The Chosen One

Let it be written, let it be done! We are now legally the owners of S/V Andromeda, so she’s ours in all her glory! ‘Excited’ does not begin to describe how that feels. The emotions move along a taut wire strung between giddy and terrified, with all the stops in between. I can only say that I am glad someone ‘up there’ knew that I needed to be firmly on this side of the dreadful ‘menopause’ before making this happen because had we done this last year, my body would have simply exploded from the impact of all the emotional-ity.

Have you seen this view yet?

I hope of our readers will clear their in boxes because the blogging is going to be intense around here as we gear up to do the critical jobs on this vessel. As she sits now, she is engine-less. Just this morning Mike pulled the trigger on a 60 HP Beta Marine engine for our new baby. The order is placed. Tomorrow we travel back to Astoria to do a meet and greet with our new best friend, Shawn, the diesel mechanic. He comes well recommended so we’re looking forward to working with him. Shawn will do the professional hand-holding on the engine refit. It takes about 3 weeks for a new engine to arrive, so we have about that long to get this engine room ready to receive the new heart of this boat.

Let the work begin.

This engine room is really more of a ‘systems’ room for Andromeda and the engine refit is only the beginning of what needs to happen here. There are other things that need attending to right away, not the least of which is there is no working head on the boat. Well, that is, the heads work fine but the plumbing is going to need changing. The heads themselves were rebuilt this year and look like they are built like tanks.

Mike thinks this might be bronze. If so, we probably should just remove the paint and let the metal get pretty. Then we will have industrial art toilets.

For example, in the aft head there is about 63 feet of hose running from the head, into the engine room, and then back across the boat to the huge holding tank under the quarter berth. Yes, that is a lot of hose and we are not happy about that. Also, there is an additional vent in the hose that sprays water into the engine room whenever the head is flushed. Not. Good. Fortunately no one has used the head for a long time. It was cleaned out, and there it sits. Opening the lid to where the tank is stored shows a tank that looks brand new, and has absolutely no smell. The previous owner did not use the head in the boat because the really nice, clean rest room at the marina is conveniently located just at the top of the ramp where the boat is docked.

The forward head. I think that may be an exhaust fan above and to the left. I have no idea if it works or whether it is necessary.

The forward head is plumbed overboard so we will have to find Coast Guard requirements in terms of putting this head out of commission for awhile. We prefer to have a head that is plumbed overboard for the times we are at sea, but in the future we may end up adding an additional holding tank up front as well. That’s way down on the list of priorities at this point and that extra head makes a great storage room.

The offending hoses and the leaky vent on the right. Those are tape labels on the wires.

So you can see that the systems are going to need a thorough going-through and updating. It would be nice to think we could just rip all of this out and start over, but I fear it will need to be more piecemeal than that.  It’s going to be awhile before Andromeda leaves her dock. But by the time that happens, we will know her insides like we know those of Moonrise.

I’ve started a working list of tasks that will need doing and will create a new page where we can keep track of these accomplishments. Now that we own ‘The Chosen One’ we can do things like set dates. Everything begins to feel much more like an actual Plan and much less like simply a dream. I cannot wait to get her up and running and bring her to her home waters of Washington State. Here comes that giddiness again!

These are the things that must be done before we can move onto the boat, at least that I can think of right this minute. I know it’s a short list and will only get longer.  A page will be created where updates can be posted regularly. Let the money-throwing begin. (And with it that feeling of terror.)

1. Engine refit
2. Replumb aft head
3. Rebed deck hardware
4. Repair leaking aft hatch
5. Replace refrigeration
6. Insulate interior stowage spaces that still need it
7. Buy a gps/chartplotter

John Wanamaker of Emerald Lady turned us on to some yacht management software that he recommends in terms of keeping track of all the things we need to do. We will look into that and may use it.

Tomorrow we begin the real implementation of our Little Cunning Plan. Woo hoo!! And now, back to the giddiness!





21 thoughts on “The Chosen One

  1. I am so flippin’ excited for you guys!!! Your boat is just a beauty!! In fact, she is everything we wanted until we downsized to our beer budget! Ha!! I can’t wait to watch the refit begin. We will be refitting our boats at the same time so we can keep each other motivated! What was her original engine? We were at 30 hp and Mongojo’s repower was done with a 56hp Yanmar. It was one of the big reasons we bought her, even knowing we had a deck issue. For newbies, it was nice to have that safety net of a good, big strong engine. And she purrs. 🙂

    Did you trade Moonrise?

    Congratulations…what a fabulous, beautiful day!

    • Definitely we will keep each other motivated! We got such a good deal on this boat, but it still feels like a lot of money. Her original engine was a Ford Lehman, which the owner pulled himself and took to the shop, and there it sits. We don’t know what, if anything, we will do with it. It’s pretty amazing that this boat has literally everything we even THOUGHT we wanted, much less everything we wrote down. Yes, it is really nice to think there will be a new engine in place, even if it means more expense up front. It’s going to totally be worth it.
      Alas, we still own Moonrise. But now that the Universe knows that we have another boat, I’m hoping it will say ‘yes’ to having her sold soon.

  2. “Chosen One”….”I’m Coming”! “Chosen One”…”I’m Coming”!
    (Courtesy of Kung Pow Enter the Fist”. Are you sure “Chosen One” isn’t the boats true name?

  3. So excited for you! I am envious of your soon to be installed Beta. That’s the way we want to go when the time comes for us to repower- which we hope is 10 years down the road. Having just redone about ALL of our plumbing (few pieces here and there left) I can only say to prepare yourself for double the amount of plumbing projects on your list. Once you get the head sorted, you’ll discover that the galley plumbing should be redone and the fuel lines and…its all good though. Andromeda looks like a boat who is really worth the extra effort to bring to better than new shape. YAY!!!

    • Indeed, yay! I am certain you are right about all the things we will discover need doing. Our goal right now is to get this little ship ready to go around here, then sail her and fix things as they need doing. We have yet to determine all the things that have already been done. The previous owner did a lot and there is no list. But the engine is a really big one, and we are stoked to be starting this project on a boat that will have a new one. The galley needs a number of little things. But I digress!

  4. It’s nice to have a couple of things that are quick and inexpensive fixes to check off a major list like yours. So, just thought I’d share that we’ve just looked into the overboard discharge situation for our Union 36, Grace, in Port Orchard. 1) Turns out Coasties are happy if the valve is turned away from overboard and “locked”. Apparently newer valves are made with aligning holes which allow the insertion of a padlock. Not wanting to invest the time or money in replacing my “Y” valve, I found that they accept something as simple as a zip tie in the closed/to tank position. 2) You’re going to find that leaky anti-siphon valve will be both inexpensive and an easy replacement. Check and Check! On to other things. We’ve been following you for a while now and are in the same life situation. Puget Sounders a few years from retirement with a full keel cruiser, our solid health, and blue water dreams. May we cross paths sometime.

    • Hi Brad and thanks for your comment and the information on Coast Guard requirements. That is so helpful! Yes, lovely to check things off what will become a much longer list, I know. We hope to see you at an anchorage up here when we get Andromeda back home in Washington State. If you have a blog or a Facebook place, please let us know so we can follow you as well. Fair winds!

  5. Wow, it’s happening! We are really, really happy for you both, and I can’t wait to read along on your projects! What a glorious way to get acquainted with every nook and cranny of your new girl. She’s a looker!
    On the topic of boat heads, I’ve pulled the trigger just this weekend and bought a compost head. Perhaps that’s an option for you too, in place of your 62 ft of spraying hoses. I’ll keep you posted as we install & test ours. 🙂

    • Thanks! We’re pretty sprung on her! I’d like to know how you end up liking your composting head. Even without that, I’m pretty sure we can do a better job of plumbing the head on our boat than what’s there now. It’s just crazy! But nothing like reworking systems to get to know her better, like you said. 🙂

      • If you decide to go with the composting head and can wait awhile, please don’t buy one! W have one you can have for nothing. We’d love to see it go to a good home. It’s in storage in San Carlos right now but I’m sure we can figure out how to get it to you. We’re driving back up north for Christmas and could conceivably take the ferry across from Santa Rosalia to SC to pick it up on the way. The ferry is kind of spendy but, if you covered the cost of the ferry fro us it’d be hundreds of dollars less than buying a new composter. Let us know what you think. Plenty of time to think about it.


        • Thanks for that offer, Steve, but I’m imagining there will be a cruiser down your way who would take you up on that. The heads on this boat seem like they are pretty bullet proof, and the tank looks and smells like new. It’s just the plumbing is a little, well, over the top. I think we can do better than what’s there now without removing things like perfectly good toilets! 🙂 Too bad Belinda couldn’t take you up on your offer. I think they are down in California, much closer to you than we are. you should get some money out of that. Those are spendy!

  6. YAY, it’s final! We are sooooooooooooo excited for you. Seriously. I’m looking forward to seeing the new engine in place and that beautiful boat under full sail. I bet it’s quite the site at 47′.

    • I am going to be nervous about sailing her until we actually get to go out and do it! And I want at least two people on board that first time who have sailed a boat this big with this sail plan. We love the way she rides in the water when she is at her slip. Trawlers pull into the marina and make big swells and she feels downright sedate! We are very excited to get her out on the water. I think she is looking forward to it, too.

  7. Congrats on the new boat. Plan out everything you could ever want to do then scale ot back. That way you can take into account how each individual project affects/interacts with the others. Its easier to scale back than to have to redo something just finished.

    With the new engine i recommend a remote oil filter, make it handy. And an oil change pump built in that draws from the bottom of the sump. With the new engine you have lots of choices that are easier to do now and make it easier to maintain later.

    • Andy, The planning is happening now. The challenge is having the time for all the projects in our heads. Right now I am focused on the engine room since I want to have the engine installed soon after it is delivered. With a nearly forty year old boat on its third engine you can imagine that there are lot of old systems in there and I would love to have a clean, freshly painted engine room before I drop in the Beta 60.

      Th Beta 60 has a built in oil change pump which I am really happy to have. I have seen a bulkhead mounted oil filter that would be a nice future addition. The existing twin fuel filters are okay but I want to move them so they are easier to site and maintain. Lots to do.

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