At long last on Sunday I finally took some time to clean the hull below the waterline. I hadn’t managed to do it yet since taking ownership of the boat in February, so it was in dire need of some attention.
I’d planned to borrow a scuba tank from Hye Seas II, but that option fell through at the last minute so instead I just settled on my mask and fins. Based on my earlier experience with barnacles I wore a nice thick pair of work gloves. I looked around the hardware stores for a plastic scraper, but of course I couldn’t fine one. Instead I settled on a 4-inch plastic trowel which worked really well for knocking off heaps of barnacles without scratching the hull.
Since barnacles were mostly encrusted only near the waterline, below the waterline I just used a scrub brush to brush away the mucky slime that had settled on the hull. It wasn’t a precision job; there are probably plenty of spots left, but it’s hard to be super-thorough with a foggy mask, tired legs and arms, immersed in murky marina water filled with the silt of barnacles and slime. I also found that the brush was brushing away a little more of the bottom paint than I’d like. Next time I may try to find a softer brush. I used a metal paint scraper to really go at the thickly encrusted barnacles on the propeller, shaft, and grounding plate. You can see some of those in this little video:
It took me a couple hours, during which Charlene, ever efficient, managed to do a couple loads of laundry and mark a bunch of papers. She also took this photo of me near the end of the job, staring up into the afternoon sun, after which I dove down once or twice more, then climbed out for a hose-down and a shower.
I may try again next week to borrow a scuba tank and spend a little more time below, just for the heck of it. Or, maybe not.