SEA Currents: Corwith Cramer
September 11, 2015
Past the Halfway Mark
Hello world, greetings from the crew of the Corwith Cramer here in Mallorca. We are solidly past the 50% mark for this yard period, and departments are (for the most part) putting more things back together than we are taking apart. For the most part. The boat is still hauled out, with fresh paint going on the hull, a clean polished prop, and the plexiglass through-hulls for our acoustic instruments inspected and clean.
The deck department, which brought nearly every single block down from aloft to be inspected, cleaned, repaired, repainted and greased, has finally finished those tasks. Two huge bins of blocks (each meticulously labeled with canvas and twine) sit on deck, ready for the swarm of rig-monkeys who will place each block in it's rightful place. Engineering continues to battle gremlins in the ship’s systems and are also replacing our hot water heater. The stewards continue to churn out awesome meals and keep our apartment running smoothly.
In the science world we are looking at closing projects as well, leaving time to help put the deck back together before our transit to Barcelona. We have been doing all the regular maintenance such as painting (lots of painting); repairing nets, or bending on new ones; opening up our machinery and cleaning/re-greasing; updating our computer manuals to better match our current methodologies; mixing stock chemicals to be used for later analysis; and inventory, inventory, inventory. Every department has an inventory, but no inventory is as well kept as the science lab. We know our quantities down to the milliliter of ammonia chloride and the box of cover slips. Every beaker, slide, glove, pipette tip and roll of tape is accounted for in a searchable excel file with it's location and number. This is obviously extremely useful, but requires a not insignificant amount of the scientists time.
Morale among the crew is high, but energy is low after we muster at the end of each day. Our biggest challenge: the heat. We hit a high of 88F today, and the ship can be quite sweltering. The apartments we are living in for now are cool at night, and a few rain showers the past few days have kept things in check, but over all the heat is an ever-present force among us. Those working in the small compartments (water tanks, waste holding tanks etc.) are especially brave and hearty in their full tyvek suits and respirators. We are all very grateful for their hard work.
All and all things are moving quickly along, and it's nice to begin to see the ship looking more like her old self (even a little brighter). I certainly enjoy giving back to the ship who has given me so much joy, but I don't think I speak out of turn for the crew when I say: we're ready to go sailing again.