Kadey Krogen Rendezvous 2017

I had planned on giving a presentation at the Rendezvous, but it’s not to be.

So, here is the outline.  I will post this on my blog, DauntlessatSea.com

I have also posted, somewhat unedited, three galleries of pictures, you need to use these links:

  • The most recent videos from the Atlantic crossing,

https://dauntless.smugmug.com/Dauntless-Atlantic-2016-Videos/n-ddh7xF/

  • My northern Europe pictures and some videos from April thru November 2016, including the painting of Dauntless in the spring and a few of my side trips to Galicia and Veneto, Italy.

https://dauntless.smugmug.com/Dauntless-2016-Northern-Europe/n-6MSG6Q/

  • The pictures from most of 2017, including the Atlantic Passage, the Caribbean, the Panama Canal and other things.

https://dauntless.smugmug.com/Dauntless-2017-Panama-Canal-/n-TWg5MZ/

Most galleries are in chronological order. The date time group is also embedded in the file name. Please forgive all the redundancy.  It’s always easier to take too many pictures than not enough, though it makes sorting after the fact a real PIA.

Also, should you see anything and have a specific question, please feel free to email me.

Kadey Krogen Rendezvous 2017

Richard on Dauntless

Dauntless has come so far

 

Dauntless’ Second Atlantic Passage

  • Four Legs from Europe to the Caribbean
    • Leg 1 Rota Spain to Rabat, Morocco, via Gibraltar to fuel up
      • 250 nm
      • 50 hours total
    • Leg 2 Rabat Morocco to Las Palmas, the Canaries (unexpected stop)
      • 600 nm
      • 4 days, 1 hr., 35 min
      • Avg speed 6.1 knots
    • Leg 3 Las Palmas to Heiro, the western most island in the Canaries, Fuel top-up
      • 172 nm
      • 31 hours and 45 min
      • 5.5 knots
    • The last & biggest leg, the only one that mattered, the Canaries to Martinique
      • 460 hours, (19 days, 4 hours)
      • 2582 nm
      • 7 knots
    • The “Oh, BTW, you still have 2000 miles to go” leg, Martinique to Panama Canal and Mexico
      • 460 hours, (19 days, 4 hours)
      • 2582 nm
      • 7 knots
      • Same strong easterly trade winds; same large, mixed seas
      • Avg roll +13°/-09° ext 22°/-10°

Overall Winds & Seas

  • Conditions are Very Different than the North Atlantic
  • Trade winds prevent turning back
    • Constant wind speeds of 20 to 35 knots
    • Direction varied over 90° from NE to SE
      • 3 wave sets produced large 25° roll every 8 to 10 minutes for 3 weeks
      • NE & SE wave sets, smaller, longer period
      • wave heights predominate 10 to 15 feet at 8 seconds
        • 3 different wave sets produced large 25° roll every 8 to 10 minutes for 3 weeks
        • First week very disconcerting to have stern fall to stbd so suddenly every periodically
      • Since leaving North Africa, until the Panama Canal, more than 5,000 nm and more than 60 days underway, all but two of those days required the paravane stabilizers.
      • Entering the Pacific and turning northwest from Panama City, in the first four days we had no need of stabilization. They call it the Pacific for a reason.

Crises In the mid-Atlantic

Fuel Loss

  • What Happened
  • Possible Solutions
  • What I did
  • What I now think I should have done (hint: Much Ado About Nothing)

Hydraulic Hose for Rudder failure

  • What Happened
    • I was screwing around
    • Possible Solutions
  • What I did
    • First fix did not work
    • Spares, spares and more spares (but not the right fitting)
  • What I now think I should have done

Overall Summary of My Second Atlantic Passage

Considerably harder than I had expected

I’m still organizing the data, but the big take-away, is that the fuel consumption for the last two years has been about 1.5 gal/ hr. or a little above 4nm/gal

Average cost has run between $75 to $133 per day when I’m on the boat.  Even during the most recent passage, cost was $104 per day, with fuel being $80 a day.

 

Krogen Cruisers Rendezvous

My Contact Information:

 

Richard Bost

Dauntless KK42-148

1.212.289.7274

Wxman22@gmail.com

DauntlessNY@gmail.com

 

Link for the blog:

DauntlessAtSea.com

Follow Dauntless at:

Share.delorme.com/Dauntless

 

 

 

 

2016 Retrospective

Looking for something else, I came across my 2015 Post Mortem of my First Atlantic Passage.  It’s fascinating.  Makes me feel I should write another one for this passage.  I will, but also think I would like to do a compare & contrast, a great teacher’s tool.

But this is not that.  This is more about the how and why I went the way we went.  In thinking about this post, I’ve been thinking a lot about this in the past couple weeks.  But even now, I go back and forth, would I or would I? That is the question.

Rainbow of Ho Chi Minh City

Not my usual rainbow and sunset picture, but appropriate none the less.  Being in Saigon gives me the opportunity to think, reflect and plan for the future.

Being away from Dauntless, longer than originally planned, but in fact, it’s worked out for the best.  When I am on Dauntless, short term takes precedence.

As I have reflected on the events of 2016.  I found myself racing through some places I really loved, like Galicia; while staying months in places I really didn’t, like Southern Spain, Morocco.

It was a tumultuous year, in every aspect.  The year started with Dauntless was in the capable hands of the Kehoe Boys in New Ross, Ireland, another place I miss very much.  I, in the meantime, was in NY and then Julie and I took a trip to Galicia in mid-February to see if we could keep Dauntless in A Coruna or Vigo, for the winter 2016-17.  We both loved Galicia as much as we thought we would.  Thus, Plan A to return to North America became Plan B.

Plan B: Ireland, Scotland for the summer, then France in August and Galicia by mid-September for the winter. Now, the Schengen three-month rule really puts a crimp on spending time (and money) in Europe for non-E.U. cruisers, but I’d spend the off times in NY and USA.

Then Life Happened and the Plan Changed, again.

Even before leaving NYC at the end of March I found myself going back to Plan A, getting Dauntless back to the New World.

So far, so good.  Plan A would get me to Asia sooner rather than later.  But I did not think about how much I liked the cruising in Ireland, Scotland, Atlantic France (Brittany) and Spain (Galicia).

The route from Ireland to Panama is dictated by climate and currents.  Not a lot of options, but I’m not sure I really thought about the choices I did have well enough.

And that will be the topic of my next post.

 

 

Dauntless Redux

The New D
The New Dauntless on a mooring in Scotland, flying her purple Kadey Krogen flag.

Just in case you missed it, here are the pictures of Dauntless, before and after her winter in Ireland.

It was a transformative time!

In the Begining. 3 years ago
In the Beginning. 3 years ago

When I get back to Dauntless in a couple of weeks, it will be time to get her wet again.

20160928_105402
The New Dauntless, on the hard. The missing anti-foul was caused by straps of the travel lift. The green sheen is organic growth just above the anti-foul.

Then, just days later, we will take the first steps in our voyage back to North America.

I will miss Ireland.  I will miss the friends I made and the people who worked on Dauntless like she was their own.  We’ll have to make it back there some day.

Gary Mooney, the GRP and Painter, was meticulous in mixing and applying the AWLGRIP paints.
Gary Mooney, the GRP and Painter, was meticulous in mixing and applying the AWLGRIP paints.
This is the layer of the undercoat for the anti-foul going on.
This is the layer of the undercoat for the anti-foul going on.
Gary applying the first layer of epoxy
Gary applying the first layer of epoxy
The New Anti-Foul. The scrapes pulled off some of the undercoat.
The New Anti-Foul. The scrapes pulled off some of the undercoat.
My latest scratch/scrape
My latest scratch/scrape
Fall 2015
Fall 2015 Dauntless is strapped down for the winter. Dauntless was hit by winds of over 100 mph this past winter while in New Ross. But since it wasnt a “named” storm, it was just another winter in the northern Atlantic and therefore boats are strapped down.
May 2015
May 2015
The Krogen out of the water
The Krogen out of the water

The Smell of Nothing

Was never so sweet.

How do I know it will be better tomorrow?  The weatherman told me of course.
How do I know it will be better tomorrow? The weatherman told me of course.

Just picked up 2411 liters, 637 gallons, of gas oil, a.k.a diesel.  That’s 4533 pounds of fuel, added to the 400 pounds she already had.  Dauntless now sits a few inches lower than before, but looks ready to go.

And the engine room smells as sweet as ever, with no fuel smell, just the smell of new batteries and cables.

Now you wonder why all the fuss?  Isn’t re-fueling supposed to be easy and routine?  Well, if you are driving a car I suppose it is.  I’ve filled cars with fuel thousands of times. But on Dauntless it’s been less than 30 times and on Dauntless, nothing is ever routine.

A few of the shenanigans that have taken place while fueling:

  • Being showered by a volcano of fuel at the Portsmouth, NH fish dock.  Luckily, no fishing boat was waiting as I showered and got out of my fuel soaked clothes.
  • Succumbing to the fear expressed by my friends about running out of fuel, I purposely overfilled the tanks by about 10 gallons before leaving Rhode Island.  This was soon followed by the little fuel runoff coming from the port side tank, a few of those extra gallons soon were in the bilge.
  • The most recent leak last summer that lead to the New Ross Experience.  Much like the Jimi Hendrix Experience in Seattle, but more expensive.

And after each debacle, the next fueling are filled with dread; what will happen next?

So, as you can see, I have every reason to be elated about smelling nothing in the engine room.

Best of all, the 637 gallons cost half of what I paid to fill the tanks two years ago in the fall of 2014.

Tomorrow, with a full fuel and water load, Dauntless is ready to take care of business as we head south for France, Spain & Portugal.

Dauntless faces south; Brian Boru north.
Dauntless faces the Brian Boru. Tomorrow they say goodbye for a long time; hopefully not forever.

 

 

 

The Great Battery Caper

After months of planning, thinking and just plain fretting, the batteries are in and Dauntless is no longer acting like a one legged duck.

Another Gorgeous Sunset
Another Gorgeous Sunset

How do one legged ducks act you wonder? Without the engine running or being plugged into shore power, we had only a few minutes’ worth of electrical power.

Two of the Four New Yuasa Batteries
Two of the Four New Yuasa Batteries

And I’d go to sleep, not with visions of sugar plum faeries (or better yet, leggy milf’s) dancing in my head, but with pictures of wiring diagrams and this and that.

So, having found replacement batteries in Kilmore Quay’s Kehoe Marine last month, they got four Yuasa Cargo Deep Cycle GM batteries that were of 8-D size, with 230 amp-hours each for me. Weighing in at 55 kg, or 115 lbs. each and delivered to the Kehoe boys at New Ross Boat Yard (yes, of course they are related).

Waiting for high tide, when the dock was only a few feet above the floating pontoon, we got the batteries on to the boat without dropping them into the water.

Then, the hardest part physically, getting the old batteries out.  Perhaps with the knowledge that we could not hurt them, it took us less than an hour to get them out.

I then spent the next few hours re-configuring how the batteries were connected.  I essentially made a positive and negative stud that consolidated the all the connections before they went to the batteries.

My friend Ed had given me a new article about the optimum way to connect multiple batteries that was slightly superior to the way I had the older batteries connected.  I had had 8 new battery cables made, 2 for each battery, each 2.3 meters long (about 7 feet).  This allowed the four batteries to have the exact same length cable to each from the charging source.  By having the same cable lengths, the resistance should be equal and thus each battery should get exactly the same amount of charge.

That took a few hours, with a panicked call to Dave Arnold, the electrical guru (who else would be driving around an all-electric car for the 1980’s!).

His call reaffirmed the use of the existing terminal block and Perko switch that was used to switch the start to the house batteries if needed.

Finally, after 8 hours, I was ready for the new batteries.  I rigged an Amstel line around the hand railing to the pilot house, thus we could lower the batteries into the engine room and the only struggle was to pull them into place while lowering at the same time.

Two hours later, all was in place, hooked up and ready to go.

All the boat grounds go to a common terminal, then one large cable to the boat side of the Victron battery Monitor shunt.  Then one large cable to another terminal post which has all four negative battery cables.

Positives are similar, in that the inverter/charger, the positive from the alternator and the positive from the terminal block (which has a number of inputs from the isolators and thus indirect from the other battery chargers) go to a terminal post, then all 4 battery cables are attached.

In the next days/weeks, as I physically tie the lines and organize a bit more, I will make a new electrical diagram.

Now, according to my calculations, all the rest of the year should be downhill!

 

 

Waterford, Ireland – Day 22

Dauntless in Waterford, June 2016.
Dauntless in Waterford, June 2016.

The biggest sigh of relief; bigger than having crossed an ocean.

D on the Waterford dock.
D on the Waterford dock.

I know it’s hard to believe, but think about it.  Boat yards have far more scary unknowns than oceans!  I knew I would cross the Atlantic in 4 weeks; Dauntless in the boat yard?  Boat yards are the Hotel California for boats; many enter and a good number never leave.

But Dauntless is jaunty, so that’s not going to happen to her; ever, never.

Dauntless left Waterford last October, expecting to be back in a few weeks.  Instead it took 10 months and I spend a winter worrying:

Would the leaking fuel tank be fixed?

Waterford, looking towards Dauntless
Waterford, looking towards Dauntless

What about the crack in the hull?

Should I spend the money to paint the hull?

And if so, what colors?

Returning to Ireland the first of April did little to assuage my fears.  A windy, wet winter (what else is there in Ireland?) seemed to make everything go slower.  Even the inside work, fuel tank, had not been done.  Michael & Stephen of the New Ross Boat Yard assured me everything would be done and not to worry.

I worried anyway, but Michael was right and made sure everything was done: On Time and On Target.

This will be our last two weeks in Waterford.  It will give me a chance to say goodbye to friends and people who have become like family for me in the last two years.  Remember the butcher, the baker and the candlestick maker?  Johnny, the manager of the City Dock was here to help with the lines.  He did look a bit gaunt though and I discovered that he is training for a trek thru the Himalayas next year.

So since leaving New Ross on May 29th, Dauntless and I have travelled 22 days to Scotland and return. 157 engine hours and about 800 nautical miles.

I’ve ordered new batteries and they will be delivered next week, just after I get back from NYC.

Then, it’s South & West to the Future.

 

 

 

 

 

Day 1 thru 5, Kilmore Quay to Arklow, Dunloagharie & Glenarn Northern Ireland,

So it’s been an interesting 6 days.

I wanted to get to Arklow on time, so I had a bit of rough weather and seas, but nothing terrible.

For 6 months, I had planned all the work that needed to be done on Dauntless this winter and spring.

wp-1464899207608.jpg
Dunloagharie harbor, just south of Dublin

Almost none of it was done.

Why, you wonder? simply put, with the boat out of the water, with all the salon hatches open to the engine room and with the general disorder that comes with such work, I found it virtually impossible to do the projects that I had planned on doing. In hindsight, I did not anticipate the amount of turmoil the boat yard work would produce.

wp-1464899206866.jpg
My First Sunrise this Year at Sea

So, by the time I left the boat yard of New Ross, we were seaworthy, but a f…ing mess.   A salon full of stuff and parts that needed to be organized and put away.  A pilot house full of tools that had not been organized as I had planned.

Leaving Kilmore Quay, I was not on a northerly track for the next few weeks.  Out 2016 was underway for better or for worse.

Alone, more than I liked or had planned, friends were coming from the USA for the month of June and I felt an obligation to push as best I could to get to the ports we had planned to meet.

Day 2 Kilmore Quay to Arklow to meet Brian from USA.

In leaving New Ross so quickly, it meant even the paravanes, my stabilizers, were not set up. So I ended up rolling my way to Arklow. With winds on the NE bow, we were going into a bit of a head seas, not nice and we rolled a bit, not great, but livable.

Dauntless
Dauntless

Arriving in Arklow, the town has two places to dock on opposite sides of the river. Thus poor Brian went to the north side as I went to the south side.  Finally, we talked and he told me he could see me, therefore, I went to him on the north wall.

Remember the new paint job, well, it sustained its firs blemish.  Even after setting all the fenders (buoys) that we could, as the tide left and returned, the bow cap rail sustained it’s first scrape.

Another Crappy day
Another Crappy day. The graph on the left shows the pitching of the boat (that’s how much the bow bounces up and down) this is one of the worst days ever. The graph on the right depicts the rolling. While the rolling was not fun, this was without the stabilizers deployed.

Oh well, you can’t live forever and for millions species of things, they would be quite happy to live two days.  My new paint job should feel itself lucky.

Day 3 Arklow to Dunloagharie (just south of Dublin)

A relatively easy, short day, but I had to see the customs guy from Waterford.  He was scheduled to be on the Custaim boat for the next 8 days leaving from this port, Dunloagharie (just south of Dublin) so I had decided to make his job and therefore my paperwork as easy as possible.  We had arranged to meet him the afternoon after we had arrived.  Peter (seems like half the people in Ireland are named after my brother, so it makes it easier to remember their names), on time and meticulous as ever, I had the forms I needed checked, signed and embossed.  No European bureaucracy can resist the raised imprint of the embossed seal.  Does matter what it says, it’s only important that you have it.  Just watch Game of Thrones and it all becomes clear.  (though with a bit less killing, maiming and torture that is depicted in the GOT).

Day 4 & 5 Ireland to Northern Ireland

Where did this guy come from?
Where did this guy come from? Blackie, whose name suddenly changed after two years to Gigi. We never discovered who Gigi was named after.

Last year I vowed to never go out into head seas or contrary winds.

That determination lasted until Day 4 this year. Am I proud of it?  No, I was as sick as a dog.  A really sick dog.

I took my medicine. I felt good enough to function.  Winds were right on our nose, up and down, first you are looking at the sky, then the bottom of the sea.  We even got some spray on the pilot house windows.  With a strong 4 knot current running with us to the northeast, but with strong winds from the northeast at 18 gusting to 25, it produced high, 8 feet, steep waves.  The steepness of the waves produced all the spray on Dauntless.

Brian volunteered to take the 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. watch and I relieved him at 2. Having a few hours’ sleep helped, but up and down every 7 seconds was miserable.

Brian was back before 6 a.m. and at that time, I had decided to head due west to a cove that may provide us some protection from the wind and seas.  About 7 a.m., I left him, but added that if conditions changed, we could continue to head north to Northern Ireland.

Eating in my bed in the forward cabin.  I luxuriated in not having to do anything but hold on as we bounced up and down.  My toes held the wall, while my arm under my head touched the opposite wall.  I felt so good with every up and down.  The Krogen handled it so well.  And being in bed, half sleeping, I felt fine.  No longer sea sick, by body enjoyed the roller coaster ride.

That’s the tings about our 42 foot Kadey Krogen.  It always feels secure.  No matter how bad the conditions, while it may feel like another ride on the “wild mouse it still feels secure, like we are on rails.

Soon after I went to bed, I could tell that the seas and winds had changed somewhat.  In my sleepy state, I thought about getting up and telling Brian to just keep going north as originally planned.  But I also knew that I had told Brian to “act accordingly” depending on conditions.  After a few hours of sleep, as the conditions stayed moderate, I thought I should just stay in bed until Brian got us to Scotland.  He was doing fine, or better yet, he didn’t mind the ride in the pilot house and I was happy in my bed.  What’s to complain about?

I finally did get out of bed and that afternoon we headed into Glenarm, on the northern coast of Northern Ireland.

The next day would find us under the high pressure that gave us fair skies and light winds, finally, easing our way into Scotland.

Tomorrow, Scots and Scotland

D-Day – Day Zero

After 8 months of waiting, repair and refit, Dauntless got underway to day a little after noon.  The first three hours are going down the river Barrow and the Suir.  Leaving just after high water, we got a little boost of about a knot (1.2mph).wp-1464382705779.jpg

But although we are only going 7 knots, I’m feeling nervous. As I slalom down the river, I actually slow a bit, just a hundred rpms, maybe half a knot, just so I can feel comfortable again.

Much like getting off the plane in Venice, Frankfurt or Amsterdam, picking up the rental car, leaving the airport and immediate being on the Autostrada, Autobahn or AutoRoute, I start off in the slow lane, maybe going 60 to 70 mph, until I get my senses up to speed.  This means checking the rear view mirror very carefully, that car coming up may be going double my speed or more.  The speck in the mirror can quickly become a problem if I get in the way.

With time, minutes, maybe a half hour, I’m up to speed.  Now the issue is can I stand the buzzing this little economy car makes at 100 mph?

In my most recent trip to Spain, I had one of the worst cars ever.  Maybe if I drove it off a cliff, it would hit 100 mph, but I have my doubts about that too.  So I was bemused to hear this car being touted on the radio ads as having an “over-efficient” engine.  You have to hand to those marketing people, they can even change the laws of the universe.

One last comment about cars, slow ones at that.  While you may be thinking, good, it’s safer that way, the opposite is the reality. With a slow car, since it takes so long to get up to speed, whatever speed that is, the tendency is to simply not slow as much whenever possible, whether that be for the curve at the bottom of the hill or trying to get past a slow moving truck (in Europe they never go faster than 50 mph!)  A wonderful idea you may also think, but then driving becomes an ordeal of passing moving roadblocks and the box of corn flakes now costs $8 since it took a week to go the distance from NNYC to Chicago.

So after going a bit slower for a bit, maybe an hour, I was back in the rhythm of Dauntless and pushed the speed up to 8 knots, what with the river current.

Ireland was having its second summer like day since August 1976, so it was wonderful cruising.  Even the little one-foot chop that was on the south coast as I headed for Kilmore Quay was enjoyable.

But best of all was the deep blue water, and as you watch the little waves break, the water is so clear.

Coming into Kilmore Quay was quite tricky, and Michael at the boat yard even drew me a map to emphasize not to deviate from the plan.  And when the water beneath my newly skinned and painted keel got down to only 2 and a half feet, I was thankful for the guidance.

There was one space left on the end of the dock, the hammerhead, and happily the people on the English sailboat in from of the spot were there to grab my lines.  That takes much of the stress out of docking.

Well, I’ll have another chance tomorrow; that’s after I back out of here!

Today’s trip: 35 nm, 5 hours and 30 minutes, average speed, 6.5 knots.

Tomorrow, Kilmore Quay to Arklow.

I Like Cats

Tonight I took a whore’s shower. How are they related? Of course I am going to tell you.

Gigi, aka Blackie, as a youngster. He grew to be one of the biggest cats I have ever seen.
Gigi, aka Blackie, as a youngster. He grew to be one of the biggest cats I have ever seen.

It’s my last night in New Ross and the New Ross Boat Yard.  Stephen and Michael, the two brothers who own the yard, had a bbq tonight for me and a few other friends and boat yard people.  You know those people who are forever working on their boat.

Yum Yum. The smartest cat I have ever know.
Yum Yum. The smartest cat I have ever know. She is half the size of Gigi, but rules the roost.

With tons of great wine and even better pig meat the feast was grand and so fitting for my last night.  But finally in my old age, I have learned it’s always better to leave too soon then too late.

Don’t I know it.

So having struggled with Dauntless all day, she is in the water, she has fuel and she is still a disheveled mess.  So I still have a lot to do.

Therefore, before it got too late, like just before 10 p.m., I decided I better leave the festivities.

Now, I had not seen the two cats, one black, one grey tabby, for the entire day, so I just felt my day would be complete if I could give them the salutations of the day and night.

But leaving the festivities so soon, with everyone clamoring about why I was leaving, I said only, I had to say goodnight to the cats.  (Of course after having thanking them for the great food, wine and lessons of Irish culture and history).

I looked for the cats; even went to my home for the last month, the shed, to look for them, but not a hair was to be seen.

As I was leaving and during my search, I reflected on why do I like cats so much?  Oh, I tolerate dogs and babies, but I do like cats.

And in the minute of walking away form the festivities, it came to me.  Cats don’t respond to peer pressure.  While they may want to get fed, they don’t pander. They do what they want, when they want.

Which brings me to the whore’s bath.

My mother loved saying that.  It was obvious that she would say it with multiple affect:

  1. She was checking to see how smart we were if we knew what she was talking about, and after the first time, it was a check to see if we remembered.
  2. Most importantly, she was showing that she was not succumbing to peer pressure in that every young person must take a shower every day. In fact, as she got older, a full shower was more a more difficult with her being alone. So the whore’s bath was the obvious solution.
  3. And of course she liked the shock value.

Tonight, before dinner, I had actually ran the engine for 30 mintes to heat the oil and check on everyting, so as to not elave it for tomorrow when I want to get underway to Arklow.

But even after 30 minutes with little work load, the water in the engine which also heats the water in my water heater was barely tepid.  So a couple hours later, when I wanted to take a shower, it was not even tepid anymore.  Though I did change the oil.

I wasn’t desperate enough for a cold shower, therefore a whore’s bath.

AN di f you still don’t know what that means you need to visit your parents more.

Tomorrow, Dauntless begins the first day of a cruise that will take us around the world.

Toot aloo

Three Goals in Three Days

I can handle that.  In the middle of the night, it finally dawned on me that I needed a goat that I could accomplish in one day.

As Ziggy Stardust would say, Wham, Bam, Thank you, Ma’am.

Otherwise my brain just keep spinning, like tires spinning in the snow going no where. Not fun. Well, at least I can’t freeze to death unlike some other interesting times in my life.

So today, I awoke with a doable goal, finish the fly bridge projects, mostly fixing my VHF antennas, check the winch switches and spreader lights.

So by 5 p.m. all was done, two antennas fixed, at least one working, lights, switches all done and that stupid 8-foot VHF antenna, fixed, I think.

Good enough for government work. I don’t know who said that, I don’t think it was the Spiders from Mars. No, they are all over the boat.

The AwlGrip painting is done, virtually all of it. We’ll be putting on the bits we took off during the next two days.

The bottom is almost done.  Two layers of epoxy, one tie coat, another primer coat for the new anti-foul and one anti-foul coat is on.  One more to do tomorrow.

The prop got this new age treatment.  Supposed to work much like “Prop Speed” (more efficiently), with an etching primer and

A typical tree lined road. I will truly miss the beauty of Ireland and it's warm denizens.
A typical tree lined road. I will truly miss the beauty of Ireland and it’s warm denizens.

then a silicon overcoat (it feels like really smooth rubber), but at 1/10 the cost of Prop Speed.  Don’t have much to lose there.  I trust my Irish brothers.

Fuel tank pieces are finally done and getting installed tomorrow.

The prop after "Prop One" application: a yellow etching primer, followed by a silicon clear coat. It takes three days to cure.
The prop after “Prop One” application: a yellow etching primer, followed by a silicon clear coat.
It takes three days to cure.

My task tomorrow, put all my tools and parts away and install my driving lights.

Friday’s task, get the boat ready to go, re-rig the mast and paravanes poles, sort out the engine room, get her ready to splash on Saturday.

Saturday, high tide is at 11:04 a.m., so we will go into the water around 9.  I’ll do a few figure 8’s in the river, wave at the tourists shaking JFK’s hand and dock again.  I’ll then change the warmed up oil, check the fuel filters and wait for the fuel truck to come and give me 1000 liters for 580 Euros.

Not bad, two years ago it would have been 1400 Euros.  I would have to stay home.

Fueling should be done by noon, at which point the ebbing water should be picking up the pace, as I will to.

One long blast on the horn to warn everyone that I am either coming or going, depending upon your perspective and it’s on the Dunmore East to wait for the change of tide.

 

Why I Am Not Afraid

 

The New Dauntless As Tasty As Ever
Dauntless – As Tasty As Ever

Being in the New Ross Boat Yard daily, now in the spring, almost daily I run into people who ask me about our passage across the Atlantic.  They always ask if I was ever afraid.  Yes, inwardly I do roll my eyes, but now I have my answer down rote, I was never afraid, but certainly miserable at times.

Every once in a while, sensing they actually may want a more reasoned response, I start talking about Kadey Krogen and this KK42 and what makes her so suited to where and how we go; at least until their eyes glaze over.

Knowing almost nothing about fiberglass, other than it’s made of fiber + glass, I have been talking to Gary Mooney, the GRP (fiberglass) expert of the area who has been working on Dauntless this winter and has a lifetime of experience with it on boats and all sorts of other objects.

We’ve talked about the repairs he made on Dauntless, first there were two problems in the hull:

  1. The four-foot-long hairline crack that I put in the hull the past July in Finland.
  2. An older, badly repaired, thru-hull fitting, also in the forward bilge, that was haphazardly done and allowed water into the hull and was the source of the water in the amidships-forward compartment bulkhead.

So this got us talking about the Krogen hull, in particular, which is a cored, also called sandwich, hull:

  1. there is a layer of fiberglass,
  2. then the core, in this case, a white non-water absorbing Styrofoam like stuff,
  3. then another layer of fiberglass.
  4. This is then covered by a gelcoat layer, making the fiberglass impervious to water.
  5. Then a two-part epoxy coat is put on to protect the gel coat, Dauntless gets two coats of that,
  6. A “Tie-coat” comes next, this tie-coat allows the anti-foul paint to adhere to the epoxy,
  7. And lastly comes the anti-foul coating. I am going to try a semi-hard coating, purposely made for very slow boats like Dauntless.  It’s said to last 5 years and be smooth enough to slightly reduce fuel consumption. I’ll be happy if it lasts three years and doesn’t hurt fuel consumption.

This boat yard really caters to the commercial boats, so things like the anti-foul, are all things the fishing boats and trawlers (real ones) use and like.

So, talking of hulls with Gary, I asked him about solid fiberglass hulls.  It’s clearly touted in the USA as a “better” meaning safer solution.  He scoffed at that, saying that most of the fishing boats here use solid hulls to make them stronger in terms of cargo and heavy equipment, but it also makes them more fragile.

A cored hull has much more flexibility, thus I could hit a rock as I did and the hull flexed enough to crack both the inner and outer layers of fiberglass.  Had the hull been solid fiberglass, it’s likely it would have broken in big chunks leaving a meter-long hole in the hull.

This happened recently to a FV just off the coast. Had they not been minutes from shore, they would have sunk. I on the other hand, carried on for another 3 months totally oblivious!

A reliable source tells me that Jim Krogen was always a proponent of the cored hull (sandwich construction) and only succumbed to public perception in the mid-90’s when they changed to making solid fiberglass hulls, below the waterline.  Besides better shear strength (as my encounter with the rock showed), a cored hull also provides better acoustical and thermal insulation, when compared to solid fiberglass.  This past winter, sitting outside in the wind and rain, Dauntless was dry as a bone inside, while many other boats with solid hulls, had condensation running off the walls forming little lakes. My storm windows also helped in that regard.

Dauntless was no. 148 in the 42-foot series and was made in 1988.  Newer isn’t always better.

This is a cutout of the gunnel (upper hull) showing a layer of fiberglass on top of balsa squares.
This is a cutout of the gunnel (upper hull) showing a layer of fiberglass on top of balsa squares.

Our hull above the rub rail to the cap rail, the gunnel, also has sandwich or cored construction, but in this case, the core is much thicker, made of blocks of balsa wood and has an inner and outer wall for added strength. Also, cored hulls do provide additional buoyancy. Clearly one of the reasons that when hove-to the boat bobs morthan rolls in big seas.

Which gets to the basis of why I am not afraid.The same cutout from another angle. The squares of balsa are easier to see.

The same cutout from another angle. The squares of balsa are easier to see.It was certainly not due to my experience as a mariner!  I’m probably in the bottom 2% of experience as a mariner.

But I am probably in the top 2% of researchers and I know the difference between opinion and fact.

For 5 years before we purchased this boat, I read, I studied and I determined what capabilities a small (that I could afford) boat

needed to have to be able to travel the world, cross oceans and yet have the comforts of home. I wasn’t going to live like a monk after all.

That process of research and reading every story of ocean crossings I could find, led me to this Kadey Krogen 42.  I knew this boat could handle the worst conditions, whether I was miserable or not.

My friend Larry said it this way, when we got in those chaotic

This is what was cut out of the inner gunnel. The picture below is the piece on the right.
This is what was cut out of the inner gunnel. The picture below is the piece on the right.

seas, 6-12 feet, short period, from all directions, off the coast of France last summer, Dauntless just seemed to settle in and not fight it. We were hanging on for dear life and she was just motoring along, wondering what all the fuss was about.

James Krogen knew how to design and build a boat that could do anything asked of it, be it bringing us home from a week-end jaunt or around the world.

That’s why I’m not afraid.

 

 

 

Phase I is Done

Dauntless after her second coat of primer
Dauntless after her second coat of primer

Phase I was doing he stuff that had to be done before Dauntless got her feet wet.  All done except for salt water pump.  For a competent person, this is a few days work; for me about three weeks.

  • Forward Bilge
    1. Complete hookup of New Vetus holding tank, with new fittings and electrical
    2. Install new bilge pump (old one becomes spare) with new check valve
    3. Make additional fresh water hookup and run hose to forward compartment for Raritan Purisan
    4. Check connections for salt water pump (new, hasn’t worked since installed)
    5. We found a bare wall bulkhead in front of old holding tank. Gary sealed it and put Gelcoat on it.
    6. Check all clamps for the multitude of thru hulls in this area
  • Anchor Locker
    1. Pull all the chain and rode out for both anchors
    2. Vacuum the bottom of chain locker
    3. Replace two deck fittings for fresh & salt water connections
    4. Re-mark and reverse anchor chain
    5. Add 90 feet polypropylene to end of chain rode (this is because it floats, making it easier to find should I have to abandon anchor with no time for anything else)
    6. Paint anchors
    7. Find third anchor for stern
    8. Make up a new, longer chain snubber

The Electrical list is untouched, but the first four items a-d, will be done in the next days.  The rest in the next two months.

  • Run new VHF cable to the two radios
  • Replace plugs for Navigation lights
  • Add Name Board lights
  • Install new Driving lights
  • Add USB ports in salon and second cabin
  • Add new switch and breaker panel for fridge/freezer in pilot house
  • Add switch panel for solar panels

Once D is out of the shed we will be able to re-rig the Paravanes and the mast.  Gary’s carpenter has made another bird that got broken in the North Sea and has repaired the doors.  The Rocker Stoppers are a work in progress.

  • Restring birds to new line, 3/16” Amsteel, so that I can modify the depth of the birds.
  • Boat Yard is making rocker stoppers for me to use while at anchor

For the Wood Trim, I can’t oil anything until all the sanding is done. I will do this next week, before we head out of the shed into the hard, cruel world.

  • Teak “eyebrow” around pilot house has been scrapped and sanded thanks to Leonie & Martin. I will put Tung Oil on it and see how that works.
  • Oil all the benches that have been sanded

Fuel tank is in the final stages of being done.  Sealant has been applied and new inspection ports are ready to be installed. Anti-Foul will be applied the last day, next Friday.

Most of the heavy lifting by Gary and the New Ross Boat Yard are done or will be in the next week:

  • Port fuel tank sealant and new inspection ports
  • New bottom job, with two coats of epoxy and one of a tie-coat
  • New anti-foul by International, a semi-hard coating that is made for slow boats like Dauntless and should last at least a few years.
  • Painting of the hull from the cap rails down, including the bow pulpit
  • Fixing on of the side doors that while latched open this past winter the winds ripped if off the hook and broke the entire frame. (winds this winter were higher than 100 knots or 110 mph.
  • New Bow thruster blades

Getting the forward cabin and compartments fixed, cleaned and put away was the big monkey on my back.  It was critical to get done and as long as it was unfinished the boat was unlivable.

I’ll start sleeping on board Friday.  It’s feeling like my home again.

My first glass of wine on Dauntless since October.
My first glass of wine on Dauntless since October. And looking forward to forward cabin.

Gary is just finishing applying the second primer coat.  That will get sanded tomorrow, then washed again with an Awlgrip wash (a solvent, like paint thinner) before the first finish coat goes on.  At that point we will actually see the final color.  I hope I like it!

I literally had my first glass of wine on board, the first since October (I’ve had wine, not just in a glass!). I do have rituals you know.

P.S.  Here is a bonus video of Gary applying the second primer coat today. ( I don’t post many videos because it takes hours to upload one video sucessfullly.)