Now things begin to develop rather fast. With delivery of my new boat at the start of this month the boat is now undergoing her commissioning to be put to the water. Last week we have marked the waterline as the boat will be put to our yard coming week to receive her osmosis-protection and antifouling, the Torqeedo electric engine is ordered and the custom-made solar array is gauged and will enter production. There are also news from the interior of GEKKO.
New floorboards are installed: Neat!
You may have read one of the last articles on the grey standard floor boards installed by Seascape in their boats. I rather do not fancy these as their light grey and material properties draw in dirt – constant cleaning (or negligence) is needed. I went a different way and bought EVA-foam, self-adhesive, upgrading the floor.
Now that the new floor boards are inside the boat I must say that the outcome is absolutely stunning! The triad of bright white top-coat color of the boat, the fiery-fresh orange of the cushions are just fine together with the deep black floor which perfectly matches the backrest mesh in the salon. I absolutely love it!
Given the fact that the invested budget was something around 90 Euros the effect is gorgeous. I would reckon that the interior feel of the whole boat is taken up a notch, creating a whole new atmosphere. Amazing how such a little act creates something as beautiful as this. Elated by the new flooring in the boat I proceeded with another project: The head.
Tuning GEKKOs head
Well, the head of the Seascape 27 / First 27 SE is a very, very small room, separated from the fore cabin and saloon by the ingenious magnetic folding doors. There´s a full fledged seawater pumping WC and a black water holding tank. Everything is very practical, aesthetics are not a theme on the First 27. Nevertheless, I did have an idea how to upgrade at least the feeling when sitting there – and went for a dress rehearsal at my home flat.
As well on amazon I found hexagonal mirror tiles. I liked their shape as they remind me of reptile scales which is a nice reminiscence of the Gecko-theme which I like to carry through on the whole boat. These tiles measure some 10 by 10 centimeters and come self-adhesive. I decorated a part of my bathroom in my flat which up to this point was kind of dark and created exactly the effect I also want for the boat. The tiles visually enhance the feel of the room and their reflections bring more natural light to the room. Now I´ve ordered 30 more tiles to start upgrading the bathroom of GEKKO.
Speaking of shiny and new …
… there is another side-project developing in full bloom. Upon ordering my boat and receiving the yacht now I realized that I apparently made a mistake in the order process and never double-checked the yard´s confirmation of order: I must have slipped a check box and instead of ticking “anchor and line package” I chose the stern shower. Well, this may be very handy when returning aboard after taking a refreshing bath in the salty sea, but now I have to acquire lines and mooring equipment by myself. Which, of course, I take as a chance to improve things.
Standard anchor on the First 27 SE is a 5 kilogram Delta anchor. Since my last adventures at anchor in Sweden I am a huge fan of mooring outside the marinas – so I contacted my friends at Ultra Marine and discussed my boat project with them. Following their suggestions I decided to go for a slightly heavier anchor, an 8 kilogram Ultra Marine. Of course in lieu with an original Ultra Marine flip-swivel. A stainless steel anchor chain or 10 meters and a lead-weighted anchor line with 20 meters is ordered as well. I´d say that the boat is more than ready to drop anchor in beautiful bays and anchorages.
The custom design is underway
After the boat will have received the antifouling protection I will put her to my friends in Hannover who are professionals in foliation. The custom made “GEKKO”-design will then be produced and applied: As the boat´s name was a very passionate choice of my kids, this will be an absolute highlight of course, adding to the character of the boat.
The stickers will be made of saltwater-resistant pro-foil which will additionally be sealed off at the edges to remain nice and beautiful as long as it should. Of course, a foliation like this adds to the cost factor of the boat, but as the First 27 SE is a thoroughbred racing boat it kind of feels that the boat demands it – I wouldn´t do this with a “normal” cruising yacht for sure.
A berth for my boat
This weekend, finally, I also signed the contract with the marina for GEKKOs berth. As I do live in Luebeck I opted for the ancora Marina, which is not the cheapest place to stay, but a marina with a very professional technical service crew and a superb infrastructure. Fitting to the name of the boat, they offered a berth on pontoon “G”. A good sign.
I went tot he marina to check my very berth which is situated in the Northern basin of the harbor, guaranteeing a quick access to the Luebeck bay area – a spring-board to the Danish Southern Sea to the West or the open Baltic Sea to the East. Good side-effect: Just a handful of berths next to me is an Oceanis 30.1 which I will utilize as a demonstrator boat this spring.
Now, this all feels very good and satisfying. After my first boat, OLIVIA, had her home port in this very marina for the last three years, just a couple of hundred meters away from my actual berth, this is now a huge step forward: Having a boat literally swimming in the water. That makes me happy, the level of pleasant anticipation is going through the roof right now.
Can she make it to the water in time?
Now, naturally, I am very impatient and excited, crawling into the boat every time I am there, sometimes just sit in her cockpit, imagining myself at the helm. There is still so much to do – but facing the sheer endless to-do-list of OLIVIA some four years ago the open items are a no-brainer indeed. We will see how fast we can put her to her elements.
For now I enjoy the constant progress and find myself planning her maiden voyage over and over again – well, that is scheduled to take place in late April and I sincerely hope that at this time travel to foreign countries will be free and possible again. Denmark is still closed completely to foreigners due to Covid 19, leaving Estonia or Sweden the only options. Exciting options, of course … let´s start into the new week and go on working on the boat.
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