It seems as if the list of things to do is getting longer rather than shorter and everywhere I look I find new jobs to do. Today I wired up the float switch (something that switches the bilge pump on when water rises in the bilges) but when I tested it I think that it might have a fault. If the float is lifted very high, the pump goes off. And when the water has all gone, the switch stays on. More investigation needed, as this will be a critical bit of kit after the launch. I have been pouring linseed oil along the top of the stringers (long pieces of wood that provide longitudinal support to the diagonal planking) as this is probably the best way to keep old timbers supple. But in the process I have discovered yet more timber inside the boat with peeling paint. And I want so much to varnish the mast but need to wait until the day promises less rain than today did, or yesterday or the day before. And the list goes on, but it will have to wait as I have a more pressing problem.
The boat has now been out of the water for several years. I bought her in July 2012 (mid-winter in the southern hemisphere) and she was showing signs of opening up…. tell-tale gaps opening between the diagonal planks. As winter turned to spring the gaps extended in width and length. Tom and I laboriously poured seawater into the bilges and although the rate of expansion possibly lessened, by summer the gaps were opening. Gaps were most obvious above the waterline. The glossy blue paint shows parallel lines. Most gaps are less than 1mm but in a few places they are larger. Oslo desperately needs to get back into the water and this must take precedence over the ever-expanding list of tasks!