Thursday, 9 September 2010

Where do I start?

The more I look the more I see and it defies belief. Ive taken a load of pix for evidence, should there be a long term problem but im trying to sort them out myself.

If the boatyard are incapable of getting it right the forst time, they have no hope of rectifying it after.

I think the pix say it all but the eye and tape measure show far more. The window cutouts are mostly too small, by an annoying eighth of an inch, despite me supplying a window frame of each size to use as a template. I gave Martin a detailed plan for the window positions and sizes but hes failed to read and understand it. The props inside have also been put in the wrong places, so I have to move them in line with bulkheads when fitted.
The deck hatch cutouts are all half an inch too big, almost too much to leave a decent overlap for the seal.

Ive found two welds which have parted, and several places that need more welds.
The forward bulkhead has to be watertight but ive found two places where there are gaps and not welded. One rib supporting the deck was lose as It wasnt welded one end.

The paint has only reached the places which are easy and visable. There are several areas which were missed completely and others where paint was rollered on over the dust and grindings.
In other places, the thick skin off the paint was also applied, so I have all that to scrape off. Forget thick, stupid lazy etc, I cannot understand how a person who has the nerve to call themself a boat builder can work in such a way.

Ive welded on 40 brackets under the gunwales to fix framing to, and made some decisions and plans on how to frame out the headlining and deck hatches.

On a more humerous note, I had a mystery caller who was most impressed and rather cute. He distracted me for well over an hour and was keen to leave his number, should I need any assistance of course. Its written on the aft bulkhead and I had better make sure I keep it safe !!!

Ive worked out its over 420 sq feet living space, including the wheelhouse, and its all useable too.

Oh well, im in charge now, so its gonna turn out ok.


  1. Wow.Nice pics and it looks like it has potential. I suspect that a grinder will take care of that 1/8th inch window problem.

    Putting the faults aside - it's impressive. The construction to date may not have been up to the standards you required, but I think that when you get it sorted it will be fine.

    I'd be tempted to fill it with water and see if any leaks out through unexpected holes.

    I look forward to future instalments.

  2. I agree - Nice pics - Looks like you are going to have to do the final 5% of the welding - Maybe the boat yard could send out a portable welder if you still have any faith in them.
    The boat looks larger in the interior shots and I am sure you will have it up to your spec's before it enters the water. I don't know how ones checks for leaks prior to launching but definitely needs to be done. John

  3. Ames,

    To be honest I don't think is is really any worse than mine was. With all those welds and bits of metal, somewhere will not be right. Paint, that's why I did my own. If you want a top notch job you have to pay for it. Me, I just wanted a reasonable job that I could afford and sort the rest out myself. Oh, I cut my own windows and hatches too, the only person you can trust to do a good job is you, harsh but true, it's your home an nobody else will care as much as you.

    Still like it, it is a good space with not much waste and excellent photos too.

    If at all worried about the below water welds, spray can of dyetest will set your mind at rest. Few quid now will save many later!


  4. I have learned something about inspecting welding.


  5. Don't fill it with water to test for leaks... too much weight. Get a person on the inside and use a large 180 cfm compressor to blast air at the welds below the water line. Have another person on the outside with a spray bottle of soapy water spraying the in tandem. You'll find any bad welds. Grind em out and re weld. I gave up on hired help on my build so now I only have to be pissed off at myself when I screw up. Check out my build: I like the canal boats. A guy from Germany is documenting one at He's building in aluminum.


  6. Funny you should say this Conall, ive found a leak.

  7. Hi Amy From this side of the pond she looks great! Always wanted to build a boat but always found excuses. Now the proud owner of a small old fiberglass trawler I'm kind of building a boat :-)
    Good luck with all the welds. Reading with enjoyment on the other side of the pond.

  8. Hi Amy have you worked out the displacement to get the swim under water?, does,nt look a lot off room under your floor.Don,t know how wide the barge is but those floor angle don,t look look deep enough, you could end up with a bulge in the middle of the floor when she goes in the water.I,ve seen it before. Not sure if dyetest works with paint?

  9. Theres loads of roo under the floor for ballast. More room than is needed for 4 tons of bricks thats fer sure. On a hull this shape and size, the rule of thumb is approx 1 ton per inch of displacement required, and im looking at about 20 inches to get water over the prop