Dream Time's sails have all been inspected, repaired and are ready to fly.

Quick Fix: 36° 37.4 S / 174° 47.2 E
May 24th
2014 (day 2,550)
Conditions:  Wind: 25/NW  Hard Stands

Saving Sails
Owning a boat can be expensive, there's routine maintenance, repairs and upgrades that need to be made to keep the boat, and the crew, safe and happy. For your average full time cruiser the annual cost of keeping your yacht's systems in good working order is approximately 10% of the vessel's value. One area that can quickly put you over your annual budget, however, are your sails, so caring for them is a good investment. We recently had Dream Time's suit of sails serviced by a sailmaker, who after doing a little re-stitching and reinforcing, said they were in good shape and if we continue to take care of them, they might just see us all the way around the world. So they're cleaned, flaked, bagged and ready to carry us to Asia! - NH


Dream Time's bowsprit - ready to be reunited with the rest of the boat.

Quick Fix: 36° 37.4 S / 174° 47.2 E
May 20th
2014 (day 2,546)
Conditions:  Wind: 5/W  Hard Stands

All Coming Together
Dream Time is a construction site - we have a gaping hole in her forward deck where the bowsprit usually rests. Her booms lay strewn around on the coachroof, stays are secured to shrouds. Gear that is usually neatly packed in the sail locker and lazarette are scattered across the cockpit and quarter deck. Inside, the companionway steps rest atop the salon table, and the engine is hovering above a hole in the bilge where the forward diesel tank used to live, and all clothes, cushions and bedding has been removed as there's a fine layer of dust covering everything. But as chaotic as it all seems, we're making great progress. Today, for example, after being reinforced with new teak, we reunited the two halves of our bowsprit - progress! - NH


Dream Time's CQR anchors - clean, protected and ready for cruising

Quick Fix: 36° 37.4 S / 174° 47.2 E
May 18th
2014 (day 2,544)
Conditions:  Wind: 5/W  Hard Stands

Anchors Away
We sent our anchors away last week to get galvanized. After seven years of use, our primary 60 lb CQR was a little worn around the edges, and our older secondary 45 lb was rusting away on the roller. East Tamaki Galvanizing did a great job restoring them, and they look like new. As both anchors are genuine CQR there's no lead between the flukes, so it only cost $150. We've also ordered 300 feet of new 9mm chain for our primary anchor. The old chain is only four years old, but 1,460 days of swinging over limestone rock and coral took its toll. Some say the chain was perhaps salvageable and suggested we get it galvanized to save money, but with so much riding on our ground tackle, spending money on new chain seems like a secure investment to me.
- NH


Dream Time's Skipperhead II fully restored and ready for action!

Quick Fix: 36° 37.4 S / 174° 47.2 E
May 15th
2014 (day 2,541)
Conditions:  Wind: 20/SW  Hard Stands

Our Bronze Throne
Only boaties, and perhaps Winnebago owners, will appreciate the significance of this entry - I have recently finished a complete restoration of our Skipperhead II. Known in the industry as the 'Bronze Throne', this Humvee of marine toilets is the most durable on the market, its components were cast from solid bronze, it weighs in at a whopping 58 lbs, and it's powerful enough to suck down a grapefruit. But after a decade of use it was showing a little wear, and a failed flap valve spring had transformed it, regrettably, into a bidet. So after stripping off the old paint, giving it a fresh glossy white powdercoat, and replacing every spring, valve and gasket, I'm relieved to report that our Skipperhead II Wilcox Crittenden marine toilet is once again fit for royalty.
- NH

Day 2,537 - New Zealand (36° 37S 174° 47E)
07:43hrs - May 11th 2014
Nose Job

Dream Time is well into her rhinoplasty surgery - a nose reshaping procedure that will have her under the knife, grinder, saws and sanders for about two weeks. But this is not a cosmetic procedure, rather it's a nose-reinforcement project, one that should have been made thirty-three years ago - when she was first built.

Her bowsprit, the long piece of wood that juts forward, is connected to the deck with four large bolts. But even though we had the deck completely rebuilt in 2005, unfortunately we neglected to replace just one small section - the most forward bowsprit mount (it was assumed to be solid fiberglass and properly bonded to the hull).

Long, frustrating story short: over the last seven years of cruising the bowsprit, and the most forward portion of the deck it was attached to, has been slowly tearing away from the hull. A problem we only discovered last year and one that, with the help of our boat building sponsor, Brin Wilson, we are finally setting straight here in New Zealand.

Here's what we've done so far: the teak caprail has been carefully removed, the front portion of the deck has been cut away, the bowsprit removed (which had split and is also in need of repair), the forward section of the hull is being prepared to receive large blocks of white cedar that will be shaped and fiberglassed into the boat to create a solid foundation for the forward deck to be bonded to. Larger diameter mounting bolts will be used, along with fiberglass sleeves and bigger backing plates.

We'll continue to post photos of our progress, along with some of the other projects we're working on: welding stanchion base and pulpit, new stainless steel diesel tank, new fridge/freezer box, remodel head with corian counter top, galvanize anchors, new chain, removal of name boards for new gold leaf and varnish, removal of mast hardware, sand/paint mast to remove minor corrosion around fittings, sail repairs, new cockpit cushions, new B&G instrument display...



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Hot Off The Press!
Read our story in the May issue of Blue Water Sailing magazine >


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