It has been 2 years since our last haulout in Kudat, on the north end of Borneo. Here in Langkawi, Malaysia, our worker, Norhan is bear strong. He ran the heavy, 6”, random orbit sander continuously for 2.5 days prepping the bottom for new antifouling. Norhan is a school teacher who had 2 weeks off and his wife was not going to allow him to sit around the house, so she answered Rebecca’s internet advert for a boat yard worker. Simply rolling paint on the hull was a luxury compared to the dusty sanding work. Two layers of blue, then 3 layers of red and Brick House will be ready to launch. That will keep us for another 2-3 years. While paint work was being done, I cut and installed a faring block to hold a new, Raymarine, high resolution sonar transducer. My old fish finder is cool electronics which shows color graphics of the ocean bottom including blips where the fish are. That powerful machine can reach down to 4,000 feet on a gray scale and around 2,000 feet in color. The new sonar is high definition which will show the same thing, down to 900 feet, but more like a picture. That could have helped our anchoring in Indonesia where 3 times a week I had to put on the SCUBA tank and untangle our anchor in 100 feet of water. I also installed our new grade 5 titanium bow roller assembly. The old stainless assembly was 41 years old and shiny, but for stainless steel, that shine can be hiding near failure. Grade 5 titanium weighs half as much as 316 stainless yet is 3.5 times stronger. And on the Kiwiprop I am testing Propspeed which is not antifouling but an antiadhesion to resist marine growth from grabbing hold, which also makes the little buggers easy to brush off. No worries heading out to the Indian Ocean in February with this gear.

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