Sunday, February 20, 2011

Commissioning Serenity...

As promised, I have some more photos of our girl for you.  During our trip to see Serenity, many photos were taken - mainly to sustain us while we're here and she's there.  Also, while work was in progress, the good people of KKY took pictures of every happening.  The minute we arrived in our offices each day, Tom and I fired up the computers - not to check on what went on in the work world since the last time we were at our desks, but to check on the latest photos of Serenity!  I jumped so quickly to show her off that I forgot to tell you how we even got to this point!  It's called the commissioning process.

I know from many of your emails to me about Serenity, that you are most anxious to hear about how this process goes.  From what I've gathered from other new boat owners, it can be a wonderful experience (as in our case), or an absolute nightmare - as in the case of a boating acquaintance.  Our process began at 6 pm on December 13th, a Monday night.  Note the time here, because this is the time that Tom and I could get to the phone to begin this important dialog.  The folks we spoke to at KKY never once made us feel that they were now in the 10th or so hour of their workday.  Each detail of what needed to be discussed was patiently explained to us and from that patient explanation, Tom and I began to understand what decisions would be required of us and in what time frame.  Since we are not the only people for whom KKY is building a boat, we needed to reach certain decisions within a particular time frame to move the process along.  Our project manager Gregg was supremely adept in this area.  We were never rushed and our questions were carefully answered.

What is mind-boggling is that the (many) specs of a KKY boat are clearly communicated.  Each item the boat comes equipped with is outlined in full detail.  With so many items standard on a KKY boat, how could there be many decisions to be made? I asked myself.  That question was the doorway to the most comprehensive education in a condensed time frame I've had to date.  Starting from the outside in, there are hundreds of details to decide upon - the capstrip -varnish vs. paint (varnish for Serenity).
Swim ladder now or later - now.  When we put the swim ladder on For Us, we had to first find out where to buy one that would fit, then hire a diver to install it (at great expense) since we certainly weren't going to haul the boat to do this.

Every boat needs an anchor - or two!  Two for Serenity.  That's a whole other topic depending on where the anchor will be used.  Since we live on the North Shore of Long Island, we had to get an anchor suited for our type of underwater terrain (sandy).  Gregg guided our choice of anchors to a Super Max 20 (also suited to the type of Windlass on the boat) for the primary anchor and a Delta for the secondary.  Both anchors will have chain rode in sufficient quantity to keep us where we think we are in any weather.  This time around, we asked the KKY folks to use colored ties to mark off the chain length so we don't have to try to make that estimate under duress (as we did when the captain had the "incident" with the valve on the fuel polishing system).  You remember that, right?  Once this decision was made (there were additional conversations about chain vs. rope on the secondary anchor, length of this rope, etc).  More information than I thought I needed at this point.  After all, before all this talk of anchors, I thought you just hauled whatever was on the bow over the side and hoped for the best.  The captain would keel over if he reads this!

Once we had the anchor conversation, we moved onto the water filtration system, color of the bottom paint and whether to have a certain paint identify when it was time to repaint the bottom (yup, you read right).  Apparently, the bottom of the boat gets painted with a gray primer first (like the base coat of a manicure).
Then you can elect to have another coat put on so that when it begins to show through the final bottom color it means it's time to haul the boat and paint the bottom before the dreaded barnacles take hold.  No barnacles would dare attach to Serenity.  We chose to paint the middle coat green, followed by the classic KKY blue for the outside coat.  Very sharp!  Our girl is the envy of her fellow boat mates in the marina!

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