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Bombay Pilothouse 31 Project

"Sailing the San Juans" web site  is about boating and sailing  the San Juans, and so it is fitting to follow this very unique vessel as she charts her own special cruise.

New bombay Rosey Windrose
New Bombay Pilothouse 31
Note: About one quarter of the visitors to this site arrive as the result of searching "New Bombay".  The site is much more than an article about one old New Bombay sailboat. Please enjoy the rest of the site, leave comments, ask questions.

New Bombay Pilothouse Rescue Project

The New Bombay Trading Company out of Florida produced "Windrose" back in 1977 plus many others of differing shapes and sizes, and that's about all the New Bombay vessel history I know.

In 2011 Japan experienced a tragic undersea earthquake and the resulting devastation reached across the North Pacific in the form of a tsunami wave damaging several coastal marinas in southern Oregon and northern California.  ( widely referred to as the  Fukushima tsunami )

Windrose, aka "Rosie" (Rosey?) peacefully moored that morning in her slip at Crescent City along with the entire marina was subjected to nine hours of pummeling waves. In the end, the little not so protected harbor was left a floating mass of flotsam and damaged boats. FYI you can go to u-tube and search Crescent City for many videos including some showing Rosey. (if you know where to look)

Insurance adjusters declared Windrose a total loss and so she sat neglected on the hard awaiting her fate in a salvage auction. Unprotected, and unloved she spent a sad winter attacked by ferocious rain and wind this part of the coast is known for. Old, and suffering from typical aging boat blues she had already lasted thirty five years and counting, but now she was quickly succumbing to dire circumstances, mostly total neglect.

We won the bid at auction, which means as winner we agreed to pay more than anyone else, plus accept her "as is, where is," including unknowns and all responsibility that comes with being a winner.

Inside a drawer in the forward cabin we found what we believe are mimeograph copy's of the original owners brochure. The specifications sheet lists draft as 3.5 feet, but drawn in lines show a keel extension bringing draft to 5 feet and adding 1,100 lbs ballast.  There is nothing to tell us if this was a factory option or aftermarket. My measurements support more like 6 feet of draft.

The interior layout for Windrose matches the floor plan except the forward cabin sink was left out, and the  alcohol cook top is located where the ice box is shown. The folding helm seat doesn't exist, apparently the plan is to sit on the cook top.

Travel lifts are useful if not a requirement today.

Unable to find a suitable trailer and unwilling to pay a transporter,  I modified my trusty utility trailer.
It rained hard the entire eight hours it took to load Rosey.
A six foot tongue extension and nine tripod supports ready to assemble. We (me) guessed that extending the trailer six feet would balance Rosey over the axles.  We ended up with 1,100 lbs tongue weight which was within my target range of 900 to 1200 pounds.

Everything we need (I hope) and its time to hit the road

A broken suspension part causes Rosey to list a few degrees to port.  At 15' 3" we were forced to carefully avoid tunnels and old low bridges, at 15,250 (trailer only) we also avoided ODOT

Three foot gashes are common damage when your slip is destroyed around you.

This is tsunami damage, but also just old teak past its prime.

Sometimes bushes need to be trimmed or your splintered rails snag them. 

Windrose arrived safely in her new, but temporary, home port of Portland, OR after a nail biting, very tense 400 mile, two day highway journey.

John 4/29/12

We have been busy going through the awesome  mess and junk a thirty five year old boat accumulates.
With her eleven foot plus beam, the storage is massive. We are still finding treasures, but mostly tossing out bits and pieces of history that has little to do with Roseys current life.  We have tossed more than twenty red hand held flares, most still in their original  3-pak packaging, the latest  expiration date has been 1994. On the starboard side at her widest beam Linda found several heavy sacks of lead tire weights, likely to balance the 8d battery on her port side. I worked over the sliding windows by using a hooked tool and digging out 1/2 inch of mossy like growth that was turning the weatherstripping to compost.  We have been surprised to find all the electrical system functioning even though connections, buss bars and switches look horrible.  When I plugged in the 110V shoreline the water heater supplied one year old (probably more like ten year old) hot water to the galley and head sinks, the familiar sounding rapid ratatat from a pressure water system building head could be heard from somewhere forward. The old crt radar fired up, as did a spinning depth sounder face that I remember from my earlier days.

After finding the keys I tried the starter button and sure enough the starter engaged and turned the old Westerbeke diesel over a turn or two. I plan to change the oil before I attempt to start her, plus I have my fingers crossed that the cooling system is intact.  In the bilge I discovered the open end of a one inch hose held up at floor board level with a small nylon cord, suspicious and curious I traced the hose to a through hull in the transom about six inches  above the waterline. What I deduced is that the bilge pump was removed and the hose was held up to keep her from sinking since there is no high loop and vent.  If a wave slapped Rosey in the butt she would take on water, if she were heavily loaded or already water logged enough to lower the transom six inches she would sink.  We do not want to keep her on the hard any longer than necessary, our intent is not a restoration per say but rather fix-er up and go sailing asap; a new bilge pump and re-doing the hoses suddenly has risen to the top of my must do list.

Linda has been cleaning and painting plus we found a local upholsterer to redo the dinette and vee berth cushions with new fabric, what a huge improvement a little tlc makes.

At eleven feet off the ground using a ladder was too risky and dificult, so I built a stairway and then proceeded to stumble anyway.
I hope to step the mast soon and go through the antique roller furler main and head sail systems. we found three sails, a 150 and 110 jib and a main, all tanbark and pretty sad uv damage on two but the  110 looks like it was never used, we found receipts for when they were purchased new in 1992.
John 5/10/12

Started the motor today:
They say ignorance is bliss, so not knowing what to do, or not to do, I hit the preheat for ten seconds and then the start button today. Rosey cranked and cranked but did not fire so I preheated some more until smoke came out the air intake. From the smoke and very heavy wire connections I deduced where the glow plug is and that it was probably hot enough. This time she cranked, coughed and fired once.  Not bad I thought after sitting over a year.  One more shot at preheating and Rosey's "Watermota" diesel was smoothly idling. A quick check of the gauges verified we had 30 psi oil pressure, and the temp was starting to rise. After five minutes of observing unfamiliar sights and sounds, I noticed oil was rising up out of the dip stick tube and running into the bilge.  With a sinking feeling I pushed a button labeled "kill" and she obediently died along with my hopes of making a San Juan trip in two months.  My first thoughts brought me back to what I had said to family members when I first talked about purchasing a salvage boat, I remember saying, "even if the motor is no good I will simply bolt on an outboard," Now I was faced with that reality.

Anchor work diversion:
Forging ahead, and changing tasks, I  spent twenty minutes squeezed under the mast on the bowsprit un-lashing a Danforth anchor that really looks too small. Positioned over the hawse pipe, I carefully lowered the anchor and  twenty five feet of crusty old galvanized chain to the ground followed by about fifty feet of good looking nylon three strand, and then the rode hung up, I had to un-twist countless kinks and loops to get the rest out.  There was no way this tangled ground tackle could be used to anchor in anything but the best of conditions at a 3 to 1 scope in shallow water. I spent the next three hours  straightening out things.  After soaking, inspecting and bushing salt away, I gave the too small anchor and chain a fresh coat of cold galvanizing compound.  The 275 feet of 9/16 nylon line required about fifty loops be taken out, coincidentally that's about how many loops a person would create if they coiled the line and placed it in the locker from the inside hatch instead of down the hawse pipe.  I'm in the market for a used plow anchor of about 32 lbs, and a solid deck mounted chain stopper too. (I think the Danforth will be a fine lunch hook)

I ran the motor two more times over a couple days, the second time it pumped oil within about thirty seconds, but the last time it did not pump oil out the dip stick. I ran the motor for over thirty minutes at 3/4 throttle (I'm guessing) the temp help at 160 degrees and smoke engulfed our neighborhood (sorry about that).  Now I don't know what to think, the problem seems to have gone away and Rosey may be good to go but I'm super skeptical. My current plan is to install an outboard bracket anyway, we will store our 7.5 Honda dinghy motor on Rosey's pretty  transom and if need be lower it into the water for a get her home system. Some system, this will put our emergency motor four feet below us, how will I start it or handle the controls? my plan needs lots of fine tuning including a place to set the external gas tank.

Mast raising today:
In my usual jury rig fashion, I stepped the mast with the help of two big extension ladders. I have used this method before with a single ladder but decided the weight and height deserved the added strength of a second ladder. My first attempt with a two fold purchase (two pulleys at top and two at bottom) block and tackle was too hard to lift the weight so I added two more blocks which of course required more line, so we subsequently had to extend the line which left me with a joining knot that would not fit through the first pulley 25 feet in the air leaving the hook one foot above the deck requiring Jamie to ( by himself ) lift one end of the mast high enough for me to get it hooked. I won't bore you with the other problems, spreaders, lights, wiring cable, antenna cable, radar cable, rope jams, ladder jam, dropping a heavy turnbuckle on my sandal clad foot, etc., etc. and finally losing (temporarily all the shroud and stay pins just when we needed them.

With the mast up I can now go through all the standing and running rigging and figure out how, where and why to spend more boat dollars.
Six lines support the two ladders, two to the top and four in the middle keeping the column more or less straight. 

Fir trees and masts coexist peacefully at our boat yard
To save ladder rigging time I plan to use the spinnaker halyard to lower the ladders intact, that way when it's time to lower the mast I wont be redoing the work.  I 'll let you know how that works.

Lowering ladders:
I said I would let you know how it worked out, well take a look at the last picture and you can see the radar is in the way, but I did manage to safely get them down with no damage, but more than enough frustration along the way.  I have been blaming the initial crane work for most of the mast stepping problems, you see when we took down the mast in Crescent City the crane was just a little too short and the operator insisted to take her down from the front which left the mast on deck backwards for my plans.  When I drop her next time I will stand the ladders at mid ship aft of the mast and lay her down the other direction. I hope that solves many issues I think were self inflicted. I'll let you know on that too.

I have now gone through all the standing and running rigging, and I am pleased and impressed with the robustness of Roseys shrouds, stays and chain plates.  In fact last night my wife and son asked if there was someway to hang a hammock and I immediately said "yes, anywhere you want," I suppose I could have added but not the lifelines, pulpits or stanchions, but I'm sure they know that. BTW, most of the stanchions are bent inward a little causing the lines to sag somewhat. That's a job for next winter.
Disappointingly, Rosey has no, zero, nada, halyards or halyard blocks except a lonely spinnaker block hanging from a strong bale. OK, there is a little one inch galvanized flag pulley, (the type you get at Ace for $1.49) with a 1/8" nylon cord all the way at the top that I Used to pull up the main, luckily it didn't break. The existing spin block with my extra anchor rode got the jib up. With both antique, (35 year old Hyde Stream Stay) roller furlers up and sails run in and out a number of times, I'm pleased more or less, and now have a shopping list of expensive low stretch, non slapping halyards, blocks, and misc. lines to purchase. I'm soaking the main sheet in a bucket of sudsy water, tomorrow I will sneak it into the washing machine to be rejuvenated. It wouldn't bother me too much if the wash job was a failure because I think it (the main sheet) is too short: I was not able to swing the boom out past about 45 degrees, I want it to to reach the aft shrouds for non sailing davit type uses.

Front hatch:
The hinge screws are missing, the wood screws holes are stripped and rotted, the hinge pins are frozen, the foam rubber sealing gasket was semi permanently gluing the hatch shut. The hatch will be a nice repair job for next winter, but I temporarily rebuilt the missing wood with fast setting adhesive filler, soaked the hinges in paint thinner and PB penetrating oil, and in thirty minutes had it back together and functioning. The hatch cover is a replacement and does not match the style or helm hatch, it is made of a 3/4" thick piece of flat clear-ish plastic, trimmed with some sort of gray rotten wood. I will definitely save the plastic, it looks to be bullet proof, the entire crew can stomp all over it without any chance of it breaking.

Bright star:
Last night about bedtime I looked out the window and saw a really bright star in among our canopy of fir trees.  After pointing the star out to Linda I suggested she may want to go out and switch off the anchor light, but she declined. As I strolled out to the boat I mused about how odd it must look to the neighbors seeing this bright light up in our trees, then thought about how normal it would look in our usual anchorages.

Too much time:
I have several frustrating hours into the eight wires I pulled through the deck, now the spreader lights have both quit, also it looks like I may be tossing the radar because I cant figure out how or who can help me get the cable end plug put back together. I could certainly use radar in the fog out in the straits but I'm afraid I'm spending too much time on non essentials and letting slide things like a three foot gash at the waterline.

Reverse polarity:
I don't think reversing the wires on a bilge pump would hurt it, but after running one backwards for awhile it developed an annoying sleeve bearing chatter that wont go away. I replaced it with a new Ultima 1000 pump and it immediately plugged up with something that looks a lot like wet dust bunnies made of sisal manila rope.  After clearing the impeller the ratcheting noise went away, but now the green auto led light went out, and to make things worse the new pump shuts off with two inches of water still in the bilge.

I hope to have a more upbeat report next time.
John  5/28/12 Memorial Day

Where do I start?
The bilge pump is working fine, but it does leave about two inches.  I'm hoping that when Rosey is in the water the angle changes enough that the bilge water is less at shut off. I reworked the hose so that  it loops up as high as possible, the existing route was only eight inches above the water line, a following wave could easily force water into the boat, or if she squatted in the toosh (like ramp launching for instance) a disaster would be in the making. I plan to install a second pump a little higher plus give some careful considerations to better inlet screens.

Hull repairs:
After kicking around pros and cons of epoxy (and expense) I decided to repair structural hull damage with laminating resin and fiberglass, the way Rosey was originally built.  I had everything needed left over from other projects so the expense was basically zero. Some of the worst gashes were 5/16"+ deep at places where the hull is only 3/8" to 1/2" thick but thankfully no penetrations or fractures to complicate repairs.  With a disk grinder and 36 grit I quickly opened up the damaged areas to about eight or ten times the depth, then built up multiple successively larger layers of cloth until close to surface. I then troweled on filler to make final sanding easier. After some experimenting I omitted the filler stage, opting for overfilling with glass and resin then grinding down. The filler was so easy to sand it was difficult to make flush and not remove too much. I also mixed up some gel cote for a final finish. I surface cured and smoothed the bushed on gel cote with plastic sheeting for mixed somewhat poor results.  Next winter I will attempt to make Rosey's hull pretty again, but for now I am settling for keeping the water on the outside and getting us to the San Juans in July, I have given up thinking June.
typical deep gash, some as long as four feet

underwater primer ready for bottom paint, lots and lots of superficial scratches  above and below waterline

Rosey's nose took a few hard punches that may or may not have been dished out by the tsunami.
After repairing damage, my attempt at using plastic sheeting to mold gel cote left small voids, once again next winter for the extreme makeover. Notice I added a 1/2" bow eye for future ramp launching.

Topside rub rail damage:
At first I was sure all the teak had to go due to damage and old age, now I'm not so sure.  Some of it has cleaned up pretty well, and the expense to replace it will be hard to bare. Temporarily we have glued splintered pieces with so so results.
This area received a temporary patch with a piece of oak, you can see copious amounts of old silicone rubber which really complicates any  bonding  attempts. The stainless strip was easy to straighten with a rubber mallet and a jig, of course the scratches are there to stay.
Waterproof glue and lots of clamps does wonders to splintered wood as long as most of the wood is still there.

This  oak replacement strip was impossible to bend even this small amount without first steaming

Quickey home made steam box allows oak strip to be bent prior to fitting.

After ripping a three foot piece of oak, I was unable to bend it to conform to Roseys sumptuous girth so I made this simple steamer.  As you can see it consists of a camp stove, sauce pan of boiling water, and a section white metal post I snagged from the tarp shelter.  Inside the post is the oak strip suspended by a wire hanger. Everything is sealed up with aluminum foil. Looking closely you can see steam coming out end of white post. After about an hour the oak easily bent with a simple jig, when cool it retained new shape and was easy to fit.

Hanging the 7.5 hp outboard:
This little outboard is like a spare tire, we don't plan to use it but have it ready just in case. As an additional justification, I wanted a place near the water to store the dinghy's motor, this seems like a good idea. Using the spare halyard (I plan to install) and a simple lashed together a-frame we can easily switch motor onto dinghy and back.
Using the excavator made lifting the Honda ten feet up a snap

More trailer mods:
After looking and advertising non stop for a suitable used trailer, it looks like I will be forced to make modifications to my already overloaded utility equipment trailer if I expect to get Rosey to the San Juans this summer. Before going north I want to test run her and her old Watermoto diesel in the Columbia river. Since hiring a travel lift round trip is about $400 plus very inconvenient I have decided to make some changes to allow ramp launching.  Some may question my sanity and time will certainly tell the whole story.  According to my measurements I will need a 40 foot trailer tongue extension with dolly, a nine foot tall winch stand/bow stop, and various bow and  keel rollers and guides. Launching will be easy, its the retrieval part that has me concerned. My tripod supports were never intended to take any lateral force, a six ton boat can easily crumple, twist, and make unusable everything I have built. There is the real possibility that I'm headed for a disaster at the ramp.

Autopilot update:
After getting a $700 quote to repair the 35 year old autopilot, I advertised on craigslist for a used unit. Today it arrived neatly packed in a padded box; total cost $90. At first the control looked like an exact replacement until I matched up the nine pin plug, not. It looks like all the wires match and their placement on the circuit board is identical so I plan to simply cut cables and spice my old plug onto the new/old unit. Hope it works.

Steel construction: ( drilling holes and cutting )
I have spent a good deal of the last week building a tongue dolly, and  winch stand bow support that towers a good eight feet above the ground.  My theory is that launching Rosey will be easy, simply run the trailer down the ramp until she is free of her land borne restraints. Retrieval is another story and I'm not sure what is needed.  I know we need a bow stop to locate her fore and aft, check!  I still need to build guides to keep her centered over the nine supports.  I also plan to construct some sort of keel guide to gently coax Rosey exactly into place as she is pulled from the water.

My worries are that I am not worried about something really important, and will find out at the worst possible moment my oversight. I'm worried that the Excursion wont have the traction required to pull Rosey up the steep wet ramp (even in 4wd). I'm worried that the cross current and wind at the ramp will be unmanageable as it has been several times before. I'm worried that I'm being too cheap and foolish refusing to hire a crane. I'm worried that everything done in the water at the ramp will be done by dinghy which brings with it another set of issues. Then of course all the other concerns, like will she overheat, leak, sink, list, shake, not steer to port, starboard, ditto in reverse, prop walk, on and on.

Metamorphosis: The transformation is complete, my once very useful flatbed tilt trailer has become a boat trailer. A single purpose,  sailboat transporter, custom fitted to a 35 year old motor sailor. Tomorrow we will carefully navigate our way about 15 miles across Portland to the county boat ramp on the Columbia river. I plan to go mid morning when traffic is light and hopefully there will be few if any boaters at the ramp. I want to go when few people are around not because of any embarrassment I am bringing upon my family name but because I will monopolize the facility and some trailer sailors and fisherman can get quite vocal if you take too long while they wait.
My spider web of tubing and makeshift plywood keel guide, plus fender held up with a rope attest to the fact that I made be a tad over my head

one end of my 38 foot tongue extension and dolly

up went the ladders again

down comes the mast again, only this time smoothly and without any real problems.
The mast is 36 feet and deck stepped, the ladders are 300 pound rated and extended to a working length of 25 feet.  There are six lines securing the A-frame, four at mid point and two at the top. The tackle consists of three pulleys at the top and two at the bottom with 175 feet of  easy to hold braided line. I  easily raised the mast to clear the cabin roof and held it with one hand while making the line fast with my free hand. We tied at the spreaders which was 19 feet above the deck and slightly higher than the balance point.  Jamie guided the bottom and kept the twin roller furlers in check. The whole operation in my opinion is safe, sane and very controlled. I left the mast dangling for three hours while I fiddled with and ultimately removed the radome and cable. Standing and stepping the mast is essentially the reverse and equally controlled.

On close inspection you can see the spreaders have been badly warn  by rubbing.  The metal is completely gone through. The cable in view is the back stay and could not have done this when rigged, but Rosey sat on the hard for over a year after the tsunami with the back stay hanging loose. Crescent City and that area of the coast are known for high winds. Neglect is a boats worst enemy, after maybe rocks, fires and surfacing submarines. The mast is marked up also, as well as the other spreader.

 Some inside pictures:  Since I'm going aboard for some shake down runs without the mast I thought it would be a good time to put back the newly covered cushions and take a few pictures. We have done very little that shows, but a little tlc and lots of  house cleaning go a long way to bring back a worthwhile old vessel.
I tossed out the huge original table that was meant to drop down and form a berth, replacing it with this much smaller one saved from another project. When we need to use this berth I will use some plywood pieces that I plan to store under the cushions, and this table can lay on the floor. Next winter the wood (it looks like mahogany) will get a new finish.

The alcohol cook top was beyond saving, I have temporarily covered the opening with a piece of plywood. That box under the steering wheel is an autopilot I was able to find that works and matches the original. .

The vee berth is a huge 7 foot long 6 inch thick bed, impossible to photograph with my telephoto lens. You can see I experimented with refinishing the wood trim. We covered the hull with white Naugahyde glued in place   .

That Naugahyde covered box on the wall hides the forward chain plate, but keeps them accessible for inspection. I sure would like to come across some stainless port holes to replace the fragile plastic ones. All of them open which is real nice, and with some new weather stripping I might be able to make them not leak too much.

I'm looking forward to the completed wood work, the little refinish we have done shows well.

Launching Rosey:
Driving down the road this time was not as nerve wracking as when we brought her from Crescent City since I knew what to expect and as Jaiden said "close to home if we have problems" then he added "what would it cost if she fell off the trailer?"

After carefully measuring the ramp depth and concrete length we  assembled the dolly extension close to the water, then it was a simple matter to back her down and she floated free.
helpers worked for Fish N Chips, the dinghy on the roof was not needed after all

after backing her in until she floated free we pulled her back out to see if she sat back down correctly
 My concerns about traction were unfounded, the Excursion had no problems, of course the ramp was dry forty feet up the hill. Backing the dolly was a real pain because the diagonal ramp grooves forced the dolly to track sideways causing some frustration.
floating above trailer
 Before unhooking we ran the motor hard in forward and reverse for five minutes to make sure no immediate problems developed.
Rosey needs her mast
 Without her mast on an overcast windy day she looks kind of forlorn and lists a little to port, reminding me of the sacks of lead weights stashed on the starboard side. I was apprehensive about my first driving of Rosey. The high river level created quite a current catching her keel on the beam and the wind was on the opposite quarter.  I was unable to turn to into the wind in reverse but did manage to back far enough out to clear the other dock before the current swept us into it. In forward she behaved very well and the cut away keel forefoot allowed us to spin in a few boat lengths or less.

My plan had been to spend a good deal of time running and testing systems before going to the slip but the day had been long and we were tired so we simply ran a two way wot GPS speed test, and a little backing down and holding position practice before braving the water gauntlet to get to our slip.
new home for about one month while I check and test systems, I sure wish we had the mast.


Update: Since putting Rosey in the water I have not been able to do much because she is a thirty minute drive, but I did go out and run her up to Gov't Island. After smoking up the marina for about thirty minutes I got the nerve to cast off (by myself) which is difficult because the current grabs a hold and drives her forward if she is tied at an angle or pulls the stern away from the dock, finally I got things balanced just right and jumped on. I went straight to the fuel dock and filled her up, the gauge said 1/2 tank and I put in 13 gallons until it read full so I think she must hold 25 or 30 gallons. It turns out the new old autopilot doesn't work after all, I'm really bummed about that, she tracks pretty good where you point her but I really do need a pilot or willing crew to steer. I ran her at wot (full throttle) the entire way to the docks at Sandy beach which is about 5 miles, and took over an hour fighting the current. She never overheated or gave any indication of anything amiss, but after docking I pulled all the boards for a look see anyway, and even squeezed under the cockpit to put my hand on the shaft and transmission. I spent an hour or so tied up, mostly messing with the pilot and then headed back, I dropped the Honda into operating position for a quick test and found that the 7 1/2 hp outboard will push her at a respectable but slow speed ( the gps battery went dead) but not anything near what the main motor does. The outboard allowed nice maneuvering but could not win the current battle in reverse because at more than half throttle the safety kick up feature would release.

More update: Back at home working on the mast I have replaced the too small flag halyard block with a larger stronger stainless dinghy swivel block that can handle anything the nylon line can hold. I purchased a jib and main halyard and after checking the sheaves for problems fished the new lines into position. The way the halyards are run either one may be used for jib or main, so in a pinch (losing a halyard up the mast) I can switch them. I also added a make shift ring bale to the back stay shackle and attached a heavy swivel block and halyard that will swing around from port to starboard. By using the Spinnaker halyard on the front and the new one aft Rosey now has two heavy blocks that can be used 360 degrees for any purpose, such as loading dinghy's, kedging into deeper water or as an awesome rope swing.

Theft on the hard: It has troubled me that the shipyard or prior owners that rescued and placed Rosey on the hard after the tsunami would remove the halyards without running a small cheap line for eventual use in re-rigging, now I think I have it figured out, she was probably robbed. Some thief likely climbed aboard and brazenly stole her halyards after she fought off (and won) her battle with the tsunami. In a way it's like suffering an accident and then having the local neighbors and onlookers running up and instead of helping they steal your wallet and tires. Just a thought is all. I need to go buy a cotter key for the mast, and since all the spares are on board at the slip, it's much closer to drive to the store.


2nd test run:
With Rosey in the water I'm able to check out some important systems. I immediately discovered the head plumbing leaked between the toilet and holding tank thanks to a poorly routed clamped hose. She lists just a little to port, the leak around the companion way hatch mysteriously went away when I poked a small stick in the limber holes (go figure) All the windows certainly let in the light and the heat as well, it's a good thing most of them open. I motored out a ways and anchored in a busy part of the river, and was disappointed that she is so roley poley from wakes, of course that was expected with her wide beam. I guess one boat can't be everything at once.

I plan one more short ride up to the ramp to load her back on the trailer, I've noticed the water level has dropped over four feet so I may not be able to load her, and will be forced to pay $200 for a travel lift plus the inconvenience of scheduling and needing a ride.

This morning I bought a trip permit (online) for the first time ($25) You would think after hauling oversize boats from San AntonioTexas to Bellingham, Portland, Crescent City and San Diego without permits that I would continue my rebellious ways. I have found two marinas with a slip available, one in Anacortes, and one in La Conner, I plan to hit the road with Rosey in tow in five days and she is still in the water at this writing, plus I still have not figured out how to carry the mast on deck to get our height under 15 feet.


OK we made it to LaConner,
and got Rosey all set up in a slip at Shelter Bay. Yes we had some problems but I'm not going to dwell on that aspect in this post.

Lets jump ahead to a post I made from Friday Harbor.

We are tied up in slip F23 at Friday Harbor for our second night and since we have free wifi I thought I would let you know what is going on right now.

Guest slip at Friday Harbor

I can proclaim Rosey has made it to the San Juans, but the story is far from told.
As you know we started in La Conner and made a 160 mile detour into Hood canal.
At our farthest turn around point Roseys old engine chose to quit and we were forced to return to LaConner using our 7.5 hp Honda dinghy motor. After some discussion and a good nights sleep in our rented slip we decided to push on to San Juan Island at a maximum 4 mph and hope the wind would help out. The trip to Friday Harbor took about eleven hours overall. We had some following wind boost in Lopez sound, but when we turned the corner into Upright Channel things came to life and we had fantastic sailing right to the marina breakwater, at times our gps showed us 7.1 mph. Every tack required un-hooking jib sheets from handle bars, next time I load bikes I will try to improve the system.

Yesterday we rode our bicycles to Cattle Pass Point Lighthouse and then over to Lime Kiln Park, a distance of about 35 miles. We had to walk up some of the hills and several jerks honked at us. None us of were really in shape, but today we feel good with no soreness so it worked out fine

Today we plan to head back with a stop at Spencer Spit and then spend the night at James Island while we wait for flood tide tommorrow morning, hopefully the current will whisk us all the way to LaConner because our 4 mph speed is stopped dead by an opposing wind and current.

Spencer Spit
Anchored at James Island


one week later from home:

OK, update time, first off, the four boat dock at James Island was full so we had to anchor out and dinghy to shore at the kayak campground for our campfire to cook hot dog and smores. Anchoring was a real chore, we tried setting the hook three times in two locations before I felt good enough to sleep through a tide change. We ended up with a Bahamian set using our grapple anchor for number two. Plus at Lindas urging I set Roseys antique sounder alarm at two fathoms, I slept like a rock until daylight. We waited for the current change and upped anchor around noon, as soon as we came around the end of James the kicker quit. For a moment I considered raising sail but decided trying to claw off a lee shore was a bad move. We had about a thousand feet before we would be in trouble, and knowing we could quickly drop three hooks I concentrated on fixing the kicker problem asap. Turned out the primer bulb was sucking air because the hose barb was broken halfway through, with a little realigning of the hose it started up and never quit again, but the problem obviously needs attention before we depend on it again. Once clear of James with the wind still on our beam we loosened both sails and made quick work of Rosario Strait. The wind held steady and the helping current up Guemes channel boosted us along at over 5mph right into Swinomish channel where the wind quit, but the current and kicker carried us up to LaConner in short order. With only one half mile left to reach Shelter Bay the current did an about face. Under Rainbow bridge I let the motor idle in neutral so I could measure the current with the gps, astonishingly we were already being swept back at 2 mph and losing fast. We quickly spun around and ran at wot to regain our lost ground and make it into the protected channel leading to our moorage. Luckily we gave our selves just enough time to make it, an hour or so later would have been a nightmare current possibly forcing us to anchor in the channel somewhere waiting for the current change.

Sunrise from shore from Langley on Whidbey Island in Saratoga Passage

All systems running before engine gave up

Stopped by Navy for submarine while crossing to Port Ludlow

Lonely Rosey is only guest at Pleasant Harbor on Hood Canal, btw hot showers, wifi come with slip fee

Camp Parson Boy Scout Camp at Jackson Cove on Dabob Bay (Hood Canal)
 We anchored at Camp Parsons and went ashore for the Campfire on Jaidens last night of summer camp. Our primary reason for making trip up Hood Canal was to pick up Jaiden and then head north to our planned bicycle trip around San Juan Island. In the morning after all the scouts had departed in their many cars we discovered Rosey's engine had given up for good. With only our 7.5 kicker and three gallons of gas our options were limited. With the help of Quintin in Portland via cell phone, google maps, and an upcoming beer festival for incentive. We were directed five miles to Seabeck where I anchored and took the dinghy to shore. I then hitched a ride with some local fisherman to Home Depot, purchased four five gallon gas cans and returned with enough fuel to complete journey.
Linda is unfazed by continuous string of breakdowns, setbacks, failures (checkout Roseys bamboo curtains)

Our first trip with Rosey is behind us now and I'm sure some would consider it a failure, but we spent twelve days, covered over two hundred sea miles, 35 bicycle miles, got held up by a nuclear sub, still have all our digits and appetite so where's the failure.

I'm assuming Roseys Westerbeke diesel is kapoot and so I'm looking for a 9.9 kicker to replace the 7.5 for our next cruise, which will probably be to Cypress and Matia islands in about three weeks. I expect by winter I will have a good idea what size outboard will become her permanent power source. I'm betting a 15hp Honda, but I'm not buying one prematurely.

John sometime around 8/8/12

For the last week I have been scouring the ads looking for a 15 hp Honda and I finally scored. You may be thinking, but you just wrote you wanted a 9.9 and that's true I did, until I realized a 9.9 is just a hopped up 7 or 8 running at higher rpm to get the hp. What Rosey needs is more cc's, she will never go fast so brute torque at low rpm is the answer to push her fat heavy hull. A 9.9 has about 212 cc's, a 15 has 350 cc's so that's what I bought. We have been camping at Timothy Lake for the past week so I had a chance to test the 15 on "Lollipop" (Rosey's dinghy) As you can imagine the heavy 15 just about sunk Lollipop, but boy what a thrill when I cranked her open. There's no doubt this Honda 15 will push Rosey better than the 7.5, but will she reach hull speed around 6.5 mph or match the 25 hp diesel at 6.75? We will have to wait and see. I'm planning a cruise to Cypress and Sucia in a few days and will know exactly how well 15 hp pushes 13,000 pounds.

John 8/21/12
The summer has come and gone and we have taken Rosey on several trips, so I thought some observations might help others.

Some unanswered questions that now have answers:

  • her motor wouldn't start back in Hood Canal because the stop lever was hung up in the stop position, a little lubricant was all she needed, I feel like an idiot because, another time, another diesel I had the same issue but forgot. Now she runs fine. and has a back up get her home motor which is always a good thing.
  • the 15 hp honda pushed her at 6 mph at wot, backed off to a respectable economical cruise level she did 5 mph, the 7.5 hp Honda did 5 mph and 4 mph respectively, Rosey's 25 hp Westerbeke at wot was 6.75 mph and at cruise was 5.75 mph . I know your eager to know that with both the 15 and the inboard at wot she left a rolling wake but I never checked the speed, the 25 alone could not make a rolling wake so my guess is 7.5 to 8 but it just a guess.
  • I'm pretty certain fuel consumption around .5 gph was what the Westerbeke and 7.5 Honda got, I never zeroed in on the 15 since I used it so little
  • We used the 7.5 hp and a little wind to push Fat Rosey all over the place on many trips, San Juan Island, Jones, James, Orcas, Cypress, Deception Pass, Thatcher Pass, Obstruction Pass, Swinomish Channel, positively proving my assertions that using the currents and weather to your advantage will allow just about anyone to cruise the San Juans and surrounding area.
  • Earlier I criticized Roseys smallish anchor, I rescind my comments, the Danforth really proved itself one night at James Island, a well set little hook is unbelievably strong at 7 to 1 scope. 
  • Rosey is 29 feet on deck and 13,000 pounds, a 15 hp Outboard in my opinion is the right choice for a permanent power choice if you must use an outboard. A smaller motor is working too hard, a bigger motor is pointless. (don't forget she has a really big keel down below)
  • using  the ladder system to raise/lower masts: I think its a great way to go, safe and easy, but not for everyone. Certain people just don't get it and should avoid rigging work. That being said, I have very little nice to say about the dozen or more crane operators and their helpers that I have been around at major yards. My boats have been the recipient of broken anchor lights, broken windexes, deck stains, ineptness, kinked cables, bent spreaders, lost pins, forgotten orders and general time consuming expensive nonprofessional work. When hiring a yard to step masts my advice to others is to limit what you let them do and supervise their every move, you will come across as a jerk and an asshole but they will not be responsible for their damage (you signed a release, remember) and in the end its your boat.
  • super deep bilges are a pain in the you know, and shop vacs must be big to suck over three feet down.
  • I never did get the course setter autopilot working, the last thing the factory said was, "it must be your cable"
  • running a radar cable inside a mast should be done in such a way that it may be serviced (removed) without un-stepping mast or damaging cable ends. (consider surface mounting cable)


OK, it’s me again, and I have some Rosey news. I am both embarrassed and unapologetic at the same time.

I have really mixed feelings and often question my logic and true motives for what I do and say.

I will get to the point in good time but first some opinions on how we choose our boats, of course I only speak for myself even though I tend to espouse to tell others what to do.

I think a proper boat (for me or you) is suited for a particular time in ones life to provide a specific use or fill a need (usually a perceived need) What does this mean? Simple, you get a fishing boat to go fishing, a dinghy to get to shore, day sailer for the afternoon, a fixer to fix, and a bigger boat to world cruise. That being said here’s some more; a wealthy person simply gets nicer, newer, more elaborate boats; a less wealthy boater plays with wrecks, basket cases, and boats that others have no interest in. Here’s more yet, a person with dreams and lots of time may build something in his back yard with plans to sail the world but in reality its not to be. Then another may set sail today with the clothes on his back, old sails and no motor. I’m getting there, I’m trying to include all of us so we must also understand that a twenty something (or younger) with little responsibility other than to himself may see life (boating life) quite different than someone that has watched the sands of his hourglass steadily move from the top to the bottom. ( if we could turn the glass over, would we?)

The above illogic was my way of rationalizing and justifying to myself selling Rosey.

Yes, I put Rosey up for sale because she had served her purpose, we had the best summer in the San Juans so far plus I determined she was not the boat to take to Alaska, and so she was snapped up by someone that I think would fit in some of the categories boaters fit in.

So my postings on the Bombay project will be coming to an end. If you read this Dale, (Dale bought Rosey) lets us know in the comments box what’s new with Rosey when you can. I know Dales trip with Rosey to Tacoma had some big water!

I am already looking for my next vessel, we have gone aboard several that we feel might be suitable for an Alaskan cruise (specific use), we have nowhere near enough dollars to get what I think is what I want, but I have always believed if you want something one must head in that direction or you will never get there.

BTW I fully expect to pick up something on a trailer to tide me over in the San Juan area next summer, as you must know from following my ravings, just about anything that floats will work for me.

John 10/16/12