Thursday, December 19, 2013


Today we got the news that Blossom has been loaded onto a cargo ship and is bound for Florida!

The ship she is loaded on is the M/V Trinityborg, operated by the shipping line Wagenborg.

She's a new ship - launched November 14th and this will be her maiden voyage the US. She's spent the last month running up and down the Asian coast - all the way to South Vietnam - and is currently heading to Taiwan. Her expected arrival date ion Florida is the 25th of January.

You can track her progress using the following link:

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Tank Tested

One of the last steps the yard performs is tank testing. There are a few systems on Blossom that can't be run until she is sitting in a nice pool of cooling water. When run, these systems suck in some of this water and use it to keep cool. Very much like air passing over the radiator of a car. The systems on Blossom that needed to be run were the wing engine, both generators and the air conditioning. We opted for chilled water air conditioning - the first on a 55/60/63 for some time. Enough time, in fact, that Dometic had to re-engineer the system and then chose to send some engineers out to Xiamen to make sure all worked according to plan.

The good news is that all worked well. There was excessive wear on the main engine's alternator belt, most likely due to the up-sized alternators. This was easily resolved by installing a heavier duty belt. We'll just need to remember to stock the larger belt in our spare parts bin.

One other test was Blossom's trim. How was she going to sit in the water? As it turns out, nice and level. This is with empty tanks, so that may change as the fresh, grey and black tanks fill and empty, but at least we shouldn't need to use fuel for trim ballast. At 5 pounds a gallon, that's not the cheapest material to use. The tender, weighing in at 400 pounds or so, will sit fairly close to centerline so that shouldn't upset things too badly, either.

Lots more pictures after the jump!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Even closer...

Another set of pictures came in the mail today.

Blossom is nearly done!

You can see that the inside and outsides have been cleaned up. That's usually one of the very last things that's done, as it doesn't happen until all the dust making activity is over. She's also been moved to the end slot, where dust from the other boats under construction is less likely to blow over Blossom.

In other news, I've been working with our electronics installer and the electronic package is almost defined. Just a few minor tweaks before we start to order the gear.

We're also working with Yachtsign to finalize our boat name signs. I asked an old school mate to help with the design and happily, she agreed. She does really great work. I have high hopes. No pressure C. :-)

Blossom's so close that I'm going to point out the things still waiting to be completed in each picture, rather than the things that have been done. If a picture has no comment then, as far as I can tell, that's how she's going to look!

Lots of pictures after the jump!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Oh so close... (picture heavy)

I must apologize to the handful of you out there who've actually been waiting for this post. I went to the yard, along with Jeff Merrill (our salesman) and Steve D'Antonio (Systems Engineer extraordinaire) a few weeks ago for the final yard inspection. Since I got back I haven't been home for more than a couple of days in a row and other "life-stuff" got in the way of my putting up this post. We got back yesterday from the Ft Lauderdale International Boat Show (FLIBS). It was a very productive week in Florida and I'll discuss all the things we accomplished in preparation for commissioning in a later post. While at FLIBS we were able to see the latest 60 to cast off the commissioning dock - Chopin - and she's a beautiful boat. It only amplified our anticipation even more!

Back to the trip!

Before I walk through Blossom note that all the pictures are clickable for a larger version. If you've any questions or comments on what we've done - or why, please don't be shy to ask. We're proud of what Blossom is becoming and almost everything in her has been the result of much discussion and consideration.

This is also a very picture heavy, with over 200 in here, so I'm not going to start any until after the jump. Those of you that are bandwidth impaired be warned!

To Blossom!

Monday, September 30, 2013

Build Update

We're in the final stretch! In less than two weeks I fly out to Xiamen, along with Steve D'Antonio, for a final yard inspection. Last time I was there - mid July - the estimate for completion at the yard was the end of October. These photos are about two weeks old, so show Blossom with an estimated 6 weeks of work to be done. It's hard to tell whether that's still a good estimate or not. There's still some very big things missing - stack? - but we've already seen just how quickly the yard can work when the man power is allocated. You can see in the pictures below just how many workers are on the boat.

Pilot House

The main breaker panel is almost completed, which implies most of the wiring is probably done. Windows are in and the settee is built out.

Day head sink is in. Still no tile on the floor, port light in the window or toilet.

Another shot of the day head.

This shot clearly shows where the finished work work is covered with bubble wrap for protection.

The helm. When Blossom is commissioned, those white gaps above and below the windows will be covered with dials, gauges and screens.

A shot of the settee. 55/60 aficionados will detect the slight widening of the seat by the commensurate narrowing of the foot landing. Just a few inches in seat depth can make all the difference in comfort. 

Even the seat base boards have matching wood grain.

Tea Station (aka Captains Cabin)

Looking aft over the settee. The granite is in and they've started to prep for the wall covering.

View of the bed. Wide enough for a single, it's now more of a couch.

The Miele Speed Oven (microwave/convection combination)

Looking forward, the Vitrofrigo drawer fridge is in. Flush handles allow the drawers under the bed to open. Two drawers and a locker for supplies.

This shot, looking starboard, shows that there's going to be plenty of room to make tea :-)

Looking aft we can see that the windows are in, walls are prepped and the starboard aft cabinets are built. There was a lot of discussion about the difference in width between the upper and lower cabinets. Turned out OK. Scott - you were right. Again. :-)

Looking forward. We finally see what our changes have wrought and we're very happy!

Portside. Ready for the couch.

Starboard. Two Ekornes chairs and a table between them.

Stairs up to the pilot house. A sliding drawer under here for more storage. Note the notch in the wall to the left of the stairs? Another tweak to improve the open feeling. The stairs heading down to the utility room aren't quite so dark.

Tiled floor going in. So far the only appliance installed is the fridge/freezer. I presume the rest will go in after the tiling is finished.

Another shot of the floor. I really like the look. Great job Scott and Steph!

Counter top showing the fiddles protecting the wood around the stack. Backsplash tiles still to go in.

The locker on the left is called the "Spice Rack" by Nordhavn. We're going to rename it the "Sodastream cubby"

We really gained a lot of storage by not installing a microwave in the forward cabinets. Not needed as the oven will be another Miele Speed Oven. The cooktop is going to be induction. The angled corner cabinet is large enough to hold a full dinner service.

I'm hoping that the yard will be swapping the bucket for a trash compacter :-)

Master Stateroom and head

Looking good! Anyone notice the projector box?

The valance will hide the screen for the projector

A large mirror should help open the space out.

Close up of the projector box.

Sink in the master head. The counter top looks massive!

Nearly ready for the wall covering

Master shower is tiled and hardware is going in.

Tiled. Note the extra two drains foward? If Blossom is ever a little bow heavy, the shower will still drain.

VIP Stateroom and head

Looking forward. Some wall covering, a few doors and drawers (which have already been built) and this room will be done.

Steph's sewing table. Note the cutout for the sewing machine. The locker on the right is storage for the machine.

We widened the guest bed as much as we could. Note the small shelf outboard that will act as an end table.

Not much in the way of inset panels in this stateroom. The locker doors and drawers have the only panels.

The extra port light and the wall covering will really brighten up this room.

Steph is really happy with the natural light over her workspace.

Nearly done. Just the backsplash to go.

Shower locker

Seat and another locker in the shower.

More storage under the stairs between the guest stateroom and the pilot house.

The salon dutch door is installed - windows upper and lower. I'm happy to see that the davit standpipe is very stealth. Find it if you can!

It's a little obscured by a cover, but you can just make out the stern capstan hiding inside the cockpit seating. Look through the hole on the right!

Boat Deck
Not sure what I'm seeing here. This is the walkway beside the pilot house on the port side. Vent exhausts, perhaps?

Davit is installed and they've started to install the rails.

No ladder to the flybridge either. Hopefully it'll be added soon after the rails.

Utility Room

I'm not seeing much change in the utility room, though it's pretty much finished.

Bilge pump?

The custom locker is looking good. A nice place to store ear defenders and engine room checklists.

Engine Room
Nice shot of the main engine

The bank of valves is the send manifold.

The fuel return manifold

Wing engine

This space will end up being used for storage.

The hydraulics have been fully plumbed. This is the remaining valves and sensors needed that the monobloc couldn't hold.

Generator on the right, wing on the left.

Main transmission and clutched hydraulic PTO

Machinery getting installed.

Battery switches on the left. Battery box straight ahead.

There's a dive compressor under all that cardboard.

It looks like the watermaker has been installed.

So Blossom is getting there. Expect lots of pictures in a few weeks!