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Old 02-20-2013
sfsailor sfsailor is offline
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Re: The boy behind the gate (new book)

The Boy Behind the Gate: How His Dream of Sailing Around the World Became a Six-Year Odyssey of Adventure, Fear, Discovery and Love: Larry Jacobson

I just finished this book and it was a great read.
I have contacted the author and he has agreed to keep an eye on this thread to answer questions.

He set out to sail around the world and actually did it. Took six years.
This guy wrote an amazing adventure story. He was very successful, no one was seriously hurt, the boat survived and he has some great memories he shared with his book.
One of my favorite was while sailing in the gulf of Aden he was flying the american flag and a rainbow flag (he is gay and that is a significant part of the story) his friends were emailing him about how dangerous it was.
His response was to suggest that maybe flying the star of David would be a good idea (his is Jewish too).

Larry:
I have a couple of questions:
1. The engine having to be rebuilt after only one year. Was it because the exhaust was too small and there was back pressure.

2. I notice that you scuba dived a lot. What equipment did you supply and what did you rent. How many tanks did you carry for example?[/quote]
Larry:
I have a couple of questions:
1. The engine having to be rebuilt after only one year. Was it because the exhaust was too small and there was back pressure.
Hi David,
Glad to answer your questions and thank you for the kind words about the book.
Yes, can you believe it? We had to rebuild all because of a back flow pressure problem caused by the installation of 2-inch exhaust rather than 3-inch. The problem stemmed from the fact that when I bought the boat, it had an old 70 HP Westerbeke. I upgraded it to a 90-hp Westerbeke which had the same footprint so it seemed like a good move. However, the installers went by the manual and the elbow and exhuast were spec'd at 2-inch because Mitsubishi (the maker of the Westerbeke block) hadn't updated the manual for the 90-hp. I blamed the installer, the installer blamed the dealer, the dealer blamed Westerbeke who blamed Mitsubishi. At the time I was we were in New Zealand and rebuilding and installing a bigger exhaust was the easier/cheaper way to go rather than trying to collect from that chain of blame! Interesting that as soon as the Kiwi mechanic saw the engine, he knew right away what the problem was, yet nobody along that chain mentioned above did (including mechanics in SF, Santa Barbara, and Long Beach, all Westerbeke dealers)
Great question!
2. I notice that you scuba dived a lot. What equipment did you supply and what did you rent. How many tanks did you carry for example?
I love scuba diving so when we departed SF, we carried 3 tanks and all related equipment. However, no compressor so we were still not really independent, although dive shop refills weren't all that hard to find until we got to more remote places. So when we got to Phuket Thailand, we found a great deal on a compressor and bought it. That changed our world! We were able to dive to our heart's content anywhere including the very remote reefs in the Red Sea. The compressor of course made us more popular with other boats and we charged a fee of one bottle of wine for a fill

Keep the questions coming as they allow me to re-live the journey of my lifetime!
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