S/V SUSANA Our goal for Cruising is 2013

This is Susana. A Bruce Roberts "Spray", steel-hull, gaff rigged Ketch.
In 1895, Joshua Slocum departed Boston in his tiny sloop Spray and sailed around the world single-handed. This historic achievement made him the patron saint of small-boat voyagers, navigators and adventurers all over the world

Susana is our Spray and will guide us where the wind meets the sea on our safe navigations. We are just a little behind our 5 year plan for retirement cruising. It looks like we'll be ready in 2014.....Follow us while we prepare Susana to take us on our Journey.

Sep 4, 2013

Winter 2012-13 Diesel Heater Installed and New Bow Sprit Designed & Manufactured

Note: Kevin and I have both been so busy, I've not had anytime to post last winters projects, so here is a (belated) update:
Last summer (2012) while sanding the topsides, we discovered a some rust spots around the bow sprit. So our project during the nice days of winter, was to remove the old sprit. Beneath there was definitely rust and the wood was beginning to rot. We carefully measured for a new Sprit and Kevin designed a new one in stainless steel. Once designed, we purchased the stainless steel and took it to a local welder in Southern Maryland to complete the project. We will wait until the topsides are completed before installing the new bow sprit.  
While Kevin was working on the inside of the boat over the winter, he decided to add some real heat. By plumbing a gravity feed line from our diesel tanks to a diesel heater, he was able to stay warm throughout the winter.

Jan 7, 2013

New Year, New Approach to our Timeline

After facing the latest fall 2012 project, and 2 other major projects this spring and summer: the rigging and  the replacement of 14 ports; we had to rethink our time line and move it back a year. 

Last Fall it took over 3 months to get the Hull to bare metal for a complete inspection. This was a major project, but really needed to be done in order to inspect the hull and get qualified for insurance for cruising. 

Kevin filling the pot with Black Oxide.
The whole boat was tented to maintain
the dust and grit.
Just a little dust!
April in her gear, ready
for clean-up.
Kevin in tight places and confined to a tent even when
the temperatures soared to 85 degrees.
Finally the last side
to paint working under
lights at night.
Kevin worked every day after work and on weekends to grind off the old barrier paint and sandblast that steel to bare metal. Each night upon completing a small section, he would have to lightly spray it with primer to prevent any rust starting and light enough  that it could easily be removed once the whole hull was ready for its aluminum-based RustLok coating.). It was a tedious job, but he worked tirelessly on the project.
April "clean-up" Crew
recycling the Black

I was the "go for" at hand. I took weekly 1-1/2 hr.  trips to Tractor Supply (the best price) to load up my  9 year old, 160,000+ miles Avant Audi, with as many bags of black oxide it could carry.  I ran for face masks, ball valves, Gatorade, gloves, buckets, lunch to keep the equipment & my captain happy. After a few runs for cans of spray primer i eventually negotiated a better price on a case with ACE hardware. Thank goodness for Harbor Freight and Tool as a source for inexpensive supplies, too. And my discount at West marine came in handy when we decided to use paper dust proof suits and 3M breathing masks. Those suits cost almost $4, my price was a $1.50. At that price it was cheaper than buying clothing or a work suit that had to be washed everyday.
Susana with her brand new hull, ready for barrier paint
in the Spring.
Expenses tallied info to come.