Current Log 11-16-07 We are now less than two weeks from beginning our 6 year cruise which we had planned to depart on Nov 1st.
We had just got out of the boat yard in what we thought was our final preparations for departure. I have been working very long days on the boat since late June installing lots of major boat systems & we ready to be done with all the boat prep work. We had changed out the drip-less packing gland to a standard packing gland, since the old drip-less has a tendency to have major leak issues when they fail unlike a standard packing gland which can always be tightened. I installed the under water ground plates for the single side band radio, polished the prop, had the bottom paint done…the last of the marathon boat projects were coming to an end. 10-04-07 The next day after getting out of the boat yard we filled up the 135 gallon starboard fuel tank & bashed into the big seas for over an hour to test the repair that we had done at the top of the tank 3 three years ago. After making that repair we had to wait until the new tank we had installed was very low so in case there was a problem we could pump the fuel into that one, but we had so many back to back projects that three years went by before we could test it. There was no sign of leaks that day or the next few days but sometime around the 4th day we noticed a trace of diesel in the bilge. I transferred about 55 gallons into the port tank, topping it off & proceeded to vacuum out the bilge then gave away about 55 gallons to our friends Bill & Mary. I found a flexible fuel tank place on line on Monday afternoon, they could build a tank liner for my old tank but would take 4 to 6 weeks:-O Looks like our departure will be delayed while we wait for this tank liner. In the mean time I made about 10 trips to haz mat to dump the mess from the bilge & 8 more trips later. I cut a section out of the teak & holly wood floor, scrubbed 30 years of dead diesel crap off the inside of the tank & hit it with several rounds of degreaser, cut the top of the tank, removed the baffles. I had Patrick the welding artist weld tabs to the edge in order to secure the top after liner is installed. I will then drilled & tapped holes in order to put ¼” screws in from the inside, secured with 5200 sealant adhesive, so the round part is presented towards the tank liner. A heavy plastic sheet will then go over the cover so there is no abrasion to worry about on the liner. All the welds were smoothed over & covered with neoprene. The floor’s stud was reinstalled & the floor is place while we wait for the tank liner. The liner was done before 11-09-07 but they are just waiting for a tank level sensor – The tank is due to be here on Nov. 20th. 11-06-07We had a bunch of motor parts installed over the last couple of weeks, it was hard to find exact replacement parts for our 31 year old Perkins motor but finally we got to test the motor for an hour at sea late that afternoon & all seemed fine. 11-07-07We headed out towards a favorite anchorage on Santa Cruise Island. All was good for a while but after about an hour & a half I saw oil coming out of the starter! Our little leak in the main rear seal had gotten real bad; concerned that the starter would not start after being flooded with oil, we turned around. The mechanics began the process of replacing this seal; at this point the shaft is pulled back, the transmission is removed, the bell housing is off, the 150lb flywheel gear is out & the seal has been removed & a new one is on order. We should be back on the water for sea trials by next week.
11-16-07 Yesterday Jose installed the main rear seal & gasket, today he will be coming to finish installing the rest of the transmission. After Sea trials he’ll install the Air Sep device.
The fuel tank liner is dew to arrive on Nov. 20th, after that install, a few days of sea trials & the last of the food supplies are aboard...we'll head out :-)
11-29-07Left Ventura for Pardise cove on a nice calm day, the weeks previous storms let up just for us.We saw several pods of dolphins ride our bow a few times along the way; we even saw a giant whale spout a few times before raising tail & diving.We anchored an hour before sunset, it was very calm & a great first night out.It rained through the night & all the next day while we made our way to the Isthmus at Catilina.Anchoring went very smooth, the $40/night mooring ball was way too short for our boat but the anchorage was cool in that we had the just about the whole place to ourselves.
11-30-07The next night we attempted to anchor but with all the moorings littering the place we gave up & took a mooring all to our selfs in Cherry cove.The next morning werowed to the beach & explored a huge & deserted boy scout camp before we head down to Avalon.
Arriving in Avalon we took a mooring in perhaps one of the worlds most picturesque harbors.We took pix of the ?semi-sub?, the casino & all the rest.The next day we rented a golf cart & raced around for a 3 hour tour?in one hour.Later we took the long walk up to the Wriggle mansion which happed to be having their once a year open house.People from all around the world come to see this place; I agree with Robin it?s a stuffy boring over priced place but the view was great.I?m fascinated with history of it all but the rooms are just?well, just rooms.But each room has it?s own fireplace & view.We could see our fine ship in the picturesque harbor; it?s what dreams are made of.
Departed Avalon at 3:40am in rout to San Diego.We were erring to caution by leaving early before the big northern storm would hit us;winds of gale force & seas to 40 are reported offshore of Washington.
We were warned (promised) huge swell & 15 to 25 knot NW winds...no luck, we motored the whole way for 10 hours.
(we did sail at 2 to 4 knots for an hour).
We saw dolphins in the dark of night as we motored along to San Diego, beating the storm.Arriving at the police dock at 1:30pm.We burned thru over a half a tank between Ventura & San Diego; we topped off the tank at 58 gallons.
It rained a few of the days as the storm passed thru, in Ensenada one of the marinas was damaged by this storm.It?s 2pm on Sunday & we?ve got a very long list of stuff to do before we can ship out in the morning.We had planned on departing before sunup this morning but Robin wanted to see the San Diego parade of lights Sunday night so we were happy to stay another night; a good thing cause ?storm part two?blew thru last night.
I'll take more time to write a bit more elaborate once we find all that excessive spare time every one (land lubber shell backs tells us well have; other cruisers just laugh when we ask when all the extra time will be available. For now I've got to ride all over town in the dark to run a bunch of earrens (& get a better spell checker :-O We had a major equipment failure, one of Robin's game controllers went down & I've got a long ride to find a replacement :-O