Category: MS Hornblower

Hornblower – Water tanks

3rd December 2011 – On Thursday I bought some sheets of steel for the engine room of the Hornblower. On Friday I went to Rotterdam for the water tanks and fittings.

Today I painted the bathroom.

Owning a boat also means driving around to collect some pieces. It is very hard to convert a boat without owning a car.

Hornblower – Repairing the side

28th May 2011 – On each side of the ship, there are two big holes. They must have been there for years, but I want it to be solved. One one side we cut out the plate, and we will weld a new one in.

In the afternoon I painted the hull. She is looking much nicer now! She was painted with black, white, yellow and red paint.

Only a little bit of each colour was left. Now everything is red, the same red as the Escapade and Frantsis used to have. The Watergeus is also painted in red. It is a good primer that has shown its quality before.

Hornblower – Bollards

27th May 2011 – Today the two old bollards were welded to the ship. One of them was broke before I bought her, the second one came loose during the tow. Both of them are welded on a solid plate.

Hornblower – Cleaning

22nd May 2011 – I only did one job today, cleaning the living room bilges. All the wood is gone, so I started removing rust, grease, insulation and dust. After 8 hours of this work, you are broken and thirsty. It was a good result to see clean bilges again.

Hornblower – Thunder and rain

21st May 2011 – I decided to sleep aboard and left Bruges in the late evening. I woke up in the middle of the night, heavy lightning and thunder made it impossible for me to sleep. Since it was raining heavily, I switched on the lights and went looking for possible leaks. Beside the hole in the deck, it looked reasonable dry.

Hornblower – Cleaning the bilges

16th May 2011 – A major job aboard the Hornblower is cleaning the bilges. I firstly removed the wood by driving a few times to some people with a wood fire. The rest, I took to my parents in Ostend. It is sad you need to remove the wood, but it is rotten and badly damaged during the last conversion.

The bilges haven’t been cleaned for years!

Everything you remove makes you think. It had been put there for a reason, people spent money on it. If it had been better maintained, it could have lasted much longer! Now I need to remove everything, clean the metal again, etc…

I’m pretty much convinced the ship has been doubled, I found to many tiny holes in the original bottom of the ship.

Hornblower – Breaking down the sleeping room and living area

15th May 2011 – Besides breaking stuff down, I made a nice sitting room from the wheelhouse by breaking down, what else did you expect, the storage unit.

It is important, when you work on a ship not to break down to much at the same time. You have to much rubbish and you have no place to live anymore. Breaking down goes much quicker then building it as well! When I’m tired, I can relax in the wheelhouse, drink a beer and look at the yard on the other side of the dock…

Hornblower – Sleeping room, bilges and engine room

7th May 2011 – I continued ripping out the floor of the bedroom to clean the bilges. Andy came to remove the old heater and batteries. I filled up my car with wood, till, it became dangerous to drive. At least four layers of floor were built. I believe every owner added another one. There is no such thing as a cheap boat!

While cleaning he bilges, the screwdriver felt out of my hand, straight through the hull. Fortunately, I quickly discovered she was doubled on that area.

Hornblower – Cleaning

30th April 2011 – As I did with the Watergeus, Frantsis and Escapade, the first job is always cleaning the boat. Depending on the condition, this is a job that takes several days to several months. The fore peak was filled with wood for the wood burning stove and rubbish. I cleaned out this space, since I want to put a generator in this area.

I pumped out the water in the afternoon and closed the remaining holes around the windows and on the deck.

We started the engine, not expecting it to run. After turning the key, the engine ran nicely without any major problems. Oil needs to be changed and some grease added to the pumps.

Hornblower – From Antwerp to Sluiskil

29th April 2011 – An important day for me, they towed the Hornblower from Antwerp to Sluiskil. Sadly enough, I could not join the trip since I had to work. I made it to Terneuzen, where I jumped aboard and continued the trip to Sluiskil.

The towing went well, I only lost one bollard and some water came in during the trip. That was reasonable, since the tug was sailing at full speed, 21km an hour!

After a few drinks and congratulating the skipper of the tugboat, I decided to sleep aboard my new boat.