Sparks Are In The Air

A lot like the boatyard, you drive unexpectedly down this road and make a turn you might’ve passed by and enter a world all its own. A lot unlike the boatyard is the movement! Loud noises, fast pace, and cool cars. This is Rolf’s haven. His shop, nestled right next to the Sonoma Raceway, is littered with metal shavings and any hammer you could ever dream up. The walls tower with race car memorabilia and tokens of finished projects. This is a lot like how I envision Garrett’s mind but with boats of course.

“I’ve got the best view in the world,” Rolf says as he ushers me to the backdoor of his shop. As the door opens my ears are assaulted with screaming engines, downshifting transmissions, and screeching tires. Rolf yells, “If you’re into cars!”

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This is the start of a beautiful relationship. Meet the newest crew to the Salt & Tar family. He may be twice our age but he runs around his shop with such excitement and eagerness it leaves us craving his youth. Rolf is helping us figure out and make the fittings for the rudder. He’s also stoked to help with future projects like the chainplates, fuel tanks, rig, anything involving the Westerbeastie, and even filming as he too, like Reid, has a drone!

So Garrett started by drawing up the plan and buying material.

Garrett used the angle grinder and cut the steel flat bar for the rudder and keel strapping. The steel has a nice natural layer of oxidation which doesn’t need to be dealt with until after we’re done cutting, slicing, and welding it.

I’m probably not the best one to be writing this post as much of what Garrett and Rolf discussed just went over my head. I’m still piecing together what we have so far and how it’s going to end up looking like what’s on the drawing Garrett made.

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I know the pintels are the rod things…

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and the gudgens are the circle toobie thingies…

 

 

Sorry guys that’s all I got haha

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Cheers!

More to come 😉

A Man Down, A New Project, A Test, and A Toy

A fallen soldier: our Ridgid orbital finally kicked the bucket. What can we say about Ridgid? For it being a middle of the line tool brand we are impressed. Honestly it’s outlasted some of the top brand tools we’ve had. We’ve asked a lot of this little orbital over the years. The rod inside has sheered off. Garrett’s repaired this trooper a couple times and it’s always come back but I believe it’s time to let this guy rest.

On a bright note progress is good!

Garrett’s got all the templates for the starboard side chainplates made. We’ve made a wonderful friend who’s a welder and he’s going to help us create all kinds of cool stuff for Rediviva. Our first project together will be the chainplates. The plan is, after they’re bent into shape, Garrett will through bolt the top leaving the bottom bolt off so we can adjust the plate once the masts are up to get the angle of the chainplate right. Before we get the masts on board we’ll also be crafting the dead eyes. With access to a machine shop we’ll be able to shape the round pieces of wood (Black Locust) and drill the holes for the line and bend and wrap the steel strapping that hugs the dead eye and attaches to the chainplate on one end and our stay at the other. Garrett says….I can paint the topsides after we get the first bolt of the chainplates secured….I’m so itching to paint!

Now that the spring is transitioning into summer we haven’t had any rain for a few weeks now and it is getting hot! We’ve had to hydrate our main companion way hatch and boy was it thirsty. This was also a neat experiment seeing how quickly the douglas fir, which is the same as our planking, took up the water. It was hardly leaking by the end of the day. The following day the hatch held most of the water all day. I think we might be surprised how quick Rediviva will take up! Although the big boat is a little more dry than the hatch but with the help of the caulking and tar… She’ll be sitting proud nestled in her new salty environment.

Garrett’s brother Reid showed up the other day with a fancy new toy!

Swab didn’t know what to do. I can’t wait to get the photos from Reid’s drone to show you guys! Rediviva looks so amazing from a bird’s eye view. What was really cool was seeing her in row with production boats and I’m telling you she fit right in. Her lines from an arial view is perfect. Cute as a Button they say.

Today in Yesterday’s Lens

Isn’t technology wonderful. There was a time I didn’t think so. A time we nearly rejected it entirely. But! It’s brought us to you. It’s given me a reason to write my thoughts. People to share them with. Today, I’m reminiscing because it’s been awhile. A lot has happened and it’s tricky to remember all the things. I’ve taken 6,059 photos since we’ve started the build. The number looks small actually. The last 3 years narrowed down to 4 digits and a comma. Six thousand and fifty nine photographs. 5 words still doesn’t seem to do it justice but there it is. Maybe some of the big things in life truly aren’t that enormous. Building Rediviva is just a chapter after all. The dream, the dreaming, doesn’t stop there. I heard recently someone say, “Once you begin to realize a dream, live it, then it’s no longer a dream is it. The dream then becomes the next thing.” Garrett embraces this as it is what pulls him forward. He is a dreamer. More, more, next, next, dream bigger, dream on, push yourself. I too think of the future but with reflection always on where I’ve been. A dreamer in a different sense. How did we get here? Where could we go? Today is because of yesterday and tomorrow is determined by what’s already happened and my choices today. So bringing it back to my first statement; technology is wonderful. I no longer have to keep everything logged in my head, which is a good thing because Garrett will tell you “logging” especially accurately isn’t something my brain does well, I can have it all neatly organized in files. 

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My computer holds ruffly 1,000 photos at any given time and 4.5 hours of video footage in iMovie to make an episode. That makes up about 2 months so the last 3 years is held on 2 hard drives, Facebook, YouTube, and here. How wonderful is it to be able to look back on your life! Pictures and videos can make even the worst times somehow beautiful years later. What did today look like a year ago, two years ago? I can do better than tell you, as most of you read about it already years ago,

I can show you my memories:

 

2015:

Today 3 years ago we were laminating our keelson. We also made all of the keel patterns from the lofting floor and did the second phase of lofting, the half-widths, to get the bevels of our frames.

2016:

Today 2 years ago we were planing down our second stock of planking material. We also put up the first plank of the 8th run on both the starboard and port side. Garrett still stares at his wood to this day…and has a little in his beard.. right now..wait what day is it?

2017:

Today a year ago we were cutting, shaping and installing the cabin ceiling. We had our buddy Hoffa there to help and Swabie to watch our work and catch any mistakes.

Today:

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It’s not over yet! You’ll have to wait and found out what today brings just like everybody else 😉

 

Seize the day!

~Ruthie

Channels

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We’ve been working on the channels for the last couple days. The channels are apart of the rigging. The chainplates are wrapped around the channels to hold the stays for the rig further out from the boat making it easier to walk on the side decks without the rigging being pinched in and to get the rigging further away from the bulwarks as well as giving the dead eyes more room.

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I thought it looked kind of neat with our neighbors mast next to us, at the right angle it looks like we have our mizzen up already  —–>

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So in the above picture this is what it will look like. We’re installing the white block you see that holds the chainplates out from the hull.

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Garrett got the port mizzen channel on by himself but for the last two days he’s had my help and I haven’t a clue how he did this alone!

Each channel is made up of three pieces screwed and tarred together. Garrett staggered the screws and angled them slightly. Once the tar dries a little we’ll be able to come back and slice off the excess with a razor blade easily. Then each channel will get sanded down and rounded to make ’em sexy.

 The chainplates will be angled around the channel and extend down the hull about 5 planks, close to the waterline, where they’ll be bolted through the hull in probably three places.

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Garrett trying to explain all this to me 🙂

We did the forward port channel together for the main mast. Garrett located where the chainplates will be from the plans.

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I’d help hold the piece in place while Garrett measured then drilled the pilot hole followed by the fastener. We dry fit each piece then took it back off smearing tar on both meeting faces then secured it back in place. Garrett somehow managed to wrangle the pieces in solo but we still had a decent time doing it with the both of us. Garrett drilled with one hand pulling in with the other and me using both hands and all my might we got each bit to make the bend.

Port Main Channel done!

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The following day brought us over to the starboard side. Starting with the starboard main channel. Which went smoothly until we realized the middle piece was put in upside down… Thankfully we didn’t get too far that it was a major pain to redo but the whole measure twice thing would’ve solved that one before it happened haha

By the time we were onto the starboard mizzen channel we were pros. We would’ve been done in under 20 minutes if the impact driver battery didn’t die… But the channel pieces were happy to make the bend and went in easy. Maybe it being the heat of the day had something to do with it. Those dense fir pieces hate the cold but love the heat!

My sister and her fiance showed up just as we were finishing for the day and got some action photos for us 😉

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Tarring each face of the last piece of the last channel! The spring is wrapping up and the summer is kicking in. I roasted my shoulders yesterday. It’s going to be a successful summer that’s for sure! We’ve had almost a solid week without rain. Garrett will be so happy when we doesn’t have to cover up all his tools and work space anymore.

Extracting the Rudder

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How Garrett and I even got this massive barn-door of a rudder into the boat is beyond me. The thing is made out of old growth fir that weighs a ton, two layers of 2×10’s sandwiched together. The height of the rudder is as tall as the boat since it will hang off the back and the tiller will come over the transom. To get it into the boat for transport we had to lift it up, just the two of us, probably 15 feet on rickety scaffolding to reach the deck. Then down into the boat, which doesn’t have companion way stairs yet, and over the engine to be secured inside. But down is easier than up.

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Once we got the rudder up onto the deck it was all downhill from there.

Still about 15 feet down to the ground but with a decent ladder to slide the rudder on Garrett tied lines to support it from falling too fast or skidding right off the ladder all together.

I held one line while Garrett held the other. We lifted the rudder onto the top of the ladder tilting it slowly for the descent. It was a bit heavy but we were being cautious not to move too quickly. When, at the perfect timing!, Reid (Garrett’s brother) showed up:

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Reid held the base of the rudder and helped ease some of the load and proceeded down the ladder with the rudder guiding it to the ground.

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!Teamwork!

The rudder is the very last thing to come out of the boat since the move. We were half putting it off because it’s so heavy but also because there really wasn’t a need to get it out yet anyway.

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The reason we’re getting it out today is because we met with a local follower of Salt&Tar that owns a machine shop near by who’ll be helping us make the pintles and gudgeons to hang the rudder. He’s offered the use of his shop and to teach us the welding trade. Garrett’s really excited to learn some welding tricks. It’s kind of one of the last frontiers, so to speak, of the boating world for him. He started with fiberglass boats then moved onto wooden boats out of the love for the material passed down from his dad, although his dad never sailed wood working is a passion they share. We’ve always had to fix our own vessels so throughout our sailing life Garrett’s learned plumbing, mechanical, electrical, rigging, and anything else that comes up. I guess besides steel it’d be ferro cement and that doesn’t really require a special skill, like welding, as just a different understanding of the material. We’ve talked about also constructing the fuel and water tanks for Rediviva, the drive shaft for the engine, and various bits like the mast head and/or the dead eye rings. This is the beginning of beautiful relationship!

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It’s so great to be near friends and family again. Not only for their helping hands, and sometimes their impeccable timing, but knowing we’re not alone in this endeavor. To all of you reading, you too help motivate and encourage us. It is something special to now be in an area where we can connect with both. This last week 4 out of the 7 days Garrett had YouTube followers stop by. Two offered up tools and access to their shop, one brought beer, and another is willing to teach. What an amazing world. Truly thank you to everyone’s positive attitude. Feeling grateful and blessed today!

Love in Boats

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Taking advantage of the break in the weather we were finally able to prime the port side.

This is my element. I love painting. It’s been a bit weird up to this point only being able to help Garrett in small ways. Bedding something in tar or brushing on preservative and let’s not forget the important part of handing him things. That’s really what’s been so great about filming and creating the episodes; it gives me a bigger purpose.

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I really get excited standing back and envisioning her finish paint. I have thoughts that almost feel like memories of freshly stroking her name onto her hull for the first time. Garrett and I have been messing about in boats for nearly the whole time we’ve known each other. The 6 boats that came before Rediviva were all projects except for maybe the last one, Scout. We worked out the perfect team. Broken down simply Garrett worked the decks and I kept down below in order. The first order of business when we acquired a boat would be clean and organize. Garrett clearing the decks figuring out what to keep, what to toss, and what needed to be fixed. I, pretty much the same list, figured out what was usable down below, what needed to get off the boat, and what needed painting. I think through that process is how the boat and I got to know each other. I walk her floor boards (sometimes after hours of cleaning to get to them) open every door, cabinet, and dark space to give her air. Then we begin a relationship, it sounds silly but the love I feel when the paint supplies come out is real.

This is only 3 coats of primer so it doesn’t fully count as it’s still prep work but once the roller saturated in her topcoat color hits her sides I’ll be truly in love.

We’ve been taking our time to get to know one another so it’ll be a lasting relationship….until Garrett gets another bright idea 😉

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