Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: North Carolina
Thanked 225 Times in 224 Posts
Rep Power: 8
Re: Learning from mistakes, ours and theirs.
When we finally left the home port, the first thing that broke down was our roller furler, holding a big 175% genoa. After several uses, when we were a couple days out into the Gulf of Mexico (we were heading for the Yucatan Channel) the mainstay pulled out of the turnbuckle. That was pretty scary, as the mast on that boat is almost 70' tall. Fortunately, it happened during a light wind day, under 12 knots. We managed to re-connect the mainstay at the turnbuckle, but each time we used the furler, the stay was turning in the turnbuckle, trying to come out. The furler was not assembled correctly, and the turning part was bottomed out on the turnbuckle. We were trying to figure out how to fix it without going back to US. That night we had a huge thunderstorm with torrential rain and we lost a good part of our navigation system, such as chart plotter, speed, and depth. I suspected electrical short as the nav station was poorly sealed. We made a decision to turn back and pull into Pensacola, Florida. Another thing became apparent: the boat was a total pig to keep on course. It tracked so poorly, if you lifted your cheek to fart, the boat would go 20 degrees of course. Did I mention we were pulling an 18' Hobie Cat behind us, captains favorite toy? That Cat was making steering ever harder. I was pushing to get an auto pilot or wind vane even before I came on board, with captain having none of it, and claiming that the boat was holding the course beautifully. Now it became apparent to all of us that AP was a must if we want to keep our sanity.
Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.