days.  We are now seeing it’s worst.  It will have to go soon.  Too bad, really, the design is right. Seventeen feet, walk-thru windshield, powered nicely by my Honda 50.  It is ideal and would be even more ideal if it were in ‘restored’ condition but it is hard to restore something you are still using all the time.

So, I bought Aubergine, Wasabi’s twin sister almost a year ago.  She is still not here yet but stored nearby in the forest on the other island.  No one will steal it.  Aubergine was only $300 (included trailer) and it is in worse shape but, if Wasabi can keep on keeping on for say, another year (at my pace), I can haul Aubergine, do a little marine surgery and then retire Wasabi to that great boat graveyard that, actually, does not exist.

That’s why there are so many old boats sitting in yards.  No real dump for them.

In the US, they just abandon them somewhere.  In increasing numbers, too.  And some of the abandoned vessels are huge.  Seventy five footers laying in the swamps of Louisiana after Katrina, other boats just littering areas, sinking in shallow waters.  Florida is awash with them. There is a lot of marina junk out there.

We have a similar problem in the Gulf of Georgia but not as bad.  Still, there are committees all over the coast clucking and fretting over it.  Meetings being held.  Money being spent doing nothing.  We’ll eventually get enough of a problem that a grant will be issued and some guys with chainsaws will do the work.  But not before huge wastes of time in meetings first.

What a system!

I may….may…perhaps…..unlikely but there is a remote possibility…..actually ‘spring’ for a good boat…..maybe…….I doubt it….but, maybe.  Someday.  Ideally, I will find a 17 or 18 foot boat, mostly ‘open’ that has some driver protection like a console that has a great hull…..


I doubt it.

15 thoughts on “Mystery leak(s) solved

    • Thanks, but Sal is the director of photography and she has been somewhat remiss in her duties this past decade. For some reason, she is ON this project but, like all artists, she is temperamental. We may be back to ‘just words’ soon.


  1. Your marine ways are really working well. You must have a huge tidal shift to get it that far up. Good you found and plugged the holes. John helped us remodel an old boat into a floating shed/writer’s retreat (for Wayne when he needs to get away from me for a while). After we got her in the water an old fitting gave way and she developed quite a leak. We towed it across the bay onto a shallow mud beach where we could haul her out. John made the patch for us and she’s been good ever since. Because we removed all of the engine parts she floats pretty high. The solution was boxes of rocks and rocks in the bilge. We also house half of our battery bank in her, so that gets down to a safe level in the water. – Margy


    • The tidal swing can be as much as 17′. Typically, it’s 11 or 12. Right now its around 11.5. It is the time of the day that matters more. If you get your highest tide at 3.00 AM, then you are hooped. Literally. You put boat-tie-up hoops on the poles so that the boat can float up and down. Then you put the boat up when it is the second highest tide (usually a much saner hour) and then, when the really high tide comes in at 3:00 the boat floats up but the hoops keep it on the poles.
      Yeah, I fixed the holes but I consider it a ‘patch’, too. NOT a real fix. Boat just ain’t worth the time and effort. But one of them (Wasabi and Aubergine) will have to get that time and effort. Eventually.
      You guys are real west coasters – rocks in the bilge, battery box afloat, writer’s retreat – all from a salvaged boat. Great!


  2. Depending on the layout of the beach, could you use a comealong and an anchor point to haul the boat and grid above the high tide line, kind of a poor man’s marine railway?
    A floating drydock involving 55 gallon plastic drums might be a little beyond the scale of what you need.


    • Kinda thinkin’ the same thing…..but the shore is so steep all around. Haven’t found the right spot. I could ‘rig’ a few logs and all that but……sheesh…..SOMETHING should be easy, no?


        • No. Davits have to be strong and that would be a mounting and likely a fabricating challenge. To find some old used ones would even be expensive, too. Don’t forget; there’s an off the grid theme being played here. Ya gotta ‘do’ with ‘found’ materials. The two long logs fastened together (on end on the beach) is simple and would work. And I’ll probably do that. In that way I can haul the boat up past the high water mark and use it for storage when we go away. In fact, I have already rigged that up. BUT………it is impossible to work on the boat there – bad footing…….so it is really just a matter of finding the right place and the right two logs. AND the time and energy.


          • The M/V Queen of the North has several that she is not using and as far as I know they are in working condition. How about some tarriers to hack you out a ledge for the davit foundation.


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