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Engines and genset ….

The main engines and genset were craned into the engine room during the week ending 12th August 2022.

The two main engines ( left and right machinery items ) and a genset ( centre ) are positioned in the engine room ready for alignment.

Further decking ….

The aft deck area has been fibreglassed making the plywood beneath waterproof.

Where the plywood decking meets other structures the fibreglass has been continued upwards to guarantee the water tightness of the decking.

The above photos show the port and starboard black water tanks ( the two black tanks ) and two fresh water tanks correctly positioned in the hull. All tanks are still to be installed and plumbed for use.

Preparations to install the bow thruster ….

Thruster section marked for the gearbox and propellor unit.

The thruster centre section is being lifted out of the crew cabin.

Final step out of the hull is to be lifted through the whale back to the deck.

Decking ….

Looking aft most of the deck has been fibreglassed with fibre glass mat and resin and

does not need to be covered with protective plastic sheet.

Some sections of the deck need to be covered with plastic as the second sheet of plywood or the fibreglass has not been laid yet.

The fibreglass layer has been laid upwards at the cabin to ensure that the deck watertight.

Deck work progress

The previously removed white beech deck planks are being machined on all faces before being cut in half as shown. These 30 mm thick planks will form the top deck layer over the two layers of plywood. Each layer is bonded to the layer below and the deck beams.
In the immediate foreground is the first layer of plywood epoxied and screwed to a deck beam. Further along is the second layer of plywood affixed over the first. The glossy section past that is coated with its layer of fibreglass and epoxy. All this work has to be achieved in mid winter while keeping all components dry.
Foredeck finished with its two layers of plywood and fibreglass.
Another view of the foredeck shows the outer edge of the plywood where the margin boards will be installed prior to laying the white beech deck planking.

Deck Preparation work in April

Timber blocking pieces are being installed to support the outer edge of the plywood deck layers. These pieces are just inboard of the yet to be installed margin and cover boards which form the very edge of the deck and surround the stanchions. This has been a lengthy process as each piece of blocking is unique in shape and individually fitted.
Finished blocking rebated into deck beams and knees, faired and ready to receive the first layer of plywood decking.
The beams and carlins around the opening of the engine room deckhouse are being prepared for the later reinstallation of the deckhouse.
In several areas of the ship, supports are being installed for later attachment of grey water tanks or other tanks or machinery.
Framing for the sole of the captains cabin being installed by one of our volunteers.

March progress update

The shipwrights have completed the deck fairing and are bolting in place the bases for reinstallation of the whalebacks on the foredeck. Fixing of the first plywood layer of the deck is expected to commence in this area before month’s end.
The forward side of this bulkhead is being lined with tongue and groove planking machined and installed by one of our volunteers. In the foreground is part of the framing for the lower deck of the chain locker.
Looking down onto that same lower deck framing of the chain locker. Water and debris from the chain will drain below this deck and be pumped out via the bilge pumping system.
The area of deck above the forward section of the engine room is to be removable so that the fuel tanks can be craned in and later craned out if necessary for maintenance or replacement. The black painted steel brackets allow for unbolting of deck beam sections to allow tank installation or removal.
Our volunteer fuel tank constructors/ welders are advancing the fabrication of the fuel tanks. After completing the internal welds of walls, floor and baffles they will install and weld the tops of the tanks.
If you were wondering what happened to the barge Alma sat on for eight years, here it is being given a face lift by its new owner.

January Progress

The main work in January has involved fairing the deck to final shape before commencing the first layer of plywood.

The foredeck area forward of the main deckhouse being faired. The two whalebacks have been temporarily removed to ensure a consistent deck shape. Work is still proceeding in the chain locker up forward as described in a previous post.
This view of the deck fairing gives an indication of the accuracy and time required to achieve deck shape in all directions. Sometimes thin layers of deck beam timber need to be added and glued in place only to be partially shaved again as the fairing continues. The photos cant really show the work involved or the skips full of shavings produced.
Some tasks, just below deck level, are more easily performed before deck placement. The winding mechanism for raising one of the centreboards is shown here being positioned on top of the forward centreboard case.
The previously removed deck planking, with its caulking and bitumen still attached, is being cleaned by volunteers so that it can be machined to its new shape.
Cleaned and machined deck planks ready to be cut in half lengthwise to form the new top layer of the deck.
In the captains cabin, ceiling planks are being replaced. Each plank is drilled in several places to allow access to the bolts from the outside hull planking, should these bolts ever need to be removed for future hull plank repairs.

Final Works for 2021

Our shipwrights are now taking a well earned break after working on the deck beams and many associated tasks. The yellow fairing battens on the deck guide the shipwrights in cambering and shaping the deck beams, knees and other timbers which are planed to receive the first layer of plywood decking. The two white steel water tanks are temporarily sitting on the engine beds awaiting installation of fireproofing material on the hull sides where the tanks will finally be positioned.
Until the main decking is installed, every opportunity is taken to complete tasks in difficult areas. This area in the forepeak functions as the chain locker for the main anchor chain at the base of the temporary ladder. An intermediate deck has been installed below the original breasthook, with an access ladder to a main deck hatch. A heavy partial height bulkhead will be installed aft of the small deck to contain the chain.
Volunteers skilled in metalwork have taken on the task of fabricating two new 4500 litre fuel tanks. These tanks will be a better shape for the engine room space, freeing more space for black water tanks and ensuring the fuel tanks meet current standards. Seen here in the middle of one of the tanks is the baffle wall which prevents fuel sloshing around in a seaway. The cutout in the baffle coincides with the inspection hatch opening in the yet to be installed front of the tank, allowing inspection of both halves of the tank.

Update on various works

At the forward end of the engine room, the shipwrights have been installing heavy timbers which will bear the weight of two 4500 litre diesel fuel tanks. New tanks are being fabricated, as the old tanks were found to be deficient in metal thickness.
A new section of deck beam was required above the bulkhead forward of the main deckhouse. The scarf joints in the old beam are seen here ready to receive the new section.
Eighty plywood sheets for the under layer of deck have been prepared with a V groove similar in appearance to the underside of a traditional laid deck. Sheets are being pre-coated with epoxy paint prior to installation. This pre-coating will minimise overhead painting after the sheets are installed and the use of epoxy paint ensures bonding with the glue applied to the deck beams.