Crane-out 2012

October 15, 2012

Macwester Malin 32 alongside

We were ahead of the game for crane-out this year in stark contrast to last year when we were caught out of position by bad weather (see F8 gail sail). When the big day arrived, I had already taken off the mizzen, main and genoa along with the anchor, and I had already uninstalled our Hippo SB1 foam-filled mooring buoy.

With a 7.30am start, it was a suitably overcast day for what is understandably a subdued process. As usual I dismantled the cockpit tent to avoid any damage, and as usual I had a disparate array of fenders on all corners just in case.

Our Malin was lifted out before the tide came in. This meant that the crane sling wasn’t fully underneath the skeg as was the case last year. I was a little nervous about this, and was concerned that somehow the rear sling might slip forwards, but the physics proved to unfold as explained to me, and there was no problem.

Macwester Malin 32 crane-out

However that didn’t stop the inevitable increase in my heart rate as our twin keel yacht rose above our heads and made her way over to her winter home behind the wall at our club. A few weeks ago I purchased more rail sleepers so that our Macwester’s bilge keels are raised by 100mm higher this year to 300mm, which should make for easier access between the keels. This came about because I came to realise that 200mm was just too tight while anti-fouling between the keels prior to crane-in. No irregular paint drips on me in the spring, as the roller fitted just perfectly between my face and the hull. The upside was that I had no barnacle growth all summer.

Macwester Malin twin keel on the hard

Once I had helped crane-out the other yachts scheduled to be lifted out that day along with the pontoons, I popped the cockpit tent back up. We won’t keep the canvas installed over the winter, but it will be handy to have over the coming weeks as I winterise the engine and carry out other off-season maintenance.

So that’s our Macwester’s resting place until spring. She’s in end of season ‘shabby-chic’ condition at the moment, but the scuff marks will be gone by crane-in …when it will all start once again.


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