Monday, 11 March 2013

Monday 11th March 2013
I'll just add my tuppence to the comments on our weather *&!!!***<>!! and that's it.
Things are moving slowly towards our holiday departure, and we're also preparing for our summer cruise. We had planned to have our cratch cover patched up where the ravages of time, bad steering and general wear and tear were showing. However, the other day one of the zips failed totally so we decided to have new one. By luck we had been given a business card of someone who did covers just the other day, so a quick phone call and Chris Crowther said he'd come down on the following Sunday for a look.
He showed up as promised, always a good sign, and confirmed that a new cover would probably make more sense. He took the old one away as a pattern. so we had to find room on the boat for some of the stuff we were hiding in the well deck. Where we're moored there's no access from the front of the boat so it becomes a bit of storage area.
I've finally made a start on making up our new mooring lines for this year. I don't seem to be a very good judge of ropes. Last year I saw what I thought was a good value rope on ebay so I bought some. Wrong! it wasn't good stuff at all, it didn't feel nice and didn't make a nice splice either.
This year I thought I'd try double braid rope. I learned how to splice it, and Cath bought me a set of hollow fids to work it. Once again looking on ebay, I saw what was described as top quality nylon double braided rope, 14mm. Sounded dead right, so I bought it. When it arrived it looked really good, nice feel, good size, so as soon as I got my fids I had a go. No joy, I just couldn't get the fid to pass the core into the cover. It was just too tight. After several attempts, and searching the internet I still couldn't manage the job. I called the supplier to find out if I was missing any little tricks or wrinkles. He told me that the rope was a 'special' he had specified, with a 'hard lay' and that I probably wouldn't be able to splice it.
I did some more internet searches and found a different style of double braid splice, which although it isn't as perfectly neat as a normal splice it seems to work. It's darned hard work, I have to keep popping outside to use a bollard as an anchor, and in this blizzard weather it isn't pleasant. I now have 3 of our 5 ropes completed and we'll see how the splices hold up.
The cover came back on Thursday, but wasn't quite a perfect fit in one place, so Chris took it away again and brought it back next day. Lovely job, and we have a bit more room in the saloon again.
On Sunday Liz and Daniel came for lunch while Damon was at work. He had a great time jumping up and down on our bed. It's his favourite pastime here it seems, specially if the weather is too bad to play outside.
We're looking forward to Friday now and the start of our holiday journey to Marrakesh.

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