Making Usable Space. Making It Pretty (Phase I)


The Cal 30 was originally equipped with a 14′ boom with end-boom sheeting and a traveller that went across the aft area of the cockpit.  Since a previous owner had modified the sail plan and shortened the foot by 4′, the sheeting is now through a cabin top winch  and hard mount near the companionway (no traveller, no problem).


So the huge space at the stern of the boat was not really usable for anything but sunbathing; the interior space was functionally not available since the only way in was to:

  • Chuck things through the tiny access behind the rudder and, when access was necessary, sticking one’s head (shoulders wouldn’t fit!) through and fumbling in the dark for whatever, or
  • Crawl through the quarter berth on either side, nearly suffocate from squeezing through the tiny passage hole in the bulkhead and fumbling in the dark for whatever.IMG_0708The solution was to carefully measure, look at available Bowmar access hatch sizes, measure twice and cut two large holes in the afterdeck.The result was complete access to the stern of the boat for storage, wiring, plumbing or whatever. The hatches are large enough for me to open, step in and contort myself into working on nearly everything is the last 20% of the boat length.I installed them temporarily earlier and decided that this area would be the first for the complete makeover with shiny white smooth paint and white KiwiGrip on the nonskid area.

    But the many, many, many coats of paint had to be removed. IMG_0709 IMG_0710  IMG_0712 What a mess. What a pleasant project to do on one of the most spectacularly beautiful days of the summer.

    Armed with plenty of cold drinks in my Engle and some Aircraft Fiberglass stripper, I made two applications and removed many layers of paint.

    Surprise, surprise! There is actually non-skid underneath all of that goop – the kind that is embossed into the fiberglass at the time the hull was built.IMG_0861 IMG_0862 IMG_0863 IMG_0864 IMG_0865

    Doing the whole topside will be a very labor intensive and messy project, but I can already picture who beautiful the old girl will be. I’m eager to sand the smooth area and get the first coat of EZPoxy (one part for base coat) on so it can be taped off for application of KiwiGrip in the non-skid area. Then, the hatches can be permanently installed. I think I’ll make some snap on Sunbrella colors for both of these to make a really weathertight afterdeck under the cusom cushions that are plnned.

Baby Steps But Making Progress

I looked at the calendar today and have ony 4 full weeks before my “retirement” and devotion of full time efforts to pre-departure activities.

After looking at the list from the last post, I realized that it only included about half of the items I have in my head for accomplishment before I depart for Chicago and beyond.

But, I have lots of confidence based on excitement combined with knowing how I’m going to do each task that gives me plenty of motivation to continue.

Tomorrow (Tuesday, 7/14) will be my first visit to Amalia for about 10 days and I have a tentative list of what I need to get done by being there all day.

First and foremost, I will be delivering my Engel and making a temporary/permanent installation.  It has been sitting in my breakfast room off the kitchen for the past few months happily keeping its cool and waiting for new adventures.  Its about time to give it some!  Along with keeping some sandwich fixings, condiments and the like available, it will be nice to have cold drinks and no need for ice.  While the solar installation will make me energy indepenedent with the fridge once it is finally installed, it will run on shore power now and whenever I am plugged into it while on the trip.  It has smart circuitry which automatically switches to 12V whenever 120V is unplugged.

Hopefully, I will be able to make a final installation of the davits so I can mount the solar panel, route wiring and complete my electrical installation.

Taking off deck hardware and stripping the aft deck is also on the list so I can use topside paint and KiwiGrip on the area and make a permanent installation of the two access hatches there.

Every little bit helps!!!