MRL 2021

A photo of Grace, launched and still in the lift harness.

The year 2021 marked the end of extensive repair projects that had started in 2020. Once I had removed the headliner from the cabin’s ceiling, I sanded the interior of the hull and paint several fresh coats of gelcoat wherever I could reach! I also built shelves below the v-berth to hold a 100Ah Battleborn LiFePO4 battery and simple head made from a 5-gallon bucket and toilet cover.

A photo of Grace's interior in the process of being coated with polyester gelcoat

For Grace’s exterior, I took an all-out approach to deal with a number of issues, including softness in the core of the foredeck and a very slippery non-skid. I started by stripping Grace of her exterior hardware and rigging. From there, Ray Villalba and Lance Clifford did a great job replacing the core in a section of the foredeck and applying new gelcoat everywhere above the waterline. They sanded Grace’s exterior (I lent a hand when I could), sprayed tinted gelcoat accent stripes to the sidewalls in maroon and dark blue, sprayed white gelcoat throughout, and added a beautiful non-skid using a rubber product for texture and a tinted mustard gelcoat. Lastly, they applied new decals and a fresh coat of ablative bottom paint.

By the summer of 2021, I had put the boat together again. I secured the exterior hardware with 316 and A4 grade stainless steel fasteners. For the most part, I stuck to butyl tape, and only sparingly used marine-grade silicone sealant in certain cases. Gary’s Plastic Place fabricated new plexiglass windows, which I installed with tiny barrel bolts.

I tuned the rigging and replaced some of the running rigging. A friend woodworker helped get a few pieces made, such as a the wood framing and slats to the hatch. I applied maybe 6 coats of varnish to all exterior brightwork.

In the cabin, I cleaned and reassembled the Bosworth Company Guzzler GH-M400D manual bilge pump. I also completely rewired the electrical system with new LED lights, B&G instruments, custom AC and DC panels, and much more. The folks at Maritime Electronics were very generous with guidance on designing and installing the electrical system. However, I did all the work myself.

There are many details that I’m surely leaving out. Below is a photo gallery that better describes than what I can in words the extent of work I did on Grace.

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