Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Bit of a fourth plague kind of a day...

..that'll get you off to Wikipedia...

With a 16:07 high tide, a bank holiday, and a reasonable height of water I legged it down to the boat on Monday for a bonus afternoon on the water...

Engine was running very smoothly following the spark plug change (I have another one on order to hold as a spare) which was just as well as there was very little wind...

Motor sailed to Emswrth Beacon and then turned off for a slow sail/drift down the harbour, before turning for home just after Verner as the wind was finally beginning to die out completely - sea breeze seemed to be cancelled out by the prevailing wind... 

...and the flies? Huge numbers of them as I passed Thorney on the way back - small black one's like fruit flies  ("time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana" )  and all gone by the time I got to Sweare Deep.. maybe they had somewhere to be...


Log:

Distance: 7.11 miles (cumulative total in the 2013 mileage tab at the top of the page)
Wind: Force 2.. E to NE
Sail Plan: Full jib and main - engine for motor sailing and manoeuvring..
Speed: GPS track says max speed was 4.1 knots (that was under motor but I saw bursts of 3+ knots under sail at times) - average speed: 2.3 knots

Thursday, 22 August 2013

Bosham or bust...

...bust actually... 

Took the day off especially for a day on the water - with a 13:00 HT and a huge tide (5mtrs) I had the option of an all day sail on one tide so was aiming to do Bosham and back in a day..

We had easterlys today, an unusual direction, but good for fast transits north and south so I was very optimistic...

Cast off, headed for the channel, passed Northney, main up, motor sailing for the main channel and the engine died...  BUGGER...  fuel tank - check, fuel on - check, pull starter - no go, choke try again - no go...  double bugger....  gave up.

Dropped the main, scraped round the end of the bank opposite Northney marina entrance, 2 or 3 knots of tide under me so fast, worrying conditions - if I missed the mooring life was going to be difficult!

Decided to cut through the moorings from before where I normally turn  - was worried about depth, but more worried about beating back to the mooring.....  either way, hit the mooring (not literally) exactly where I wanted to, and 10 minutes later I was tied up and drinking coffee....

Took the engine into the maintenance guy I use, and mentioned that I'd smelt fuel so clearly it was getting through (flooded I thought), I'd also taken the plug out and told him that the end looked carbonated, brown and 'disgusting' (so he knew he was dealing with a mechanical numpty.... as if he didn't know already..! )

Anyway - didn't start for him either (which is a relief - last time I took a non-starter to him it started first bl**dy time ) so he used some spray carb cleaner into the air inlet - but still no go - he then disconnected kill cord electrics - but still no go - changed the plug, and away it then went - sweet as a nut... 

I'll find some time to get it out to the boat this weekend to take it back - but I have visitors, so no sailing..

In the meanwhile, I'm going to buy myself a spare plug, and some spray carb cleaner - just in case....



Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Clipper Race

...my bro in law works for the Clipper Race organisation, and I've got tickets for one of the official spectator boats at the race start on the 1st September on the Thames! Whooo yes.....

This is them yesterday departing their home port of Portsmouth..  lovely picture....!

Monday, 12 August 2013

Both ends of the harbour on a tide..

I've had boats for about 6 years now, but yesterday was the first time my sister had ever set foot on one of them, never mind actually going sailing... either way the stars and planets conjoined yesterday to make such an event happen and and a damn fine afternoon it was!

Winds were largely the same as my trip out on Friday but this time, as we were two up  I went for full sail plan and while it was a bit of a handful in some of the gusts, between them it provided some superb fast sailing, in sunny beautiful conditions...

A run down the channel, main up at Northney, engine off and stayed off until we turned for home at the end of the afternoon.. the run down to HISC was very fast - despite adverse tide we saw 5.2's and 5.3's, and when we turned to head up harbour at NW Pilsey, with the tail end of the favourable tide we saw 6.2's and  6.3's.

We had enough time so we then had a reach up to Emsworth, and one of those excellent tacking sessions back to the Beacon - wind direction being what it was we occasionally got a good lift which eased the passage considerably... there was a lot of traffic up there...!

Superb day, finished off with a curry and a beer - doesn't get any better.... 


Log:

Distance: 10.02 miles (cumulative total in the 2013 mileage tab at the top of the page)
Wind: Force 4 gusting 5.. W to WSW
Sail Plan: Full jib and main - engine for manoeuvring..
Speed: GPS track says max speed was 5.9 knots (that was definitely under sail but I saw bursts of 6+ knots at times) - average speed: 3.5 knots

Saturday, 10 August 2013

Bar Beacon and back...

Picture courtesy of the
Conservancy
After almost two weeks away from the boat I was gagging for some sailing...  I'd been to EuroDisney for 3 days and was also looking for a detox from all the burgers and frites....

Got to the boat (after going ar*e over tit on the slipway for the third time this year) to find a little more wind than I was expecting, so decided to put some reefs  (3) in the main before I left (which was a good thing), and pausing only to slap the engine on the back of the boat, sponge out the bilges from the rain we'd had on Monday, and hoist the PBO burgee I was off... jib only down the  channel towards Northney I was getting 2.5 knots against tide...  it was windy...

Slowed and headed into wind just off  the entrance to marina and proceeded to make a right cock of getting the main up as I wasn't head enough into wind to allow the main a clean run up the mast and the roach was catching in the stays ..  struggled away getting it up (I need a  tiller pilot!) and  noticed a starboard channel marker off the port side, thought nothing of it until the unmistakable sticky slow down of a grounding brought all progress to a halt..  yup - on the putty (which was a bad thing)....  sails down - engine on in reverse - sat on the back of the boat, jiggled, and 5 minutes later I was off - what an idiot....... 

Jib out again and this time I got some clear water before putting the main up properly - wind direction was superb (dead west almost all afternoon), I'd had a run down the channel, but then I had a reach all the way down the harbour in the company of one of the other club cruisers (who'd also been having main problems he told me!)...  superb sailing with solid 4 to 5 knots SOG  (not bad again 1 to 1.5 knots of adverse tide) all the way to the harbour entrance where I decided to head on and see if we could make the West Pole...

Pratting about getting a main up when solo, and no tiller pilot, and force 4 gusting 5 equals the above....

Alas, there was not quite enough time (if I hadn't faffed around at the beginning I could have done it)  the other club cruiser had already turned for home, so I joined him and had another one of those brilliant drag races up the harbour... saw 5.2  and 5.3 knots a couple of times, and again that's SOG (so against tide)..

Brilliant days sailing - 3 and a half hours of pure detox - but the day was not yet over...
  • shackle holding the main sheet unscrewed itself (bad) as I got to the mooring (good) and dropped into the cockpit (also good) - tightened that and also decided to check all the others...
  • swivel bolt holding the tiller to the post came unscrewed (bad) and nut dropped into the cockpit (good) so also took the opportunity to tighten all those!
  • I dropped the keys over the side when locking up but managed to grab them as they went past (thank goodness for cork balls),
  • threw the Crocs into the tender for going ashore and one of them bounced out of the boat  (cue chase across harbour in tender to catch it)...    
...a good day of mostly ups and some downs...

Log:

Distance: 12.51 miles (cumulative total in the 2013 mileage tab at the top of the page)
Wind: Force 4 gusting 5.. W
Sail Plan: Full jib and 3 reefs in the main - engine for manoeuvring and getting off mud..
Speed: GPS track says max speed was 4.3 knots (that was definitely under sail but I saw bursts of 5+ knots at times) - average speed: 3.1 knots