Final Leg of trip from St.Pete, FL to Punta Gorda, FL
We ended up going a lot farther than we thought the first day of the return trip from St. Pete... The wind starting picking up around 2200 hours blowing steadily at 18 knots with gusts to 25 knots... after traveling for 13 hours and approximately 85nm we decided rather than continue up Charlotte harbor in these winds we would stop at Pelican Bay just south of Boca Grande Pass on the GICW... also because of the high winds we opted to dock rather than anchor in Pelican Bay at the Cayo Costa State Park docks (N26º41.153', W082º 14.674')
After docking we took Beecha for a short walk ashore and discovered that Cayo Costa State Park had done some major additions to their Pelican Bay dock area... new large pole barn type building at the base of the docks, new Kayak and Canoe rental building, a lot of nice new fencing and several other small improvements... VERY NICE!!!
We finally got to bed about midnight and had the alarm set for 0630 hours.... which came way too soon!!!
0700 hours we left the docks bound for Fishermen/s Village Marina in Punta Gorda, FL... arriving back to our familiar slip B-13 at approximately 1000 hours. The winds were still blowing at 15 knots with gusts to 20 knots... so the trip was not really bumpy but a lot of spray from the wind directly on our bow.... gave SAILS a good rinse at the dock.
We'll be here at Fishermen's Village till the first part of April... plan to leave for our northward trek around April 7th.
Viking Boatworks St. Petersburg
We ended up leaving SAILS at Viking Boatworks on March 1st and returning to Punta Gorda by car... On Friday March 4th I contacted Viking Boatworks on the phone to see if they had come up with the hard numbers for the bottom paint repairs… and I found that they had changed their tune and were once again back to square one and the problem was not their fault… they had determined from emails with emails to a company that deals with CAPAC systems that my CAPAC system was not working and the cause of the trouble.
The had come up with several other options for me… 1) Just recoat the bottom with new bottom paint and add zincs to the props… turn the CAPAC off. 2) Sandblast and recoat with epoxy and new bottom paint all at my cost. 3) Sandblast and recoat using their new Seahawk paints they now represent… again all at my cost. 4) Drop me back in the water and we part company… no charge!
I opted for option 4) and we are now back in the water and headed back to Punta Gorda on SAILS.
We did not get away from Viking Boatworks until 1100 hours so we will not try to make the 15+ hour cruise in one shot… we’ll stop somewhere along the way back and spend the night and get up early to make the final leg back to Punta Gorda.
On the hard at Viking Boatworks
We left Vinoy Basin this morning at 0630 hours and headed north up Tampa Bay towards Viking Boatworks. They are located at the west end of the Gandy Bridge that crosses Tampa Bay. We arrived at approximately 0815 hours and we were out of the water on the travel lift by 0900 hours ready for bottom inspection.
Bottom job did not look any better that it did in May 2010 when we discovered the paint blistering problem... after some discussion with the yard manager it was decided to move the boat into the yard and bock it up and have the paint company representative come out and take a look at the bottom and determine what is causing the paint to detach in water filled blisters.
At approximately 1100 hours we were blocked and sitting on the hard... the paint rep arrived at about 1430 hours and he and the yard manager walked the perimeter of the boat several times scrapping and picking at the blisters... finally they offered to sandblast the bottom and recoat the bare steel with epoxy primer at their cost and I would have to pay for the new bottom paint and it's application... plus the cost to haul the boat.
Not feeling comfortable with the quality of the work here at Viking I made a counter offer to settle.... give me X dollars back on the original work and I'll have the work done somewhere else and we'll part company.
The yard manager and the paint rep are now back in the office determining what my actual cost will be to take their offer and also another number to settle with me and we part company....
Updated info to come soon as I know...