Day 45 towards Cape Horn - Rough seas, squalls, .... working on wind vane proje

Wednesday 5th December 2012

Lovely sunny morning but seas got rough as day progressed - easily to 3m and quite close, making for uncomfortable motion.... especially later when it got more cloudy and we had some squalls when some big grey clouds came by... Rushing al0ng in strong wind, heeled over, in rough seas is not conducive to getting work done!

After earlier getting a very helpful, useful email fom Raymarine UK, in response to my queries and proposal for trying to make use of the wind unit on the stern arch, I was keen to get going. I dug out my electrical kit and spares to see what useful items I had available to connect the 5 pins of the unit to the 5-core cable. Handling the unit, I realized there was a more urgent problem - How to mount it so it stayed upright was not going to be simple - it could easily turn upside down without the base unit it normally plugs into...

I dug out some pieces of wood - lots of playing around with the wood and unit lead finally to cutting a useful piece into two and then further cutting... I'd need to drill holes to attach a third piece for attaching to the arch & take cable ties, jubilee clips and /or a bolt and nut or two... I'm making use of the shape of the end of the unit to attach the ends of the thin pieces of wood to keep it upright, but have to avoid the two rotating parts above and below from snagging.

I got far enough to feel confident that my idea will work for the mount - and then decided to cook a decent meal while it was still light (which I did), ... at which point the weather deteriorated so no further work could be done. Tomorrow, I'll look at the electrical connection side of things, but did manage to check a possible route to down below for the cable from the cockpit .... that works .. I was pleased to see that..

On the radio side, my radio connection problems for emails have been eased tremendously by a couple of very kind Winlink people. It's amazing the difference a good beam antenna pointed in the right direction can make! I was also surprised to find the 'N-S effect' working from here, to my advantage... Not expecting it to work, I tried to connect in to Nova Scotia around midnight when the tables showed a very remote chance of making a connection. I knew, from previous experience, that it has worked from deep in the S. Atlantic, but was pleased to find a good enough connection was made from here to post last night's log report! I'll try that again now!

24hr DMG at 3pm: 130 n.ml Cape Horn is 3160 n.ml. away & our nearest land is Easter Island 665 n.ml. away to SSE, with Pitcairn Island, 736 n.ml. to the WSW & the Gambier Islands 983 n.ml away, also to WSW. We're presently about 2415 n.ml. from Lima, Peru, on our nearest coast, but we're actually level with Chile now, having 'crossed the border' just before sunrise today!

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For my daily position and track:

See my website's 'Travels' page - go to www.svnereida, open 'Travels', then click on "Where is Nereida?"

http://www.exactearth.com/media-centre/recent-ship-tracks/tracking-nereida/ - courtesy 'exactEarth' using their polar-orbiting satellites -, especially good nearer the poles, i.e. should be good when in the Southern Ocean.

Unfotunately, having run out of lithium batteries for the GPS tracker unit, the other website can no longer keep my track up-to-date - it stopped on 17th November...

Written by : Mike

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