More milestones

Big news–the toilet is no longer sitting in the middle of Mahdee at the site of the future galley. Oh, and the engine stringers are installed. The latter being more significant, but the first seems to be having a bigger impact. Probably about 15 months ago we needed to move the toilet in order to make the new frames and floors under it. I argued that we should just move the big porcelain skipper with the attached plywood sole about 10 feet forward which would be out of the way while we did our work and wouldn’t require hefting it up and out of Mahdee and down the scaffolding and thence to some out of the way storage location in the boat yard (which didn’t really exist).

I took some ribbing by workers who had to go around or move the toilet a foot or two to do their work in Mahdee. Some of those complaining where even more irritated by other items stored outside Mahdee which I would point out to them. It seems there is never enough room. Back to the story, around 14 months ago we had the floor and frames done. In that part of the boat, however, Mahdee has several floor beams stacked on top of one another and 14 months ago only the bottom floor beam was installed. The super floors (as I like to call the overlying floor beams) have a primary purpose to provide support for the engine stringers.

The ends of those super floors extend out under the toilet and provide support for the sole in the head. In some locations around the engine we have three layers of floors, in particular, those near the head. Today, I finally got all of those layers of floors finished and installed. The engine stringers look great to me, but the real fun was moving the toilet back into its place of honor. Coinciding with that occasion, Ryder has finished a comprehensive cleaning of the inside of the boat, so the interior looks really big and uncluttered.

Because of all the cleaning, I have had to confine my dust making work to places outside the hull. Early work on the floors and stringers, before the dust ban, required lots of cutting, re-cutting, grinding and sanding to make everything fit. The result was, in John’s words, “a purple haze” in the boat due to the use of purple heart as the dominant structural wood. All this while John was accused of making too much dust. He was choking down buckets of Sapele dust while rough faring the planks on the hull. Anyway, after the dust ban inside Mahdee came into full force, I finished the last two super floors which miraculously fit perfectly the first time. Must have been the motivation to not climb into and out of the boat 10 times to make little cuts and grinds to fine tune the fit. On the other hand, maybe all the practice on the previous floors culminated in perfect skill. That thought occurred to me and then I broke two 5″ bronze fasteners inside the second “perfect” super-floor while trying to attach it to the boat. This served to re-humble me.

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