Living afloat
The story of the Luxe Motor Watergeus, the Groningse snik Hornblower, the Historische klipperaak Aquarel, the lemmeraak 'Op Hoop van Zegen', the Friese maatkast Tordino and how to convert a Dutch barge into a houseboat.
MS Watergeus
The Watergeus is my home. It's an old Dutch Luxe Motor, built in 1929. She was about to be scrapped when we bought her...
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Living Afloat
(and old stuff - outdated)
Living Afloat
Living Afloat gives you free ideas on what you need to know about barges, how to buy them, how to convert them, etc..
Recognize a barge
Buying a barge
Converting a barge
Barge to the yard
Safety on a barge
Converted barges
Barge stories!
Waterways & harbours
Photo Gallery
Photo Gallery
MS Tordino
The Tordino is a Friese Maatkast built in 1922. She is being converted into a floating museum.
MS Aquarel
The Aquarel is an authentic klipperaak from 1916 converted for exhibitions and with a permanent small museum of maritime artifacts. She was sold in 2016 and is now a houseboat in Zaandam.
MY Op Hoop van Zegen
Op Hoop van Zegen
The 'Op Hoop van Zegen' is a lemmeraak from 1916. She was converted into a classic looking yacht.
I spent most of my time in or around boats. Read what I'm doing!
MS Hornblower
The Hornblower was a project of converting a snik into a yacht. I sold her in 2014 to start another project.
HomeHornblowerConversion • September 2011

September 2011

2nd September 2012

Since my back is still hurting, I can only do some smaller jobs. Today I started lining out the wheelhouse floor. The wheelhouse will contain the kitchen, a bench and table for sitting and the steering column.

3rd September 2012

4th September 2012

A major problem when I bought the ship were the sliding doors. Last week I started working on removing the old rotten profiles in which the door was sliding. Today I bought the metal and started replacing them. This looks an easy job that could be done in a few hours. By the time I finished, it took me a whole day for one door. Maybe my back is part of the problem...

The bottom profile is new, the one on the left is still the original one

It is only when you remove something that you discover a new problem...

Clamping the new profile

7th September 2012

8th September 2012

If everything goes as planned, my new windows should arrive next week. Around the old windows is still a lot of wood. That wood was fixed by screws and nails. The nails were welded and the screws were drilled from the outside through the metal and then into the wood. had to break every single of them with a hammer and a chisel. It made a lot of noise and it strengthened my muscles of my arm!

After removing some more wood, I found a name and a date. This probably means the interior was redone in 1981.

Next to the windows at the front part of the wheelhouse I welded some ribs. I don't like drilling through the metal for the wood. It is another chance of creating rust and leaks.

Once the welding was done, I started working on the dashboard.

9th September 2012

A second day of hard work where you quickly see some progress. I cut the biggest sheets for the steering box. A result was visible in no time.

10th September 2012

Today was time for the front paneling of the steer wheel. It took me much more time then expected. By the end of the evening, I was not even halfway...

11th September 2012

The gas handle has to be mounted on the original place I cut a sheet of multiplex and mounted the steering. It took me some time to get it right, but I'm happy with the result!

13th September 2012

I sanded down some of the panels for the wheelhouse steering. I'm building the column for the meters of the engine and gearbox. By the end of the evening, you notice progress is getting slower.

15th september 2012

On the Internet I found a spare gearbox for a Bedford Engine. I had a look but it was a different size and probably a different model.

In the afternoon I did some smaller wood work.

16th September 2012

Next Wednesday my new windows, or at least the first ones will be placed in the wheelhouse. I closed all the holes of the wheelhouse that gave entrance to the engine room.

In the afternoon, I cleaned out the wheelhouse. In a few months time, it became a major storage space. I also painted the floor to protect the wood during the works.

The last picture of the windows...

19th September 2012

It took me some time to make a plan for the bedroom. Another room that worried me a lot is the bathroom. I stopped working there a long time ago. TOday I made my mind up and started working there. The first bit was finishing the floor, then doing some plumbing. It's the first time I do it all by myself. I won't be surprised if some of the fittings are leaking...

A few pictures of how I left the bathroom a couple of months ago...

Toilet area, now used for spare insulation

>> PART 2 >>

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