Thursday 7th March 2013
2.30PM A big flock of Antarctic prions have been circling and swooping around us all day so far- easily 100 or so in bright sunshine. Finally,we've a good NW wind taking us E, having got down to 44S by mid-morning and then having gybed the mains'l, so we're goosewinged, with stays'l poled out ...
A really lovely day, only spoiled by the engine seawater-cooling problem... Spent an age looking through the Yanmar workshop manual - no mention of emergency manual fuel cut-off. Eventually, took bright torchlight to engine compartment and looked down to where I knew it was roughly. I knew it's normally completely out of sight, down on far side of engine, hemmed in by a wall, where oil and fuel filters are both also inconveniently located!! Found a big, bright red, rubber-covered push-button - impossible to miss if it were visible! Started engine, confirmed no seawater circulating - and operated cut-off switch to stop it, to check I'd got that right!
So next, had to move away the (heavy, awkward!) steps from cabin to cockpit, also the for'd engine panels beneath steps (another difficult item) and remove seawater pump cover to check impellor, .... having turned off seacock first! Very damaged - most rubber flanges gone - definitely in need of changing. TG for a tip from a mechanic in Cape Town about using two flat screwdrivers for easy removal of the impellor - and TG also for my large rubber mallet for helping to persuade the new one into position... Big problem now is the flange bits that have made their way towards the heat exchanger... Must I find them and remove them - or can I safely run the engine and leave that for a later date (like when I'm back!)? I managed to finish getting the panels and steps back just as sun was setting at 7pm.... but will think about things before running the engine to test it. At least now I could get up to the cockpit to adjust our course... we were headed ENE, rather than E, all this time!
Last night, a large yellow,crescent moon rose around midnight ... there's a clear sky again tonight, with Jupiter visible over the stern from the companionway, but was busy replacing steps at sunset so missed looking for the comet..
Had some good contacts over the day and this evening, although impellor job cut down radio use a lot - and caused my 1100Z position report not to be sent, with no good enough contact possible, despite lots of trying, later in the day. Will be delayed now until early tomorrow. Had a couple more B.C. contacts on 40m tonight, which was nice, as well as Australian and S. African, to add in to US ones. Also found myself talking to Japan and the Philippines!
Wind has died down somewhat, but direction is still good.... Should make fair progress for next few days, although likely on Saturday, & again early next week, to get very light winds again
TIME: 2013/03/07 11:00
LATITUDE: 44-00.46S LONGITUDE: 070-06.05E
COURSE: 085T SPEED: 6.4
WIND_SPEED: 18 WIND_DIR: NW
SWELL_DIR: NW SWELL_HT: 3.0M SWELL_PER: 8
BARO: 1025 TREND: 0
COMMENT: DMG 96 n.ml.;C.Agulhas:2348 n.ml.; C.Leeuwin WP:1919 n.ml.
Ile Kerguelen: 285 n.ml. (188T) Ile Amsterdam: 498 n.ml. (045T)
For my positions, see:
www.svnereida.com - 'Travels' - "Where is 'Nereida'?"