Rob and Jacky Black
Wed 30 Apr 2014 18:58
We left the UK on the 17th in beautiful sunshine and arrived in Lefkas after a brief overnight in Athens on Good Friday – 18th of April. The following week was a hectic combination of getting shopping, sheltering from the rain, organising the boat work that was to be done after Easter, meeting-up with friends and so on. On the lift out we were pleased to see that the hull with its recent copper-coat was pretty clean although the rudder had several bare patches where the power washing had removed the surface of the copper-coat – it transpired that this section had not been primed before application so was peeling off – something we have to take up with the firm that did the work in Crete.
However this proved to be the least of our woes as the engineering company boss – Andreas reported he was concerned about the movement he detected in the keel! Suffice to say we have now had a Marine Engineer Kevin Whittle do a survey and the keel has been removed, new bolts inserted, new stainless steel plates fabricated and the keel will be re-fitted hopefully today if the rain stays away. In addition all the skin-fittings (12) and valves were damaged – and have to be replaced we don’t know why this has happened but the evidence was clear to see as they were all pink in colour which is the indication that the copper/bronze is no longer tenable. We were hoping to have plastic ones fitted but unfortunately the spaces inside the boat are too small for the associated vales to fit under the floor boards so now we are waiting for the best quality replacements to arrive from Holland. Meanwhile the weather has been very mixed with thunder storms, torrential rain, strong winds and some sunny spells with lovely warm temperatures – that’s April I guess although the locals tell us it is really unusual for the area.
We have been off the boat living in two different apartments – the first tiny but adequate for the 5 days we spent there and now a much bigger and more comfortable one with a bath and a super-king sized bed which is wonderful. The boat looks as if a bomb has hit it - all the floor boards are up, the cupboards where there are skin fittings are empty and all the stuff is in bags or loose in the forward and after cabins; there are holes through the hull waiting for the new skin fittings and the decks are filthy from the dusty rain and workmen’s muddy boots! We still await the final cost of all this work but are most grateful to the marina boss here who organised for our boat to be put in the travel hoist over the weekend (as it is not used then) at no charge while the engineers worked to sort out the keel; this meant we didn’t have to get the mast taken off (at great expense!).
We intend sending the Marine Survey regarding the keel to Hanse as it would appear that the problem has been caused due to incompatibility between the stainless steel keel bolts and washer/nuts and the plates which look to be made of aluminium! As a result there has been significant corrosion especially on the forward bolts and plates and the holes through the hull have been expanded because of the gradually increasing amount of play between the two.
On a brighter front Alex a local expat is busy today polishing the hull. We have made use of the apartment washing machine and the clothes are out in the sunshine drying. Tomorrow is Mayday and a holiday here so we hope for some good weather again and that more of the work on the boat can be completed.
Hopefully the next blog will give a rosier report and we will be back in the water raring to get sailing!