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Old 14-10-2008, 20:55   #1
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Hunter 34 retrofit - Blog

I just bought a Hunter 34 that I plan to retrofit. I thought it would be fun to document my experience on a blog.

Here's the address: Hunter 34 Retrofit

Advice and comments are more than welcome!
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Old 14-10-2008, 21:33   #2
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Make a a thorough photographic journal of the interior. Go nuts with sticking your camera into places you cannot get your head and shoot away. Shoot everything. Take closeups of fixtures then take orienting shots. The cool thing about doing a photo journal is later when you put together a series of before and after photographs taken from the same perspective. Also, you will likely have someone do some major work and things are bound to be moved, levers pulled, and maybe just vanish. Having original shots can help you keep true to the builder's original intentions -- and then improve on them (right!). Sometimes when you get too many parallel projects going, a good series of shots can help you find your way back home.

I found that tackling things that mattered most to me first was the best strategy I could have ever adopted. But it is a different way of doing things. For me, it was the smell (I cite this cause you mention the same thing). I started with the smell. It did not matter to me if the electrical panel needed work, I decided to start on the smell. That led to the bilges being cleaned and worked on and painted. But then the smell shifted. That led to the head being replaced. And then there were more smells there. that led to hoses being replaced. But then the smell shifted again, and that led to the stove coming out and then wiring and tubing being replaced. meanwhile, I started to learn how every inch of her smelled -- and that led to smelling damp wetness which led to rot and so forth. I learned what was a healthy smell, what was suspect, or what was simply old and funky

My point is that there are plenty of ways to start projects but you might want to pick the ones that matter most to you. As I fixed smells right and left, systems came on line and most importantly, I enjoyed being on the boat more and more. The more time I spent on the boat the more other things emerged that needed fixing. But the common denominator was to address my quirky needs first and in doing so I learned the art of balancing doing something that just HAS to be done vs something that will make you feel god when you look at your handiwork.

Maybe for you it is simply wanting a place to sit and relax and there is not enough light in that area. Then you start looking at how to solve that problem, and suddenly all sorts of impacted systems come on line and you look at your boat a little differently.

Several folks at the dock would say I really needed to fix my water tank or get the anchoring system back up and working or the furler is busted -- you need to fix that now. Some of those things got fixed in time, but it was how I got there made all the difference to me: Since I did what mattered to me, I kept engaged with my boat and never let go.

Well, I certainly got off on a box there!

Take the massive amount of pictures. You'll bore the rest of your friends, but you will never bore looking at pictures of your boat. Especially when you are on your boat!



Michael
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Old 15-10-2008, 06:49   #3
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Hey Michael, thanks a lot for the sound advice. I think you are right about working first on things that matter the most to you. Last weekend I did start working on the smell! I cleaned the bilges and the head. I would say that 90% of the bad smell is now gone and it makes working on the boat a lot more pleasant. I then started to clean the cargos and everything else that looks dirty. To me this was a good first step since it forces me to have a really good look at the boat in all those little corners. It's the perfect way yo get to know the boat and figure out exactly what needs to be done.

You're also right about the pictures! I did not take images of the bilges before I cleaned them. Now that there all nice and clean I wish I had!
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Old 15-10-2008, 09:16   #4
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For some excellent photographic documentation of an H34 rebuild (mostly interior - severe water damage during a hurricane), go here:

Epitome's Rebuild
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Old 15-10-2008, 11:13   #5
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Have you checked your chainplates? I once delivered a Hunter 34 that dismasted because the steel (not stainless, but steel) chainplates rusted. They are located in an area very difficult to inspect.
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Old 15-10-2008, 11:44   #6
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Thanks Slomotion. That is really an amazing site!
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