One week left, a race to the finish!

Phase 1 of Project Overhaul has been going strong for four weeks now, with just one week left until Chieftain splashes back in the water. In addition to the regular needs of bottom paint, replacing zincs, and rigging work, this maintenance period is tackling some of the big items Hawaiian Chieftain must have for her next 30 years on the water.

Major Items for Repair

  •   A full rebuild of the anchor windlass (the machine that lowers and raises the anchor) including purchasing a new motor. This project was made possible by a $10,000 donation from an anonymous donor and the rebuilt windlass will be delivered this Friday, 8/4. We’ll post video of the “new” windlass being craned back onto the bow of HC.
  • Replacement of the aging tail shafts and propellers. It was discovered in 2016 that the tail shafts were due for rapid replacement, as well as the variable pitch propellers. The old Hundested brand system is being scrapped for a traditional, simple straight shaft system. This will provide greater reliability and ease of use.
  • Replacement of aging electrical panels by volunteer Franco Cottrell, and important work to the main engines and engine room. This includes fresh paint, rebuilt fuel injectors, a water pump gasket, and the addition of Walker Airsaps to decrease the oiliness of the crank case breathers on Chieftain’s Volvo Penta engines.

The Goal: Safe and functional

The goal of phase 1 is “safe and functional,” addressing Chieftain’s most urgent needs for the 2017-18 season. The items above in the “major” category were of top importance, but a lot of small items are on the list too. Longtime Hawaiian Chieftain sailors and supporters will be pleased to hear the galley also got a few new cupboards, and those pesky pitch control wheels are gone forever from the main hold! The crew is doing a fantastic job, everyone is learning a lot, keeping a positive attitude despite the long work days. There are the usual challenges with parts availability and logistics, but right now we are slated to splash just two days after our goal date, on 8/10.

Your help needed now more than ever

There is still a lot to do in our last week! If you can support this effort with a financial gift, this week is our last chance to reach the $43,500 goal of phase 1 and we are $18,000 short of making it. What this means is that not all the projects hoped for can be completed. If you have been thinking about giving to this effort, your gift will make a huge impact on what we’re able to do in the time we have left. Here are some examples of items we wish we could get to:

  • A new bilge alarm panel to replace the one that is falling apart due to age
  • Funds toward the remaining cost of the new shafts and propellers, a huge expense to take on, but necessary to literally propel the vessel!
  • A tool box for the engine room to keep us organized and sea-stowed
  • A refrigerator for the main hold to replace the old one that is failing
  • Additional repairs to aging and broken woodwork, and more new galley cupboards!
  • A new jib sail. The inner jib is so patched that it is not likely to hold together for another season.

Phase 2 will kick off next year. Stay tuned for more of the massive repairs slated to give Hawaiian Chieftain another 30 years of sail training and education programs with kids! If you want to be there to see Hawaiian Chieftain go back in the water next week, email for details.


Thank you Project Overhaul supporters – you make it possible.