Sunday, May 30, 2010

Updates and downsides

The news isn't encouraging all round, I'm afraid, all excepting the wonderful sound of my Vereeniging's engine starting as I press the button and it roars into life - bliss!

The update on my wet bottom isn't good though ;-P. My wonderful daughters came and helped me yesterday. We scraped and cleaned the rust off the area I had pulled up in front of what we discovered were two leaky water tanks (now emptied, thanks to lots of assistance from Koos, too).

In fact, we were all ready to go with the vlak vet, the thick black grease that we use to protect our particular type of bottom. Then I had a thought. Maybe I should check further along the floor, and so Jodie and I pulled up another two boards running down the middle of the barge. I should mention that all these boards were originally screwed down into the ribs, but what with getting wet and all, the screws had rusted, which meant destroying the wood around them to get them out. Still, I said to Jodie (not once but several times)floorboards are cheaper than welding, and so we persisted - and I'm glad we did. The water had crept further than I would ever have thought, and now I have to do the same thing again with the next section....let it dry, scrape it clean and grease it. The next section after that will probably have to be done too, which will be more difficult as there are cupboards built in over the floor, and I can't take all of them out. I will take up another middle board, and hope for the best...floorboards are cheaper than welding...floorboards are.....

The next section I've removed


A close up of the yukky bottom still to be dried and cleaned


And this is what it looks like after it's been dried and scraped free of rust

The other sad news is that the Hennie H was as rotten as we feared it would be and all the inspector could do was sympathise. Everything Koos took off has to be replaced with thicker steel. Still, he seems to be reasonably upbeat about things, as according to his calculations, we should still be able to manage the repairs. The downside is that we cannot do this ourselves, and professional welders costs a lot of money. The negotiations begin tomorrow morning!

23 comments:

  1. Oh, Val, I'm so sorry to hear about all your setbacks. I do hope your negotiations go well and that you can get the Hennie in ship shape at a reasonable cost.


    We are so looking forward to seeing you in July! So excited!

    xx
    AM

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  2. I am sorry that you both have had bad news. Your job is time consuming and Koos' is expensive. Annoying especially at this time of the year when you just want to get out faring. Hopefully you can console each other with your wet bottom and Koos' thinning bottom! x

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  3. Sorry about that Val. I sure hope you can get the repairs done at a good cost.

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  4. :( There will be a day when you can sit inside your lovely Vereeniging without getting wet feet! Hope you can keep up the good spirit as Koos can! But knowing you two that will be going to be alright. Just make sure you'll be keeping your goal in mind, because you will achieve it. Maybe not now, but certainly tomorrow... or the day after that, or after that!
    xx

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  5. Val,
    My sympathies! Steel on the water can be a real trial and rust is truly the gift that keeps on giving. Good luck with it; I will keep looking in to see how it goes.
    Tom

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  6. Good luck with it all. Hearing all the work that you and Koos do make me think that this is a real shared passion of yours. Yes, I've experienced the boating life and understand it's allure too. Good luck with the repairs and the negotiations

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  7. I want to say something, but don't quite know what to... apart from the fact that I am hurting for you. Wishing you lots of energy and determination to keep going... and lots of pleasant thoughts to take your mind off it all.
    ;(

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  8. That sucks. It sounds like you have a plan to deal with it though. I hope it all works out. I'm sure it will.

    Do you still want help from Alex?

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  9. Oh dear, anyone who thinks dealing with boats is easier than house repairs has another thing comin'!

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  10. Oh no, well it was a good move to open up more than you thought would be needed to open from the very beginning and got those leaking water tanks spotted. It would sure have created an even bigger problem in the future if not fixed.
    I see the bottom support structure is a mess of L- and I- beams riveted together. This is a real breeding-center for rust. While you are at it, you could treat those seems with the same type of anti-corrosive protection used in hollow structures in cars, it will seep into the seams and stay there forever. A known brand is Dinitrol, cavity wax, and comes in spray-cans. Then you can put the "vlak vet" on top and be happy.
    Sorry for the bad news about Hennie H. Unexpected costs are the worst kind of costs... :(

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  11. Sorry to hear that, Val, but a good thing you did persist.
    But, with all those rotten bottoms you speak of, a lawn and garden sound like much less work!
    Good luck wiping and greasing those bottoms!

    lol

    must be a good sign...
    verification word - "vally"!

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  12. Your blog is ALWAYS like a beautiful tour guide! The most beautiful photos, and amazing stories! I even love to hear about the issues at hand...white it is bad news it does make me smile and keep in perspective that we are all human and can't control everything.

    Big hugs!!

    xoxo

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  13. oh no. i'm so sorry to hear of all your troubles. it's a good thing you are both so passionate about your barges. i would probably have given up already...
    keeping my fingers crossed that this is it as far as it goes barge trouble wise.
    take care!
    xxo

    ps. thanks for your nice comment about my pictures :)

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  14. Oh god, so sorry to hear about all these unpleasant discoveries with Vereeniging and Hennie H. I suppose it's better that you found out it all in Vereeniging now so that you can get everything in order once and for all, even though it takes more work. But I don't suppose it's much of a consolation. I do hope as well that you'll be able to get a good deal with the welders.

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  15. Thank you all for your sympathy dear souls. It has kept me going the last few days. I am exposing ever more of my bottom...ahem....and finding the same story. As they say here in NL, 'what a work!'

    Hans, thank you for that excellent advice. I shall follow it through!

    For the rest of you, your kind words are very welcome. I love Bilge Rat's expression about rust being the gift that keeps on growing.How true!!

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  16. So sorry to hear about your bad news Val but I am sure once you turn this corner it will be full steam ahead.

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  17. Val,
    The other (and worse, I think) thing about rust is that it never sleeps.
    Tom

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  18. Oh Tom, you are so right. I am feeling quite depressed about the state of my bottom ;-( It's looking like so much work to put it right.

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  19. Lots of lunges and squats :-) hee hee

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  20. LOL Mo, I could do with some of those too xxx

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  21. Don't get too blue Maman. With a little work and loads of vlakvet, we'll get your bottom back to the right condition in no time.

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  22. Bless you, Dojo. You've already helped me so much. Love you xxx

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