When Kerri and I first met, she had a fabulous Pacific Seacraft Dana 24 and I had a rough and ready Allied Princess 36. Neither of these boats really suited us in terms of the long term home and world cruiser we required. We wanted a boat in the 40 foot neighborhood that had some coolness factor to it. It had to be salty, yar, some designer cache would be nice, and most of all, easily sailed short handed (just the two of us) as well as single handed (in the event something should incapacitate one of us).
On our “short-list” were boats like the Colvin Gazelle, some of the saltier pilot house leaky teakies, and the Freedom 39 schooner.
The Allied was sold, the Dana was on the market and hauled for the detailing we needed to give her to fetch top dollar. Kerri was at the yard sanding or cleaning when I got a call from her. “What do you think about a Freedom 40 Center Cockpit?” She had discovered one that was severely neglected, and she had already got the scuttlebutt of the who, when, where, why, of what it would take to turn the deal. After making her own preliminary survey crawling through the cabins and opening the drawers and cabinets, she got me out there. I did my own preliminary survey of the engine room (yes room), the rig, sails, and systems. We sat in the spacious cockpit up in a funky boatyard in Maryland and I could already see the green mountains of the Marquesas rising off in the distance and the smell of the hibiscus wafting out to meet us after that long passage from the Galapagos.
The reality is that our 6 month refit took 3 years and, frankly, I see us continuing to improve the boat, bit by bit, until the day we turn her over to the next pair of starry eyed cruiser wannabes.
The easiest path for me to give you some history of the boat itself is to point you to the Hall of Fame induction write up.
Marquesa has freestanding aluminum spars, a massive iron centerboard, and “conventional” booms with jiffy reefing, lazy jacks and sailpacks. She has fully battened sails with a little higher aspect ratio than the original two ply wrap-around sails. I built the aluminum pipe canopy frame and traded labor to the canvas guys to make our top and full enclosure. The enclosure gets us out of the weather with its 11 isinglass panels that zip in to place. Those will be coming off soon, I hope, and we have 11 screen panels to go in their place in case of a buggy anchorage.
So let’s talk about systems:
Perkins 4-108 diesel auxiliary engine
Marine Max 160amp alternator and serpentine belt kit
Frankenmaker (This is George’s custom designed and built public works department)
– 7hp Kubota
– 50GPH watermaker
– 100amp d/c alternator
– Refrigeration for cold plates in the refrigerator and freezer
8 golfcart batteries for main bank
2 group 27 batteries for main engine start and thruster
– 100 gallons water
– 200 gallons diesel
11 gallon hot water heater
Ham Radio KB3THV
Sirius Satellite radio
Ideal Windlass (180 feet chain and Manson Supreme anchor)
Vetus Bow Thruster
Nearly all of the systems aboard are either newly installed by me or refurbished/rebuilt by me. For heat we use Mr. Heater connected to a 20 lb. propane tank.
This picture was taken just after she became ours and before we started fixing her up.
She had been partially submerged for an unknown amount of time, and there was a water line stain about 1′ above the cabin sole.
It looked like an attempt had been made at fixing up her interior in the vee berth and head. Unfortunately, most of it was shoddy workmanship, and I had to re-do much of it. There are still some minor unfinished projects left to complete like trimwork, but nothing that could keep us at a dock.
The cushions were brand new. They look dirty in the picture due to the camera angle, but Kerri wants me to note that they are, indeed, clean.
I ripped out all of the nasty vinyl lining and replaced it with teak plywood. I also had to replace all of the ports which was a fun job.
The open area above the settee was wasted space, so I enclosed it and installed smokey plexiglass sliding doors.
If you look carefully, you can see the 60 bags of coffee beans behind the smokey panels next to Mr.Heater. In front of the other door are 30 bags of rice side dishes.
Although I do all the cooking, it was important to Kerri to have a new stove because she’s the one who cleans it.
Our new Seaward Princess stove and oven was courtesy of Boater’s World and their “going out of business” sale. We got more knocked off the already marked down price because of a few dents. It had been marked down to $400 already, but I offered the guy $250 and he took it.