Category: MS Hornblower - page 8

Hornblower – Welding

8th May 2012 – The plates in the floor of the wheelhouse are welded. I now need to cut the remaining pieces and put them in. Since the weather is terrible, I’ll have to wait to cut the sheets in the right size.

Hornblower – Painting the engine room

6th May 2012 – I’ve painted one side of the engine room with a white primer. They told me it is a good paint, the smell made me really sick! I had to empty the old fuel tank and got some diesel in my moth while trying to fill a hose. Working on a boat is not always pretty!


With some help of my neighbour we lowered the fuel tanks in the engine room. Since they didn’t fit, I had to cut one support of the wheelhouse floor.

The engine room is 3,10m long, the fuel tanks are 1,50m each. Not much room left, but they are the maximum I could get in! I know have around 800 liters of fuel storage for the engine. This should take me somewhere!

Welding can start again! I’ve just rewelded the support and stitched the plate in position. the rest will be done later this week.

Hornblower – Cleaning the wheelhouse

5th May 2012 – Since I need to lower the fuel tanks in the engine room, I started by cleaning the wheelhouse. After working a few months on the front area, most of the stuff was stored in the wheelhouse.

In the afternoon, I worked in the bathroom. Sometimes, I like to work with wood instead of always welding and cutting sheets of metal. I did a little of t&g to finish the bathroom walls.

Hornblower – Welding

28th April 2012 – Because it was raining, I started welding the wheelhouse floor of the Hornblower. The idea is to make sure no smell or fumes can leave the engine room into the living area of the ship. One thing is already sure, the Hornblower is become a solid ship. The amount of metal added to make her stronger, she will be able to cross rough waters!

Hornblower – Welding

28th April 2012 – The floor of the wheelhouse is bolted, so are the L-shape profiles. The bolts were to keep everything in position. Together with the hatch, everything needs to be welded. I ‘ve started today. I’ll see how long it will take.

Hornblower – Hatch

25th April 2012 – The hatch for the wheelhouse floor is now in the right position. That sounds like a small job, but it did take me a few hours. One the major problems on small boats is space. I had to move around half of the stuff rom the wheelhouse…

Maybe I should start collecting less!

Hornblower – Generator aboard

23rd April 2012 – I lowered the generator into the Hornblower. She will supply me of electricity when the batteries are death or when I need extra power. I’ve chosen for a Hatch engine again. They are very reliable. It is a full set, I only need to mount the exhaust to the outside of the boat.

Since there are already a few holes on that side, It is all about just welding a pipe to the exhaust bit.

So far, I have owned the Hornblower for one year. I have done a lot of work. The idea was to finish her in three years time. Now, one year is gone and I believe I certainly need another year before she is ready for cruising in France. The idea of only working in the weekend is gone. Every evening I’m doing something. At the moment, the ‘cheap jobs’ are almost done. I’m going to the yard in less then one month with the Watergeus, so I need to save as much money as possible.

Hornblower – Another generator

20th April 2012 – The bricks, a washing machine and the hatch have killed my back. After moving around several times with those bricks, I’m not feeling good at all. I know a few of my neighbours who have fitted a few tons of these bricks on their barge! Respect for those who did that!

The big old generator I bought in February was to heavy (in weight) for the little boat. Therefore I was in search of another smaller one for the Hornblower. I found another Hatz with Boch dynamo.

Hornblower – Hatch to the engine room

19th April 2012 – The bricks are all in position, or at least nearby. With 1200kg of concrete, she is now five centimeters deeper then before. I really wonder how much more she is needing before I can make a safe trip.

Later on, I put the hatch aboard my boat. The hatch is a bit to big, but it fits nicely in the wheelhouse. I might have to make some adjustments to the ribs of the floor. I’ll see how far this will take me on a later stage.

Hornblower -Ballast part II

17th April 2012 – I got my second load of bricks, another 600kg. My neighbour came to help me a hand loading them onto the Hornblower. Once this job was finished, I put some of the bricks in position between the ribs. I noticed with 600kg in the back and 600kg in the wheelhouse, It didn’t make any difference at all.

Hornblower – Ballast

16th April 2012 – After the conversion of the bow, building the bathroom and living area, putting fuel and watertanks in the boat, she was listing sadly towards the front. The propeller started to become visible. This means I need to put weight in the back. The back area is a sleeping room, so this means I will not have enough weight. In a local concrete factory, I could have free concrete bricks of 15cm by 15cm. Each of them has a weight of nearly 8kg.

I loaded around 600kg in my car for the first run. I dropped them in front of the boat.

A friend from Sluiskil came over, so I had no time to pick up a second load of bricks. I went to have a chat on his boat.

Hornblower – Railing (3)

8th April 2012 – There are two more things that need to be done on the bow. One of them is a support for the cable sliding along the deck when the anchor is dropped. The other one is the railing on the bow. I wasn’t expecting to finish this job in a half a day, but we did.

The bow, which has been has been the subject of several discussions is finally looking like I really wanted it to look!


My parents came to help as well. They sanded the original ceiling in the living room and did some wood work.

Hornblower – Railing (2)

7th April 2012 – Today we put the railing pipes on their feet. The old feet still need to be cut. It might give a wrong impression, but I won’t use them as a fender or to keep boats away in a lock…


Last week, when welding a bulkhead in the engine room, a rotten pipe felt through the hull. Since this hole is only seven centimeters above the waterline, it is now closed by welding a little patch on it. I could have used fiber or something else, but it would not feel safe.