This is a blog featuring my personal stories of food, gardening, yachting, photography, travel and life.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Weekend Aboard The Key of Sea

     Last weekend we headed off to spend a weekend aboard the Key of Sea. We had no plans to take her out beyond the break water. Just a quiet time aboard and a chance to do some much needed cleaning, We brought the pressure washer down and a dock cart full of provisions for a planned Friday night dock tail party with a few of our boating buddies.
A dock cart at Squalicum Marina
     Leslie had to spend part of the day at school so I was left alone knowing I had to get the pressure washing done. My trusty Craftsman pressure washer is about 10 years old now and I use it to pressure wash my boat and the decks at home once a year. Then it gets put away in the back of the barn until the next year. Year after year I pull it out, fuel it up and pull start it. Every year, after a few pulls it kicks right over. I don't know why I got so lucky with this machine. I went through two Craftsman riding mowers in 10 years which literally fell apart, before I finally broke down and bought a John Deere which has given me no trouble at all in the past 5 years I've owned it.
My Craftsman power washer
     With the power washer roaring to life and having switched out the nozzle on the wand to use the one with the least amount of pressure, I headed for the fly bridge up top where I began cleaning the deck and other fiberglass parts of the boat. It easily eliminated the green mold and other crud off leaving the appearance of a fairly clean boat. Of course, I knew it was far from clean but at least the first and worst layers were slowly washing away. I worked my way down the sides and bow and stern until I was knocking down the seaweed growth off the waterline.
      Much of the rest of the initial washing was handled by the boat brush. This long handled brush gets dipped into a bucket of soapy water. I have two different kinds of this liquid soap. One is pink and other orange. If I want to wash off the wax from previous years I use the orange one. It is harsher. If I'd like to save the current wax and only wash the salt off, I use the pink. The first wash of the year needs that harsher stuff. So a few ounces of it in the bottom of the bucket filled with cold water, I dip the brush and start in scrubbing. 
     Now the boat was beginning to take on the look of  a clean boat. But there was still a long way to go and it wasn't going to happen this weekend--WAXING!
    The options here are many and everyone has an opinion on which wax product to use and what to use before and after. Depending on the overall condition of your boat, this process can take many steps. My boat is older and the finish hasn't always been maintained with the best care. 
    There are so many products on the market and as many opinions on which is the best as there are boaters it would seem. My choice was based on a bit of the product I was given by local boat yard, SeaView North which is where my boat goes when it needs work on the bottom, repainting, etc. I used a bit of the 3M Marine Cleaner & Wax and was astonished at the ease of use and finish quality the product produced on the boat. The down side is that it is expensive.
     SeaView North is my boatyard of choice when I pull the boat every couple of years. They have excellent workers and often have deals that help lower the price of pulling it out or on a paint package. Anyway, I've been impressed by their work so I keep going back.
SeaView North's TravelLift 
     The process of taking a big boat out of the water is unnerving but interesting to watch. SeaView has two TravelLifts that literally lift or "haul out" the boat and set it on "the hard" which is the term for setting the boat on the ground. It doesn't actually ever
Boat on blocks
touch the ground. It is set up on blocks.

     This next weekend will be the date to begin the waxing project provided the weather cooperates which is any one's guess this time of year.

King-sized bed on a Bayliner 32
    In the meantime, last weekend we managed to pull off a great dock tail party with probably 15-20 people stopping by. We had a great spread of appies and plenty to drink. Everyone wanted to sit out in the sunshine which worked pretty well until the sun got lower in the sky and forced us inside. The party was done by around 9 and after cleaning up we headed off to bed.
Master Stateroom's lockers & sink
    Bed on the Key of Sea is a king-sized bed, not a commonly found item on most boats of any size but certainly not in ones in the length of our boat. It is a remarkable use of space not found on any other boat our size that I am aware of. The trade off is its location and the feeling of claustrophobia it gives some folks. The Master's Stateroom, as it is called, is located beneath the salon. A three step ladder leads down to the stateroom where there is enough space to stand and dress. Clothing lockers and drawers are located next to the bed along with a sink and locker behind a large mirror where we keep personal items. To get into the bed you have to bend over and sort of crawl in. I actually roll over into m corner of the space since Leslie likes to sleep next to the exit. I love the coziness of my little corner.
     You can sit up at the head end of the bed quite easily and read. Two port lights can be opened just above your head for fresh air and their is a large window to the stern end of the room that slides open for even more fresh air. The bed space is the opposite form of the salon above so your knees have less space and your feet only about 18-24 inches. Quite cozy. Too cozy for some folks. We have friends who chose not to purchase the 32 Bayliner due to the claustrophobic feeling they got when down below.
Web Locker
     We've added 2-inches of memory foam to our bed which has made it very comfortable indeed.
     The rest of our weekend was comfy, cozy. Naps, a walk down to the Web Locker for breakfast, reading and puttering. 
     Sunday afternoon we decided to head home. So, after cleaning up one last time and loading up the dock cart, we headed up the ramp to load the car. A shower at home and back in our own bed felt great. We finished the weekend with the newest episodes of Call The Midwife and Home Fires before heading off to bed.