Well I finally found the right boat project for me. I've been wanting to buy my own boat for years (too many to count), but finding the right one and meeting all my requirements was the challenge. Who knew that when I started my new job with the Navy, the right door would open.
One of the people I work with had a boat sitting on a trailer for the last ten years in the RV storage area on the base. When he heard that I was into sailing, he came over to my office and we started talking about sailboats and he told me about his. When he mentioned he might want to get rid of it, I told him I would take a look at it and let him know if I was interested.
The boat is a Albin Vega 27 that was made in Sweden in 1975. I had never heard of the boat and did a little research. It turns out that the Vega is a great little pocket cruiser and people have sailed them across the Atlantic and the Pacific, and not just once or twice. So, now I knew the boat could do what I wanted, but was this the boat? After looking at the boat, and seeing beyond the accumulation of dirt and debris, I found that the boat itself was in solid shape. It had never been left in salt water for any length of time and only had a little over 700 hours on the original motor.
The deal was struck. The more I read about the Vega, the more I wanted it. Now mind you, this is a fixer-upper and I know that going into it, but I got her for a song, including the trailer. We have an RV pad on the lower portion of our property where she will live while she's being worked on.
The pictures below show her state when I bought her and I will chronicle in pictures all the work I do to bring her back to life. You may look at the first set of pictures and think that I'm crazy. Aside from your probably being right about the crazy part, only time will tell.
I think I've decided on a name, Blue Max. It was the nickname my son was called on the football field by his teammates.
Anyhow, I hope you enjoy the pictures and can see the possibilities as I see them.
Pictures at time of purchase - Click on the first picture to open the viewer...
Line drawings of the Vega. The 1st is the way it was designed and the 2nd shows the Nav Station and refrigerator that I will install as I completely redo the inside. - Click on the first picture to open the viewer...
I spent several weeks getting the boat ready to make the short trailer ride from the storage lot to the house. It has been sitting for 10 years and I needed to make sure the trailer was up for the move, as well as make sure the mast made the journey safely also. These photos show the prep work and the move home as well as the jack stands I purchased to lift the boat up off the trailer and the varnishing/storage shed I built next to the boat.
Anchor Windless - To rebuild the v-berth I needed to know the position the anchor windless chain pipe would be so I had to start by building out the base for the windless on the foredeck.
Repairing the Handrail Holes and Installing Stainless Steel Handrails
Installing the new compass - The hole from the old compass was about 3/4 of an inch larger than the hole needed for the new compass. I made two rings out of 4mm marine plywood to put on the inside and outside to adjust the size of the hole.
Installing the new carport over the boat.
Removing the MD6A Diesel Engine
Main Cabin Rebuild
Adding New Anchor Roller
Cockpit hole repair - There was an old mechanical speed indicator mounted on the forward cockpit hull and when I removed it, it left a 3 inch hole going into the main cabin. These pictures are of grinding a taper around the edge of the hole, putting a cellophane covered backing on the inside, filling the hole with epoxy filler and then covering with 3 layers of fiberglass cloth. Epoxy fairing compound will be used to finish it off for sanding and painting.
Workshop - A couple of shots of my workshop with the new band saw and table for my router.
Replacing the Port Side Chainplates
Hanging Closet / Storage Closet
What was a hanging closet on the port side, between the v-berth and the main closet, was poorly designed with just a storage area at the bottom where stuff could be dumped in. It's being replaced with four 3" high drawers at the bottom and three mesh shelves above the drawers that can hold clothes and still allow air flow.