Christmas Eve

santa hatLanded in Vancouver on time on the 20th of December. Denise was waiting for me and we went directly to Bracewell to check out the progress of the repower.

Tim and Cyril were there and we made our way to the yard where Soul Balladeer was on the hard. She looked pretty impressive as we walked up to her as the 44 PH hull is much more volumous than even the Hans 48T hull. A quick climb up the stairs and we were looking at a hole in the pilothouse floor ( hatch to be more accurate) that had allowed removal of the engine.

As we started reviewing the situation it became evident very quickly that through the years Soul Balladeer had been fitted with a number of redundant systems that were really not necessary given present technology.

The most striking thing is the amount of hoses that have been installed in the engine room over the years. These were all used at one point , however, for different reasons, a lot of them had been disconnected from their respective systems . The result is a myriad of hoses that make maintenance of many of the boats systems arduous at best.

A lengthy discussion with Cyril and Tim and we were all in agreement that many of the redundant systems could be disconnected which would result in massive decrease in the amount of hoses that were required.

Now some will ask…”You need redundancy…why did you remove your backup systems?!!!”

I am referring to back ups for the backup systems. It is overkill to have a 5KVA generator backup for a 12.5 KVA generator. It takes up valuable room and isn’t able to contribute to the electrical requirements if the 12.5 KVA generator actually failed. The physical constraints of the engine room also make it difficult to service all these systems. There just isn’t room to get around in there. So….the small generator is being pulled, hoses cleaned up, and replaced where necessary for the 12.5 KVA generator,the impeller and associated gasket on the generator replaced and a complete service completed on the generator itself.

The Isuzu is waiting at the shop to be installed, however, we are still finalizing the transmission details. I’m sure a lot of seasoned boaters know that once you start down this road of improvement, it is very easy to get carried away and before you know it you are into tens of thousands of dollars of added costs. The trick is , to weigh what needs to be done with what one would like to have done…measure that against what you can afford to have done and the way forward usually becomes clear.

We are now looking at the end of February to have the engine room work completed with new bottom paint , interior/ hull cleaning/ polishing and renaming of Soul Balladeer completed as well.

Denise and I wish all you folks a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. May peace and happiness fill your lives in 2013.

Ho Ho Ho

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