I had hoped to launch on April 7th, not noticing that this weekend coming is easter weekend and a 'long weekend' in Fiji. There are other reasons for the delay however...
Martin 'the meknik' has been hijacked to ready a VIP boat (yeah, right) for a weekend away this weekend. the engines were supposed to be ready on Saturday, but as it never actually stopped raining on Saturday I didn't push him.
Arun 'the Elektrik' is conspicuous by his absence. The batteries still need to be connected up/lights tested etc etc.
Because of the weather (constant rain due to a passing cyclone) John the GRP hasn't been able to put the final gelcoat on the hulls. Again, I haven't pushed him, let's do the job right. The rudders will have to be put on when the boat is in the slings as we need two metres ground clearance.
Following my herculean efforts to raise Henning up the mast, I decided to investigate a bit. After removing the snatch blocks from the mast which the halyards run through (a twenty-four hour job. Lots of CRC spray...like WD40 but more expensive and maybe a bit better....well it smells nicer anyway!) I found that the bottom section of the mast contained mucho mud/coral!!! It took fifteen minutes with the hose inside the mast and pointing up to flush out all the muck, but having done it the lines now run smoothly, which means the pulley system at the top of the mast must be OK. However, the plastic wheels in the snatch blocks (photos after I've recharged the camera battery) were totally jammed. The dive centre blasted the debris out with compressed air and they are now OK, spinning merrily.
We (Butto and I) started to rebuild the 'office' in the port hull, the long desk top and shelves. First we have to sandpaper-off all the old glue, not a problem but we are now enjoying a series of rolling power cuts in Fiji, ostensibly due to the effects of the near cyclone but actually the country seemingly can't afford fuel for the generators. There is also a problem with spares...they don't have any for one reason or another and estimates as to when they will have the required 'bits' vary from three weeks to three months. So mucho hand-sanding, a slow process.
Still waiting for the fridge compressor to appear. In the meantime, to 'cheer-up' the boat interior and in personal hommage to the boat which I won't ever have (a Wharram Tiki 52 with yellow hulls....head ruled heart when I brought Trouters, and friends threatened physical violence if I brought a Wharram) after some experimentation I left the body of the new fridge bright white and painted the lid yellow. After looking at it, I painted the next section of the top yellow as well. Piccies to come, but very 'hippy'.
All in all, a bit disappointing. The paint is taking an age to dry due to what must be 100% humidity, so patience is the order of the day. Lucky really, funds are running perilously low. I still need to get a new halyard and a couple of sheets, tomorrow I think. I'll get Butto to hoik me up the mast and I'll drop the VHR airial line down the same time as the new halyard, maybe even take off the masthead light unit for investigation. Oh yes, the sails are ready, but no point in putting them on until I have two serviceable fore-sail halyards. A couple of weeks perhaps, not the end of the world.