The Frankenfold Myth

June 19, 2012

When I talk about our time in Papeete (Tahiti) I am inclined to describe it as all work and no play. When one is bogged down with projects like the Frankenfold (a.k.a the mainfold from hell), it is easy to forget that much fun has also been had. So before elaborating further on All The Fun®  allow me to describe this particular bit of boat owner’s misery.


Convivia has had numerous small fresh water leaks since we bought her. These have been dealt with more or less as they came up, and along the way I have even managed to improve on the system. On passage we started to develop a leak at the kitchen faucet, the location and disposition of which made it very difficult to fix. The short term solution was to decommission the faucet. Plumbing then took top priority on my project list. I had plenty of time to think about how best to address the situation. I wanted to remedy the existing problem and also make a substantial improvement to the overall stability of our ship’s pressurized water system. Ultimately this would have meant removing all of the hose and replacing it with Sea Tech hose. This being the middle of nowhere, I was not holding out of that. Plan B was to replace as many of the nylon fittings as  I could and add a manifold as close to the pump as possible. After several (though it seemed like several hundred) trips to several hardware and marine stores, I was able to get all of the part together and complete the project. The result (as seen below) is not beautiful, but it works and solves a problem that would have been inevitable had I not taken the time.

The Work List

In case you are curious, here’s what else I’ve taken on:

  • Install new galley faucet
  • Fix bilge pump
  • Install LED spreader lights
  • check tricolor light
  • fix boom vang
  • Fix large port lights (or make blanks)
  • Install cockpit shower
  • Make new light air vane for Monitor
  • Repair jib

All The Fun®

In between all that work we managed to squeeze in quite a bit of joy. Our first full day in Papeete was the transit of Venus. We had a once in a lifetime opportunity to be in the place where Captain Cook made his observations in 1869.  The kids got a little hands on astronomy and history lesson and the day was beautiful  and clear.

We also celebrated my birthday in appropriately understated glory. Vick made a new and improved flourless chocolate cake with fresh, hand whipped (by the kids) cream. Late we snuck the crew of s/v Obelisk aboard for a little low-key revelry.

Over the next week we visited the numerous parks along the waterfront, awed ourselves with the selections at the grocery stores and markets, and spent time with long lost friends. We plan to leave Tahiti on June 23rd (with the PPJ Tahiti-Moorea Rendezvous) and though we came for work, I am sure we will remember the good times as well as the Frankenfold!


1 comment

  1. Comment by Cidnie

    Cidnie June 19, 2012 at 6:54 am

    Well done on the Frankenfold! To me, functional plumbing is ALWAYS beautiful. The kids look fantastic and that shot of the birthday cake- food porn!

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