Clockwise from top left: BlueWater 4mm NITELINE reflective deck rigging; new inflatable seat from Thermarest/SealLine next to Newfound seat; composite tubes curing for new hatch mechanism; carbon fiber/fiberglass ready for wet out
Moonlight Dancer is all dried out and back in the shop for some more work. I'll be honest about the problems: every one of my soft padeyes leaks, the hatches leak, and the seat is awful. To be fair to Joe Greenley, I did not follow his instructions on making the soft padeyes. And if I only used more silicone sealant they probably would not leak at all. I am thinking about making recessed mahogany flush deck fittings instead, so that it will be unquestionably watertight and easier to sand and revarnish. For the hatches I'm going to put gaskets on both the hatch cover and the hatch lip, and reposition the bungees to apply more downward pressure on the hatch cover. People say they can get their hatches watertight even in surf with an internal bungee mechanism so I'll keep trying! If could do it over I would use a bulkhead hatch for the aft compartment, with some kind of bombproof screw hatch mechanism. The small forward hatch is actually reasonably watertight. Maybe all the water in the forward compartment comes from the padeyes. I got an inflatable seat from Pygmy as a replacement for the foam seat from Newfound Woodworks. I've found that a simple inflatable Thermarest pad is a very comforatable seat even for all-day touring.