In the water at last: Proteus relaunching…

By: Noah D.

Proteus has now been in the water a full two days. Finally.

No joke, I’m sitting here at the salon table trying to work and I’m being gently rocked to sleep. The lines are creaking. The wind is whistling lightly. Yeah… two days.

We’ve been living in treehouse mode for about two weeks prior to our launch a couple of days ago.2014_10.23-6172 And for that time, we’ve had all the usual amenities on shore power except for the air conditioner (which we use in reverse cycle for heat and dehumidification) and normally flushing toilets. Oh, and it feels just like a treehouse: climbing up a ladder and a 15ft drop to the ground from the deck.

All things considered, though, it was a relatively nice way to move in. It made everything fairly convenient (except the climbing the ladder thing) and we both got a taste of what it was like before we had to worry about all the other things like keeping the boat tied to the dock and making sure it doesn’t sink.

The Relaunch

The relaunch, though, was one of the more bizarre things I’ve seen in a while. It isn’t that I’ve never seen huge boats being driven around by marina hoists – I grew up around this stuff – it is just that I’ve never seen MY boat being driven around by marina hoists. Any boats previously have just been large enough to drive around on a trailer and just back down into the water in a slipway. Alas, no more. It is on the scale of a minor industrial operation to move this boat.





All of Lynn’s and my “stuff” was being carried around and then dropped into the water.


But Proteus handled it as if it was no big deal. Just another day at the office for her.




Wow, now that’s a game face…


Coming into the berth for the first time.

Interestingly enough, with both water tanks full (150 gallons) and a full tank of diesel, Proteus still sits a few inches above her waterline. It is kind of nice to know, actually! Literally everything we own is in the boat and its cumulative weight (plus the two of us) doesn’t make much of a difference.

I’m interested to see what happens when we load up for a jaunt across the oceans.

A Little Jaunt

Proteus relaunching was such an exciting thing to witness, but simply floating is not the purpose of a boat. Without so much as a stitch of sail on the pole – it was only about 4-6kts of wind yesterday, anyway – we went a couple of hours down the river here and back to our berth. We called the Prince Philip Lock controller on Channel 68 and out we went!



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One thing we found out about Proteus‘ cockpit dodger is that the front screen is a little difficult to see through. At times. It isn’t fogged at all, it is just a little glare-y and wrinkled. It would not be a problem if we were not looking for buoys. In the middle of the ocean, it probably will be just fine. That being said, my first major purchase or physical modification might be a hard dodger/windscreen.

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That’s about it, though. I suppose the most exciting visual is the huge Orwell River Bridge. And some waterfowl. We went about halfway down the river to 52ºN and turned back, ahead of the rain. A total of 9 miles. I hope you’ll stay tuned for when we hit double digits. And triple digits. And quadruple digits. It won’t be long.



Stay tuned…

Proteus, the name…

By: Noah D.

The minute we had settled on the Proteus name, I got the vinyls made. They’ve been sitting in a box for almost the past month, but got the old name off and put the new name on.

2014_10.17-3959Of course, they are a little larger than USCG spec, just to make sure. And we also settled on putting “Guntersville, AL” on the transom as our home port. A little home-town pride, perhaps? Definitely a conversation starter in a British marina.

The vinyls are just perfect – though simple – and spectacularly done. I shopped around a few different companies and opted to go with the uniquely named Funky Monkey Boat Graphics company. They’re a UK company and apparently have a great quality for a fair price.

I did my own design, though, and, if you blow up the photo, you can see there is a little drop shadow on there. Not exactly complicated, but the drop shadow uses a global light originating from 45 degrees forward of the bow: the drop shadow “drops” towards the aft of the boat on both sides… and on the rear, the drop shadow is directly underneath.

Simple, really. And probably nobody is going to ever notice it. Not all of design is making pretty logos: sometimes it is just thinking through its destined location.

In other news, we’re still on the hard and have been delayed a few days for technical difficulties with the marina hoist. When it comes to lifting our home, I’m not complaining that they take a little more time to get it repaired properly.

Stay tuned…
-Noah D.

Moving aboard…

By: Noah D.

Pardon the lack of posts these days, but… we’ve been finally moving things aboard Proteus.

Honestly, I’m being better about posting to Twitter (@sailelement). And much of it I blame on the lack of stable internet for the moment… but that shall be rectified soon. Now a few nights in and we’re getting settled.2014_10.11-5683

The exciting part is that everything will have its place. Finally. And if it doesn’t have a place, it doesn’t stay. It is starting to be an effective purging device for “extra stuff.” Moving aboard should be a liberating process, I think.

The shame of it is that we were expecting to put Proteus into the water this week, but due to the annual maintenance of the marina hoist, we have to wait a bit longer. Maybe a couple of days? I’m not complaining, though: when lifting 24,000lbs I really want the lift to work.

Otherwise… even though we are a few more days as a treehouse, it will allow for a few more projects to get done before the splash. For that, stay tuned…