It was an offer we couldn’t refuse.
We packed a breakfast picnic, brewed some coffee and headed out before dawn.
Perfect road weather and beautiful scenery along the way.
The chance to visit with friends and to inspect our prize – little R.E.D.
Once back home, Francois couldn’t wait to re-inflate and inspect her. She showed some signs of wear but was in incredibly good shape for an eleven year old.
What we used to clean her:
A paste of baking soda and Dr. Bronner’s Sal Suds
A combination of Mary Kate Hull & Bottom Cleaner and Aqua Tek Dinghy Cleaner
My plastic pan scraper (for the barnacles)
Several hours of Captain’s elbow grease.
A rinse with vinegar and water.
A final coating of Aqua Tek Vinyl Guard for UV protection.
Can you see the difference?
Cover all washed and strap repaired.
I have to add a little side story about rinsing. We live in an apartment condo with two elevators. We had to deflate Little R.E.D. a little so she could fit into the larger of the two elevators. Imagine the two of us dragging her down the hallway, struggling to get her into the elevator, inject a few choice words exchanged here, an expedition into the garage so we could spray her well with vinegar then rinse well with water to remove the last residue of cleaner. We dried her well with a chamois then repeated the elevator performance. We have to really love this life and each other to be doing these things.
Who but crazy sailors would proudly photo op their new-to-them dinghy on their living room table? But she does look good.
Indeed she does!