Like everyone, we found deciding what to leave behind and what to bring on our cruise difficult. I put myself in charge of power tool selection and feel like you can get by with 5 power tools for a 1 year cruise. With these tools I’ve milled down rough lumber and built a rear seat, fabricated a new aft chainplate, and cut custom teak pieces for various projects around the boat. You can certainly get by with out these tools, but having them aboard will enable you to pretty much build and fabricate whatever you need aboard out of almost ... Read More
We’ve all heard the old saw that all it takes to turn a cruiser into a racer is the sight of another boat catching up to us. Sometimes true, sometimes not. Casting a critical eye up the sails to check the trim is hardly racing, it’s sailing your boat well. In fact, the very mention of the R-word leaves many sailors cold, which is a shame because you can have an awful lot of fun getting out on the water in the company of like-minded souls. Read More
Plus, not all races are created equal. More and more clubs are responding to ...
We’re here in cruiser friendly Elizabeth City, NC, mile 50 of the ICW. As part of their mission to be the most cruiser friendly city on the ICW, the city provides a ton of free dockage. September (already?) is still pre-season for fall migration and we had our pick of the docks. We spent last night on a wall that was exposed to the south by the wide Pasquotank River. We decided to review the weather report in the morning choose our plan of action to ride out Hermine on Saturday. I heard there was a bulkhead north of the ... Read More
Aside from one rather unfortunate dinghy-sailing adventure as a teenager, I have managed to steer clear of smaller boats for most of my life. This was a conscious decision; I didn’t defect from power to sail till my late 20s, and since I learned on a J/24 and not a dinghy, I quickly became accustomed—not to say addicted— to the feeling of security engendered by a large lump of lead counteracting the forces of wind and waves. The boats were sporty enough to be exciting, especially in a big breeze, and there seemed little chance of going for an involuntary ... Read More
I guess it was bound to happen. Put two millennials on a sailboat with 270 amp hours of battery and you’re going to have a problem. I was seduced slowly – everyone knows running the engine to charge the batteries is terrible for the engine and an extremely expensive way to make power. I find we have to charge the boat every other day, even when we have good sunlight for the 480 watts of solar. Our fridge and freezer are are giant and terribly insulated.
But its beyond that, running the engine while on anchor just plain sucks. Even ... Read More
It’s hot out here! Imagine that – Florida in the summer!
We spent almost a week anchored north of the Las Olas Bridge in Fort Lauderdale. Rachel’s Aunt took delivery of our sailrite binimi kit and brought it with her when she came over one night for dinner (thanks Stacie)! We spent the next 3 days building the frame, patterning the binimi, and sewing the thing up. It turned out fantastic and now we have a refuge from the unrelenting sun during the day.
We got in contact with Pam Wall during our stay in Fort Lauderdale and ended up ... Read More
Here’s part 1 of the watermaker install for those of you who missed it.
The install resumed on the hook in Marsh Harbor, Bahamas. I had plenty of time to work on it after we arrived thanks to 30kt winds for over a week. The pump was installed on the mount and then bolted to the engine rails inline with the power takeoff pulley. After three trips to the store I finally got the correct sized belt. Ideally I would have liked to attach the mount directly to the engine. With my setup you have to be careful not to ... Read More
We left Providencia, Columbia, which is located off the Nicaraguan coast on July 2nd. We hoped to arrive in Key West, Florida on July 8th. The window planning is tricky with this passage, trying to time a decent window to get across the most vigorous of the trade winds that set up north of Providencia while avoiding undue amounts of tropical moisture and also transiting while no tropical development is expected is no small order. For this entire trip north we’ve been consulting with WRI (Weather Routing Incorporated). The stakes are too high to misread internet weather information and put ... Read More
At this point we’re getting a decent idea of what it costs to cruise. We’re also realizing jumping right into in it has its downsides. The boat is 95% perfect. Which is kinda amazing considering we’ve never cruised before. Ideally we could have used the boat for a season and then taken care of the changes that have crept up. The issue is, I can think of numerous people I’ve met while refitting that are constantly tweaking the boat to be just right, yet never set off anywhere. I did not want to turn into one of these people. At ... Read More
We hoist the dingy onto the deck and separate the two halves, nest them together and lash it amidships. Each of us knows the procedure by heart at this point – there’s no point in talking. Our thoughts lay to the north and in the future. The routine of departure settles upon the boat as the sun sets in the west. Always a contemplative time – the night before setting out on a voyage on the open ocean. No matter how well you hedge against the unknown, the sea is an expanse of wilderness that can never quite ... Read More