17th July, 2015
W. Eric Faber
Fri 17 Jul 2015 01:14
With one reef in the mainsail and a couple of rolls in the Genoa we made good progress yesterday and overnight. We normally reef well down for the night, but the wind was dead aft and not forecast to change much, so the single reef was left in. Winds have varied between 14 knots and 21 knots giving us a speed of well over 6 knots. One of the larger boats in the fleet managed around 9 knots to10 knots and is currently 60 mies ahead of us, achieved in less than 12 hours.
This morning the bilge pump did not bring up any water. When sailing dead down wind, the boat does not heel much other than that caused by any rolling. One must assume, therefore, that the leak is associated with the heeling of the ship rather than with a leaking seacock. We have had some water ingress since I bought the boat in 2005, but it seems to have worsened a little since then.
The wet and cold weather we had in Tanna appears to have disappeared and every day in Port Vila has been lovely. Yesterday and today the weather is pleasant with a little sunshine, which, unfortunately, is not enough to refill the ship’s batteries from overnight use (mainly fridge and tricolour light). The water-towed generator is failing to put any energy into the batteries despite having had it checked in Tonga. We suspect the wiring may be at fault. The current plan is to rewire the solar panels, the wind generator and the towed generator in Mackay. Luckily, in the mean time, we have the Honda generator, which we ran for an hour this morning to fill the batteries.