Cruising Compass #21 - the Newsletter for Sailors and Cruisers
Subject: Cruising Compass #21 - the Newsletter for Sailors and Cruisers
Dear William, You are receiving this email from Blue Water Sailing magazine because you purchased a product/service, signed up for sailing information or subscribed on our website. To ensure that you continue to receive emails from us, add comments@... to your address book today. If you haven't done so already, click to confirm your interest in receiving Cruising Compass. To no longer receive our emails, click to unsubscribe.Dec. 14, 2006 - Issue 21Welcome to Cruising Compass - your weekly dose of cruising news, notes and fun. Cruising is all about stories; submit yours here and share it with the rest of the Cruising Compass community!.
Know someone who's into the cruising lifestyle (or just dreams about it!)? Send them Cruising Compass by clicking on Forward Email at the bottom of the page.here to view the Cruising Shot of the Week! Have a great shot of your own (you know you do!)? Email it to us.
The 2006 Atlantic Rally for Cruisers is nearing an end. Just about all of the boats have pulled into Rodney Bay, St. Lucia, after a more-or-less 15-day passage from Gran Canaria. This year's ARC made headlines with equipment failures and high-seas rescues. In fact, two more rescues took place this past weekend. The 35-foot Bavaria Arnolf suffered a broken rudder after a collision with a submerged object, possibly a whale. The double-handed French crew tried a series of emergency rudders and a drogue for steerage, but everything failed. After 48 hours, they decided to abandon ship. Another Bavaria, a 47-footer named Be-Bop-A-Lula, was near enough to answer the Mayday and take the crew onboard.
Another rescue occurred when two ARC boats picked up a Mayday from Allegria, a Belgian yacht that was not participating in the rally. One of the two crewmembers aboard Allegria had suffered a mental breakdown and jumped overboard. He was found and rescued about four hours later. Thanks to the help of the ARC boats, a radio relay was able to arrange a medical evacuation. arc.worldcruising.com
Marion to Bermuda
The 2007 Marion (Mass.) to Bermuda cruising yacht race will start on June 15. The online entry form is now available at www.marionbermuda.com
Changes in attitudes
St. Petersburg, Fla., can't decide where boaters should go. The area is quickly gaining a reputation as being non-boater friendly (dwindling marina space, anchoring restrictions, etc..), and now they are starting to worry about proposed mooring fields becoming eye sores and ecological dangers. Read the entire story at www.stpetetimes.com.
Despite water access problems here and throughout the state, however, Florida nabbed the top position again for most registered boats, beating California and Michigan. How do you feel about all the changes going on regarding cruising in Florida? Sound off in the poll on the website, or send an email to comments@....Beautiful anchorages around the country and around the world... real stories from real cruisers... valuable cruising advice from experts... the technical information you need to equip your boat for safe and fun sailing... and the best and most in-depth boat reviews... that's what you'll find in every issue of Blue Water Sailing magazine - the only sailing magazine published by circumnavigators. Get two issues FREE with no obligation by clicking on www.bwsailing.com.
And don't forget to send that special sailor on your list a gift subscription! Happy Holidays!
For those of you who will be cruising the Bahamas around Christmastime, do not miss the annual Boxing Day and New Year's Day Junkanoo festivities. This annual event is probably the biggest celebration in the Bahamas, featuring parades, music, food and dancing. Most of the more populated island have a celebration, but the largest one is in Nassau. Visit www.junkanoo.com for more info.
Winter is a great time to be in Florida, and Fort Lauderdale's Winterfest Boat Parade is definitely one of the coolest, most lavish boat parades around. This parade is a tradition in South Florida and a fun way to celebrate the holiday season. This Saturday, Dec. 16th, watch as the decked out yachts parade from Port Everglades to Pompano beginning at 6:30. Check it out at www.winterfestparade.com
Découvrez la France avec Sea Sense
Travel the Canal du Midi in Southwestern France while learning boat handling and seamanship skills with Sea Sense, the women's sailing and powerboating school. This eight-day liveaboard class for women will be aboard a comfortable, modern canal barge and will travel from Castelnaudary to Narbonne, May 26 - June 2, 2007. Learn more at www.seasenseboating.comNo one was born knowing how to handle a cruising boat in all weather conditions, how to navigate, provision for passages and use advanced high-seas communications. But you can learn. The best way is to get hands on experience on an ocean passage with teachers who have more than 200,000 ocean miles under their keels. That's John Neal and Amanda Swan-Neal. They run Mahina Expeditions aboard their Hallberg-Rassy 46 and have taught cruising skills to hundreds of sailors - many of whom are out cruising the world on their own boats. You can do it, too. Visit Mahina Expeditions at www.mahina.com.
We all use our engines more than we might want to admit. If you are like us, you motor a lot and go through a fair amount of diesel. As every owner of a diesel auxiliary engine knows, the key to keeping the engine faithful and happy is first to change the oil every 100 hours and second to feed it only the cleanest diesel fuel.
Here are five ways to keep you fuel as clean as possible:
1. Most of us buy our diesel at local marinas where a lot of boats are filling up, so we know that the quality of the fuel is good. Or, if the marina has a bad batch, everyone knows about it right away. But far from home, there are no guarantees and once you get to the Third World, you never know what quality fuel will be on offer. The first trick is to filter suspect fuel as it flows into the tanks. The famous Baja filter works well but the fuel passes through the filter so slowly you can waste hours putting a hundred gallons into the tanks. An aviation grade fuel filter, used to filer av-gas, works much better and faster. If you do not have a filter with you, cheesecloth or panty hose layered in a funnel will catch most of the bad bits. If you have none of the above, then it is best to decant the fuel by filling jerry jugs first and letting the sediments and water settle to the bottom. You can then pour off the top of the tanks and leave the dirt in the jerry jug.
2. Clean tanks are a must. It is a pain to take off the inspection hatches on your tanks to clean the inside, but if you have loaded on bad fuel, you may have to do this. Most of the crud will settle into the lowest corners of the tank. If the tanks have drain plugs at the lowest corners, you can bleed off the suspect fuel through the plug. But this will leave some sediment at the bottom. A hand pump and a long piece of hose that can be fed to the lowest corners will be the best way to pump out the last ounces of dirty fuel.
3. If you suspect there is any water in the fuel, or if you are cruising in cold water areas where condensation can form inside the tank, you need to add a diesel additive to emulsify the droplets of water. Diesel fuel pumps do not like to pump water and injectors don't burn it well. White exhaust smoke may indicate water in the fuel. Additives are basically alcohol so in a pinch you can simply add a few capfuls of raw alcohol to each tank to break down the water molecules. We like to add diesel additives as a matter of course. Water in the tank will encourage the growth of a particular algae that seems to thrive on diesel; this algae can in time bloom and turn the fuel into gelatinous blobs of gooey tapioca. Try to avoid this.
4. In-line filters are worth their weight in gold. Racor makes the filter of choice for most cruisers and we have to say they work well, so well, in fact, that we prefer to put two inline, one right after the other, as a double insurance policy against foul fuel. Once the fuel has passed through the main in-line filters it will flow through a built-in fine filter. Don't forget to service the fine filter whenever you have loaded on suspect fuel or at least annually.
5. If you have multiple fuel tanks, you should have installed a manifold system that will allow you to choose which tank to pump from and which tank you want to accept the excess return fuel from the fuel pump. Engines like the new Yanmars pump twice as much fuel through the fuel system as the injectors actually burn so the remaining fuel flows back to a tank. If need be you can feed return fuel, which has been filtered thoroughly by the in-line and fine filters, into a tank you know is clean or, in a pinch, into a jerry jug.
If you are looking for a different way to use up some potatoes, try these easy potato pancakes. They are good at any time of day. Try them served with applesauce or sour cream.
From Feasts Afloat by Jennifer Trainer Thompson and Elizabeth Wheeler
- 4 to 5 medium potatoes
- 2 eggs
- 3 to 4 Tbsp grated or finely chopped onion
- 2 to 3 Tbsp all-purpose flour
- black pepper
- 1/4 tsp baking powder (optional)
- Vegetable oil or a mixture of butter and vegetable oil
Heat a large, heavy skillet over medium heat. Add enough oil to lightly coat the bottom of the pan. When the oil is hot, drop the batter by tablespoonfuls into the skillet. Press each pancake flat with a spatula. Cook the pancakes, turning once, until they are crisp and golden brown. Serve at once.Here's a useful tool to make anchoring safer and more secure. The Kiwi Anchor Rider is a simple anchor weight that slides half way down the anchor rode (chain or nylon line) and adds up to 30 pounds to the catenary of the rode - actually doubling the anchor's holding power.
The Kiwi Anchor Rider also dampens side to side yaw in gusty conditions and helps prevent the rode from snubbing on the windlass as it straightens out. Made in New Zealand. This thing really works and is worth its weight in gold - almost - and is much better than a sleeping pill. Learn more at www.anchorbuddy.co.nz or call AB Marine at 401-847-7960 or 800-801-8922.
"I'm a liveaboard on my Endeavour 42 at a dockominuim in Kemah, Texas. I have noticed that the rate of living at the marina keeps going up as the cost of living in the area goes up. I believe that the dockominuim will sit on their land till someone makes an offer they can't refuse, then sellout. It's happening here in Texas. It's only a matter of time before all the private marinas are taken over by condos."
S/V Too Much Fun
"The solution for the boat owner is to buy a house with a slip behind it - the writing is on the wall. That is exactly what I did. If you think that is far fetched, look at the prices of the slips and the monthly fees, not to mention that your 'neighbors' are literally right next to you. Otherwise, save the money and go cruising! In the long run that is the most economical choice."
S/Y Iron Mistress
If you've ever bought a brand-new, updated cruising guide only to find that it's already out of date in some areas, than you can see the wisdom behind a continually updated online cruising guide. The creators of the Online Cruising Guide hope that this guide will be the first place that cruisers will go for information. So far the site only has info for the Virgin Islands (U.S. and British with Spanish coming soon), but they plan to have the entire Eastern Caribbean up in the near future. The site is well laid out, informative, useful and best of all, free. This is a site that is definitely worth checking back with periodically as updates occur. Check it out at www.OnlineCruisingGuide.com
You are sailing in the tropics and see a massive cloud to windward that is trailing a dense band of rain showers below it. It is coming closer and you need to decide if it is time to reef. Or will it just blow through and not cause much of a problem? How can you tell the difference in the strength and intensity of a squall before it hits full on?
Send your answers to comments@.... A winner - who will receive a Blue Water Sailing hat - will be selected at random from all of the correct submissions.
- Congrats to Bob, this week's Mindbender winner! His deck will leak no more once he finds the leaks using this easy technique:
"I would find the leak by using some food dye in water and squirting it around a fitting. I would use different colors for different fittings. I would start with the most likely suspect 'uphill' from the light."
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