Thursday, May 27, 2010


Well, it is now May 26th, but I write this post for the launching which happened on Monday May 10, 2010 . Pompano is in the water in Chatham and its almost been two weeks since i've even seen her, and that is a shame.

My last few days with Pompano were spent moving out of my cottage, cleaning up my tent, organizing my tools, and double checking the bilge pump. Everything seemed to be in order, and I went to Nantucket on Saturday for my brother's 25th birthday which was on Sunday, then doubled back to Chatham Monday morning to meet Nauset Marine at 12 noon. They came early, and I had cut away the front of my tent so they could back the trailer right in and pull her out. It was pretty amazing how it all worked. The driver had his helper just hold on to Pompano as I removed all four jack stands. There was just one hand keeping her up right as the driver backed in and set up keel blocks and the after pads. It was the same driver that picked her up in Woods Hole 8 months ago and he had some nice things to say about the way she now looks.

He pulled out and I drove the yard's work boat over to the launch ramp to meet him. And along with a few guests, Brad Pease, Kitty, and Jerry, Pompano was launched. It had been nearly 10 years since she's seen water, and leaked very minimally. The pumped didnt even come on until I had her back at the boatyard's pier. She floats very nicely on her lines and the next day Drew helped me step the mast and connect the shrouds.

Although this is a MAJOR step in my work on Pompano, and I have received many congratulations, it is bittersweet for me. She is in the water, yes, but still needs much work to be sailing. The seats need to be made, the coamings need to be finished, the raised deck needs to be built and dynel covered, as well as the bulkhead. These things may not seem like a lot compared to the amount that i've done over the past few months, but it will be daunting work while she is in the water and I am occupied with a real job. But stay tuned, and hopefully by the end of the summer, she will be in sailing shape.


One person keeps Pompano upright as they back the trailer in around her.

Pompano sees the light of day after 8 months in the shed.

And nice she certainly looks.

Pretty big truck for that boat, but it got the job done just fine.

Backing down the ramp at the harbor master's pier.

Afloat after 8-10 years of sitting on land.

On a mooring at Pease Boat Yard in Chatham.

The yard in the background.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Week 13

The final week before Pompano is launched is mostly successful with some snags. I hired Brendan to come by and paint the name, Pompano, on the transom. I knew she couldn't be launched without a name, and Brendan came by and did a wonderful job. It was perfect because I was having wisdom teeth pulled so I was away from the boat which gave Brendan some time to work without distraction.

The big project this week was installing the rub rails which went on mostly without incident. I installed them fair to the eye and put a 1 1/4" SS screw every 7 inches and shaped them at the bow and stern. There are little notches cut out at the bow for bronze plated to act as chafe gear for the bow lines.

I worked a lot on the coamings this week. I searched through the boatyards stock of air dried white oak, to find that I wouldnt be able to work around the sap wood and knots for my long and wide coaming boards. Brad helped me pick out some beautiful Philippine Mahogany. So I traced out my patterns, cut out the wood and got it in the steam box. After about 40 minutes, Brad, Mike, and Dave helped me bend them into the boat, but with a little bit of pressure, the first boat exploded in half. The kiln dried wood was just too stiff and even after steaming, wouldnt take the bend. So I had to start from scratch. Thankfully, Brad helped me rebound and selected some beautiful Wana from a 30' long board that he re-sawed with me to make my new pieces. The next day we had the steamed in and clamped in place. Unfortunately, I ran out of time with them and will have to finish them up when the boat is in the water.

I also got a lot of varnishing done this week. The toe rails, overall, recieved 3 coats of Allspar and 4 coats of Epiphanes varnish. The rub rails got 2 coats of Allspar and 3 coats of Epiphanes. I also spent some time installing hardware. The bow cleat and thru port were bedded and installed as well as the after spinnaker cleats and deck mounts on either side. I basically wanted enough hardware installed for the launching and towing of the boat from the ramp to the boatyard, where I could easily finish installing the rest of the hardware.

The most important thing for the launch, however, is probably the bilge pump, which I installed and wired to the batter and a three way switch mounted on the inner bulkhead. With that in and working, I feel confident that she wont sink after being launched. With that, the rudder was hung and the tiller put on, and a general clean up. Then, on Monday the 10th and 12:30pm she will be picked up by Nauset Marine and launched at the town ramp. Lets hope she floats as well as I wish!

week 13

Brendan came by and sketched out the name on the transom.

The paper he traced from.

Prepping for paint.

The final product, looks amazing.

The rub rail is installed and shaped at the bow.

rub rails are on and bunged.

7 coats of varnish on the toe rails and 5 on the rub rails.

The bow cleat is installed as well as the thru port.

I made sure to get the bilge pump wired and working.

A shot of the battery and pump.

A pattern for the coamings is clamped in place for shaping

Port side coaming pattern.

Searching through the yard's air dried oak with not much success.

Picked out some nice philippine mahogany.

And steamed it for 40 minutes to only have it break during installation.

Brad helped me scramble and re-saw some beautiful Wana for the coamings after the break.

The Wana is steamed in and secured with clamps and tie downs.

A view from the bow.