While I would prefer to have the Far Reach engine free all the time it would require access to a mooring that we could sail on and off. There are very few moorings in NC and none where we are. She is berthed in a small marina with 360° of protection. So, we often carry a Honda 9.9hp four stroke outboard on a custom-made removable swing arm bracket attached to the port quarter. The outboard allows us to more conveniently move her in and out of her slip, make the tight turn onto the fairway, then exit the narrow 1/4 mile long channel out to the Neuse River.
I have been asked about our bonneted jib a number of times. I was asked about it again the other day on the Cape Dory forum. So, it seemed like a good time to provide more detail to those who might be interested.
For the last couple weeks we have been working on several projects as we continue to either further refine the Far Reach’s few systems or conduct routine maintenance. One project was the installation of a camcleat for the jib downhaul System, which is a separate article.
The first varnish project was to repair some damaged varnish on the teak stays’l winch bases. The bases are about 4” tall and are varnished. On top of the base is a 2” thick bare teak pad that serves to raise the winch up enough so the drum is above the top of the coaming. Though we varnish the coamings and pads every four months, there was a break in the varnish on the top edge of each pad. Horizontal surfaces always receive more abuse than vertical surfaces so this damage was not a big surprise.
One of the projects we completed when we originally launched the boat, in the early summer of 2015, after the six year rebuild was to install chafing guards on the bowsprit to protect it from the stowed anchor banging in to it. I simply glued leather patches to the bowsprit and then used copper tacks to secure copper flashing to the leather and the bowsprit. You can read about it here in the daily log under the 17 Nov 2015 entry.
The Far Reach, Anchored, the Lagoon, Sint Maarten
I continue to find myself anchored in Sint Maarten, like so many other cruisers, waiting for a part to arrive. It seems that almost every boat passing through here is waiting for either parts to arrive or on repair work to be completed before they can continue their journey.
The boat in front of me has been here over six weeks trying to get proper work done to repair a broken watermaker. The boat on my starboard side limped in a few days ago having lost their mast. They were told by the rigging shop they should expect to be here at least a month. Another boat captain I spoke to has been here for almost three months getting their hydraulic systems repaired. There are a number of boatyards here and they are all filled with boats. Sadly, there also many boats that seem to be abandoned, like so many broken dreams . . . like once beautiful birds now too old and crippled to fly.
17 April 2016, The Far Reach, Moored, Elephant Bay, St Thomas
This past week I’ve been working on several projects.
I went back up the mast and switched the clevis pin around as suggested to eliminate the jib halyard chafing problem. I think it’s unlikely that is the issue but in the spirt of eliminating all possibilities, I took on board the suggestion, so to speak. I had a long conversation with my friend Robert Quates, who built my mast, as we discussed the chafing solution. We made sketches and discussed the pros and cons. I think we have a good plan. He is working on he part now and I hope to have it soon. I am confident it will solve the problem. Also, I should be able to install it with the mast in the boat.