The KM

Now that our boat is in Wiarton there isn’t much that I can do on a hot Sunday morning other than make plans for what we are doing next and write my blog. For those of you who have been following along since the beginning you will know that Becky isn’t the official name of the boat. It’s an unofficial name that my wife Leanne gave her … you would have to check the August 14th post for the reason. There have been a few posts over the last 10 months and I can’t actually remember if I have ever mentioned what the official name will be.

Last summer when Jason, Kevin and I were on the Rideau canal we found her in a marina just south of Ottawa (well… I actually found her but to avoid a long discussion let’s say that Kevin found her first). From that point onward I was obsessed with her. She was pretty much the focus of conversation for the remainder of the trip.

One evening after I had pretty much convinced myself that this was the greatest idea ever we started talking about possible names and that is when Kevin came up with it.

Family Ties!

It was perfect. Leanne loved the show when she was a kid. She even had a cat that she named Alex P Kitten. Funny how our son’s name is Alex too!

Anyway … the name stuck with me. It was going to be a family project and a family cottage. It was settled. We had the name before we had the boat. The rest of course is history.

This is a what is called a perfect segue …

Without being overly dramatic, that trip changed my life. I had a great time spending those 10 days with these guys that I have known for over 35 years and it was all possible because Jason owned a boat.

Her name is the Kobayashi Maroon but she is unofficially called the KM. For those of you who might have spent a little too much of your adult life in your parent’s basements the name is based on something that happened in a Star Trek movie called the Kobayashi Maru. I’m just kidding of course … you didn’t have to actually live in your parents basement. It could have been anywhere in their house…

But I digress!

Jason changed the name to Kobayashi Maroon because of the colour. He is very clever. She is a 1991 Tempest SS263 and he has had her for almost 10 years. Here is a page from a sales brochure from way back then.

To say that Jason has put a lot of time and love into this boat is a bit of an understatement. He is an extremely intelligent guy that just seems to know all things electrical and mechanical. He has even worked with wood on the KM and has done a very good job.

Here are some photos of the KM from our trip.

It is a coincidence that we all wore these colours that day.

I slept in a small tent in the cockpit.

He lives in Toronto and is about 10 minutes from the marina (of course in Toronto that could mean he is a block away) and he spent a lot of time on her.

Jason and his wife Kerrin have a 5 year old named William and a really little one name Gerry (I’m exhausted just thinking about it) so he wasn’t able to get the KM into the water for this summer.

He received a call about 3 weeks ago telling him that his boat had been knocked off it’s blocking during a very intense storm the night before. There were other boats still on the hard but his was the only one that the storm took out. The initial assessment wasn’t great. He was basically told by a few “experts” that the boat would be a write off and it would have to be scrapped.

There seemed to be too much damage to the hull for the KM to be salvaged. We were devastated. For anyone that has put this much time into anything it is understandable how upset he was.

Here are the photos the marina sent to Jason.

Once they had it on blocks again Jason was able to take some more photos.

Jason was now facing the fact that he wouldn’t have a boat again.

He has since been told that she can be saved and he is starting the process of cleaning her out. We are crossing our fingers the KM will once again be able to see the water.

At the moment she is sitting under covered storage (centre in the photo) waiting for someone to make her beautiful again. Stay tuned for updates.

Now back to Becky.

Leanne, Maddie, and I took a trip up to Wiarton yesterday so that I could do a bit of work. The main focus for the trip was to do some maintenance on the seacocks. Jeff had armed me with the information of what had to be done so this was my first official mechanical work on the boat.

He was (and is) convinced that the issue was with the seacocks not being maintained for quite a while and, now that I have taken them apart, I see his point

A seacock is a valve on the hull of a boat or a ship, permitting water to flow into the vessel, such as for cooling an engine or for the air conditioners.

This is how the two seacocks for the engines looked when I arrived at the boat. Some of the water you see here was already in the forward bilge before we tried to put her in the water. I was too lazy to remove it.

And after I removed the water.

So here is what I learned.

When I tried to open and close the valves using the yellow handles, the one on the left (for the port engine) wouldn’t move and the handle for the starboard engine did.

The leak was in the starboard seacock.

The way this type of seacock works is there is a cylindrical rubber piece that is inserted into a brass housing. The rubber cylinder has a large hole in it that allows water to flow through if it is rotated in the proper direction.

There is round flat plate that gets inserted before the rubber cylinder. It’s on the left in the photo.

In this photo the rubber cylinder is partially inserted into the housing. On the back of the housing you can just see a smaller handle which basically just turns a threaded rod that presses on the flat plate. This causes the rubber cylinder to compress which causes it to increase in width which in turn seals the housing … stopping the seacock from leaking.

So … I couldn’t turn the handle on the port side which meant it was compressed and it didn’t leak. I could easily turn the handle on the starboard side and it did leak.

I could also turn the yellow handle on the seacock for the air conditioning pump at the transom and this also leaked.

Speaking of the seacocks at the transom … there are two of them (the second is for the generator) and these were not meant to be easily accessed by someone who is 6’2″. This is a series of photos of me spending almost 3 hours working on these valves and also hooking up the thru hull fittings that are above the water line on the starboard side. I’m paying the price today.

That hole on the top of my head is getting bigger all the time.

We did have more space before the hot water heater was installed.

Part of the maintenance was to also to lubricate the inside of housing and the rubber cylinder itself. It was recommended that I use a product made by Dow Corning called Molycote 111. So now all 4 of the seacocks are lubricated and tightened and are ready for this boat to go back in the water.

Really hoping that it is later this week.

The one new issue is that it looks like I will need to replace the pump that draws the lake water run through the air conditioners. If I can get that installed this week then we can get the cooling system fully set up and make the boat livable. It is 30 degrees Celsius (86 Fahrenheit) out there today but feels like 36 with the humidity.

Here is a photo of the air conditioning pump at the transom.

I will be continuing this blog even after we are done with this renovation and plan to use it as journal of our time on the boat. To start this off, when I was finished work for the day and was able to walk straight, we took a quick trip up to a little town north of Wiarton called Lion’s Head. We found a small beach and just sat and listened to the waves. The water was incredibly clear and incredibly cold.

Definitely hoping to be out on that water soon.

The plan for this week is to head back to the boat on Thursday to meet up with Dan the electrician so we can finish things up.

Until then stay cool and stay safe.

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