World of goo

Paint and screwdrivers for dinner

Paint and screwdrivers for dinner

Black goo is not the correct technical term for the stuff that we smothered over the back of the rubbing strake (that big long piece of wood we were starting to attach down the side of the boat at the weekend) to keep it and the nuts, bolts and holes waterproof. The tin described it as having something to do with bitumin, but this means little to me other than reminding me of poets laureate (sorry).

We removed the bolts we put in at the weekend and dug holes for their return. This was done with the tools I call “is a drill” and “not a drill”, because one of them (the big one) is a drill of some sort which you can use to make nice holes for bolt heads to sit in. Surprisingly enough the other one is not a drill, it’s more like a screwdriver and bashes as it turns. Can’t remember for the life of me what it’s called, but I used it to fix the die to drill in the right places. I got quite quick at this in the end (minor chufty). Then the bolts were put in and tightened and hurrah, we have a rubbing strake.

Yes, yes, I still sound like a boat-tard. And no, no it wasn’t this simple. The join where Rich had attached two pieces of wood to make the strake longer parted as he had suspected it might and needed repairing. Today was my turn to work in the cramped aft cabin where you’re squished between a bulkhead and a box with only room to move one of your arms, whilst holding all your tools and not always being able to see what you’re doing. Removing the bolts meant twatting and buggering the thread in some of them, and unscrewing them on the outside led to Rich having sore fingers and me having a minor breakdown from the fear of dropping slippery mole grips in the drink. Getting the wood back to where we’d put it before was another feat of balance and strength by Rich. And on top of all this, he had to get back to work and I had to get back here to open the gym.

So it might surprise you to learn that it was all pretty brilliant. I like working with Rich, he likes working with me (he reminds me of this when I’m in a hole making pained noises as I turn a rachet) and we have the radio that his mum got us for Christmas turned to 6music to keep us going. Knackered, stinky and covered in goo is a good way to end a working (half) day, particularly if it as accompanied with a sense of a achievement. One strake down, one to go.


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