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"Homecoming"

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  • Skip Gundlach
    Anyone heard from skip OR lydia??? they should be in st pete by now.. u Hello, all you lovely listers out there, Thank you all for your concerns... We are,
    Message 1 of 5 , Mar 3, 2007
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      Anyone heard from skip OR lydia???  they should be in st pete by now.. u
       
      Hello, all you lovely listers out there,
       
      Thank you all for your concerns...
       
      We are, indeed, back in Salt Creek Marina, but not yet on the ground.  There's a bit of a space problem currently, so we hope we will get picked up on Monday. Already, we are back in the social swing of things, having just waddled back to the boat from a potluck on another cruiser's motoryacht, and renewing many acquaintances here.
       
      Meanwhile, we are thrilled to report that, some equipment failures related to salt water intrusion, not discovered until under way, excepted, the trip back was entirely uneventful.
       
      Well, technically, it was very eventful - just not of the same sort as recently experienced!
       
      Because our driveline was apparently compromised in the wreck, we were not able, as expected, to motor our way home. We expected to motor, because we'd removed our two damaged primary sails to protect them from further damage on the trip home.
       
      So, instead, we made do with our staysail (the very small one inside the area normally covered by a jib), and, in one of our very calm periods, I managed to persuade Lydia to let me drag out the spinnaker. This sail has been a bit of a challenge, as we haven't any really good place to keep it, and it's a bit daunting in its size with just the two of us, who literally have never been on a boat which flew one, let alone used it ourselves.
       
      It was phantasmagoric,as you'll see in the "Restoration" gallery inside the first thumbnail on our gallery link below.  I missed taking a picture of it reflected in the extremely glassy water during the first few hours we flew it, but the initial experience with the spinnaker was just awesome.  Later, after we got comfortable with winds above 4 knots (about 5MPH), we let it stay up the following day, when winds eventually reached into the double digits.
       
      A real thrill to be flying along at 8 knots, with the boat nearly vertical (no heel), we can tell you.  Because this was our first experience with a spinnaker (technically what we have is either known as a Multi-Purpose Spinnaker, or, perhaps, sometimes might be called a Gennaker, after a genoa/spinnaker), we were very conservative in our use.  Ours came with both a product known as an ATN (a brand name) Tacker, a sleeve which can go over a furled genoa, to hold the bottom of the sail in place, and a snuffer, a tube which holds the sail in a very small area.
       
      The Tacker allows one to put the sail in the same approximate configuration as would be the case in a giant-sized jib, and use it somewhat the same.  Because the shape is different, due to only the bottom of the sail being held in place, rather than also the entire front of it, it doesn't behave exactly the same, but we were able to sail very close (heading up) to the wind in light air.  As the wind built, and the direction changed slightly, we bore off (let the wind go closer to our stern), and raised the tacker to make the shape more like that of a regular spinnaker.
       
      Our boat has a spinnaker pole, with which we'll play the next time the conditions are perfect, but for this trip, we just used the tacker to hold the bottom of the sail.  We put up the snuffer, which is a very long sleeve around most of the sail (the sail's in it), secured the bottom and the end of the sail, and raised the snuffer - sort of like pulling down a stocking, but in this case, up.  That allowed the bottom of the sail to spread out, and suddenly, we were flying the spinnaker, and moving at very nearly the speed of the wind!
       
      However, as the wind blew harder, we felt that we should take it down.  The first time we didn't quite know what to do, and it was a wrestling match to pull down the sock again.  The next time, we not only did it before it got too strong, but went straight downwind, which reduced the wind against the sail, and it came down pretty easily.
       
      In between, and on the last of our journey, through the Skyway bridge near midnight and in light fog, we used our staysail.  Earlier, it had been blowing pretty strongly, and while the sail was very small by comparison to the usual sail we'd have up, we still were able to make good progress toward our destination.  The winds were nearly perfect for our purposes (other than we'd have enjoyed the forecasted, and never-appeariing stronger winds, which would have allowed more progress in any given time frame), being from the right direction.  Had we not made it here when we did, when the wind reversed direction while we slept, at anchor, we'd have been stuck out there, still, for the next many days, as it would have been right on our nose - and tacking the last 50 miles might have taken us another week with just the staysail... 
       
      In the end, our not having an engine to rely on (other than for an emergency or maneuvering in tight spots) was just another preparation for the rest of our lives.  One day, it was totally calm.  So, we just floated along, read, swam, did some plumbing, and otherwise ignored the fact that we weren't going anywhere.  Suddenly, Lydia "got it."  It was entirely all right not to have an agenda, or a schedule.  This was what cruising was all about. Then, right after dark, the wind picked up, we put up the spinnaker, sailed all night, and made more distance overnight than we'd made the entire two days before!
       
      We continue to be grateful to have our boat, as she's proven yet again her worth. We were in some conditions yesterday which had us swinging through a 40*+ arc, which, as the pressure from the water shifted from one side to the other of the hull, created creaking below us in the cockpit.  We assumed it was all the bulkheads which had become untabbed (fiberglass attachments to the hull).  Instead, as I went hunting for the squeaks, creaks and groans, it turned out to be the cabin's inside liner, also fiberglass, on the tops of the bulkheads.  Putting my hands around all the hull areas showed not only no movement, but not even any creaking, while, above my head, there was piteous moaning (just kidding!) - and I could feel the movement - which is not a structural issue, but better, likely can be relatively easily cured.
       
      Tomorrow I go with one of our yard buddies who's off to Ft. Lauderdale to get a boat to deliver back to this yard, hitching a ride to the GMC we were given and which we left in the very cruiser-friendly bar/restaurant's parking lot, thence to drive back, and commence our refit.
       
      Pictures of our trip back are up, and then we'll put up the pictures of our refit as we go along. We hope to be under way in a few (4-8?) weeks, but I continue to refuse to set deadlines, those being a contributing factor to our recent excitement.  From here on out my posting should return to the usual infrequency, and for those whose mail systems were somewhat overwhelmed in the last few weeks, I encourage hanging in there, as it's not usually this active :{))
       
      Finally, please note the new sig line, taken from Illusions.  It pretty well sums up our thinking, and has been reinforced in the last several weeks.  My next post will likely be along the lines of the blessings we have received as a result of our adventure - which, if I'd not mentioned it here, I've considered it to be, all along, and which I have noted to be an inconvenience reimagined.  For not less than 40 years, I've looked at my many inconveniences in that light - that is, what a great story to tell, later...
       
      Thanks again for all the love and support. We hope to prove ourselves worth it...
       
      L8R
       
      Love from Skip (and Lydia, immediately on arriving, off to clean the bathroom which hasn't been touched since we left!)
       
      Morgan 461 #2      Disaster link: http://ipphotos.com/FlyingPig.asp
      SV Flying Pig   KI4MPC
      See our galleries at www.justpickone.org/skip/gallery !
      Follow us at http://groups.google.com/group/flyingpiglog and/or
      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/TheFlyingPigLog
       
      There is no such thing as a problem without a gift for you in its hands.
       
      You seek problems because you need their gifts.
    • Chrisblair
      Skip, We were hoping to find an email from you this morning. It is great to hear you’ve begun the restart so successfully! Incidentally, we have a spinnaker
      Message 2 of 5 , Mar 4, 2007
      • 0 Attachment

        Skip,

         

        We were hoping to find an email from you this morning.  It is great to hear you’ve begun the restart so successfully!

         

        Incidentally, we have a spinnaker like the one you describe.  Ours is a UK Sails Flasher and we’ve flown it a lot.  We also got the ATN sleeve that goes around the furled genoa to make it easier to maintain a good shape.  Here’s what we’ve learned about flying it.  It is great for winds under 15kts.  When the gusts approach 15 we take it down (these sails are very lightweight and blow out easily).  It is also huge so just like a standard symmetrical spinnaker we keep a knife in the cockpit in case we need to let it go quickly to avoid a broach if we get an unexpected blow.  This has never been needed since it is so easy to control compared to a traditional symmetrical spinnaker but just in case we keep the cutter close by.  This is a primarily a downwind sail so instead of tacking you jibe this sail.  It is real easy to do but you have to be sure both sheets and the tack are outside all shrouds and other lines.  When we douse the sail we use a sock just like yours.  We just let the sheet all the way out and the sail blows straight out.  Once it starts to collapse we tug on the dousing line and the sail is tamed in a few seconds.  We used to start tugging the douse line as we released the sheet instead of waiting for the sail to collapse.  This makes it way harder to get the sock to come down and we pulled so hard that one of the guides ripped out of the sock.  Luckily Robin was able to sew it back on but we now give it plenty of sheet before we start tugging and it is a piece of cake to handle.  A very experienced friend of ours suggested releasing the tack also.  This makes a lot of sense and we plan to try it next time we fly the Flasher.  We got the basics on how to fly it from UK Sails website.  They had a great video in their training section of their website.  It was a few years ago but it still may be there.

         

        We are still on target to leave here in a couple of weeks and should be passing through your area in April but one thing we’ve learned from ya’ll is that we’re definitely not on a schedule so who knows when we’ll really get there?  But we’ll keep you posted on our whereabouts.  Maybe we’ll get a chance to have a drink with y’all.

         

        Take care and we hope the repairs go well.

         

        Chris and Robin Blair

        SV Eliza


        From: TheFlyingPigLog@yahoogroups.com [mailto:TheFlyingPigLog@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Skip Gundlach
        Sent: Saturday, March 03, 2007 10:32 PM
        To: TheFlyingPigLog@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: [The Flying Pig Log] "Homecoming"

         

         

        Anyone heard from skip OR lydia ???  they should be in st pete by now.. u

         

        Hello, all you lovely listers out there,

         

        Thank you all for your concerns...

         

        We are, indeed, back in Salt Creek Marina, but not yet on the ground.  There's a bit of a space problem currently, so we hope we will get picked up on Monday. Already, we are back in the social swing of things, having just waddled back to the boat from a potluck on another cruiser's motoryacht, and renewing many acquaintances here.

         

        Meanwhile, we are thrilled to report that, some equipment failures related to salt water intrusion, not discovered until under way, excepted, the trip back was entirely uneventful.

         

        Well, technically, it was very eventful - just not of the same sort as recently experienced!

         

        Because our driveline was apparently compromised in the wreck, we were not able, as expected, to motor our way home. We expected to motor, because we'd removed our two damaged primary sails to protect them from further damage on the trip home.

         

        So, instead, we made do with our staysail (the very small one inside the area normally covered by a jib), and, in one of our very calm periods, I managed to persuade Lydia to let me drag out the spinnaker. This sail has been a bit of a challenge, as we haven't any really good place to keep it, and it's a bit daunting in its size with just the two of us, who literally have never been on a boat which flew one, let alone used it ourselves.

         

        It was phantasmagoric, as you'll see in the "Restoration" gallery inside the first thumbnail on our gallery link below.  I missed taking a picture of it reflected in the extremely glassy water during the first few hours we flew it, but the initial experience with the spinnaker was just awesome.  Later, after we got comfortable with winds above 4 knots (about 5MPH), we let it stay up the following day, when winds eventually reached into the double digits.

         

        A real thrill to be flying along at 8 knots, with the boat nearly vertical (no heel), we can tell you.  Because this was our first experience with a spinnaker (technically what we have is either known as a Multi-Purpose Spinnaker, or, perhaps, sometimes might be called a Gennaker, after a genoa/spinnaker) , we were very conservative in our use.  Ours came with both a product known as an ATN (a brand name) Tacker, a sleeve which can go over a furled genoa, to hold the bottom of the sail in place, and a snuffer, a tube which holds the sail in a very small area.

         

        The Tacker allows one to put the sail in the same approximate configuration as would be the case in a giant-sized jib, and use it somewhat the same.  Because the shape is different, due to only the bottom of the sail being held in place, rather than also the entire front of it, it doesn't behave exactly the same, but we were able to sail very close (heading up) to the wind in light air.  As the wind built, and the direction changed slightly, we bore off (let the wind go closer to our stern), and raised the tacker to make the shape more like that of a regular spinnaker.

         

        Our boat has a spinnaker pole, with which we'll play the next time the conditions are perfect, but for this trip, we just used the tacker to hold the bottom of the sail.  We put up the snuffer, which is a very long sleeve around most of the sail (the sail's in it), secured the bottom and the end of the sail, and raised the snuffer - sort of like pulling down a stocking, but in this case, up.  That allowed the bottom of the sail to spread out, and suddenly, we were flying the spinnaker, and moving at very nearly the speed of the wind!

         

        However, as the wind blew harder, we felt that we should take it down.  The first time we didn't quite know what to do, and it was a wrestling match to pull down the sock again.  The next time, we not only did it before it got too strong, but went straight downwind, which reduced the wind against the sail, and it came down pretty easily.

         

        In between, and on the last of our journey, through the Skyway bridge near midnight and in light fog, we used our staysail.  Earlier, it had been blowing pretty strongly, and while the sail was very small by comparison to the usual sail we'd have up, we still were able to make good progress toward our destination.  The winds were nearly perfect for our purposes (other than we'd have enjoyed the forecasted, and never-appeariing stronger winds, which would have allowed more progress in any given time frame), being from the right direction.  Had we not made it here when we did, when the wind reversed direction while we slept, at anchor, we'd have been stuck out there, still, for the next many days, as it would have been right on our nose - and tacking the last 50 miles might have taken us another week with just the staysail... 

         

        In the end, our not having an engine to rely on (other than for an emergency or maneuvering in tight spots) was just another preparation for the rest of our lives.  One day, it was totally calm.  So, we just floated along, read, swam, did some plumbing, and otherwise ignored the fact that we weren't going anywhere.  Suddenly, Lydia "got it."  It was entirely all right not to have an agenda, or a schedule.  This was what cruising was all about. Then, right after dark, the wind picked up, we put up the spinnaker, sailed all night, and made more distance overnight than we'd made the entire two days before!

         

        We continue to be grateful to have our boat, as she's proven yet again her worth. We were in some conditions yesterday which had us swinging through a 40*+ arc, which, as the pressure from the water shifted from one side to the other of the hull, created creaking below us in the cockpit.  We assumed it was all the bulkheads which had become untabbed (fiberglass attachments to the hull).  Instead, as I went hunting for the squeaks, creaks and groans, it turned out to be the cabin's inside liner, also fiberglass, on the tops of the bulkheads.  Putting my hands around all the hull areas showed not only no movement, but not even any creaking, while, above my head, there was piteous moaning (just kidding!) - and I could feel the movement - which is not a structural issue, but better, likely can be relatively easily cured.

         

        Tomorrow I go with one of our yard buddies who's off to Ft. Lauderdale to get a boat to deliver back to this yard, hitching a ride to the GMC we were given and which we left in the very cruiser-friendly bar/restaurant' s parking lot, thence to drive back, and commence our refit.

         

        Pictures of our trip back are up, and then we'll put up the pictures of our refit as we go along. We hope to be under way in a few (4-8?) weeks, but I continue to refuse to set deadlines, those being a contributing factor to our recent excitement.  From here on out my posting should return to the usual infrequency, and for those whose mail systems were somewhat overwhelmed in the last few weeks, I encourage hanging in there, as it's not usually this active :{))

         

        Finally, please note the new sig line, taken from Illusions.  It pretty well sums up our thinking, and has been reinforced in the last several weeks.  My next post will likely be along the lines of the blessings we have received as a result of our adventure - which, if I'd not mentioned it here, I've considered it to be, all along, and which I have noted to be an inconvenience reimagined.  For not less than 40 years, I've looked at my many inconveniences in that light - that is, what a great story to tell, later...

         

        Thanks again for all the love and support. We hope to prove ourselves worth it...

         

        L8R

         

        Love from Skip (and Lydia , immediately on arriving, off to clean the bathroom which hasn't been touched since we left!)

         

        Morgan 461 #2      Disaster link: http://ipphotos. com/FlyingPig. asp
        SV Flying Pig   KI4MPC
        See our galleries at www.justpickone. org/skip/ gallery !
        Follow us at http://groups. google.com/ group/flyingpigl og and/or
        http://groups. yahoo.com/ group/TheFlyingP igLog
         
        There is no such thing as a problem without a gift for you in its hands.

         

        You seek problems because you need their gifts.


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      • Alfred Swan
        Glad to hear that you got back to Salt Creek safely. Hope the repairs proceed well. Sherry and Al (and Blue) ... From: Skip Gundlach To:
        Message 3 of 5 , Mar 4, 2007
        • 0 Attachment
          
          Glad to hear that you got back to Salt Creek safely.  Hope the repairs proceed well.  Sherry and Al (and Blue)
          ----- Original Message -----
          Sent: Saturday, March 03, 2007 11:32 PM
          Subject: [The Flying Pig Log] "Homecoming"

          

          Anyone heard from skip OR lydia???  they should be in st pete by now.. u
           
          Hello, all you lovely listers out there,
           
          Thank you all for your concerns...
           
          We are, indeed, back in Salt Creek Marina, but not yet on the ground.  There's a bit of a space problem currently, so we hope we will get picked up on Monday. Already, we are back in the social swing of things, having just waddled back to the boat from a potluck on another cruiser's motoryacht, and renewing many acquaintances here.
           
          Meanwhile, we are thrilled to report that, some equipment failures related to salt water intrusion, not discovered until under way, excepted, the trip back was entirely uneventful.
           
          Well, technically, it was very eventful - just not of the same sort as recently experienced!
           
          Because our driveline was apparently compromised in the wreck, we were not able, as expected, to motor our way home. We expected to motor, because we'd removed our two damaged primary sails to protect them from further damage on the trip home.
           
          So, instead, we made do with our staysail (the very small one inside the area normally covered by a jib), and, in one of our very calm periods, I managed to persuade Lydia to let me drag out the spinnaker. This sail has been a bit of a challenge, as we haven't any really good place to keep it, and it's a bit daunting in its size with just the two of us, who literally have never been on a boat which flew one, let alone used it ourselves.
           
          It was phantasmagoric, as you'll see in the "Restoration" gallery inside the first thumbnail on our gallery link below.  I missed taking a picture of it reflected in the extremely glassy water during the first few hours we flew it, but the initial experience with the spinnaker was just awesome.  Later, after we got comfortable with winds above 4 knots (about 5MPH), we let it stay up the following day, when winds eventually reached into the double digits.
           
          A real thrill to be flying along at 8 knots, with the boat nearly vertical (no heel), we can tell you.  Because this was our first experience with a spinnaker (technically what we have is either known as a Multi-Purpose Spinnaker, or, perhaps, sometimes might be called a Gennaker, after a genoa/spinnaker) , we were very conservative in our use.  Ours came with both a product known as an ATN (a brand name) Tacker, a sleeve which can go over a furled genoa, to hold the bottom of the sail in place, and a snuffer, a tube which holds the sail in a very small area.
           
          The Tacker allows one to put the sail in the same approximate configuration as would be the case in a giant-sized jib, and use it somewhat the same.  Because the shape is different, due to only the bottom of the sail being held in place, rather than also the entire front of it, it doesn't behave exactly the same, but we were able to sail very close (heading up) to the wind in light air.  As the wind built, and the direction changed slightly, we bore off (let the wind go closer to our stern), and raised the tacker to make the shape more like that of a regular spinnaker.
           
          Our boat has a spinnaker pole, with which we'll play the next time the conditions are perfect, but for this trip, we just used the tacker to hold the bottom of the sail.  We put up the snuffer, which is a very long sleeve around most of the sail (the sail's in it), secured the bottom and the end of the sail, and raised the snuffer - sort of like pulling down a stocking, but in this case, up.  That allowed the bottom of the sail to spread out, and suddenly, we were flying the spinnaker, and moving at very nearly the speed of the wind!
           
          However, as the wind blew harder, we felt that we should take it down.  The first time we didn't quite know what to do, and it was a wrestling match to pull down the sock again.  The next time, we not only did it before it got too strong, but went straight downwind, which reduced the wind against the sail, and it came down pretty easily.
           
          In between, and on the last of our journey, through the Skyway bridge near midnight and in light fog, we used our staysail.  Earlier, it had been blowing pretty strongly, and while the sail was very small by comparison to the usual sail we'd have up, we still were able to make good progress toward our destination.  The winds were nearly perfect for our purposes (other than we'd have enjoyed the forecasted, and never-appeariing stronger winds, which would have allowed more progress in any given time frame), being from the right direction.  Had we not made it here when we did, when the wind reversed direction while we slept, at anchor, we'd have been stuck out there, still, for the next many days, as it would have been right on our nose - and tacking the last 50 miles might have taken us another week with just the staysail... 
           
          In the end, our not having an engine to rely on (other than for an emergency or maneuvering in tight spots) was just another preparation for the rest of our lives.  One day, it was totally calm.  So, we just floated along, read, swam, did some plumbing, and otherwise ignored the fact that we weren't going anywhere.  Suddenly, Lydia "got it."  It was entirely all right not to have an agenda, or a schedule.  This was what cruising was all about. Then, right after dark, the wind picked up, we put up the spinnaker, sailed all night, and made more distance overnight than we'd made the entire two days before!
           
          We continue to be grateful to have our boat, as she's proven yet again her worth. We were in some conditions yesterday which had us swinging through a 40*+ arc, which, as the pressure from the water shifted from one side to the other of the hull, created creaking below us in the cockpit.  We assumed it was all the bulkheads which had become untabbed (fiberglass attachments to the hull).  Instead, as I went hunting for the squeaks, creaks and groans, it turned out to be the cabin's inside liner, also fiberglass, on the tops of the bulkheads.  Putting my hands around all the hull areas showed not only no movement, but not even any creaking, while, above my head, there was piteous moaning (just kidding!) - and I could feel the movement - which is not a structural issue, but better, likely can be relatively easily cured.
           
          Tomorrow I go with one of our yard buddies who's off to Ft. Lauderdale to get a boat to deliver back to this yard, hitching a ride to the GMC we were given and which we left in the very cruiser-friendly bar/restaurant' s parking lot, thence to drive back, and commence our refit.
           
          Pictures of our trip back are up, and then we'll put up the pictures of our refit as we go along. We hope to be under way in a few (4-8?) weeks, but I continue to refuse to set deadlines, those being a contributing factor to our recent excitement.  From here on out my posting should return to the usual infrequency, and for those whose mail systems were somewhat overwhelmed in the last few weeks, I encourage hanging in there, as it's not usually this active :{))
           
          Finally, please note the new sig line, taken from Illusions.  It pretty well sums up our thinking, and has been reinforced in the last several weeks.  My next post will likely be along the lines of the blessings we have received as a result of our adventure - which, if I'd not mentioned it here, I've considered it to be, all along, and which I have noted to be an inconvenience reimagined.  For not less than 40 years, I've looked at my many inconveniences in that light - that is, what a great story to tell, later...
           
          Thanks again for all the love and support. We hope to prove ourselves worth it...
           
          L8R
           
          Love from Skip (and Lydia, immediately on arriving, off to clean the bathroom which hasn't been touched since we left!)
           
          Morgan 461 #2      Disaster link: http://ipphotos. com/FlyingPig. asp
          SV Flying Pig   KI4MPC
          See our galleries at www.justpickone. org/skip/ gallery !
          Follow us at http://groups. google.com/ group/flyingpigl og and/or
          http://groups. yahoo.com/ group/TheFlyingP igLog
           
          There is no such thing as a problem without a gift for you in its hands.
           
          You seek problems because you need their gifts.

        • fljourney@aol.com
          Hi Skip and Lydia - So very glad to hear that you made it back safely - you ve been in my thoughts and sending lots of good karma to you. We ve been
          Message 4 of 5 , Mar 4, 2007
          • 0 Attachment
            Hi Skip and Lydia - So very glad to hear that you made it back safely - you've been in my thoughts and sending lots of good karma to you. We've been frantically working toward departure for a couple month sail to the Caribbean. We are leaving the dock tomorrow afternoon - are you anywhere near the Harborage? Would be great to see you before we set sail, even if only briefly. Also, if you're stuck for a slip, ours will likely be available. We have been looking to rent it out and have someone working on that, but nothing is definite yet. Call us tomorrow (we plan to leave the dock sometime around 1:30) if you're around (813) 340-0414 or (813) 230-3805.
             
            Miss you and know that things will continue to progress for you in the best direction.
            Love, Lori
             
            Lori Kleinman, PhD
            Licensed Psychologist
            Music Therapist
            Professional Flutist

            fljourney@...
            (813) 340-0414




            AOL now offers free email to everyone. Find out more about what's free from AOL at AOL.com.
          • Ray Wolf
            Skip and Lydia, We are sitting in nassau harbor, heading down to the exumas tomorrow. Progress is slower than we had hoped, waiting for weather or parts seems
            Message 5 of 5 , Mar 6, 2007
            • 0 Attachment

              Skip and Lydia,

              We are sitting in nassau harbor, heading down to the exumas tomorrow.  Progress is slower than we had hoped, waiting for weather or parts seems to be our main agenda.  At this point we are thinking we will not reach the virgins this year, but still hope to reach the turks and caicos before turning around and heading home.  We are due in st. pete by july 1.  The weather should be more cooperative for the run home.  Glad you made it home, and have started repairs already.  Hopefully we will run into you on our way back.  E-mail is our most reliable form of communications.  With ur wifi booster we had more than 20 potential hot spots to choose from in nassau, although only two were free and working.

              We met a canandian who has 7 feet of draft.  He had an interesting concept, he had a big dinghy, with a 50 horse engine, and a towing bridle built into the frame of the dinghy.  Said he found he was running aground so often that he now uses the dinghy to pull the big boat off when ever needed.  An interesting way to deal with deep draft in shallow water.

              Stay in touch, and let us know when you leave, we might cross wakes.

               

              Ray




              -----Original Message-----
              From: Skip Gundlach
              Sent: Mar 3, 2007 11:32 PM
              To: TheFlyingPigLog@yahoogroups.com
              Subject: [The Flying Pig Log] "Homecoming"

              

              Anyone heard from skip OR lydia???  they should be in st pete by now.. u
               
              Hello, all you lovely listers out there,
               
              Thank you all for your concerns...
               
              We are, indeed, back in Salt Creek Marina, but not yet on the ground.  There's a bit of a space problem currently, so we hope we will get picked up on Monday. Already, we are back in the social swing of things, having just waddled back to the boat from a potluck on another cruiser's motoryacht, and renewing many acquaintances here.
               
              Meanwhile, we are thrilled to report that, some equipment failures related to salt water intrusion, not discovered until under way, excepted, the trip back was entirely uneventful.
               
              Well, technically, it was very eventful - just not of the same sort as recently experienced!
               
              Because our driveline was apparently compromised in the wreck, we were not able, as expected, to motor our way home. We expected to motor, because we'd removed our two damaged primary sails to protect them from further damage on the trip home.
               
              So, instead, we made do with our staysail (the very small one inside the area normally covered by a jib), and, in one of our very calm periods, I managed to persuade Lydia to let me drag out the spinnaker. This sail has been a bit of a challenge, as we haven't any really good place to keep it, and it's a bit daunting in its size with just the two of us, who literally have never been on a boat which flew one, let alone used it ourselves.
               
              It was phantasmagoric, as you'll see in the "Restoration" gallery inside the first thumbnail on our gallery link below.  I missed taking a picture of it reflected in the extremely glassy water during the first few hours we flew it, but the initial experience with the spinnaker was just awesome.  Later, after we got comfortable with winds above 4 knots (about 5MPH), we let it stay up the following day, when winds eventually reached into the double digits.
               
              A real thrill to be flying along at 8 knots, with the boat nearly vertical (no heel), we can tell you.  Because this was our first experience with a spinnaker (technically what we have is either known as a Multi-Purpose Spinnaker, or, perhaps, sometimes might be called a Gennaker, after a genoa/spinnaker) , we were very conservative in our use.  Ours came with both a product known as an ATN (a brand name) Tacker, a sleeve which can go over a furled genoa, to hold the bottom of the sail in place, and a snuffer, a tube which holds the sail in a very small area.
               
              The Tacker allows one to put the sail in the same approximate configuration as would be the case in a giant-sized jib, and use it somewhat the same.  Because the shape is different, due to only the bottom of the sail being held in place, rather than also the entire front of it, it doesn't behave exactly the same, but we were able to sail very close (heading up) to the wind in light air.  As the wind built, and the direction changed slightly, we bore off (let the wind go closer to our stern), and raised the tacker to make the shape more like that of a regular spinnaker.
               
              Our boat has a spinnaker pole, with which we'll play the next time the conditions are perfect, but for this trip, we just used the tacker to hold the bottom of the sail.  We put up the snuffer, which is a very long sleeve around most of the sail (the sail's in it), secured the bottom and the end of the sail, and raised the snuffer - sort of like pulling down a stocking, but in this case, up.  That allowed the bottom of the sail to spread out, and suddenly, we were flying the spinnaker, and moving at very nearly the speed of the wind!
               
              However, as the wind blew harder, we felt that we should take it down.  The first time we didn't quite know what to do, and it was a wrestling match to pull down the sock again.  The next time, we not only did it before it got too strong, but went straight downwind, which reduced the wind against the sail, and it came down pretty easily.
               
              In between, and on the last of our journey, through the Skyway bridge near midnight and in light fog, we used our staysail.  Earlier, it had been blowing pretty strongly, and while the sail was very small by comparison to the usual sail we'd have up, we still were able to make good progress toward our destination.  The winds were nearly perfect for our purposes (other than we'd have enjoyed the forecasted, and never-appeariing stronger winds, which would have allowed more progress in any given time frame), being from the right direction.  Had we not made it here when we did, when the wind reversed direction while we slept, at anchor, we'd have been stuck out there, still, for the next many days, as it would have been right on our nose - and tacking the last 50 miles might have taken us another week with just the staysail... 
               
              In the end, our not having an engine to rely on (other than for an emergency or maneuvering in tight spots) was just another preparation for the rest of our lives.  One day, it was totally calm.  So, we just floated along, read, swam, did some plumbing, and otherwise ignored the fact that we weren't going anywhere.  Suddenly, Lydia "got it."  It was entirely all right not to have an agenda, or a schedule.  This was what cruising was all about. Then, right after dark, the wind picked up, we put up the spinnaker, sailed all night, and made more distance overnight than we'd made the entire two days before!
               
              We continue to be grateful to have our boat, as she's proven yet again her worth. We were in some conditions yesterday which had us swinging through a 40*+ arc, which, as the pressure from the water shifted from one side to the other of the hull, created creaking below us in the cockpit.  We assumed it was all the bulkheads which had become untabbed (fiberglass attachments to the hull).  Instead, as I went hunting for the squeaks, creaks and groans, it turned out to be the cabin's inside liner, also fiberglass, on the tops of the bulkheads.  Putting my hands around all the hull areas showed not only no movement, but not even any creaking, while, above my head, there was piteous moaning (just kidding!) - and I could feel the movement - which is not a structural issue, but better, likely can be relatively easily cured.
               
              Tomorrow I go with one of our yard buddies who's off to Ft. Lauderdale to get a boat to deliver back to this yard, hitching a ride to the GMC we were given and which we left in the very cruiser-friendly bar/restaurant' s parking lot, thence to drive back, and commence our refit.
               
              Pictures of our trip back are up, and then we'll put up the pictures of our refit as we go along. We hope to be under way in a few (4-8?) weeks, but I continue to refuse to set deadlines, those being a contributing factor to our recent excitement.  From here on out my posting should return to the usual infrequency, and for those whose mail systems were somewhat overwhelmed in the last few weeks, I encourage hanging in there, as it's not usually this active :{))
               
              Finally, please note the new sig line, taken from Illusions.  It pretty well sums up our thinking, and has been reinforced in the last several weeks.  My next post will likely be along the lines of the blessings we have received as a result of our adventure - which, if I'd not mentioned it here, I've considered it to be, all along, and which I have noted to be an inconvenience reimagined.  For not less than 40 years, I've looked at my many inconveniences in that light - that is, what a great story to tell, later...
               
              Thanks again for all the love and support. We hope to prove ourselves worth it...
               
              L8R
               
              Love from Skip (and Lydia, immediately on arriving, off to clean the bathroom which hasn't been touched since we left!)
               
              Morgan 461 #2      Disaster link: http://ipphotos. com/FlyingPig. asp
              SV Flying Pig   KI4MPC
              See our galleries at www.justpickone. org/skip/ gallery !
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              There is no such thing as a problem without a gift for you in its hands.
               
              You seek problems because you need their gifts.

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