The past few weeks have been inspecting and servicing the steering system from the wheel through to the Rudder Quadrant.
This came about because I know I need to rebed all the deck fittings including the Steering Pedestal. So while its almos out its an opportune time to have a really close look at all the components.
Sorry a bit slack on the photos but all up we replaced the bushes holding the steering shaft, freed up the rudder lock which I'm sure has not operated for a long time and replaced both of the wire cables after finding severe wear in one of the cables probably a result of the worn cable guides, also replaced.
I also found this which just goes to show how important it is to disassemble components during your deep level inspections. This is the connection sckle between the wire steering cable and the rudder quadrant.
As you may know we lifted the engine out to repair the corrosion in the engine mounts. With all the other little repairs now complete it was time to lift it back in and here is the finished engine bay.
With the engine out it became obvious the wiring needed some attention. Over the life of the boat extra equipment is added, some replaced and other equipment removed. You never know the circumstances under which these changes are made and they may well have been good enough to get through at the time.
And the nearly finished result...
Its been 10 days since the engine was released from its mounts and slid forwad onto the cabin floor. Fortunatly pulling the engine out uncovered a few other problems waiting to cause a breakdown. In a nut shell I found the battery cable positive rubbed through to the core on the engine mount, one mount was about 50% broken away, the primary fuel filter was in a location that made it almost impossible to replace and the water heater was the source of a small annoying puddle I would find in the bilge every day. Combined that with cracked and perished heater hoses and a generally untidy layout.
So what do we do about it? Current engine heated water heater is gone and may look at replacing it with a small electric unit. The primary diesel fuel filter has been relocated to enable better access and the general layout organised to make some sense without having everything crossing over.
What a mess we have at the moment, I'll be glad to get the engine back in it's rightful place and move onto new projects as we nibble away day by day. Pending projects include a complete rewire, a new cabin roof lining and a composting toilet.
We continue our endeavor to clean up the survey list and create a reliable sailing boat. Corrosion in the engine mounts was one issue that whilst not critical at this point in time needed looking at. That means pulling the engine out which will open the opportunity to clean up the engine bay and improve the spaghetti layout we currently have. Layout is important to avoid chafing and I've found several cases that would eventually result in a failure.
Now that we are settled into the new pen at Mandurah Offshore Fishing and Sailing Club its time to tick off some of those items found during the survey.
Inevitably one overhaul uncovers another needy repair/refurbishment. Given the journey will be a long one, this is not about quick fixes, but repairs and refurbishments that bring about reliability.
The compass came with a large air bubble and a very scratched lens making it impossible to read.
The Engine Control
The engine control, although not up on the survey, I felt it was a little stiff, there were rust stains leaching out the bottom and when I had a look inside I notice big flaking chunks of rust. :-(
Once I got it out this is what I found, needless to say it was beyond repair and needed a new replacement.
As predicted the storm has past and the weather more favourable for the 6 hour journey south.
With a 2 meter swell and a 15-20knot breeze right on the bow we motored all the way and the little Yanmar purred along beautifully for over six hours pushing us along at 6.5knots.
Crashing through a few waves I quickly learned what a well designed and dry sail boat this is. You can have all manner of action across the bow and the cockpit remains dry and cosy.
On the 13th of September we took delivery. The following two weeks were a busy time of rectifying a few things bought up by the surveyors and then getting used to where everything is and how it works. A very steep learning curve, a few nights on board to cut down on the travel back and forth. Two weeks later we are ready to bring her home. Alas, Mother Nature has another idea by placing a thunderstorm right in our path to Mandurah.
Now I understand how people get frustrated when they are held up by things out of their control. Here I am stuck in side, pouring with rain and waiting for the storms to pass. Tomorrow will be better and we will be off.
Currently at Fremantle Sailing Club and our journey will take us down to Mandurah, a short journey of 6 hours, but not today.
"Imagination 1" Pictures are limited at the moment but they will come once we take delivery in a couple of weeks. After a haul out and bottom scrub it was time for our three surveyors to push, pull, twist and prod every nook and crany after which they would deem her a good boat and gave her a tick of approval.
A JARKAN EUROPA 10, she is 9.9 m long, 3.2m wide and weighing in at 4000kg. Designed and built by Kanga Birtles of Jarkan Yachts NSW. There aren't too many of this design around, apparently only 30 ever got built. There was a bushfire around the factory and the moulds got burnt. It was decided to build moulds for a larger version and discontinue the Jarkan 10. You can read more of Jarkan here .
"Imagination 1" has been well looked after by its last owner for the past 8 years sailing throughout Western Australia and Indonesia.
In "The Search For A Boat" there are three determining factors in my case. The budget, singlehanded sailing and the budget.
I know of people who have searched for months and even years before deciding and commiting to the vessel they now have. It's not an easy task. On an adventure such as this the boat becomes your home, it needs to be big enough to be safe, while fitting in with a sustainable budget and manageable with your own level of skill and competence. If I go for a boat beyond my capability thinking I will grow into it, I fear that there will be a tendancy to never be ready to slip the dock lines.
I'm looking for something between 30' and 40', set up for cruising, able to handle an ocean passage and not requiring a major refit before we get started. Given my modest budget, I know there will be work to do but I haven't come across anything on a boat I wasn't capable of stripping, overhauling and recommissioning. You can list out all your wants, break them into needs and likes and go from there. Does your choice really exist? Unlikely, so there will be some level of compromise.
It's the first day of spring here in Australia so I thought what a great day to kick off my sailing adventure blog. There has been a bit happening in the background for the last 3 months in search of our new adventure partner a sailing vessel.
A long process, that sits somewhere between buying a car and buying a house. Essentially on a long adventure the boat is going to become your home, all be it a "tiny house" maybe a little bigger than a motor home, always suffering from condensation and never sits still.
Like a car they have no resale value and for the sake of a $2 clamp they can sink in many fathoms of water, never to be recovered. But what's life without adventure, exploration and stepping outside of your comfort zone.