S/V Nereida sails around the world

Season's Greetings - from 'Nereida' afloat in San Carlos!!

20th December 2014 - 'Nereida' happily afloat... Happy New Year!

Seasons greetings Nereida lit up - showing new hard top

Sending you the warmest of Season's Greetings and wishing you all a very Happy and Healthy New Year 2015...  from 'Nereida' decorated with a string of coloured LEDs...

It's great to be afloat at last, even though it's in a marina, still with lots to do...   There's a problem here for deeper-draught boats and 8th December was the last possible date for 'Nereida' to be launched for quite a time.  So it was vital to be 'splashed' now, in order to be able to go sailing at all over the coming months.

Photos of the short road trip: leaving Marina Seca, onto the main road close by, down to the marina ramp - all being pushed 'backwards', ahead of the tractor driven by Jose-Maria...:

m2  3.Leaving Marina Seca 

4.Onto the main road by Marina Seca

m5 m6

 m7 Afloat ..... at last!! m8

To celebrate, I invited yardworkers Jorge, Pepe and Edgar and their families to join me on board 'Nereida' the following Saturday afternoon with the idea of taking them all out for a sail after a good lunch. (They've never been out on a sailing vessel, despite all their years of working on boats in the yard...)  I had a lot of work to do, clearing things away and tidying up to make room for twelve people eating down below and in the cockpit! (Photos show chaos in the main cabin and in the cockpit when we were about to leave the yard - made worse by having had to retrieve lots of gear from a storage locker...  I'm busy now working through everything on board, hoping to reduce the excess and make space for visitors!)

mChaos in main cabin mCockpit chaos while on the hard

I had a nasty shock when hoisting the staysail and finding I'd managed to crease the luff in the track on the foil... It proved impossible to budge it up or down, so I folded/furled it up as best I could, leaving the halyard slack, and then got help from my willing neighbours to hoist the genoa in the hope of using it during the Saturday outing...  (A few days later, a cheerful local rigger, Carlos, came to help me - and pulled the staysail down with very little effort - a big relief!!)

The usual scenario in the afternoons is for a N wind to pipe up strongly here, usually after a flat calm overnight and during the mornings, and I suspect my visitors were slightly worried about the possibility of the wind making 'rough' seas and causing seasickness - I later heard that Pepe had asked someone for pills, just in case!   I switched on the instruments in preparation for leaving the dock - and saw very little depth of water ... I'd totally forgotten about the shallow water in the marina and that LW was in the afternoon!  I checked with a knowledgeable neighbour - sure enough, the word was not to even think about leaving ...  I'd be sure to go aground in the marina entrance - either on the sand bar there or on an unmarked rock close by to its S....  (Friends Ben and Lucie, in 'Georgia'went aground on that same sand bar twice a week or so ago... despite their relatively shallow draught!!)   ... So my planned outing didn't happen - but we enjoyed the afternoon on board, despite that.

As is so often true, I've found people here to be really friendly and helpful...  Garth (originally from USA but with Mexican family across the Sea of Cortez in Mulege) has been very supportive - got my outboard properly serviced by Umberto, gave me some 'magic liquid' he guaranteed would unstick a well-stuck-down turning block on deck, sent rigger Carlos over to me to help with the jammed staysail, and also made sure mechanic Alejandro came to undo the seawater cooling pipe leading to the heat exchanger, where I knew I had bits of impellor stuck - ready to cause me a problem at some point, when running the engine...   I was amazed to see just how many broken bits of impellor flanges were there when Alejandro finally got to my engine yesterday (having been to the wrong marina at least twice over the week!) ... LOTS more than just the one impellor that had broken while battery-charging in the Southern Ocean last year...!:

 20141219 100040 20141219 100238 - gasket needs replacing Of course,the gasket needed changing but I have no spare - a tube of liquid gasket proved useful until I get another...  Alejandro reminded me I should have a spare injector or two, also...  And a small filter placed in the seawater pipe would be useful for easily extracting future impellor bits...

I've been working hard at improving my Spanish recently - of necessity, since many locals have little or no English.  It's satisfying to be able to communicate better with them.

With Christmas and the New Year so close, there's been a lot of movement in and out of the area & several friends on boats have left recently, but fortunately a few others will remain.  In particular, Ed and Charlene will be here - we're hoping to go out for a sail on 'Nereida' over Christmas Day - that would be great!  Ed spent quite a time with me today, looking over some problems on board with a view to helping me, which is greatly appreciated.  He'll be back tomorrow with tools.

The Internet here is awful - often impossible to make a good connection, so I tried to get my Bullet antenna working, to a wi-fi router...  Gustavo came by - and proved to be very helpful.  He got it working at one point, using a spare data cable I bought recently, but it's misbehaving again and needs more work.

My Christmas (and New Year) present to myself will be to get 'Nereida' better organised and sorted out!!  Despacio, despacio ...!

HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!!  Feliz Navidad y Buen Ano Nuevo!!

More news from Marina Seca, San Carlos

27th November 2014 (US Thanksgiving)  

             20141123 180019   

Work continues in sunny but dusty San Carlos where the sliver of a new moon appeared in the lovely sunset sky over the distinctive two peaks last Sunday.

Some good work has been done over the last two weeks - the boat is looking much smarter (I even hosed the dust off the decks tonight) and I’m feeling a lot happier!   It’s great to have so many friendly, helpful people around – typical boating community here, with everyone helping one another…  (Particular thanks to Tony & Patsy of 'Forbes & Cameron'  and Brunton's in U.K. for getting a much-needed greasing nipple to me via San Diego for my Autoprop.  Also to Alain of ‘Blue Moon’,  and Ed of ‘Panacea’ - and the cheerful yard workers who have often been very helpful as well)

Five layers of a barrier coat were applied in quick succession to the underwater section Friday fortnight ago, after thorough sanding, and then a light sanding was followed by four coats of Coppercoat on the following Wednesday.   Then the low loader came along early on Monday to raise “Nereida” slightly so the blocks under her keel, as well as the supporting stands, could be moved for the process to be repeated in the uncoated places - including under the flat base of the keel (where a Black Widow spider was found on moving the wooden supports!).   

Having thoroughly primed the yard workers on the procedure beforehand - and making sure only the most experienced of them was involved - it all went beautifully smoothly, with two on each side (Jorge with Edgar and Pepe with Miguel) and Adriano mixing the batches with me helping.  Ed of 'Panacea' also gave a helping hand - he'll be applying Coppercoat to his boat and was interested to see how it all went.  It certainly created a lot of interest from nearby boat owners, other yard workers and staff of Marina Seca here in San Carlos, Mexico.  The thought of 10-12 years of no antifouling being needed raised a lot of comment!   (Photos below)

 In between that and finishing wind generator wiring, I’ve been busily painting the aft cabin bunk tops with a two-part epoxy sealant for protection, the main problem turning out to be the excessively long time taken for each coat to harden, meaning only one coat per day was possible.  I’d naively hoped to get the job completed over last weekend, since the days are still very warm, but it’s only just finishing.   With both sides of seven boards involved the job will have lasted 8 days - hopefully, they can be put back in place this weekend so the aft cabin can be organised and cleared up....

The newly completed wind generator installation has proved useful - in the usual afternoon thermally-induced winds, the rotor is whizzing around so the house batteries are regularly at a healthier voltage now.  (My 220-240V shore charger refuses to accept the high input voltage of 270V coming from the 2:1 transformer resulting from the mains power at 135V here.  I’m often having to borrow 110V equipment to do work via an extension lead in the yard.)

The new hard sprayhood over the companionway (known as a hard ‘dodger' in N.America) is looking good - the shape is identical to my old canvas awning, with Lexan windows.   The glazing sealant gave Jorge quite a problem - it’s silicone and cures to be very strong, but is difficult to apply all around and behind the windows, being runny but skinning over within 20 minutes, giving very little time to smooth it and remove the masking tape around while maintaining the positive pressure on the window for the week it needs to cure.  The stainless steel fixings - front-plates and backing-plates - have given me a lot of work in preparing to instal them, with difficult access to where each of the two backing-plates go.

A Thanksgiving ‘potluck’ Dinner was organised by ‘Shamaness’ here outside the yard last night - it included the traditional turkey and pumpkin pie and I was delighted to find some unexpected fresh-mashed potatoes - a change from tortillas!  Two good guitarists played later and we all relaxed after the day’s boatwork - all very enjoyable!

                20141119 082542

We got going soon after 8:30am ......

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                20141119 084001

                20141119 084045

Miguel and Edgar get started :

                 20141119 084116   

Jorge and Pepe relax in between coats:     

                 20141119 110610

                  20141119 110642

Waiting for the third coat to dry...

                  20141119 110736 

                  20141119 110842

Edgar pays careful attention to the rudder area while Ed checks around the propellor and (rope) Stripper:

                  20141119 110847

Jorge and Pepe were delighted to have finished all four coats by midday - in time for lunch!

                  20141119 120410

Monday morning, after several days for drying out, the low-loader came to lift 'Nereida' slightly so the blocks beneath, and the side supports, could be moved to complete the coatings:

                  20141124 080922

                  20141124 081516

The Autoprop has been thoroughly cleaned off to bare metal, ready for Propspeed coating to be applied - I had been waiting for the greaser nipple and the bearings were thoroughly greased once it came - an easy operation.

A Black Widow spider was found lurking on one of the blocks moved ...!

                           20141124 081358

                  

                  

                                 

 

More news from Marina Seca, San Carlos

27th November 2014 (US Thanksgiving)

Work continues in sunny but dusty San Carlos where the sliver of a new moon appeared in the lovely sunset sky over the distinctive two peaks last Sunday.

Some good work has been done over the last two weeks - the boat is looking much smarter (I even hosed the dust off the decks tonight) and I’m feeling a lot happier!   It’s great to have so many friendly, helpful people around – typical boating community here, with everyone helping one another…  (Particular thanks to Alain, of ‘Blue Moon’, and Ed, of ‘Panacea’ - and the cheerful yard workers have often been very helpful, also.)

Five layers of a barrier coat were applied in quick succession to the underwater section Friday fortnight ago, after thorough sanding, and then a light sanding was followed by four coats of Coppercoat on the following Wednesday.   Then the low loader came along early on Monday to raise “Nereida” slightly so the blocks under her keel, as well as the supporting stands, could be moved for the process to be repeated in the uncoated places - including under the flat base of the keel (where a Black Widow spider was found on moving the wooden supports!).   

Having thoroughly primed the yard workers on the procedure beforehand - and making sure only the most experienced of them was involved - it all went beautifully smoothly and certainly created a lot of interest from nearby boat owners, other yard workers and staff of Marina Seca here in San Carlos, Mexico.  (Photos below)

 In between that and finishing wind generator wiring, I’ve been busily painting the aft cabin bunk tops with a two-part epoxy sealant for protection, the main problem turning out to be the excessively long time taken for each coat to harden, meaning only one coat per day was possible.  I’d naively hoped to get the job completed over last weekend, since the days are still very warm, but it’s only just finishing.   With both sides of seven boards involved the job will have lasted 8 days - hopefully, they can be put back in place this weekend so the aft cabin can be organised and cleared up....

The newly completed wind generator installation has proved useful - in the usual afternoon thermally-induced winds, the rotor is whizzing around so the house batteries are regularly at a healthier voltage now.  (My 220-240V shore charger refuses to accept the high input voltage of 270V coming from the 2:1 transformer resulting from the mains power at 135V here.  I’m often having to borrow 110V equipment to do work via an extension lead.)

The new hard sprayhood over the companionway (known as a hard ‘dodger' in N.America) is looking good - the shape is identical to my old canvas awning, with Lexan windows.   The glazing sealant gave Jorge quite a problem - it’s silicone and cures to be very strong, but is difficult to apply all around and behind the windows, being runny but skinning over within 20 minutes, giving very little time to smooth it and remove the masking tape around.  The stainless steel fixings - front-plates and backing-plates - have given me a lot of work in preparing to instal them, with difficult access to where each of the two backing-plates go.

A Thanksgiving ‘potluck’ Dinner was organised by ‘Shamaness’ here outside the yard last night - it included the traditional turkey and pumpkin pie and I was delighted to find some unexpected fresh-mashed potatoes - a change from tortillas!  Two good guitarists played later and we all relaxed after the day’s boatwork - all very enjoyable!

More news from Marina Seca, San Carlos

27th November 2014 (US Thanksgiving)

Work continues in sunny but dusty San Carlos where the sliver of a new moon appeared in the lovely sunset sky over the distinctive two peaks last Sunday.

Some good work has been done over the last two weeks - the boat is looking much smarter (I even hosed the dust off the decks tonight) and I’m feeling a lot happier!   It’s great to have so many friendly, helpful people around – typical boating community here, with everyone helping one another…  (Particular thanks to Alain, of ‘Blue Moon’, and Ed, of ‘Panacea’ - and the cheerful yard workers have often been very helpful, also.)

Five layers of a barrier coat were applied in quick succession to the underwater section Friday fortnight ago, after thorough sanding, and then a light sanding was followed by four coats of Coppercoat on the following Wednesday.   Then the low loader came along early on Monday to raise “Nereida” slightly so the blocks under her keel, as well as the supporting stands, could be moved for the process to be repeated in the uncoated places - including under the flat base of the keel (where a Black Widow spider was found on moving the wooden supports!).   

Having thoroughly primed the yard workers on the procedure beforehand - and making sure only the most experienced of them was involved - it all went beautifully smoothly and certainly created a lot of interest from nearby boat owners, other yard workers and staff of Marina Seca here in San Carlos, Mexico.  (Photos below)

 In between that and finishing wind generator wiring, I’ve been busily painting the aft cabin bunk tops with a two-part epoxy sealant for protection, the main problem turning out to be the excessively long time taken for each coat to harden, meaning only one coat per day was possible.  I’d naively hoped to get the job completed over last weekend, since the days are still very warm, but it’s only just finishing.   With both sides of seven boards involved the job will have lasted 8 days - hopefully, they can be put back in place this weekend so the aft cabin can be organised and cleared up....

The newly completed wind generator installation has proved useful - in the usual afternoon thermally-induced winds, the rotor is whizzing around so the house batteries are regularly at a healthier voltage now.  (My 220-240V shore charger refuses to accept the high input voltage of 270V coming from the 2:1 transformer resulting from the mains power at 135V here.  I’m often having to borrow 110V equipment to do work via an extension lead.)

The new hard sprayhood over the companionway (known as a hard ‘dodger' in N.America) is looking good - the shape is identical to my old canvas awning, with Lexan windows.   The glazing sealant gave Jorge quite a problem - it’s silicone and cures to be very strong, but is difficult to apply all around and behind the windows, being runny but skinning over within 20 minutes, giving very little time to smooth it and remove the masking tape around.  The stainless steel fixings - front-plates and backing-plates - have given me a lot of work in preparing to instal them, with difficult access to where each of the two backing-plates go.

A Thanksgiving ‘potluck’ Dinner was organised by ‘Shamaness’ here outside the yard last night - it included the traditional turkey and pumpkin pie and I was delighted to find some unexpected fresh-mashed potatoes - a change from tortillas!  Two good guitarists played later and we all relaxed after the day’s boatwork - all very enjoyable!

San Carlos Report - 5th Nov 2014

Back to San Carlos via Phoenix, to work on 'Nereida'

            20141016 153658                20141016 162312       

                           AYC talk 14Oct2014                        IMG 4184

Spoke at Arizona Yacht Club meeting in Tempe, by Phoenix, on Tuesday 14th October, before heading on down to San Carlos.  A great audience at my talk . and a fun time the Sunday beforehand, sailing a Laser on Tempe Lake, in bright sunshine. Strong gusts capsized me twice - but water was fresh and warm, so swim was quite pleasant... Safety boat came to my rescue - I was just not heavy enough to get boat up again each time, despite all my efforts heaving on the end of the centre board!

Busy again now in Marina Seca, San Carlos - trying to get into 'Mex mode' to avoid stressing myself out over time taken to get nowhere...  But my bow thruster streamlining projecthas been nicely smoothed and finished off by Pepe and Adriano. (No - I didnt want one, but since its there, might as well prevent the loss of speed the tunnel must have caused).

         20141029 140801          20141029 140750

Had help installing replacement steering bearings and cables (with new greasers) and (replacement) new wind generator - wiring needs to be finished and hub plus blades to be put in place.

Also installed a Halyard Exhaust Alert in exhaust hose, with cockpit display - hoping never to have engine damaged by overheating in future.  Wiring of alarm and junction box needs completion but its not difficult - just needs me to find time to get to it.   (Photos show sensor inside hose and outer connection to junction box)

         riser sensor 4 2             20141026 090233         20141026 090212            

With aft cabin turned upside down for access to wiring, Ill complete work there before replacing newly-cleaned bunk tops and tidying up - means main cabin and forepeak are jammed up, making moving about difficult.   Hard awning/dodger is also needing some more careful thought - spent time making patternsfor steel plates and straps to attach it firmly.   Jorge has been mproving the inside finish in places with fresh gelcoat.

Found an empty (i.e. leaked!) bottle of epoxy hardener all over forepeak floor ... grrr!!  Have spent time cleaning up a big mess, chasing up replacement and organising travel to/from Tucson to pick it up quickly - this weekend, I hope, ready for applying Coppercoat next week.  Have scheduled launch for 24th Nov so need to get it done, along with Propspeed application to prop and propshaft, plus dealing with anything else below waterline.

Hot now in sun around midday, but has suddenly become very cool in the evenings and overnight - having to get out warmer bedding. (Debated getting out socks last night, uncovered feet felt so cold!)  No shore power input - not too surprisingly, charger is malfunctioning with high input voltage (132V, instead of 120V!) - yet another problem that was NOT on my list of expected boat work!  Having to rely on solar power to keep batteries charged - three wires needed new sections added to eliminate loss of output power due to corrosion.

Took last weekend off to relax and go sailing in Tucson S.C. Regatta here in San Carlos - lovely to get out on the water Friday - Sunday, with parties each evening.  Many thanks to Peter and Judy Burgard for inviting me to join them, with their son Alan, as their guest for the Regatta racing on Bandito, with its distinctive Halloween’ spinnaker in black & orange adding interest on the downwind legs!

Large moths are out in force in the evenings they seem to enjoy settling upside down on theinside of glasses to drink the beer! 

Friends Robert and Rose finally enjoy Tillicumbeing launched - after two years of hard work on a total refit - she looks beautiful - happy people!!   Im envious!

                                        20141030 094247