Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Swing Set Improvements Continue

 The bigger the boat, the more things there are to go wrong. We weren't spared of mechanical issues during the early years of owning Swing Set, but all in all, it could have been worse. One sort of big thing was that the starter went out on the starboard engine. This was discovered during the week and we had a new one installed by Bloch Marine by the weekend. There was an alternative to having a new starter installed, but at the time I was working seven days a week and I had little time to do much work myself, nor did I have any experience of the type required to tackle most of the mechanical work on Swing Set. Bloch Marine, being the yard that had serviced the boat from when it was new, never failed to have us out on the water by any given weekend. As the owner of one of the other boat yards on the river always said, "You can't break it again if you aren't out there using it". I kept that starter in our dock box for years, and finally this summer, John Bloch gave me the number of an outfit in St. Louis that rebuilds starters. Three days and $250 later, I have a spare rebuilt starter. Hope I never need it.
 Early on, our Norcold AC/DC refrigerator went out on us. Kurt Kotraba, the owner of KKK Marine services, pulled out the old one and installed another new one with the help of his son, Karl. See? Kurt and Karl Kotraba, K-K-K. Very nice people.

Here's Rosie in the galley with the old refrigerator behind her, shortly after buying Swing Set. Notice the microwave just above the frig. Also, the galley looks a little bare, doesn't it?

 Here is a view of the galley on Swing Set taken this last spring. The old white microwave, although still working, was replaced with a convection/microwave oven. We also added another "pantry", the oak closet just to the left of the refrigerator. It's deep enough for can goods and holds plenty. We added the spice rack and the pot rack. That pot rack will be a noisemaker when the going gets rough, won't it? I plan on using some motorcycle cargo netting to keep those pots in place in a sea way. Gourmet meals comin' up! Now where did the can opener go?

 Here is the settee and cocktail/dining table in the salon. Note how narrow that settee is. The table was nothing but in the way, it quickly found it's way into storage, as we like better to sit at the dinette to eat where we can see out better. It's one reason we like a flybridge as opposed to an express. We don't want to miss out on any action, even if the action is a pretty sunrise or sunset.

 This view of the dinette shows the new upholstery we had done by VIP Upholstery. We were able to save a few bucks by using the same vinyl, which was still like new, and just replaced the seating areas. One big improvement was that we made the seat on the settee wider, which provided a better place to relax and read, or nap. These type of activities are essential for a long and happy life.

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