Around Alone Update:
Total miles sailed so far-4363 NM
Miles sailed last three days-395 NM
Miles left to go to the Horn-1749 NM.
Top speed so far=10.8kts.
THE REST OF THE STORY:
Position: Latitude- 41*17’S. Longitude-113*30′
Weather-Wind 15-20kts but gusting 30-50kts in the early morning
Cabin Temp. 56*-72*
The 964mb low is still nearly on top of us.
The worst of it came at about 1am in the morning until 3am when the winds were screeching at 50 kts, the only good thing to come out of that, was the winds seemed to flatten the seas somewhat so there were smaller holes to come “Crashing” down into.
The waves are still breaking into the cockpit at times, so repairs will not be attempted on steering cables until things moderate somewhat. It kind of makes me miss the nice winters in Mexico.
We are starting to sail over the top of the low as it is moving SW and can now at last steer the course to the “Horn”.
Position: Latitude-43*03’S. Longitude-112*00’W
Weather: Wind-10-15 kts. WNW
Seas confused 6-8ft. from SW and West.
Cabin Temp-59*-67* Sunny skies most of the day
The winds were down and it was time to see if the steering cables can be fixed. I estimated if things went well,it would take about three hours, Hmmmmmm
The chain had spun off the sprocket and dropped down inside the steering pedestal. I removed the compass and disconnected the fuel and shift cable so I could pry that part of the pedestal up and get under it with my fish tape hopping to be able to hook the chain or a cable and drag it out. After about 20 minutes of being unsuccessful at dragging the chain out, even after it was hooked, because you have to get it around the sprocket and the steering shaft, then the break mechanism for the wheel. “IMPOSSIBLE”
So I stepped back and decided that possibly I could unbolt everything on top of the wheel tube and lift that off then I would have a four inch opening to drag the chain and cables out of.
Now you must picture we are sailing in some waves and two off my biggest compartments had to be emptied into the cockpit.
I mean there is 1000ft. of lines, different lengths of chain, a 60lb. CQR anchor, 5-gallons of oil and transmission oil, and hoses, electrical cords, Hookah Hose and many other miscellaneous I don’t know “Why the hell I have all these Shit Items”
Ok so you got the picture, all work is done with those hatches open and piles of “shit” everywhere, that you must walk on, and lay on, and most importantly trying to keep it from falling down into the open hatches where the bilge is and things can disappear forever.
Once I get all the bolts out of the steering shaft housing, there seemed to be no way to get it off the 4″ stainless steel tube. It is bronze and you can only pound on that stuff so much. Hmmmm! Three hours????
Well if you can’t get it from the top why not the bottom. So I crawl down in the compartment and take of the four nuts that hold the Bronze cable wheels and the backing plate for the steering pedestal.
Suddenly I have the chain and cables in my hand, as a matter of fact the cable that broke, broke at the chain and there was enough extra wire at the steering quadrant end to remake it on to the chain using two Crosby U-bolt clamps.
In the end it took 7-hours of steady work and no breaks but I can tell you I feel much better today knowing it is fixed. I believe why it failed was because the lines to the wind vane steering became to slack and allowed the rudder to swing back and forth and the wind vane would stop the wheel from spinning suddenly allowing the chain to cut into the cable, or possibly it was the result of the shaft sliding out of the coupling and back against the rudder causing a lot of extra pressure to turn the rudder.
DAY-33: 24hr.Run=14 NM.
Position: Latitude- 44*10’s. Longitude-109*15’W
Weather: Wind 12-15 kts NW
A nice sailing day and I finally got up enough nerve to take the transmission out of reverse and let the prop spin while I ran the boat in neutral, circulating the oil and basically drying the engine it out for twenty minutes.
Next I started the water-maker up and ran it for an hour making water. The water maker produces about 7-gallons an hour.
I consume on average about 2.5 gallons a day.
Our first 75-gallon tank ran dry after thirty days, so now I will gradually top off both tanks once again.
It certainly feels good sailing once again with a boat I can steer.
Always missing Debbie, El Jefe’