Upon arrival in the St. Petersburg area, our first order of business was to have the boat hauled out so that the Max Prop could be removed and replaced with our old fixed prop.
|Not the worst we've seen, but ICK!|
|Removing the Max Prop|
We chose Embree Marine on recommendation of a local Facebook friend. I will say right here that after it was all said and done, the folks at Embree have impressed us with their knowledgeable and professional service from start to finish.... but I'm getting ahead of myself.
|Only a fellow sailboat owner would call this a treat!|
A bit of history here, we bought the boat in 2012 and had a complete bottom job done in October of that year. We had it painted with Micron Extra, thinking that it would be good for 2-3 years.
In February of 2013 we had the boat hauled out for some maintenance work and re-applied a layer of paint along the top two ft. of waterline, the keel and the rudder.
|I would say that it's TIME for a new coat of paint.|
Then came Marathon... The waters in Boot Key are a playground for marine growth. We did not know this until we had been there for a month and realized that we were seeing unprecedented amounts of shells growing on our bottom. So much for our bottom paint! It was literally ruined and the decision to continue on to the Bahamas before we did yet another haul out was a difficult one. Our deciding factor was that there shouldn't be much growth in the barren waters of the Bahamas... so we put it off.
Now that we're back, it's time. We scheduled our haul out for the 14th of September giving them plenty of time to get the prop back while we road tripped to California!
Fast forward, here we are again at Embree. We pulled up to their dock and parked the boat thinking that we were in for about $2,700 for the bottom job and another $1,200 for the prop repair... As we waved goodbye to our home, packed the cat and our clothes into the car and happily drove away... we had no way of knowing what our future would reveal... Oh and while we're at it... throw in a wash, buff and wax of the upper hull sides too. What's another $750 since we're out???
They said that while the boat was drying out, they found this spot that was weeping. Thinking it was just a blister, they began to grind it out... but it just kept going and going until there was THIS!
Our first thought was "West Bay" So we suffered some damage after all... But in talking to Chad, he assured us that this was an old repair from a (hard) grounding by some prior owner... Our time in West Bay must have just reopened this old wound. Of course throw this onto the growing pile of things to fix (and pay for). We are just SO happy to have found it by this method instead of somewhere (insert ominous dun dun dun dunnnn) out there...
Go ahead and fix that up while we're at it. Can't head back out to the wild with that down there...
We returned to the boat again later in the week to check on the progress. Things were moving right along. The repairs looked good. Bottom paint was gong nicely and the prop was all back in place with new zincs on the prop and the cutters. (the boat came with a set of spurs or cutters that will cut through a line (think lobster trap) that wraps around our prop shaft. If we've tested them we don't know it... but we've never had anything wrap around the prop shaft... )
|Extra clean through hull!|
|No more boo boos!|
|Lets try THIS stuff...|
We've been living with our daughter these ten days and although we are eternally grateful for her hospitality... we are SO ready to be back in our own home.
They did a leak check and even washed the deck and cockpit for us. Then we were directed to go up into the office to pay the bill...
After going over it all, we are happy with the charges, if happy is a word that can be applied in this case...
What's next? We have about five weeks left in Gulfport during which we will install our water maker and do a whole list of other boat projects with hopes of being ready to head out again November 1. The big stuff is almost over... If I make it through this next month without losing my mind, it will be a miracle.
Let's just hope there are no more costly SURPRISES!