It was the last week of April, during a discussion with the yard manager, I asked if we could have help modifying the anchor rollor / stem head of Fayaway. We got a great deal last year on a new Rocna anchor, but realized it did not fit well into our existing bow roller. (The original Bruce anchor didn’t fit correctly either but used it anyway). Something had to be done to correct this issue.
The photo above shows how I had temporarily tied the new anchor into its new position. Because the shank extended back too far into the chain locker, we would need to extend the bow rollers out approximately six inches to keep the anchor in its new (correct) position.
More about the anchor in a moment. First I’ll digress into why it is now July 21st, and yesterday had Fayaway out for her first sail of the season. After leaving my paying job, I focused on preparing Fayaway by listing and attacking many projects (various prior and future posts on this topic). I had carefully planned how long it would take me to do this work. However, for two projects, Kelly and I decided to hire the professionals, people who are well-equipped to do 1) re-fair, seal and paint bottom; 2) Modify anchor-roller / head-stay.
The bottom work was requested last year, before she was hauled, so it was started by blasting all paint down last October, so that it would dry over the winter. We knew that finishing the fairing work, barrier coat and bottom paint layers would take some time in the Spring. It would need good weather for a few days in a row – not what we had this year. (it rained almost every day, or maybe one sunny day out of 7). Ok, so we were very patient with this since you can’t control the weather. And the work was completed the first week of June. Sigh of relief.
Mistake #1: I had realized the anchor problem early in the year, but had other projects to do. During initial evaluation I considered having two “cheek” pieces of stainless plate cut and bolted on. So, I took lots of photos, made sketches and researched proper anchor launching scenarios. My consternation was elevated upon realizing I would not be satisfied with my “Mickey Mouse” solution. While I knew it would probably function well, I knew it would not “look good” and so made the late decision to have the professionals do it.
Mistake #2: I asked for help in April, of the year we wanted to embark on our journey. We learned the hard way that we should not do this! I had been warned by other good customers before that while their work was top-notch, that we should only ask to schedule work in the prior year. But I didn’t listen to them well enough. Our request didn’t seem like such a big one. But yes, evidently it was. I should have known that if they would not provide an ETA, then don’t ask! Lesson learned.
Our “plan” was to have all work completed prior to June, and by launching June 1st, we’d have the entire month to do shakedown, and then head North during week of July 1st.
Oh well, live and learn. Fayaway is better now, being in the water, and having a professional job done for critical components that will need to stand the test of heavy use.
We ended up with an optimal solution, for our original design to extend the new anchor out from the bow (prevents knocking on hull), but allows chain to be kept under locker hatch. We now have the added bonus of a new head-stay wire (wanted to replace anyway), but also raised the furler drum out of the way, making anchor tasks more accessible. Our cost was valuable time (and some money too), but we think it worth it now. Our plans remain to use the summer for local cruising (Stay in New England) and head south in September.
Have a great summer! We’ll leave you with a couple pics of the initial bottom fairing to the final coat of bottom paint.