Lightning hit us last Sunday at 2130 hours while anchored in a cove at Heron Lake, NM. We survived the night by my denying that we had been hit and explaining that the smell was ozone. Ignorance and denial gave us a good night's sleep. Gypsy is a 24-foot cutter built with the WEST System of cold-molded wood veneer/epoxy composite. Two five-inch delaminations of the outer layer or two are at the waterline port and starboard at midpoint in line with the shrouds. Inner laminations seem to have held. Mast light circuit blown, others damaged. Engine wiring seems fine. Aluminum mast (apologies in advance) shows some discoloration and might have lost "temper." We will finally pull the boat out of the water tomorrow but hope to find no more damage to the hull.
Schooner Creek Boat Works in Portland, Oregon
built "Gypsy" and could handle repairs. David Whalin at Gulf Coast Composites near Houston over the phone seems similarly competent. Portland is a long way off over two formidable mountain passes, Houston is downhill a long way into unbelievable heat and humidity.
The question is: does anyone know of a competent professional boatbuilder capable of handling hull repairs (electrical and rigging capabilities would be similarly useful) who might be closer to Northern New Mexico?
I have to start with someone professional enough to produce an estimate of repairs acceptable to the insurance adjustors. Any marine surveyors closer than San Diego?