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  #1  
Old 05-22-2007
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Atlantic Journey Hell

Well,

As some of you may have known, I have been in New York for almost 2 weeks now, preparing a boat, who's name and Captain I will not mention for privacy reasons.

Long Story made very short, we have not left and will not be leaving for the Azores. The whole trip here has been a nightmare, and a great example of one of the worst and poorerst organized passages.

May any of you learn from my mistake when signing up as crew for an Ocean crossing.

When I got here, the boat was in the hard, and was completely disembowled. It was full of trash and personal belongings of the captain. Okay, so I thought we could clean it up quickly

Very soon we learned that the engine wasn't installed yet, and the prop shaft, a new engine was coming and a new prop shaft, prop, zincs, whole deal.

We spent a whole week putting in a new engine, and rebuilding the exhaust system from scratch, the water exchange system.

We re-painted the whole boat. We unplugged throughulls, re-organized the whole boat.

Days and days of pain-staking work.

What is worse, the captain did not hire a qualified mechanic to do all the engine work but insisted on doing it all himself.

(He did get a diesel mechanic to do the prop shaft installation and allignment, but he was a "friend of the family" )

Miraculously, we got it all done in 7 days, and actually got the boat in the water... WHEN..

The real problems started.

The waterlift muffler, which wasn't a muffler at all, but something someone put together with hardware store plumming, and which the captain had used for 15 years, leaked water back into the engine.

The engine oil turned into white milk.

Luckily the water was NOT salt water, so we were able to save the engine after draining the oil 4 times.

We then had to remove the exhaust system and install a proper waterlift muffler. Which I spent a whole day climbing into small spaces, covered in grease.

All this in a little tiny RedNeck town somewhere in upstate new york, where the only food we could get was Pizza, oily chinese food, and polish sausages.

We kept on pushing and pushing because we had already spent 7 days cleaning the boat and putting the new engine in... that's why I didn't leave.

After we cleaned the engine... something else went wrong. The anti-siphon valve began gushing out water, we spent a whole day finding out how to install it properly, and eventually never found out but created a totally different concocktion that did the same job.

Just when we thought we were ready to leave.

We started the engine, put her in first, like we've done many times...

And.

The cutlass bearings, turns out, were mounted wrong, or cracked, or screwed in improperly. As they were making a rubbing screaming noise - which wasn't present before.

Hmmmm.

So back on the hard the boat goes, the engine must be taken out, along with the propeller and prop shaft, to inspect the cutlass bearings.

So - at this point, the whole crew of 5, including me, had enough, and we abandoned ship.

I'm in NY now and going home on Thursday, at least I get a chance to look around manhattan

So here's what NOT do to:

1. Do not install a new engine into your boat and expect to leave the next day. It takes a lot of tinkering and maintainance, it's like a brand new baby. Expect at least a 1 month delay

2. DO NOT insisit on doing engine work on a new engine yourself just because you know how to change the oil and attach some hoses. Hire a mechanic, get some rest and sleep, and have him do the work.

3. DO NOT leave your boat on the hard for 2 years, and then, 2 weeks before your departure date, start working on it and doing everything last minute in a frantic attempt to head out on time.

4. DO NOT make your crew do more than a little painting and twak up jobs, they are there to crew your boat, not "fix up your boat from scratch" for the next 2 years, for free.

5. FEED your crew, if you are going to have them work longer than 3 days on your boat for free, for longer than 4 hours a day.


AAAAAAAh - I have no words left. I'm going home and I do not want to look at a sailboat for at least a month.

Kacper

3.
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  #2  
Old 05-22-2007
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So is this guy going to pay you, or was it all free labor?
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Old 05-22-2007
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K-
I would have left the moment I saw the boat in that condition, after giving him an earfull for wasting my time...how big of a red flag do you need? Are you qualified to make the repairs you were attempting?
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Old 05-22-2007
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Cruisingdad is a jewel in the rough Cruisingdad is a jewel in the rough Cruisingdad is a jewel in the rough
Honestly, you were going to cross the pond in that boat?? Geez. God is looking after you, Buddy. If you are having that kind of problems on the hard, wait till that thing is listing 30-30 on a quartering/breaking sea and the wind is howling 40-50. That is when the stuff that was done just "ok" will really start breaking. There is no "abandoning ship" then.

You are your own man/person whatever. I know you want some great offshore time. But in my opinion, you better really check out the captain and boat LONG before you even think about taking on that kind of an adventure.

Sorry, I really am living up to me name (Dad). Just were a lot of people killed/missing/rescued last week and don't want someone that seems nice enough making a deadly mistake. Glad you made it off ok.

- CD
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Old 05-22-2007
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Yeah Kacper, you were THAT close to being a satistic it sounds like; You may have had a better chance of getting closer to the Azores in your C-22
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Cut off from the land that bore us, betrayed by the land we find, where the brightest have gone before us and the dullest remain behind, .......but stand to your glasses, steady,.......tis all we have left to prize, raise a cup to the dead already, hurrah for the next that dies
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Old 05-22-2007
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Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice
Ha.....I knew that thing about sailing from the Azores directly to England was something out of a nut case....

Go home, and take that as lesson in life....more will follow in your next 80 years of life....which you now do have.
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Old 05-22-2007
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Kacper,
Your experience had very little to do with sailing. It had a lot to do with gettin screwed over by a dirt bag. Get your own boat, even if it's a very tiny one. Go sail it. Screw your wife on the deck. Get all liquored up and fall asleep in the cockpit. THAT is what sailing is all about.
Sailhog

P.S.: Cruisingdad is your friend. Listen to him.
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Old 05-22-2007
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Wow.

Just wow.

I would've spun on my heel the moment I saw the boat gutted on the hard. If I like that sort of work, I have enough of it here. About the only pre-casting-off work I would expect free crew to do is to help stow and tie down stuff, and to listen to me blather on about ship's systems, where the seacocks are, where the wood plugs are, which way the fuel cocks and head cocks pointed, how to keep the log, and a long list of safety instructions. I would also be interested in confirming that they weren't misrepresenting themselves via pop quizzes on navigation and engine fixing (assuming they claimed to know such arcana).

Crew should be presented with a 95% functional boat, in my opinion, with only stowage and stuff you discover wrong in the process of stowage to keep you from leaving. Oh, and it's OK to wait for the right weather window, but you've got to feed the crew and call the expense the luck of the draw.

You were severely taken advantage of. Please post Captain ********'s real name, boat name and type and home port in order that this experience doesn't sour another young and willing crew unnecessarily.

I'm not kidding. I'm trying to do Atlantic crewing this summer, and if I waste a plane ticket on this piss streak, I'll be most displeased. PM me privately if you wish. Thanks, and you have my regrets.
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Old 05-22-2007
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Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice
Kac...my boat is in the hard since today.

Want to come over for 15 days to cross the Atlantic with me??? We'll go via the Bermuda Triangle and will cross the Horn (twice to double the fun).

Please bring tools

Thanks
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Old 05-22-2007
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That seriously sucks... what yard in upstate NY were you in? We've hopped through a number over the past couple of weeks working our way up the Hudson... I'd hate to find out we were 500 feet from each other!
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