20th October 2006 – I arrived late in the evening. The roof was finished of my new entrance. It looked good. Since it was already dark, I decided not to work, but rather to have a drink on my girlfriends boat that was still at the yard.
15th October 2006 – The first part of the sides were put in position. A couple of the hatches were placed to get an impression. It is not easy to create a side over the length of 24 meters and keeping it straight. Halfway, sand will be loaded in the boat to get her in a better shape.
When the first couple of hatches are placed, the already build part will be finished first. The plates now need to be welded completely.
14th October 2006 – After a heavy night, we placed the roof on the newly created cabin. The roof wasn’t good, so we started again. A very time consuming job.
The Blue board was placed in the late afternoon. My ship looks again a bit more like a real commercial barge.
13th October 2006 – Together with my neighbour we would bring the ship to the yard. Several things went wrong. My neighbour had to unload a cement ship, so we lost some time. During the journey with the Varta, the engine wasn’t functioning as it should. We missed the opening hours of the bridge and had to wait. We were still in time to be dry-docked and had a good party in the evening with all the neighbours.
13th October 2006 – Early in the morning I helped my neighbour with his work to unload a cement barge. Two hours later we left for Ghent. Today, we would sail with my girlfriends spits to the shipyard in Sluiskil. We arrived at 10 o’clock, left at twelve and arrived at the yard around five. Till six o’clock the Varta was completely dry-docked. We had a drink…
12th October 2006 – It looked a nice day but being on my own, I couldn’t do much. I put away my stuff that I loaded yesterday evening. In the morning, I visited Andy’s ship. On my barge, I did some small inside repairs, such a fixing a heater, repairing the compass support and some more.
In the afternoon, I went to the scrapyard in Vlissingen. It’s sad to see so many ships being scrapped, some very nice barges that could have got another future then being cut up. I bought a blue board for my boat. I took it from the Laverna.
The Laverna was a sleepschip built in 1928 by Groot & van Vliet from Sikkeveer. She was 66,97 meters long and 8,119 meters width. The Laverna was motorized in 1955.
7th October 2006 – Inside painting is not exactly my strongest point, so my mother painted the back accommodation, while my father tried to clean and recover as many wood as he could from last week’s demolishing work. Where was I? Working at somebody else boat. My girlfriend, who owns a spits, is going to the same yard I went too.
4th October 2006 – My hatches have arrived. I bought a set of aluminum hatches, an original Friese Luikenkap. It took some time before I got them, but they look nice. Why choosing for such a model? All Luxe Motors did have a Friese Luikenkap; in the old days in wood, later in aluminum or steel.
24th September 2006 – After two days of hard work, we found it was time for some fun, some amusement, so we decided to break down some more of the wooden construction.
The next phase will be the construction of a new entrance, but in the same style of the boat. Therefore, we lowered the metal plates in the hold of the ship. This part will be fabricated in the hull and later put in position by the crane.
23th September 2006 – The deck was placed on the boat, from the hatches to the compartment. A very precisely job, since the plates had to be placed as close as possible to each other. The bigger the gap between them, the bigger the risk that water will stay where the weld is.
22th September 2006 – When I arrived, the plate at starboard side was also put into position. The plates to the sides of the ship are the hardest. You have to take care of many aspects. The sides are not straight, the ribs are constructed with multiple plates. Some of these ribs have been damaged during her commercial career. The gangway goes slightly lower at the end. Some parts of the plate had to be burned away, what causes the plate to change shape of the heat.
That evening the third and fourth plate were placed. A small stroke was cut of a new plate, so the final gap was filled.
The watertight compartment has been created. It should be fixed properly with ribs in the next days. It will also become stronger, when the deck will be placed.
17th September 2006 – The first plate was put back in position and welded. So was the second plate. Working with two people only takes some time.
16th September 2006 – The Watergeus has always been used as a water supply vessel. The cargo hold was well protected with a white stuff, some kind of cement. Where the new watertight compartment will come, this stuff had to be removed. A job that took me all morning. It was so much dust that the area around me (including myself) was completely white. A bit of good advice, never do it without a mask. I still have difficulties breathing.
In the afternoon, we cut the first plate of the compartment, a job that took three hours. Nothing is straight on a boat…
8th September 2006 – The heavy plates needed a crane to be loaded on my ship and positioned in the right place., so my neighbour bought a crane. In the afternoon, the crane was delivered and mounted on his deck. During these works, we moved my boat a bit more to the front.
3th September 2006 – After a hard night we started working again. I didn’t sleep because of the loaded spits barge next to me. The boat was only connected to my boat and not to land… Ropes were loose and it was heavily loaded.
In the morning we created a first rib that should hold the plates. The ribs had to be rounded to keep curve the platform. We used metal strips and curved them ourselves.