Sunday, October 23, 2016

Preparing the boat to leave

I have been working on getting the boat ready for my departure by filling my water and diesel tanks. I didn't want to compete with the other 76 boats in the Salty Dawg Rally all trying to fill up their tanks at the same time so I made 2 trips to the local gas station and got 80 gallons at $2 a gallon.
Usually I pour the diesel into a Baja filter sitting on the top of my fuel tanks but today I tried my new syphon hose shown above. All you do is stick the copper end in the yellow jug and after shaking the hose, the fuel stats to flow. Lots less mess!
I checked my 4 bilge pumps and they all worked except the small manual one had split where it was bent so I had to run out and get a new one.
Ok I am about to use some very annoying nautical jargon here to describe what you are looking at. In the middle of the photo is a wire that helps hold the bowsprit in place. The left side has a flat bar that is called a tang and a turnbuckle connects to a wire stay. All stainless steel of course and the 306 kind that is supposed to last longer. Anyway for the longest time, this "whisker" stay has been loose and I finally got around to finding a shorter turnbuckle so that I could tension it.

I hope to run out to the store today and buy supplies that will last me 6 months in the Caribbean.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Splash Day

After a last minute paint of where the boat was sitting on the blocks it was off to splash the boat.
I had changed the flax in my stuffing box so I was expecting a leak around the prop shaft but there no sign of water. Even after several attempts to loosen it, no drips had appeared so I gave up. What did appear strangely enough were drips from the seacock under the sink. Both the hose clamps had broken.
George kindly took time off fixing his Westsail 32 to come down from Maryland to help me.
Onapua is "Safe at anchor" at Walt and Mary's place.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Day 2 in the yard

I installed a new VHF antenna and GPS on the stern to go along with my new AIS transponder which you can see here.
It is the blue device sitting in between my VHF and my radio to the right. Notice that I put Ziploc bags over all my electronics to protect them from the possibility of a stray wave coming through the companionway.
I installed a new starboard navigation light on the bow.
I replaced the monitor windvane control lines because I noticed chafe on the old ones.
I added lines to my companionway washboards to keep them in place and so I don't lose them.
And finally I brought out my trysail and placed it on the spare track in a red bag at the bottom of the mast.
Now you are probably wondering why I did this because the trysail is only used in bad weather and the reason is because I intend to sail down to the British Virgin islands in the beginning of November. There are 77 other boats leaving in the Salty Dawg Rally that I hope to join. It is a 14 day voyage and with the help of my Delorme satellite Inreach, I hope to do daily updates on this website so that you can follow my progress. I will also provide a link to a map that shows my position along with all the other participants.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Back on the boat

I am back in Reedville doing boat chores in delightful Virginia weather. While I was gone, Jennings Boat yard did a bang up job doing a bottom job and fixing my rudder.
I am installing an AIS transponder from Vesper Marine which includes a VHF antenna and a GPS puck.
Also a bow starboard navigation light and I am spraying NeverWet on my prop to keep down the barnacle growth.
Notice that the prop was painted with a zinc coating that is also supposed to keep down the growth.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Rolly Tasker Sails, Phuket, Thailand

I'm at the largest sail loft in the world employing nearly 100 women to sew sails for sailing boats the world over.
It was started by a famous Australian sailor who regularly won the Sydney to Hobart yacht race. They had a list of his successful triumphs on the wall.
This place is enormous.
I was actually hoping to buy a spinnaker while I was here and besides having some stock sails available, they had quite a few "seconds" like this one that was just slightly bigger than I wanted for under $US1000.
Here are a few more pictures of the loft.
You can see the"seconds" lined up against the wall on the left. Most of these sails were perfectly okay and less than half the price of a new one.

Friday, August 26, 2016

In storage

My friends Walt and Mary have a Westsail 32 just like mine named Orion one boat over from mine here at Reedville.
They are thinking of selling their boat and buying a trawler because of health challenges.
I was out on a blistering hot summer day working on the boat.
The temperature here is so much more uncomfortable compared to New England. Actually, painting the boot stripe on the boat wasn't half as bad as working inside the engine compartment of the boat because at least there was a little breeze cooling me off. I had to add flax to my stuffing box and I know that it sounds complicated, but it is simple enough to get done. The propeller turns on a shaft from the motor inside the boat using a gasket keeping the water out called a stuffing box.
The stuffing box uses a flax material to allow some water to seep through to keep the shaft cool.
I also let off 3 insect bombs inside the boat because I have noticed some cockroaches appearing over the last couple of months.
I plan on splashing the boat in the middle of October and heading south.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Hauling Onapua

The bottom paint was mostly gone but there are not too many barnacles on her.
There is a bad hole in the rudder that will need to be fixed after it dries out.
I used to have a shoe between the keel and the rudder that has disappeared and the 3 blade prop had lots of barnacles on it.
I plan on replacing the zinc's on the prop shaft and the Bob stay.