It was an offer we couldn’t refuse.  


Pig the Navigator

We packed a breakfast picnic, brewed some coffee and headed out before dawn.


Adirondack Scenery

Perfect road weather and beautiful scenery along the way.



Achilles Tender

The chance to visit with friends and to inspect our prize – little R.E.D.


Inflation Test

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.


Barnacle Remover



12 hours of Elbow Grease

Can you see the difference?


Repaired and Ready to Go

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.


The ‘After’

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!




I recently made a trip to Rhode Island, USA
with a friend to attend the
workshop on
A beautiful drive from Montreal, Canada…
through the Green Mountains of Vermont, USA…
…to the tiny state of Rhode Island.
We stayed at the TownePlace Suites in N. Kingstown, RI
(by the way a great place to stay…
friendly, clean, relatively new
(a substantial breakfast included
making the already inexpensive price even more affordable)
Day 1
We learned about Marine Systems
and the right tools for the right job…
Were given insight into our host’s vast resource library…
We learned about really useful things to have onboard
should the need arise…
These are a brilliant (if only temporary) solution to a broken head…
…the use of materials for repairs and modifications such as
… used as a backing plate for an anchor mount.



We learned about the correct way to install a bilge pump…



And a pressurized water pump…

…with filter…



Thumbs up!
They both work!!


..that stays flexible even after several years.
(easier to remove than 3M 5200 Captain – who is a big 3M fan)
…used to re-mount an old hatch…



Day 2
Electrical component of the workshoop





attaching and joining…



…and securing…


…a great way to secure wires…



Next came wiring various electric/electronic elements
to the distribution panel…
Bilge Pump
Water Pump
VHF Radio
and cabin light…




…all properly labelled…





So many questions asked…
…all simply answered…
…all material very well explained…



One great gang of happy, passionate, highly motivated gals!



…and our Fearless Leader and Facilitator!
Thank you Beth…
Thank you WSF…
Thank you to the 14 other participants who made the event so memorable…
Thank you Rhode Island!
(hope to see you again sometime)
Now I can’t wait to get back onboard R.E.D.
to install my new
Dometic Alcohol/Electric stove!!!!
…safely and securely of course…