Watergeus – Working on the den

1st November 2006 – The weather wasn’t to good for painting, sometimes sun shine, sometimes raining. In the morning, I was able to paint the new cabin and the deck. Those were the two parts that were completely finished.

In the afternoon, we continued with the sides. It is taking us every time more time to put the plates in position, maintaining the lining and distance between both sides, so the hatches would fit nicely.

In the late evening, my other neighbor came with a fully loaded spits barge, the Yannick. That night, he didn’t put his ropes nicely, so the whole night, we were all moving from one side to another. Bashing and the noise of tiers being squeezed made it horrible to sleep. The cold winter didn’t make it easier. Fortunately I had an petroleum heather.

Watergeus – Slow progress

22th October 2006 – Another two & halve meters have been added. Since there are now enough plates and ribs, one of the major supports has been added. This support should keep everything straight and tightly together.

While removing a part of the old L-profile, used for the water tanks in the old days, I felt overboard with tools and clothes. I made it safely to my boat, but the tools and gloves were lost. Quickly changed clothes and continued working…

Watergeus – Hatches support

21st October 2006 – In the morning, I helped aboard my girlfriends barge, cleaning the plates of the bow.

We have added the strips to the side of the plates. These strips will be the ribs of the upper structure. Just welding the side plates is not strong enough. Also the plates will have a waving motive if they are not attached to the ribs.

The set of hatches I’ve bought exists of a beginning and an ending hatch. For those to fit, a special gudder needs to be welded. It took us some time to get in place.


Watergeus – First hatch in position

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.

Watergeus – Blue board

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.

Varta – Going to the yard

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.

Moving the Varta to the yard

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…

Visiting a scrapyard

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.

Watergeus – Paint and recovery jobs

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.

Watergeus – Hatches have arrived

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.

Watergeus – Removing some more wood

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.

Watergeus – Deck built

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.

Watergeus – Working on the bulkhead II

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.