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Feb 092012

I remember when the tanks were pressure tested in the yard. As the pressure increased there were plates going “Boooink” as they adapted to the pressure. I should have taken that as a sign that something was wrong, but at the time I was thinking that the tanks would never be exposed to that kind of pressure in real life. Now I know it was a sign of possible movement that I should have listened to.

Today the second tank was completed and pressurized. Silence. Nothing moves. Solid. Good. I’m happy. Now I just need to put the interior back together. And wash my bloodstains from the boat after I cut through half of my finger when a drill bit broke earlier today. No worries, it seems I heal quickly these days. I’ll just put on some groovy music to get into a good mood for interior remount. It feels a lot better to put things together than it did tearing them down!

Feb 062012

All sorts of factors are adding themselves on top of the Bahia tempo. The local Military Police are on strike. This totally screws up traffic in the city. Takes hours for my welder to get here in the morning. The army is trying to secure things but they are not very good at it. There has been an increase of murders and robbery in the area according to the newspapers.

Doesn’t feel any different here in the city centre though. But I wonder what will happen if the police are still on strike when the carnival starts…

And then there’s the heat. The equipment thinks it’s hot too. The old-school HF Ignition unit has had its cover taken off, and my small car heater is used as a fan to try to stop it from overheating:

But anyway, the work feels good enough. Now the tank plates are quite solid. They will stop moving, I am pretty sure of that:

Feb 022012

Actually I am having a problem with this. Being Swedish and used to efficiency. Here everything takes 100 years by my standards. Over a week ago we got an OK from the Bahia Marina management that we could do the work at a spot on their service dock. I tried to actually go there starting Monday, but bad communication had it so that the spot was still occupied even this morning (Wednesday!) when we got here. After they confirmed yesterday that it should be free :-D !

So, half a day more lost before we could actually move in and start to set up equipment. But now we’re so close! The material is on deck, the boat is in position, the power cables routed and everything! I think we can actually get started today…

By the way, as you can probably see, it is hot. Very hot. Even those who are native are complaining!!

Jan 262012

Now about half of the interior is completely dismounted and the boat is a complete mess. It took longer than I thought to do due to the massive heat. I simply had to go out and cool down pretty often. And now I am in a bit of a depression because I keep thinking about how this time really should have been spent fixing all the small details of the boat that I want to perfect, not tearing down stuff to make structural repairs. But that’s life…

Yesterday we went hunting for materials. Three different major aluminium outlets. The last one did have good 25mm L-profiles, which is what I want to use as stiffeners on the tanks. They had no idea what alloy it was, though. So we took a small test piece, did a bit of welding on it in Roberto (The welders) shop. And now I am testing it in concentrated salt water to make sure it is OK, and not some 3000 series aluminium that will corrode instantly…

Jan 222012

If I sweat any more now I will have to start running the bilge pump! It is over 30°C in the shade, and more inside the boat. I am struggling with dismounting the aft toilet. Here ALL joints are double glued, precisely as they should NOT have been. Unfortunately this job was done during the last hectic months in the yard, when the summer was too hot for the yard workers to work during the day, so they shifted to working at night (The boat was outside in the sun!). Myself I had to do some work during normal office hours too, so I got very little sleep and could not check everything. The design and instructions were clear: Everything was to be built so it could be taken apart again. But here the guys went totally over the top with the glue gun.

Notice my new favourite tool: A cut off kitchen knife. Hard, thin and flexible. Perfect for getting in the glued joints and cutting them apart. Still hard work, even if the joints are heated with hot air gun. Sweat sweat sweat.