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Old 16-06-2015, 11:40   #16
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Re: Staying motivated with all the projects

Lots of great stuff here, and many of you nailed the fact that in my super long winded way, I realize there's no perfect answer here.

Mike - Your point 1-3 definitely apply to me and that's really the key thing for me. It does take me much longer than those with more experience to get an "easy job" done and you also hit my primary concern with the boat not being viewed as a huge time suck. Well at least not purely as a project, we bought the boat to enjoy and learn on before leaving.

Ann - My wife is also interested in working through the projects and we're both aware the winches need to be done and while not scared of the project we want to be able to complete it once started and for the first time, I think that means we need to dedicate a full day to the process, and just rebuild as many as possible in that day. I'm fortunate in that my wife shares the dream and as a result wants to be as involved in everything as I am. The danger here is that I've noticed it's pretty easy to kill a whole weekend on projects and I know if we make that a regular thing, it will stop being fun for one or both of us...and that would be terrible.

I guess this whole thread is a result of me feeling guilty for not getting quite as many things done this weekend as I would have liked, but at the same time. Much of that was do to actually trying to ensure we had some fun time thrown in there.

We have taken advantage of several portable projects, to bring things home and work on them here. refinished cockpit table and drink holder, Dinghy Rub Rail replacement and currently working to on refinishing our hatch boards after adding some doors for marina and anchorage use. I hadn't considered bringing the winches home to clean and rebuild here but may consider that once we've done a few. Want to be sure we don't lose any parts, which is why the current plan is to cut a hole in the bottom of a box equal to the winch size and fit that in place before beginning the dis-assembly process.

Anyway, I appreciate all the feedback folks and based on the feedback I feel less guilty about trying to ensure we actually enjoy our boat time vs. purely focusing on the project list

-EB
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Old 16-06-2015, 12:41   #17
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Re: Staying motivated with all the projects

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Mike - Your point 1-3 definitely apply to me and that's really the key thing for me. It does take me much longer than those with more experience to get an "easy job" done and you also hit my primary concern with the boat not being viewed as a huge time suck. Well at least not purely as a project, we bought the boat to enjoy and learn on before leaving.
Seems to me you're doing great EB. But to pick up on our common observation about so-called "easy" projects. I've learned that when an experienced boat owner says, "Oh, don't worry. This little job is easy ... " DON'T BELIEVE THEM!

Sure, it's "easy" for someone who has done it a hundred times, but for those of us without much handyman skill or experience: IT AIN'T THAT EASY

In fact, I'm thinking about writing a kind of Boatowners' Mechanical and Electrical Manual (the Calder bible) for the rest of us mere mortals. The series header would be: It Ain't That Easy to....
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Old 16-06-2015, 13:24   #18
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Re: Staying motivated with all the projects

Hi EB,

I doubt anyone with a boat can claim differently from what you profess.

Generally, our project philosophy is best paraphrased in the old book Don't Sweat the Small Stuff [and it's all small stuff...]

One of the pearls of wisdom [from memory] was: "When you die, your inbox will be full..."

We prioritize preventative maintenance and safety projects, and let the upgrades and 'comfort' projects prioritize themselves in times where we are looking for something to do during leisure periods [chosen or induced by inclement wx...]

Keep having fun, and prioritize with consensus are my recommendations...

Cheers!
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Old 16-06-2015, 15:13   #19
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Re: Staying motivated with all the projects

Some of my habits regarding lists and tasks don't fit the conditions of the OP, but some of my behavior might be useful.

I have no home away from our boat, but we do travel away frequently. Certainly, I spend most of my days aboard. My boat has been my only home for 43 years and my current boat is 42 years old and in my care for 31 years.

I try to maintain a schedule that includes completing at least one task for my boat every day, but I'm always able to identify items that are light work. I usually keep a written list of about 15 or 20 items that are a mix of maintenance checks, cleaning/polishing, replacing or restoring, ...... 15 minute tasks up to many days of work. I try to pace my work and spread out the easy items so that I'm not left with all difficult jobs. I will admit to repeating the placement of untried tasks on subsequent lists when I have not refined my method or means of completion.

My boat's condition generally improves, but my list never gets "shorter". Some projects remain undone for years while I try to decide what I want to accomplish. For example, I've replaced and resealed my portlights numerous times over 31 years, but I've never decided upon the "final solution"! Sometimes I've considered a need for a specific feature, but over the time of planning, I've lost interest in having it.

I don't believe there's a maintenance plan or schedule that would be suitable for everyone.
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Old 16-06-2015, 17:57   #20
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Re: Staying motivated with all the projects

Its the same story everywhere you go. Never enough time on the boat. Thats why people want to liveaboard...so you never have to leave! Its just so much fun being on the boat.

One suggestion....boat maintenance is MUCH more fun at a beautiful anchorage. When you get all sweaty, jump in for a swim. Even the nastiest job doesn't seem so bad anchored off an island. Usually the skippers of other boats anchored nearby will dinghy over to see "what ja doin?" and offer a helping hand, a word of advice, or just to look over your shoulder in awe.

The obvious answer...spend more time on your boat. Go to 80% time. Take more long weekends. Abuse your sick days. Do you work to live? Or live to work? Obviously you have a great boat...such a shame it spends most of its time tied to the dock, without you, while you sit in a office someplace.
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Old 17-06-2015, 00:27   #21
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Re: Staying motivated with all the projects

Hey EB, it's so great you two are getting out and enjoying the boat on weekends. It is supposed to be relaxing. If you force yourself to spend the whole time working and not having fun, then you'll come to resent the boat. There will always be more projects. Now go grease those winches...and have a cold beer to celebrate. You'll then wonder why you procrastinated
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Old 17-06-2015, 13:12   #22
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Re: Staying motivated with all the projects

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Hey EB, it's so great you two are getting out and enjoying the boat on weekends. It is supposed to be relaxing. If you force yourself to spend the whole time working and not having fun, then you'll come to resent the boat. There will always be more projects. Now go grease those winches...and have a cold beer to celebrate. You'll then wonder why you procrastinated

Great to hear from you again. Great timing, I was just going through some old pictures earlier this week and came across the pics of our weekend sail in SF with you. Wish the sailing down here was as nice!

We're loving the boat and are hoping to get away for a week of local cruising later this fall.

Thanks!
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Old 17-06-2015, 13:34   #23
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Re: Staying motivated with all the projects

Easy solution, buy a small boat (trailer sailer) for those times you want to sail, and keep the big boat for all those times you'd rather work on projects.











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Old 17-06-2015, 14:52   #24
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Re: Staying motivated with all the projects

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If it's broke and NEEDS to be fixed or it will get worst if used, you fix it! Other that everything falls into "when I get around to it"

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ER, after 46 years of boat ownership I've learned to do, maintain, repair many thing myself. But I've also learned there are things I choose not to do myself. Somethings require expertise and/or tools I don't have. When I have a marine pro work on the boat I always watch every step of the way over his shoulder and learn as much as I can (I'm paying for it so I might as well get educated at the same time). Others are too toxic for my liking. Something's are just too uncomfortable to reach at my age. You have to find the right balance for you between working and enjoying, learning boat repair skills and paying for technical expertise. Most of all you have to reserve enough of your boat time for the pleasure of sailing.

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We prioritize preventative maintenance and safety projects, and let the upgrades and 'comfort' projects prioritize themselves in times where we are looking for something to do during leisure periods [chosen or induced by inclement wx...]

Keep having fun, and prioritize with consensus are my recommendations...

Quote:
Originally Posted by ErBrown View Post
Lots of great stuff here, and many of you nailed the fact that in my super long winded way, I realize there's no perfect answer here.

Anyway, I appreciate all the feedback folks and based on the feedback I feel less guilty about trying to ensure we actually enjoy our boat time vs. purely focusing on the project list

I just picked a few great posts to highlight the idea of prioritization.

However you choose to do it, there's probably something like critical stuff (something critical is broken), important stuff (preventive maintenance, for example), improvement stuff, "get a round tuit" stuff, and so forth.

And somewhere in the list -- you pick where, but it's also important -- is "enjoy it" time.

I too choose sometimes to just write a check. If a chore needs more skill (or tools I don't have, and don't want), or if a chore will hurt me (arthritis this, tennis that, frozen something else)... I'm on board with the idea of protecting my "enjoy it" time by paying the right guy to do that job for me.

-Chris
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Old 17-06-2015, 16:10   #25
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Re: Staying motivated with all the projects

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....................

I try to maintain a schedule that includes completing at least one task for my boat every day, ..........................
So, what about today? Yes,- I dipped a Q-tip into a cup with a little black acrylic paint and rejuvenated the registration numbers on my dinghy. 'just something every day. ....or if your not always with your boat, then something on the days where you are with the boat. Keep the habit. There's a huge number of small items and now and then you can through in something big!
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Old 17-06-2015, 17:23   #26
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Re: Staying motivated with all the projects

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Great to hear from you again. Great timing, I was just going through some old pictures earlier this week and came across the pics of our weekend sail in SF with you. Wish the sailing down here was as nice!

We're loving the boat and are hoping to get away for a week of local cruising later this fall.

Thanks!
Well, sailing is going to be GREAT wherever you are! You would not recognize Kynntana right now. I had to get the water heater out, and rather than ripping out the cabinet (umm, who builds a boat AROUND everything else....?) I pulled it out through the sink, which meant destroying the countertops, which meant throwing away the leaky faucets, which meant buying new faucets (twice, because my car was broken into) and then buying new Corian (which my racing friends are now all laughing about). So, yes, take that list, put it away some place safe, sail more, and just do the projects when you damn well feel like doing them
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Old 17-06-2015, 17:47   #27
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Re: Staying motivated with all the projects

Actually I think it was the gods that jammed your sail in retaliation for the sin of not doing your winch maintenance. You gotta watch those gods...
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Old 17-06-2015, 17:56   #28
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Re: Staying motivated with all the projects

For me today I worked on the dinghy as well. Our crappy old inflatable has been falling apart, so we brought it home. Today we re-attached the tracking strips on the bottom of the tubes. So yeah, baby steps
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Old 17-06-2015, 18:01   #29
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Re: Staying motivated with all the projects

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Actually I think it was the gods that jammed your sail in retaliation for the sin of not doing your winch maintenance. You gotta watch those gods...
Hmmm...could be
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Old 17-06-2015, 18:54   #30
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Re: Staying motivated with all the projects

Erin, I was in the same boat as you more or less. Drive from San Antonio to Kemah every other weekend (for 4 years) to hang out on the boat. Maybe do projects and sometimes get out on Galveston Bay for a day sail. It's not easy to keep up with the boat work when you live 250 miles away, and work week days. I think it's a real challenge to keep the boat in great shape, and still get a lot of enjoyment out of your investment. I would hire Diver Dave to clean the hull (and check zincs) once every two or three months, and maybe find a service to keep the boat clean and shiny from the waterline up. Keep a de-humidifier going inside when you are away to keep mold down.

Anyway, all the best to you and Kara. I hope you kids enjoy your boat for many years.

Ralph
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