C'est la Vie is a 1966 Charlie Morgan 34.

Her home port is Everglades City, FL. Our typical cruising area is Southwest Florida, the Florida Keys, the Southeastern Atlantic Seaboard, and the Bahamas. We are C'est la Vie's third owners and purchased her in 2005. We continue to maintain and update this classic vessel. Please post any questions or comments about C'est la Vie or our travels via the comment links below.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

fortunate discoveries of undesirable repairs

While polishing C'est la Vie's stainless steel bowsprit I discovered a hairline crack along the lower fork of the rod bobstay.  Perhaps a picture is worth more than a thousand words
The bobstay is the strut that spans between the leading edge of the bowsprit and the hull of the boat.  In the image above I have replaced the bobstay with a hank of yellow rope.  The bowsprit is not designed to bear the loads exerted by the forestay.  The bobstay transfers the majority of the rigs loads into the hull of C'est la vie.  If the bobstay were to fail while sailing there is a good chance of the entire rig failing and falling to the deck.  So we are pleased to have found the crack while on the hard.  We are dismayed at the addition to the project list, and even less pleased about the added expense of repairing the stay.

Here is a closeup of the crack... in the image included I am pointing at the tiny crack.
After collecting a couple assessments of the damage and corresponding repair, I dropped the stay off at a local machine shop.  the plan is to remove the forked end of the stay and replace it with a new section of stainless rod.  The machinist will likely use a section of a stainless drive shaft to make the repair.

Now we wait two weeks until the stay repair is completed.  Until the bobstay is replaced we will need to keep the mast in place so that the forestay can support the weight of the bowsprit.

In the mean time, I have stripped off the mainsail and boom.  We plan to replace the slides on the mainsail/mast with a Strong Track system .  Due to damage along the luff of the main sail we knew we would need to replace the upper two slides.  We have heard great reviews of the Strong Track so with the mast down and other work being done on the sails and rig it seemed like the right time to upgrade.   

We did not realize the internal outhaul on the boom is seized.  I've relocated the boom to the backyard where daily doses of vinegar can be applied to the various boom orifices in hopes of freeing the outhaul.  If over time this does not prove effective the next step will be to attempt to remove the forward end of the boom in hopes of accessing the out haul system.  Personally, I'm skeptical but hopeful the vinegar works.    

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Diversions from boat projects

Despite my best intentions of launching directly into boat projects plenty of diversions have kept me away from C'est la Vie.

The first full weekend in June, Anne and I drove to Western North Carolina to attend the North Carolina Outward Bound School's All Staff Training.  The annual event is the one time of year when the school attempts to gather its entire staff at one location.  The three day "training" does include some professional development, but it more resembles a giant pep rally for the start of the busy summer season for NCOBS  We enjoy the time to celebrate our successes, honor our peers, and  catch up with distant friends.

Returning to the OBX on Wednesday night and a full day of office work on Thursday did not allow for any boat time before my parents came down for a visit on Friday.

Saturday June 11, the nearby community of Pine Knoll Shores hosted its fourth Annual Kayak for the Warriors Race.  The fundraising event benefits programs for wounded service men and women and their families.  
This is the first time I have participated in an official kayak race and must have benefited from beginners luck. In the image above I'm out to an early lead.  Over the 5K course I was able to hang on to the lead and finish 1st overall.

My intentions for participating in the race were not entirely philanthropic.  NCOBS is now offering courses specifically desgined for veterans returning from recent conflicts.  Theses "Veterans Courses" are free for any US Military Vets.  NCOBS greatest hurtle with the courses thus far is connecting with participants.  I  made a couple contacts at the event that hopefully will lead to future enrollments.

The next day the Lovett's were eager to hit the water. We launched their dinghy, a Chesapeake Light Craft Passage Maker, at Marshallberg Harbor.  They motored the dinghy and I paddled a kayak across Core Sound to Codds Creek along the South Core Banks.
 The skinny water and low tide made the Codds Creek egress a bit tricky, but the day long journey went smoothly.

So here I am at the ides of June.  The Lovett's have continued on to their boat in Wilmington, NC and Anne is back to work in Beaufort.  Time to refocus on C'est la Vie projects.