Oct 14, 2008

Butt Ugly Boat Update, Part 1

Judging by the number of people who've asked me how it's going with the Butt Ugly Boat, I guess I've been remiss in posting updates on our progress.

Ever since we got past the wedding craziness last month, we've spent almost every spare minute at the lake cleaning, polishing, and de-funking and we've now reached that happy stage of the project where everyone who comes on board does a little double take of surprise.

The biggest improvement so far doesn't translate very well to the internet--smell. The BUB smells way mo' bettah than it used to thanks to liberal applications of soap and water followed by a couple of gallons of teak oil and topped off with an entire weekend strapped to a carpet shampooer. The delicate aroma of deisel fuel with a top note of crud and a subtle hint of cootie is gone. Morley now feels free to walk about the cabin without his shoes on and Shelby no longer whines and holds her nose when she's aboard. I could kick myself for not taking a photo of the carpet after just one pass with the shampooer--it looked like one of those TV commercials for miracle carpet cleaners. Except a lot more gross. And disgusting.

Anyway, here's a fairly current view of the salon after 20 trips (at least) to the dumpster with a dock cart full of crap:

It is cleaner and there's less junk sitting around, but no dramatic changes in decor change yet. And here's a fairly recent shot of the master cabin. I replaced the old bedding with some fresh, clean cootie-free linens:

...here's what it looked like before in case you forgot (shiver) (retch) (gag):

We've started making some repairs and improvements too. We replaced the funky, decrepit 1980's style leather/brass cabinet pulls with some new ones made of brushed pewter that are slightly retro-yet-sleek (plus we replaced the cabinet hinges--all 86 of them).

The kitchen faucet had been leaking for ages so Morley installed a snazzy new one. Please note that the faucet in the photo below is the old leaky one, not the snazzy new one:

We'll eventually reconfigure the entire galley to move the sink towards the wall, install an 18 inch dishwasher, then replace the countertop with Corian--but that leaky faucet had to go now. Keeping a bath towel wrapped around the kitchen faucet didn't exactly compliment the decor.

Our project this past weekend was to figure out the electrical system and its mysterious ways. Sometimes the boat was slow to crank after we'd been sitting for a while which made us suspect the batteries weren't charging as they should. We crossed our fingers and hoped it was a simple solution because we have huge 4D batteries aboard and they are darn near impossible to manhandle in and out of the engine room (they weigh 130 pounds each). We dreaded the prospects of having to replace them and getting his-and-hers hernias, not to mention they ain't cheap and we have three of them.

After a little investigative work we discovered all they needed was to more water, and fortunately water--even the prerequisite distilled water--is cheap. Just topping off those bad girls took about three gallons' worth of water and took about half an hour. They are seriously big batteries.

The next big thing is to make some major decisions on the new decor because our favorite upholsterer, brother in law Jim, has put us on his schedule next month. We'll spend the next few weeks debating the merits of various shades of beige, then choose the new carpet and the leather for the sofas. And then Jim will liberate us from our 1980's den of decorating hell, and then we'll have a nice memorial service for that gawd-awful blue carpet--may it rest in pieces--and the BUB will look modern and cheerful and clean forever and ever. Amen.

So that's the news from the Butt Ugly Boat. I'd like to announce the BUB is officially a cootie-free zone with a fresh Springtime scent. It's safe to come visit us now.

PS: Matt, I'm looking at you.

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