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(and old stuff - outdated)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..
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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.
HomeConversion • February 2007

February 2007

See also: Barge Stories => Preparing for the trip

7th February 2007

It heavily snowed again, not only in Belgium but also in the Netherlands. Rinus, a friend of mine took some pictures of my boat in the snow.

Boat in the snow
My boat in the snow. Click on the picture to see more pictures of the Watergeus in the snow.

17th February 2007

When arriving on my boat, the tank was nearly ready.

The tank was built in the cargo hold, since there was more space for putting the plates and welding.

We drilled most of the holes for the screws of the windows. Over a two hundred holes were drilled! In the meantime the last places were welded on the tank and an inspection hatch was created.

18th February 2007

My ballast tank and my pump were delivered to my barge.

The Hätz 1 cyl. engine with pump

I swapped my old 1 cyl. Lister for a 1 cyl. Hätz with waterpump. Since I have a crane on my boat, I decided to put my crane into action and put the engine on my neighbours boat.

My crane putting a 1 cyl. Lister aboard the neighbour's ship

My boat, as seen from my neighbour's ship

19th February 2007

Today, my electrician placed the fusebox and the 380v 3-phase connectors on my boat.

The fuse box with the 380v cable (black) and the 220v cable (Orange)

The den, freshly painted for going to Bruges

In the afternoon, my dirty water tank was put into position. it took us one hour and six people to get the 1 ton heavy tank in a small space in the back of the ship.

22th February 2007

In the morning, since the weather was dry, I painted the main entrance in black, according to the rest of the boat's style.

New entrance painted in the same style as the boat

While the first coat of paint was drying, the windows for the kitchen and bathroom were placed. Since I couldn't drill with my hand, which is till not healing, the holes could not be re drilled to match the windows.

Making a small trip on the Arma

In the afternoon, I made a trip with Rinus' new boat, the 1929 build Arma. She is a Luxe Motor built on the dimensions for sailing through Friesland. It was a small but relaxing trip.

While sailing on the Arma, the welder started working on my bulkhead, the last thing that needed welding before leaving Sluiskil.

23th February 2007

I had prepared everything for the trip (see article), but forgot about putting weight in the back, so the propeller would be under the water, not halve above. If the propeller is above water, you can't sail backwards! Therefore I filled the new waste water tank with canal water.

Filling the waste water tank

The deck was painted on the side visible in Bruges. This will make her look nicer for when we arrive somewhere next week.

Deck painted in green

The holes for the potholes of the bedrooms and corridor were drilled, those of the kitchen and badroom re drilled.

Some more plating of the watertight compartment were welded.

In the late evening the preparations for the trip were discussed, while drinking some coffee and beer.

24th February 2007

When windows are placed, between their frame and the steel of the den, there is always a small gap, just enough to let water slowly enter the boat. Therefore you can make use of packing or silicon. It took us some time to fit the windows nicely and close them with silicon.

Windows of the kitchen

In the afternoon, the pipes for the toilet, shower and exhaust were placed on the waste water tank.

A lock was created to close the door from the outside and the inside. Later that evening some more welding was done on the bulkhead.

25th February 2007

Today the last porthole was placed on the outside of the Watergeus.

Last porthole on the Watergeus

26th February 2007

In the late morning / early noon I started making the last preparations for the sailing. Realizing a lot of the the bulkhead needed to be welded, I started doing it myself.

The last picture taken of the Watergeus in Sluiskil

Between some welding sessions, I helped moving a boat by hand and celebrated somebody's birthday.

In the evening, the welder came to finish what I had started.

Taking goodbye of the people I've lived with, we decided to sit inside my neighbour's ship and drank a beer. Half an hour later we heard somebody shouting their was a fire and when going upstairs, smoke was getting out of the pusher next to us. Together with him we extinguished the fire. There was a lot of damage. After an hour everything was under control and the fire had gone out. Cause, an diesel heater. So I ended my last day in Sluiskil in a very sad way.

By the time it was two o'clock, I went to bed, realizing a few hours later we would set sail with the Watergeus to Bruges...

27th February 2007

Today the boat was moved to her mooring in Bruges. To read the whole story, click here.

Sailing on the Canal Ghent-Terneuzen

Watergeus finally moored in Bruges

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