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Date: 24 Nov 2009 15:28:29
Title: Day 2 (we think)

typing on deck! combination of me still not quite right and the sun shining.
 
Weather settled a bit. The sea is more typical long ocean swell. Still big but longer so it has less effect.
We experimented last night and sailed with unfurled foresail only. Took a while to take down and stow the main sail in the big sea with 25 kts of wind.
 
all stop: just had to slam laptop shut for a little bit of drama.. more anon.
 
anyway, we were all knackered last night which is typical of second night since you get little sleep on your first night out.While the foresail alone was slower it made things more manageable and allowed us to go on 2 hour watch system with one person up. all got sleep and felpt much better this morning.
We then tried hoisting the spinnacker on its own. Normally difficult to do without the mainsail to shelter it but we got a sock for it a few weeks back and this allows us to hoist the sail inside the sock and when its up the sock gets hoisted allowing the sail to fill.
 
More neighbours today,  about 4 boats in sights. We found we were closing on one of them and found they had a wrapped spinnaker. This is a real nightmare. It happened to us yesterday when we hoisted except half the sail was in the sock and half out so it was a real mess. It happens when the wind eddies around the main sail kind reversing the flow and making the sail spin inside out. WHen it binds on the forestay it really gets stuck. We gybed the main ro reverse the eddy and it eventually unspun. So ya would think we would start using the net thingy that we made the day before we left. This is like a sail made of net except ours is just horizontal rope tied between two lines from mast to the pointy end of the boat and the mast. so no we didnt put it up and no we didnt put it up this morning.
So there we were watching the neighbours climbing the mast to un-lock,untie, cut or whatever ya do when it wont come down. Within minutes out spinnacker had wrapped itself inside the uphaul (rope holding the pole up) and tore !
The neighbours radioed to thank us for standing by! I had to admit our own issues.
So we repaired the tears and put it back up- this time with the anti spin yoke. And 10 minutes later , just as I started typing this the main tear opened again. We have taped the bejazus out of it now and its back up. In the meantime the neighbours hoisted a new spinnaker and headed off. within a few minutes it was back down ahd the headed off in the opposite direction. They are now closing back on us (presumably because they saw us with now sail up- again and were returning the favour. This time thye are flying twin foresails -possible in whats called a twistel rig arrangement. Kevin Heery had this setup on Sabrina when they did the arc. its is very forgiving and the boat rolls much less. We didnt really have enought time since getting the boat to go for that approach. It certainly seems to be working well for the lads behind us.
 
The books are out today and more importantly we had a wash. Water is obviously a big concern since we can only stow so much. We have 40 5 litre bottles for drinking and the two boat tanks take about 70 litres each. We also have a water maker which takes the salt out of the sea water. This takes a lot of energy though and we can only use it when the engine is running. To run the engine uses diesel and we have about 250litres of that on board. We  are actually in the racing fleet so we are not allowed to have the engine in gear others boats can use theirs as long as they record the hours used which is then taken into allowance when do give you a position. If the racing fleet drive under engine ( unless it si for an emergency) they get no result. All boats can however run their engine out of gear to charge the batteries so that you have energy for lights, radar, radio, gps and charging important stuff like this laptop and ipods.
Sooo we will run the engine for about 3 or 4 hours a day to charge up and while that is happening run the watermaker. If it breaks down we will be a bit smelly. You can wash in salt water but soap (even the salt water soa) wont really work.
So good so far and we have all washed and can tolerate each other again. THe wash has to be super fast though cos the machine can only do so much.
 
10 minutes since our re-repair and kite is still intact- fingers crossed.
We have done about 35o miles but if ye look at the positions ye probably have a better idea of where we are from our yellow brick. This is a plastic box about 150mm by 150 by 30. it sends a signal every 6 hours we are told. We wont be going onine to browse as satellite phone credit would be munched up pretty quickly. In any case we are more interested in enjoying the weather, reading books and fixing stuff without starting to drive harder than we should and likely start breaking stuff.
 
Lara just told us that the boat near us is called 'Only You' and we all immediately broke into song.
We ahve another wee leak in the anchor locker in the bow which meant sea water got on the guitar strings- Cormac hasnt put it to the test yet....i dont see it surviving the week in this roley poley ship.
 
Ive done a lot of rambling today. Probably wont have anything to say soon.
 
OUr present position is 24:53.10N 19:34.62w . the reason i give this is that the puter on the land side sees a position on puts us on google earth. There are blogs on the arc site too but since we've started this ......
Everyone here says hello to all back home with special emphasis on mammies and daddies. hope  the weather is improving a little in Galway.
Beoga out. (for now....)
 
 
 
 

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