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
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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(and old stuff - outdated)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.
 
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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 • January 2009

January 2009

Important (What I learned this month):
  1. I'm certainly going to put a central heating in the hold and engine room before next winter comes.
  2. When it starts freezing and the water pipes are getting frozen, it is better to switch of your pumps!

3th January 2009

We did a lot of work today. Not only has the furniture been mounted in the sleeping room, we also insulated the corridor to the living room and started the engine.

In the morning I started insulating the corridor, one of the last places with no insulation. The other one is the bathroom. In the afternoon, with the help of my parents, the furniture was put in position.

In the evening I put some anti-freeze in the engine and ran it. Why? Well it was not freezing today (around 6°C), so I could easily ran the engine. Maybe I should have taught about this last month...


Since I don't have the money to buy any furniture now...


Since I don't have the money to buy any furniture now...

7th - 8th - 9th January 2009

The cold weather must not have been that good, since I'm ill in bed. When I woke up this morning, ice was all around the ship, the canal being nicely covered with ice. Yesterday evening, it was getting close, but now it is closed!


A closed canal


A closed canal


Broken ice

The next two days were identical.

10th January 2009

This night was one of the coldest, having around minus 11° C, and my main heating system went out, so I had to continue on my small electric heater. By the morning, all pipes in the engine room were frozen. It was a happy day, little sleep and no water. I wanted to have an inspection in the engine room, but the lock was frozen. No products helped opening the lock so I had to use a crowbar to get access to my engine room. Why did I chose to live on a ship again?

The good thing was that we made some progress in the hold today. I didn't work that quick as usual, but the entrance has a roof and insulation. The electrician can now finish his work on the entrance next time he comes.

12th - 13th - 14th - 15th January 2009

Mainly watched some people working on the gearbox of the sleepspits Julie. The next days I helped a little on their cooling system. When helping on such a project, you realise how little you know about ship engines. I learned more in those four days then I learned at school...

17th January 2009

We mainly worked on the electricity, finishing the kitchen and living room. All sockets are working now.


Lights in the living room are working

In the afternoon, I cleaned the technical room where the watertanks are stored. Somewhere next week, they have to weld a bulkhead, so I had to cover my tanks and create as much space as I could.


The tanks are covered with sheets of wood

18th January 2009

Instead of working on my own ship, I'm having the habit again of helping others instead. Why? I'm learning more when working on their ship then working on mine. At this moment all I have to do now is repetitive, on the other ships, everything is relative new to me and therefore more interesting.

21st January 2009

So again I helped on the cooling system for the Julie. We cut the packing for the plates closing the cooling circuit. At the end of te evening some little adjustments were done on the steering as well. If everything goes as planned, we might be able to start th engine over the weekend.

23th January 2009

When I got home, I hadn't seen my ship that high on the water. Looking closer, I noticed water level had raised with more then 40cm's.


The higher the water, the more you can see of the ship


Water coming over the wooden supports of the quay

The engine of the Julie was started today and ran nicely. Two weeks of work, and she is ready for a big trip to the yard. In some way it's good she is running and I can concentrate again on my ship, but at the other hand, I started to learn something about engines.

24th January 2009

Again a day for the Watergeus, where further finished the entrance to the ship. while doing so, I decided to make a small storage room underneath the stairs. By finishing those little areas you realise work is nearing its end. At the other hand, you realise a lot of specific work still needs doing.


Building the little storage space, also used for the second fusebox


A big job is making the frames around the portholes, certainly when you have around 20 of them, all different sizes...

25th January 2009

I mainly worked in the corridor to the sleeping room. Tomorrow it will be painted, so I had to finish a few details.

26th January 2009

A small light can make a big difference in a room. We worked on the electricity, mainly the entrance and corridor. I have now electricity in most of the rooms in the hold.

27th January 2009

Today was one of these days you have to work very hard, be carefully because a lot is happening. In the morning the wood was delivered to finish the hold. While my parents were loading the sheets of wood aboard the ship, I started working with the welder on a new bulkhead in the front of the ship.


Wood was just delivered


The bulkhead finished for now...

By the end of the evening we finished the job. One meter high and five meters wide, with the ribs in place, just a little less then 400kgs of extra metal in the ship.


Rudders are around 5cm more out of the water then before

30th January 2009

Today we sailed the Julie to a shipyard in Zelzate. In the morning I had to ran a few times from my ship to the Julie bad back. You start realising the distance of the dock after a while...

We left at 08:20 and arrived at 16:00 in Zelzate. We had no problems and were able to pass every bridge and lock with no waiting at all! A beautiful trip on a nice but cold day!


Leaving the mooring in Bruges in the morning


At the lock of Dampoort in Bruges


Just before Moerbrugge


Near Aalter


In the lock of Evergem

31st January 2009

Now that the Julie is at the yard, I could concentrate again on my own ship. I continued on the entrance to the living room. In the afternoon I went looking for some more furniture for the sleeping room.

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