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What the deck!

You may recall from our earlier blog postings that we have been working on removing the deck. Well, finally, after many, many hours of hard, hand and back aching work, we have finally removed the old teak deck from Jorvik Rose, along with the teak toerail, pulpit railing (at the front) and the forward stanchions.

Fortunately we managed to remove the rest of the deck with minimal damage to the gelcoat. The brown 'dots' that you can see all over the deck are the screw holes that we have been filling with epoxy resin filler.

On Monday morning, she was moved into the blue sheds at Berthon to start the next phase of the refit and once secured, we spent the morning emptying her out to make it easier for the shipwrights to gain access to under deck fittings.

She will be inside now for the next two and a half months while the new deck is fitted. This involves a lot of manual work by the shipwrights. All the remaining deck fittings need to be removed and backing pads made for the fittings to be remounted onto the deck. These will be made from a fibreglass material called 'G10'. This is needed as the cork deck is too soft to have deck fittings that will carry large loads. Once these are fitted to the deck, plywood templates can then be made and sent to the deck manufacturer so that the new deck can be manufactured.

In the meantime, the electrical installation will be completed - this has been on hold as installing the main inverter-charger would have prevented removal of the starboard side genoa winch (which is needed for the deck replacement). We are also looking at some potential alterations to the pushpit (the railings at the back) and the guardrail height, making it taller so that it is safer at sea.

One of the problems we found along the way is that the aft locker hatch lids, which have a balsa core, are severely damaged. At some point in the past, water has leaked into the hatch core and as it is most likely to have been fresh rain water, this has caused the balsa core to rot and turn into a nasty, gooey mess. It is likely that we will have to get new hatches made - we will know more next week.

Looking back, we have had a great summer of hard work and nice weather as well as a couple of long breaks in the US and time spent with friends. We have also been really lucky to see Spitfires and Hurricanes again in the last couple of weeks, seeing the RAF trying to set fire to them and being close enough that the propwash nearly knocks you over! The last few days we visited Vik and had a great time, and after scrumping some apples and damsons, we have spent today making damson jam and damson chutney. It sure beats working and I recommend it to you.

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