What is coming next?

April was another record month on SustainableSailing with a 25% increase in views over March which was our busiest month so far.

So we assume there are some new visitors (and an especially warm welcome to the new subscribers).

With this in mind, and also with us being able to able to get on with the refit, it seems an update on what is coming next would be a good idea.

By Sabbatical in April 2022

Our first priority is the aft cabin work that is required to get the mizzen mast up with it’s new dyneema stays. So that means finishing the chainplates and the work to better support the mizzen mast foot (which is connected with reconfiguring the double bed in the aft cabin).

Then we have two paths that we can work on. Inside (and in poor weather) we can continue with the aft cabin remodelling. Outside we can get everything ready to put the mizzen mast up (which is quite a long list).

You can see our first draft changes to the aft cabin layout here since then the ideas have only changed a little. Once the main work is done the mattress can be adjusted, the whole cabin insulated and the headlining fitted – that will be our first “finished” space as our comfortable place to sleep in a warm, nice looking cabin.

After the mizzen and aft cabin our next task is going to be the work on and under the foredeck. That includes modifying the bow roller. We want to be able to securely self stow and launch our Spade anchor; to have a roller for mooring lines that is clear of the anchor; to have points for the yankee, forestay. We want to have a plan and the basics in place for both a code zero and an asymmetric spinnakers (either via direct connection to the new roller structure or or a way to have a removable bowsprit). We will do the structural work to reconfigure the old anchor and chain lockers for our new windlass and inner forestay. We wrote about this in Plans for anchoring and not a lot has changed except that we hope to get our existing bow roller changed locally now that I have managed to remove it.

Then a few basics (3 holes to fill above the waterline – old shower outlet, old bilge pump and engine exhaust) and we can get on with the bilge (remove old water tank, new bilge pumps, new water tanks) so that we have done everything below the motor. That will allow us to fit the propeller shaft (cutlass bearing, dripless seal and aquadrive) and so be able to finally install the electric motor and batteries.

Meanwhile once the mizzen is up we can properly check the plans for the solar panels and wind vane self steering. The solar will come first.

At this point we can fit the new chainplates for the main mast (some dry weather needed) and do all the rigging work. In bad weather there will be all the interior wiring and plumbing for the galley.

Somewhere in all this we will have decided what to do with the guardrails. That is connected with decisions about the solar panels but also whether we keep what we have or replace them (several have been bent, the line guides on the top of the stanchions have significant UV damage, we would like higher lines for better security).

We have lots of painting to do including antifouling below the waterline (after removing the existing paint, possibly needing a new epoxy barrier coat); hull topsides (the gel coat is too tired to be worth us restoring); decks (to improve non-slip and hide changes/repairs) and probably a quick spray of the inside to look brighter and cleaner.

Lots of other jobs won’t happen before we launch (hopefully in time for my sabbatical in April 2022) so we won’t have done much more to the galley, we won’t have washbasins in either head or the shower in the forward head. The forecabin will be untouched so just for storage. No new headlining in the main saloon.

Instrumentation/electronics will be minimal. New bulkhead compass, new depth sounder, new AIS (transmit and receive), new VHF radio, android tablet for navigation (phones as backup), navigation lights and some internal LED lighting.

There are lots of other smaller jobs (like cleaning and refitted the connection from the steering to the rudder stock) and a few big ones that don’t depend on us (eg the boatyard fitting the new toe rails).

Before we move to living aboard and cruising the world

Following the 2022 season we can get on with “finishing” more things


  • finish the galley with an extended worktop making it a full U shape, gimbled cooking, fridge, storage
  • finish the forward heads with basin and shower. Reconfigure the doors so that it can be a good “dressing space” for the forecabin.
  • finish the aft heads with basin
  • forecabin to be made into a nice guest cabin (and good storage when no guests)
  • replace chart table with Refleks diesel heater and storage (on the go chart work in the cockpit, planning on the saloon table), fit hot water storage and radiators from the Refleks
  • New headlining throughout to match the aft cabin (with insulation everywhere), nice LED lighting everywhere
  • Full navigation suite using Raspberry Pi’s and Open Source projects such as OpenCPN and SignalK. Other Raspberry Pi’s for “office work” and play. One fully configured Raspberry Pi navigation system stored with a screen and battery in a Faraday cage to be available should everything else be destroyed by lightning).

Above decks

  • Fit windvane self steering (either a Cape Horn or a Hydrovane)
  • Improve wheelhouse (stronger and opening front, full but removable enclosure). Some ideas here.
  • New sails, furlers and extra cockpit winches to take us towards our ideal sail plan

And onwards

The aim will do have all this complete before we move to live aboard. After that hopefully the only remaining big tasks will be a Watermaker (needed if we are going to do our own clothes washing and have showers without visiting marinas) and getting the Plastic Recycling to work onboard. However, we will be cruising with tools and materials so that we can maintain and repair as much as possible ourselves as we go.

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