Cockpit Teak Tearout

Trini still has a few leaks to work on. Our project this week was to tackle the old teak in the cockpit.  In hard rain, water would drip down into our engine room and sea locker.



We had two options to fix this.
Option One:  Replace the old teak with new.  Not only is it  labor intensive and an expensive option, we would need to varnish the teak and maintain it annually.

Option Two: Pull up the teak, seal up the holes with epoxy then prime and paint where the teak once was.  Little to no maintenance afterward.

We picked option two.

Pulling up the teak
Pulling Up the Teak
Finding a Healthy Layer of Mud Under It


Once the teak was up and the benches cleaned, Capt. Kelly sealed each hole with epoxy to keep the rain out.  There were a lot of holes to seal.



After two coats of primer and a coat of sanded paint. (The sand is to prevent slipping when standing on the seats.)  The cockpit was ready to go.  So we took our friends, visiting from Phoenix, Kathy & Scott for a sail in Galveston Bay.

One item we will add are cockpit cushions to make it a more comfy ride.

Kathy & Capt. Kelly enjoying the cockpit
Scott enjoying the bow

Sailing Happy!

The Boat Wife

Kathy & the Boat Wife (Kelly)


Weeks of Leak – Part 3 (The Finale)


Last week in our Weeks of Leaks – Part 2 project, we just needed to paint our final coat on the cap rail.  Which we did.  See the Before and After photos below.


Before - Gray & Weathered Cap Rail
Before – Gray & Weathered Cap Rail
After - Bright White Cap Rail
After – Bright White Cap Rail


Now that the front half of the port side is complete, we started on the aft port side.  This should be finished by the weekend.  Then in the coming weeks we’ll tackle the rest of the boat.


Finishing up the port side
Finishing up the port side

As Boat Wife of this vessel, let me tell you how tired I am of this project.  So next week I am going to start adding a new topic called Around Here.

I got the idea from my sister Nancy in Minnesota.  She has a crafting site & sells hand made cards called Goshery (Check it out, it’s a fun blog) where she highlights the events and happenings in the town we grew up in.  I never new it could be such a fun place until I started reading her blog.

Next week I’ll introduce to you MudBugs!

Until then Fair Winds,

Kelly (Boat Wife)


Watching the Weather

As the cold rain beats against the deck while I write this post, it brings home the fact that weather is important on a boat.  Especially a sailboat.

Under sail, weather determines how to set your sails (full sail or reefed sails), what to wear (foulies or shorts)and if you’re going to have a fun ride with a brisk wind or a bumpy ride with high winds and large seas.

When living on the boat weather isn’t as big of a concern (well…unless a hurricane is coming).  To avoid cabin fever, in today’s soggy weather, I will need to put on a rain coat, (no umbrella – the wind will blow it away) and walk with a fast pace to the car located in the parking lot, about a 100 miles away.  (Okay, it’s only a distance of a city block or two but feels like 100 miles in this weather.)

On the boat, when it’s gusty, the boat rocks around from the waves created by the wind.  At night it can be hard to sleep when the rigging whistles from hollowing wind that blows through it.

So you get my point about weather on boat, right?  Great!

Looking up from the cabin to cockpit
Looking up from the cabin to cockpit


Over the years I’ve labeled weather.

Storms are angry

Sunny days are happy

Wind is energetic

Rain is depressing or therapeutic (this depends on my mood)

Fog…well, fog is creepy

Why is fog creepy? When the thick white wall creeps in, sound is muted. Your visibility is limited and everything you pass looks ghost-like.

We all know this.  But when on a boat and you’re caught in fog, it’s better to be at the dock then on a passage in a busy shipping channel…that’s just scary.

Below are some recent photos of our fog covered marina and some without.

Fair (fog free) Winds!

End of our Dock end of dock foggy marina Marina

Port to Port


Our 42′ Whitby, Trini has a few cracked, old ports that leak.  One port is over the captain’s side of our berth (bed).

When it rains he wakes up to drops of water landing on his forehead.  This causes a chain reaction, starting with his cussing, then his shuffling out of bed to look for a bowl and a dry place to sleep.  This commotion wakes his beautiful boat wife who was peacefully sleeping on the dry side of the berth.

The leak had to be fixed!

Old, Leaky Port
Cracked knobs prevent the port from forming a tight seal

The remedy!  We had two options.  Replace the gasket or replace the port.  Since the port over the Captain’s head had cracked knobs and a cracked window, a new gasket would be useless.  So we replaced the port.

This is how we did it.

Take out old port
Taking out the port – A two person job

First we took off the bolts.  Pretty easy but a 2 person job.

Then we had to pry off the port from the hull of the boat.  This wasn’t so easy since the port was adhered with 5200, a very aggressive adhesive.  (Luckily the other ports we’ve taken out had caulk instead of adhesive.)

old port gone
Clean the area around the port

The new port had an outer ring.  We had a choice of adhering it to the hull with caulk or drill the ring so we could bolt and caulk it to the hull.  We chose to bolt and caulk.

The Captain lined up holes and marked them before drilling.

Drilling the holes
Drilling the holes

Now the port is ready for caulk.

Port opening and outer ring ready for caulk


The caulk we used and our tools
The caulk we used and our tools

A good covering of caulk for the interior ring.

Make sure to put enough on – You don’t want water leaking through
Applying caulk from the exterior to fill in gaps before apply the ring

Caulk was also apply from the exterior to fill in any gaps.  Then the ring full of caulk was set in place and the thru-bolts.

Wa La!  The new port is installed.

New Port
New Port

After a few rain showers, we’re happy to report there is no more leaks over the captain’s head.

A little tip:  This installation process took longer than we thought it would.  After taking off the old port, we discovered the Beckson ports we purchased were wrong and new ports would take over a week to arrive.   We had a hole in the boat.

A cruising buddy of our, Bryan from Salty Dog gave us a good tip.  When he replaced his ports, he bought a roll of plastic rug covering (Its the stuff used to protect carpets from staining in high traffic areas when showing a house for sale).  It’s an awesome product and has adhesive on one side that will temporarily adhere to the boat and is watertight.  This did the trick.  There were several days of rain and this tip saved us from many wet nights.


Black Paint

When we pulled Trini, (42′ Whitby Ketch) out last April we painted the brown boot-stripe black but didn’t have time to paint the black stripe near the cap rail.  This wasn’t an issue since we knew we could paint it at the dock.

So last week it was time to paint away the dark brown stripe, a stylish color when Trini was built in 1980, to match the black boot stripe.


After tying Trini closer to the dock, painting the stripe was simple.

  • Lightly sand the brown stripe
  • Clean the stripe
  • Tape off
  • Paint on the black and before it dries follow behind with a dry brush to even out the coat of paint.  (Usually best with two people) See photos below.

Due to the weather (there was a rain day) it was a two day process to complete both sides.  Now that we have black stripes future projects will be to make black canvas sail covers, dodger and bimini.

But the next project on the list that is coming up soon is installing refrigeration on the boat.  It’s odd since we are experiencing freezing temps this November and I could just leave the food out in the cockpit to keep it cold.

Until then,

Boat Wife Signing Off!

Sanding brown stripe
Cleaning brown stripe
Tape & Paint
Follow with a dry brush to even out the coat
Finished product

Our First Winter Living on a Boat

I will never forget our first winter living on Moorea.  It was cold!  Normally the briny waters in the marina would not crust over with ice.  In our area it would rarely drop to freezing temperatures long enough to make a crunchy layer on the water.

So we didn’t expect it to be too cold…we were wrong.  Since we both worked full-time and had an hour commute, we were away from our boat all day.  I was the one to come home first.  Many nights it was just below freezing outside and inside the temps were in the mid-thirties.

To warm up the cabin, I would turn on two small space heaters then start the oven to bake bread I had bought at the store.  Then I would curl up under layers of blankets waiting for my husband to return.  When he came through the cabin hatch, he would say it was cold with an interior temperature of 57 degrees.    Eventually the cabin would get up to 62 degrees.

When it was time for bed, our stateroom (bedroom) would be in the mid-forties as we crawled into the sheets.  We brought only one space heater into the stateroom due to the lack of floor space for it to rest upon.  Both of us would be wearing caps to bed and long johns.

These are some of the experiences, but check out the short video below.  It shows the icy docks and boat.  It was very slippery walking from and to our vessel.  Like I said, I will never forget our first winter living on Moorea.

Fair Winds,

Kelly Girl



Sail the World on an Old Boat

We had a choice.  To either save our money for a new boat or buy an old, less expensive boat.  We decided on the old boat because we could then save our money to finance our trip around the world.

There were no regrets in purchasing a 34 year old boat.  Her hull is sturdy and she feels solid.  I trust she will get us through a storm and deliver us to our destinations safely.

s/v Moorea

 Moorea, may not have all the luxuries a modern boat has but she got us to where we needed to go.  If we were to do it all over again, we would go in an old boat.