Repositioning the boat
The position of the boat in the photo below is close to where it was set down.
It was always our intention to hire a Franna to reposition the boat closer to the building, so that we could use its roof to support the tarps. However we encountered a similar situation as with the transport – nobody wanted to come onto the property until the dry season. Tom tried to set up the tarp with the boat in the current position, but could not achieve a height and tension that he was happy with.
It was early February and we were experiencing an unusually dry spell, with several more dry days forecasted. So we seized the opportunity, phoned Bob Oram for some quick tips on how others had managed to drag their boats over ground, hired a Landcruiser, and purchased several sheets of form-ply,
Tom dug pits for the jacks. Given that we had to lower the boat to the ground, we couldn’t think of any way around this.
The next image shows a piece of hardwood, up against the port rudder bulkhead, threaded through the loop of a sling which went through a slot to the rudder cassette space and out under the hull port-wise. The other end of the sling was attached to the forward towing point of the vehicle. We tried this on the starboard side first, but later needed more sling length, so shifted it to the port side.
The next image shows how we secured the other sling on the forebeam.
We untied all the tarp stays and and let the tarp drape over the boat.
Above and below are before and after shots. It is the same pole in each photo.
This was a particularly awful task that we performed badly by trial and error. We worked well into the night, tired, sweaty, hungry and driven crazy by the mosquitoes. With the benefit of hindsight, we’d do things differently, and probably take only one hour rather than four to drag the boat. We found that the form-ply skidded along the ground better than the boat skidded on the form-ply, despite lubricating the upper surface of the form-ply with liquid detergent.
Because we were dragging the boat sideways, it would only budge by pivoting. Tom would attach the rear sling to the vehicle and I would drag it some. Then I would reposition the vehicle to the front and he would attach the forward sling and I would drag it some. But each drag at one end of the boat would reduce the progress made on the previous drag at the other end. It was a slow process, until Tom had the idea of using the Rocna anchor to secure the opposite end. Things would have been much easier if we had set up two of our Rocnas with chains and the ability to quickly shorten them.
Despite the poor process, the outcome was successful. We raised the boat onto blocks again, and over the past month various adjustments have been made to the tarps, and we are pretty happy with them now. At least until the next cyclone…
And I have told Tom we are not dragging the boat again – it’ll have to be a dry season launch, so a Franna can move it onto the truck. I think Tom was pleased with the thought of never having to jack the boat another millimetre.