Wednesday, July 23, 2014
This post is also known as "mistakes were made". This is a cautionary tale. Generally on the Sunday share I want to tell you about an awesome or helpful upgrade project we've done. This one? Yeah, great theory but mistakes were definitely made.
Back story: I regularly clean the cabin sole (floor of the cabin) since we have a dog who sheds profusely. And I am not kidding when I say PROFUSELY. When I clean the floor, I start by vacuuming (we have a long runner rug and a few doormat rugs) then follow with hand-wiping with Simple Green and a rag then sometimes taking a pass at it with another rag and some Old English Lemon Oil. This makes the floor shine but also causes a certain slippery-ness. I also include the companionway stairs when I do this routine, so you can imagine that with bare feet or low-tread shoes, coming down those steps can be a little dangerous. Actually, even between cleanings when you come down them with damp feet they can be treacherous. In addition to having no texture besides varnished and sealed wood texture, they are also very steep.
And then I had a brilliant idea. Treads! I've seen them on countless production boats so I assumed they'd fix our problem. They did, but we made a few errors in the process. Josh was able purchase a 6 pack of adhesive treads for just such a use. I cleaned the steps and set about applying them (peeling the backing and centering them on the steps. Josh thought maybe we should wrap them around the forward edge of each of the steps (see photo) because he was sure we stepped up them we used the surface closest to the edge more than the middle depth of each stair. Okay, so I did that. Everything seemed fine until we decided to actually come down them. Did I mention that these stairs are notoriously steep? And that the overhang from one down to the next is pretty narrow? It is. And this means that when you walk down them in shorts, you catch the back of your leg on the sandpaper-like surface and scrape your leg. Not only scrape it, we are talking break the skin abrasion. Like it leaves a mark and you bleed down the back of your calf. Or your thigh if you lean up against them when you're trying to reach a particularly unreachable cabinet space. Ta-da! So lesson is this. DO NOT WRAP THE TREAD AROUND THE FRONT SURFACE OF EACH STEP. If we hadn't done that, these treads would have been a no-brainer home run. As they are, we'll keep them and develop tough calf skin until they need replacing and never make the same mistake again.