Fitting out a boat requires a ‘go-get’ attitude. An effort has to be made by the one doing the fitting out. A boat is comprised of many components, and in the case of ‘Minnow’, several of them have not been up to scratch. Seawater will quickly rust and corrode cheap metal, as is witnessed by the bolts retaining ‘Minnow’s’ windows. Stainless steel of marine standard or phosphor bronze will stand up to the test, but I suppose when Derek built her he was not thinking in the long term and saw her as a cheap and quick means of getting afloat.
Galvanized pulleys suitable for a garden washing line cannot possibly be as satisfactory as proper marine grade ball bearing blocks which I have purchased today to replace them. Steering the boat will be a joy. Instead of heaving on the steering line and hearing grating noises from seized metal pulleys, I shall feel the tiller tremble in response to the boat’s movement through the water. My Autohelm 800 will equally respond by effortlessly moving the line, and at the same time it will consume less electricity than would be the case with the recalcitrant pulleys.
While I was out shopping, in addition to buying bolts for the windows, I bought a tin of grey International Toplac paint for the hull, deck and cabin trunk. Grey will mask the scars and rough repairs given to this valiant sea warrior over the years. She is strong and stalwart, much deserving a name like ‘Warrior’, ‘Valiant’, ‘Gladiator’ or ‘Fighter’. ‘Commando’, ‘Red Beret’ or ‘Paratrooper’, might also suit her character.
I can look forward to the mind-numbing job of replacing all the bolts retaining the windows and the hatch light. While I’m about it I shall have a go at cleaning spilled paint and epoxy off the Perspex, but I do not think I shall have much success, in particular removing the epoxy. I shall attempt scraping off the old sealant and applying new.