And another page turns…

So it’s been about a year since my last post… What’s happened in that year? We moved to Melbourne and rented a nice two bedroom apartment in not too far from the city centre. I commute to work (takes an hour), the boys walk to school, and the good wife goes ice skating.

In short, we swallowed the anchor.


But then my work started sending me overseas, and life got interesting.

First Bangalore… (That’s actually a shot from Kovalam)

Fisherman on the Beach

Then Denver…


Then San Francisco…


Then Dubai…


In my first 12 months I literally travelled twice around the world, and racked up another two orbits in frequent flyer miles.

But recently I got some news which inspired my to start blogging again… The Deck family are moving overseas.


Categories: Our Travels | 1 Comment

ERIK has left the family…

it was with sadness and some relief that ERIK has been sold.

We hauled her out for an inspection, touched up the anti foul and replaced the anodes while we were at it. There was an issue with delignification around the prop shaft, but the rest of the boat was fine and she passed with flying colours. Happy current owners, happy prospective owners.

Here is a shot of her going back in…

The week after this was very hectic. We had moved off ERIK two weeks prior, into a house sit. After ERIK’s haul out, I had a couple of days to wrap things up at work, finalise ERIK’s sale, get the removalists to pack the shipping container up, and arrange to see and say goodbye to as many of our friends in Tassie as we could…. But that tale is a seperate blog post.
Back to ERIK; we got her sale sorted, and handed over the keys, gave a stem to stern once over of the systems aboard her, and left her in the hands of her new owners.

A week after we left her, some friends spotted ERIK sailing in the sunset, to her new home down the channel.

Farewell old girl.

It was fun.

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We may have a buyer…

a couple from Bruny Island have had their eye on ERIK for quite a while seems. They have put a holding payment down, and we are sorting out the haul out and survey for two weeks time!

Not sure whether to be happy or sad, at the moment.

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ERIK is for sale!

Our beloved ERIK is for sale… She’s been described as “the best design for the worst weather” in WoodenBoat magazine, she’s a sister ship to Sir Robin Knox-Johnston’s famous SUHALI, she’s been our traveling home for the past eight years.

We bought ERIK from her second owner in Port Adelaide, South Australia. We sailed her home to be a comfortable safe home for our family – our two boys have grown up on-board this safe family cruiser. We have sailed her around the sometimes difficult waters of southern Tasmania for years, where the seaworthiness of her design and construction has been faultless. Her hull and rig are in excellent condition, and her interior is warm and comfortable. Her electronics have been updated and wiring replaced, and her engine is in excellent working order and very reliable.

We’ll be sad to leave her – she’s part of the family and yet our future has other opportunities. So it must be..

I have put her up on YachtHub – you can read all about her technical specifications there, or download this PDF



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Fresh water systems

So we had somebody interested in trading ERIK for their larger boat, plus cash. He came down to look at ERIK and, as you do, wanted to have a look in the bilge.

I think it’s been about four years since we cleaned the bilge, and about a year since we pulled the cabin sole up to have a look. Suffice to say it was Not Pretty. Blugh, yucky and messy might be good words to describe it too.

We took the opportunity to give the bilge s good vacuum today, and checked all the fill, drain, and breather pipes. Then we filled the water tanks… Oddly tank 2 was still full, but the foot pump didn’t think so and was sucking air…. Hmmmm.

Time to pull the foot pump. Blugh!
Ages ago one of its mount legs had broken off, but it’s been working like trooper for years… Not anymore. Leaking like a sieve.


We have a spare, of course, but it’s a prick of a job to pull these pumps out. The mount screws are very difficult to get at because of the design of the cabinetry. I’m going to sit down, one of these days, and construct some sort of sled system with the pumps mounted on it. That way I can position the screws the sled down in a nice easy spot… It’ll mean attacking the cabinet with a saw, and detouring the feed for the raw water pump, so it’s not on today’s list of things to do.

After a 15 minutes of skinned knuckled, and swearing the new pump is in!


Note the water everywhere… Sometimes a gravity fed day tank for water can be annoying!

All fixed!

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Back in the water at last!

We got back floating this morning. After a minor hiccup with a busted attachment point on the forklift (not ERIK’s fault), Rowan at the DSS dropped us in nice and smooth.


We tied her up, loaded the dinghy up on the housetop, got the engine started… Hang on, where’s the ignition key…

“Honey! Have you seen the engine key?”
“Haven’t touched it…”


Frantic search for the key begins. It got moved from its usual spot because I was working on the main electrical panel, where the ignition switch is.

Did it get packed away with the electrical stuff? No.
Did it fall in to the now horribly scungy and evil smelling refrigeration box and is perhaps sitting in the 2″ of brown water at the bottom… Ugh. No.
Where was it? Under the biscuit tin. That’s right… under it. I’ll have to ask our sons how that might have happened.


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Day 7 of our 5 day Haulout

And on the seventh day, we declared that we’d worked pretty bloody hard and couldn’t do much more… So we started in some other projects, like the 12v distribution panels and giving Bonnie, our dinghy a good sand.

We also treated ourselves to La Soirée, an awesome show of comedy, cabaret, acrobatics and burlesque.


We get back in the water tomorrow, hopefully early, so I can get to the first day of my new job on time!

(Never a dull moment!)

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Day 6 of our 5 day Haulout

Very productive day today!
Put the 5 litres of anti foul on, that was supposed to go on yesterday…
Painted the rub rail it brilliant red, that was supposed to happen yesterday…
Put the anodes on, that was supposed to go on yesterday…

So, we are a day late, but my oh my, doesn’t she look pretty:


Talking of pretty, I have been meaning to post some pictures what we look like in full anti foul paint gear. That snorkel thing I’m wearing is what we bearded men have to wear instead of a face mask.



So now you know why, if anyone calls, we don’t answer the phone…>

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Day 5 ain’t last day after all…

Rain stopped play.


Can’t paint in the rain, so no going in today. The DSS don’t do in/outs on the weekend, so it looks like we won’t return to the sea till Monday.

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Day Four of that crazy Haulout thing us boat owners do

Hauling out at the DSS, we have had quite a number of old salts wander past, admiring ERIK and giving us the benefit of their experience… Albeit while we are swaddled up with breathing masks, eye protection, gloves, toxic chemicals all over the place… What better time to have a chat?

That aside, there have been some real pearlers, and I thought I should share:

An old salt on modern racing designs…
“Look at that thing there”, says an old salt, pointing at a custom built racing 22 footer. “Who’d build something like that?” A rhetorical question, I assume, because he doesn’t pause before going on with “…carbon fibre masts, bloody good in a lighting storm, but I wouldn’t hang a sail off one.”

An old salt on steel boats…
“Wouldn’t have a steel or alloy boat, the sea always has it’s eye on it, don’t you know, always looking to turn it back into the dirt it came from.”

An old salt on putty…
“You can thin that up with turps, you know, yeah, that’s it get your fingers in there, work the lumps out.” The good wife remarks that’s a bit thin now, so he says “Oh you can thicken it with whiting”. I look at her goop covered hands, back at him, and he just grins.

An old salt on the sailing properties of older boats…
“These olds boats know more about sailing than we do.” He pauses to draw a long breath, “I was sailing to New Zealand, roughest weather I have ever seen, got my new lines out, tied shackles and swivels to it to weight it down, flung the whole lot over the transom and went to bed.” He pauses to draw another long breath, “…then, see, I awoke up the next morning and found the boat was rocking along under her staysail, dead on course, all the warps gone, lost the jewellery too. She knew what was best.”

We got the second coat of topcoat on the topsides this morning, and they gleam! We masked off the waterline (guessing where it was, again… We really must get round to scribing a waterline on the planking that we can paint to…) and painted hard anti foul for the waterline and around the prop aperture. Tomorrow, before she goes back in, we’ll put 5 litres of soft (ablative) anti foul on the hull.

Doesn’t she look good?!


We get in the water tomorrow; last night on the hard tonight. Poor ERIK doesn’t like being out of the water, it puts unusual loads on her hull and her planks crack their paint in unusual places. It’ll be good to get her back in.

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