17th June 2010 – Nearly ready to go
17th June 2010 – Nearly ready to go
16th June 2010 – Yesterday, we bought the batteries and the white diesel for the trip. The batteries were mounted, the engine started and the fuel added to the tank. Life rings were mounted on the wheelhouse and the boeisel got a second coat of green.
Navigation lights were mounted on the roof of the wheelhouse.
15th June 2010 – The fourth and last coat of paint was added to the hull. The green boeisel was repainted and the name boards mounted on the front. She is ready to be launched!
14th June 2010 – My eye is still hurting to much so I decided not to work. Instead, I prepared the tools I would need for the trip, like fenders, life rings, radio, jackets, etc…
13th June 2010 – Today it was my turn to paint the ship. First the deck, then the hull. She is really looking different now. Not longer that wreck of Zwartsluis, but again a nice looking Beurtschip.
In the evening I visited some friends in Sluiskil, a few miles down the road. I lived there for a year with the Watergeus, but I’ll never forget that little town.
12th June 2010 – I made a little cruise from Bruges to Ghent on a barge with my girlfriend. A time to relax. Sun was shining, but I had to wear glasses since it hurt to much.
My neighbour added a second coat and the last plate was welded on the Frantsis.
11th June 2010 – In the morning my neighbour drove me to Terneuzen, I can’t drive myself with only one eye and no depth view. While I could not weld, I cleaned the engine room, a dark place! I scraped the remaining parts of the hull and in the afternoon, the yard cleaned the hull with a high pressure.
During the late afternoon and early evening the hull was degreased and a first coat of tar replacement was painted on the hull. Even when it was dark, she looked much better! I was curious to see her during the daytime.
10th June 2010 – In the morning I had to see the doctor. They had to remove rust circles from my eye. I stayed in bed all day in Bruges. A nice bed makes a lot of difference. But this also means no work on the Frantsis today, so, the planning to put her in the Water on Monday is at risk!
9th June 2010 – A nasty problem are the bilges of the boat. They are dry but there is a lot of old grease and rust. I cleaned the bilges today in the hold.
In the afternoon and evening, some more plates were welded.
Yesterday I must have gotten something in my eye, I didn’t sleep all night and I could barely see through my right eye. It became more and more of a problem, so they had to bring me to a hospital in Bruges. At the ER service, they removed a piece of tar or metal from my eye.
8th June 2010 – With the smell aboard of dried grease, welded metal and oil, It was hard to sleep aboard. We welded the whole day and by the end of the evening all plates were in position, a few of them already completely welded. Some more of the hull was cleaned as well.
In the evening I setup a small tent to sleep in. It is colder on deck, but the air is much healthier!
7th June 2010 – I was up very early, since the deep loader would be there at 7 o’clock in the morning. This means they would lift the Frantsis up at 6 o’clock. Half an hour later as expected a man came to tell me they lost the key of their crane, which made me even more nervous. I had no experience with heavy lifting and moving a boat by crane. I was totally dependent on these people. They have enough experience, but it was new to me.
It took more then a hour to get the boat on the truck. There were no problems, except one: the barge was to high to fit underneath the bridges on the highway. I had to remove a chimney and the grease pump in the wheelhouse was to high as well. Once these issues were solved, we drove to Terneuzen. A little less then four hours of driving in a very comfortable truck!
At the yard, the crane was ready to lift the boat from the truck and in less then 15 minutes she was mounted on supports. It was nice to know in a week she will be in the water, where she belongs.
I started cleaning the hull, mainly where the welder had to start working. The boat had to covered by sails so no dust could get to the other boats at the yard.
A boat with no wheelhouse is often a sad view. In the afternoon I quickly remounted the wheelhouse. At least she is no longer looking like an empty hull.
In the evening we started welding the hull. Since we want to do it right, we took 6mm plates for the waterline and bottom. With chalk I marked the places that needed repairing or where I believed it was thin. It is easy to mark, but the welding might take some time. I prefer doing it now and to have a good hull to start with.
6th June 2010 – Still broken from the big job yesterday, there was not much time left for the transport tomorrow. Besides preparing the ship and cleaning the yard, I still wanted tot visit Zwartsluis and the historical ships being restored in the area.
In the late afternoon I went back to the city centre, had a good meal and a beer.
29th May 2010 – Buying a boat is just the beginning. Planning and negotiating is much more work. We visited the yard in Terneuzen today, it is just opposite the old mooring of the Watergeus when she was a water supply ship.
In the morning we made an inventory of the steel I had aboard. The conclusion was simple: all metal is too heavy to use. I have plates of 6mm and strips of 8mm, nothing thinner. Since we are welding it ourselves, and curving or shaping the plates are happening by hand, this metal is to thick.
25th May 2010 – Today we went back to Zwartsluis to have a second and final look at the Frantsis. Based on what we could conclude today we would or would not buy the boat.
A friend of Valerie joined us to have a look at the engine and the hull. We had a look at the engine, made it run and had a close view on the hull. In the afternoon the decision was made: we would buy her.
In the office of the yard we agreed the price, signed a paper and the boat was ours. It was a good feeling, but now it was serious business, a hard period with a lot of work would follow and since the boat had to leave the yard within a month, there is no time to waste!
21st May 2010 – The Ontario is back next to me, alongside the Watergeus. For a day I had a view on the water. I’ll be glad when she is gone, not for the view but for my ropes and steel cables.