July, 2023

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Sunday July 23rd Extending my Zaandam visit through the 28th. 

Sunday, July 23rd, 2023

I had booked 4 weeks that ended on Friday. But did not get the job done yet. I was able to stay another week in the same yard shed at Klaas Mulder Watersport.

I had promised that I would post the size of the rot repair once I had opened up the wounds. But it is only after these 4 weeks that I can give an estimate of it. I feel confident that this extra week will finish the need to be under cover. She should be closed up and I can take a breather and not have to always have a tarp over the boat. But there will still work to be done back in the water in Amsterdam.

The rot ended up practically all on the starboard side at all but the most forward stanchion bases and both starboard and port pushpit bases.

one of the stanchion bases

starboard stern

what this stern corner looked like on purchase. Neatly hidden under the paint and putty.

Starboard stanchion post. Notice the white epoxy filler just attached to the rotten plywood. This is most likely an older “fix” than the seller did.

Port stern corner




I cut out 8 foot by 5 inch of the outer edge of the starboard deck, and replaced the entire deck width, about 6 feet of the rest of the aft starboard deck. And I cut down as far as a foot of the hull below the lifeline stanchions. I scarfed in new 3/8” thick of the same Okoume marine plywood.

Yesterday I was fitting in the deck replacement and just could not figure out why there was not enough space left to glue on the teak deck strips. Turned out that the original deck is 3/8”  (10 mm) and I had measured it as 12mm. A difference of just under 1/8”. But it would not give me enough room to match the new teak strips. I made this 8 foot up from 3 lengths and had the 6 scarf joints made up. Because of the bow in the deck it would take a large panel to cut this much width out of it.

the 8 foot deck edge removal

the repairs scarfed in the hull

It would add more than a day to start anew with 3/8” plywood.

So far, I have not needed to purchase any plywood or boat lumber. I had a good stock of ½ and 3/8 inch marine plywood remnants from  last year’s bottom repair. I, or better the crooked seller,  got lucky, I also did not need to purchase the solid wood for the gunwhale which was glued to the upper rim of the deck and in the removal split apart. I had a square of clear Meranti left over from which we made the backing plate on last year’s bottom repair.

A very kind man, René, was recommended by the yard boss here. He is close by and has a boat building shop on the water at his home. He has every latest wood working machinery, sawing, planing, sanding I can dream of. He split the square at an angle to get the size I needed with a 22mm top and about 12 mm bottom. I need to install this first because the new deck extends over the 22mm edge.

And I just talked to Rene and he will sand the ½” pieces down to 3/8” to rescue me on yesterday’s bad discovery. I plan to do the teak strips back in Amsterdam. They were originally 6 mm (1/4”) but have been sanded/worn down to 4 mm and less. The toe rail was screwed and glued to the guwhale and also broke in bits. I will worry about it in Amsterdam.

It has been a rough job and probably a bit above my pay grade. To measure and cut some of these many angled pieces. As an example the corner post on the stern had four different angles on the sides and slopes on the top and bottom. Lots of trial and error. But I have become a pro in comparison to last year’s training by Robert Skagen to make the scarf joints and now 4 times faster.

The yard is family run, father and son. Very nice friendly well organized. No showers. So, I wash in the boat, rinsing with cups of water standing in the bilge and then removing the water with my wet-dry vacuum. It is very quiet here at night in comparison of the noise in Amsterdam right next to a freeway. But miss the club socializing. The Sunday service is my weekly social treat. The Saint Bonifacius church is reasonably well attended. Quite a few Indonesians, Filipinos and Vietnamese. The Indonesians, to me are as similar to the Filipinos as the French Polynesians to the Hawaiians.

And I quickly have to correct my self if I wish the Indonesian Mabuhai or the Filipino Selamat Pagi.

The pastor is from Perala but the priests rotate between the 4 parishes in the Zaandam district. So do the choirs. Two weeks ago it was a special treat. A soprano solo sang Mozart’s Ave Verum and a baritone Panis Angelicus.

It was the Slavery memorial day and prior to the service the organist played Amazing Grace when the choir rehearsed. I quickly looked up the lyrics on my phone. Would not miss this opportunity. But, it ended up as an organ instrumental only, very nice, jazzed up. The Neo-Gothic building was completed in 1900, this picture shows one of the large stained glass windows and you will see below it part of one of the 14 Stations of the cross. They are done by the very same artist as the ones I showed in my Good Friday post in the much older Saint Nicholas church in Amsterdam.

Saint Bonofacius church

Zaandam is a village compared to Amsterdam. The people are even friendlier. On my first grocery shopping I had a young man lift my shopping basket onto the cashier’s conveyor belt and then when I bagged them another customer lifted my shopping bag up to the bagging level while I stuffed my bag. I miss home (which one Jack?) but I enjoy the kindness and genuine interest the average Dutchman has for total strangers.

I am slowly getting over my depression from the disappointment on the miserable response on the effort to help out my friend Ken. A few more donations came in.

The article in the June “Zeilen” magazine, that promoted me to sailing celebrity status can now be read at 


One side benefit is that there has been a very nice surge in “SoloMan” book sales, through this article. You should be able to use a language translator to get the major lines of the story.

Enjoy the rest of the summer and say a prayer for your friend while he is atoning for his past sins.