Watergeus – Back accommodation

4th May 2011- I worked on nearly every aspect of the back accommodation: electricity, plumbing, oiling the floor and fitting the mirror again. The water tanks in the back are now filled up and not leaking, so I can start using the whole water circuit!

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.

Escapade – Paperwork

6th April 2011 – When you buy a yacht, you need to have the correct paperwork, especially with older boats. If you can’t prove the boat is a registered as a pleasure craft before 1998 in Europe, you need to have a survey done. This is a very expensive happening.

Some of the documents, when I bought her, were not correct. Since I had an old registration number, they found her back as a yacht. I now have a Vlaggenbrief and Immatriculatieplaat. This means I can finally move around with the Escapade.

In the end it took me nearly a month to get the paperwork right!

Escapade – A nice day for working

2nd March 2011 – The first sunny day in weeks. It is now two days the Escapade is completely dry! So I now for sure there is no leak on the bottom. I’m still cleaning and removing some little pieces of wood that were still glued on the ribs.

Escapade – Found a previous owner

28th February 2011 – I traced a previous owner of the Escapade. I finally know where she was built and when! He even has some older pictures of her. I can’t wait to see them.

The Escapade was built in 1937 at the shipyard Van Lent en Zonen in Kaag.

Watergeus – High expectations

27th February 2011 – I was looking for a few metal drilling bits when I noticed some water under my engine. First, I taught it was rain water, but very soon I noticed it came from a different area, the propeller. Friday afternoon, I ran my engine for an hour,so I know what caused the leak. Only it didn’t stop. Looking closer, I noticed the belt of the automatic grease pump was broken. I now quickly used the manual pump, but water continues to drip. I’ll have a look somewhere next week.

A bit more positive news on the Escapade, even with the heavy rain from last night, not much water had come in. I now properly sealed most of the holes on deck.

Thinking of what needs to be done this year, painting the outside of the Watergeus, going to the yard with my two boats, building a new upper structure on the Escapade, I realize it will be a bit to much for one person.

First of all, I want the back accommodation to be finished, so people can rent the area. Whenever the weather permits it, I must paint the outside of the Watergeus. It has now been three years and without maintenance it doesn’t look good anymore.

If the Escapade stays dry, I’m not in a hurry converting her. She will take a large amount of my budget.

Watergeus – Nearly there…

26th February 2011 – One tile was replaced today. It was broken by drilling a hole yesterday evening. The toilet was mounted, the wheelhouse woodwork finished and the last corner of the floor sanded. A few bits of wood needed a primer and the area was cleaned.

What needs to be done the next weeks: Plumbing in the engine room, painting and getting the kitchen in!

In the evening I started cleaning the inside of the yacht. I used steel brushes and a hammer to remove rust and paint.

Watergeus – Small jobs

25th February 2011 – In the morning I filled up my water tanks, a job that takes four hours. While they were filling, I cleaned one of my storage rooms. Since I need to break down the bedroom in the Escapade, all my tools and stuff that was located there needs to get to the Watergeus.

The afternoon was completely spent on removing paint on the Escapade.

Escapade – Fire damage

22nd February 2011 – Another evening spent aboard the Escapade, cleaning bilges and removing rust. The ceiling of the bedroom was removed. The more wood I have removed, the more I discover. Melted insulation, burned wood and a black metal with some paint left. Cause of the fire must have been the electricity.

Escapade – Bilge cleaning

21st February 2011 – As usual on a boat, one of the first job I always do is cleaning the bilges. It was no different with the Escapade…

Different then with other barges, the Escapade was filled with led as ballast.