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Date: 19 Jan 2013 17:43:39
Title: Atlantic. Las Palmas to Cape Verde

19/02/2013

24 12N 018 26W

Saturday 19th January 2013

Crew:  Tony, Ken, Barrie, Ian

Las Palmas Marina

We have all been very busy getting the boat ready to sail. Stocking the boat with food for a 4 week passage involved considerable planning and many shopping trips in and around Las Palmas.  Barrie prepared and cooked a couple of meals for first 2 days at sea.

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We finally slipped our berth on Wednesday 16th Jan to discover a problem with the engine cooling system.  Drifted into the anchorage and changed the mangled pump impellor and during all this customs came aboard for an inspection which further delayed us.

Eventually set sail at 15.30 with mainsail only and a beam wind of 15 knots.  We were all feeling a bit queasy for first 48 hours.  Enjoyed Barrie’s pre prepared soup and Ian’s chicken Thai curry. Since then we have all been overeating to reduce our stores and weight and stop acting like a submarine. The evening G&T go down well with ice from the freezer but then forget to duck and end up with nets of fruit head butting us.

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Put out our fishing lures but caught nothing so far. We blame the many dolphins who spend whole afternoons with us but must be scaring the fish away. It’s probably a good thing since every nook and cranny on the boat is full.

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So far the weather has been kind; perhaps too kind because the wind is a gentle 8 to 15 knots giving us a boat speed between 4 to 6 knots. This means that our passage to Cape Verde is quite slow with ETA Wednesday 23rd Jan.  However, we keep getting short spells of stronger wind which push us along at a nice 7 knots. Hopefully we will get better wind the further south we go. The photograph below shows our twin headsails, each supported with a pole which is proving a great setup for downwind sailing.

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 We have been using far too much power with lights burning, radar, AIS VHF and even boiling the kettle on the inverter.  With only 420 amp hrs of battery capacity and using up to 300 per day we have ended up with flat batteries at 10volts. We are becoming a lot more miserly with our electric power but still having to run the generator for 4 or 5 hours per day. The Hydrovane self steering has been deployed with great success and helping to conserve battery life since we don’t have to use the autopilot.

Its G & Ttime so adios

The Diatonic Team


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