Month: May 2020 - page 2

Vlet – Preparing the journey

19th May 2020 – It took me two hours to make the preparations for the journey. I followed Google Maps and made notes for the journey. Let’s hope I didn’t forget anything. The next thing is find my tools, generator, vhf, etc… Looking forward to have a journey tomorrow.

Stern – Moving the sheets of metal

18th May 2020 – I drove the metal sheets to Beernem. Not an easy job since they were to big to fit properly in the van. They are now on my hatches of Tordino, ready to be welded Thursday. Once the roof is done, I’m safe for the winter!

Visiting a barge for a friend

17th May 2020 – I drove to Ghent to visit a barge of a friend for a friend. A nice combination and I hope she will buy it. It is a fair price for a good houseboat.

The interior is slightly outdated, but that is just where the barge is giving it charms. The outside is very well maintained and you can live in it for the next coupe of years without having to do major upgrades.


It had been a while since I was in that part of Ghent so I took some pictures of the boats in the area.

Vlet – Planning

8th May 2020 – We had a meeting in Oudenburg to check our list of supplies needed for the journey and to talk about the route for getting from Almelo to Ghent. Going any further is not an option since the locks are still closed in Belgium for pleasure crafts.

It looks like we are about the be well prepared.

Stern – Painting the hull

16th May 2020 – I painted the portside of the hull with a small dinghy. It wasnt’ a success when I started. When launching the boat, it made water, and it never stopped. So I had to pump it very five minutes. I only managed to do halve of the ship since to many boats were passing by and I was making to much water. When taking some pictures, I dropped my safety line and had to paddle with my hands to make it back to my boat. I wonder if there was more paint on my ship or my body….

The hull itself is looking shiny and it does make a difference.

I noticed the belting was indeed rotten and gone on several places. Previous repairs of silicon were found underneath the paint.  It is above the waterline, so nothing to have sleepless nights about, but it means a lot of work in the future.


Stern – Metal, paint and cleaning

15th May 2020 – I didn’t do much. Early today the metal was delivered for the roof. In the morning I went to Antwerp to pick up some paint. In the late afternoon, I cleaned the yacht removing most of the rubbish and the remaining wood. The accommodation is now nearly empty. I did some measuring to realise it isn’t that big at all. It is not possible to build a proper bed for two people.

In the evening I loaded a small boat on my car so I can start painting the hull tomorrow.

Vlet – Visting a converted peilvlet

13th May 2020 – We went to Almelo to visit a ship. It is a small vlet, converted into a low accommodation live aboard. The pictures in the add were looking good and it was not different when we arrived. The ship was well painted and the general condition was looking good. The engine ran and we had a close look at the bilges, bottom, engineroom, etc… Even the navigation lights were working.

Stern – Removing the interior on starboard side

12th May 2020 – It was now time to remove the interior on the other side. There was some more wood, but also a lot of electric wires, a sink, plumbing, etc… The sink outlet wasn’t safe at all. Just a hose over a metal pipe, not even secured. When I removed the insulation, I discovered a crack in the hull, just underneath the deck. The ship was probably hit by another ship or squeezed between land and another ship.

The general condition is not better then the other side. But a good cleanup and paint will do a lot!

My neighbour took the wood, he will burn it. Safes me a lot of time.


Stern – Windy weather

10th May 2020 – It was extremely windy in the afternoon. When the Stern was in Ghent, it was along a friends ship so I knew it was secure. Now it is my responsability. That is why I want it to be in Bruges as quick as possible. I had a look in the evening and it looked more like a sailing boat then a covered yacht. I added some extra ropes to secure the cover. The lifering on the roof was in the water, but I managed to salvage it.

The repairs aboard the Maxx – Leaking

9th May 2020 – A big disappointment today when we launched the Maxx. I was there to assist, but when the ship touched the water, it became clear the bottom is rotten. Through several leaks, water came in and we had to take her back out.
It had to be a special moment, but now it is an uncertainty. One thing is sure: it will cost some money before she can float again.

A lifeboat is built thin, I know what issues I might have with the Stern in the future, but what to do? A good advice is to abandon the ship, but after spending so much money, there is no way back then to continue.

In the afternoon, I worked on the Stern, but thinking about the Maxx. I only see two possible options:

  • Fiberglass the hull
  • double the whole engine room

I have no experience with fiberglass and doubling the engine room doesn’t guarantee there are no other leaks. So I can’t give any advice…

Stern – Day 2 of removing paint

9th May 2020 – Like a friend said to me last week: by sitting on a chair nothing happens. This is true, so I continued removing paint. I had no time left to paint, but put two proper covers over the boat to keep her dry. They are predicting bad weather tomorrow.

I sealed a small leak in the deck. It needs welding, but the more I can keep her dry, it is better for the ship and myself.