Position 13:29S 143:43E
We sailed overnight last night and were not
planning to stop at all for a couple of nights, but found that at 6.30am this
morning, the autopilot stopped working.
As had recently passed Morris Island anchorage
where a few of the rally yachts had stopped last night, we decided to turn
round, beat into the wind and see if we could
fix the autopilot.
We beat into the wind and were only able to do 4
kts on 2100 revs of engine - into wind and tide. it is amazing what
diffference it makes going downwind instead of directly into it.
We found that the autopilot ram had sheared a
bolt. it is actually the bolt which connect the main part of the hydraulic
drive to the platform which fixes it to the boat.
We will need to take this to a workshop to be fixed
- hopefully in Darwin. Simrad drives are pretty common in fishing
Luckily we bought a brand new hydraulic drive in
Panama so it was a case of taking the old one out and fitting the new one
Hardest part of the job was emptying the aft
We were just looking at a lovely sandy beach when
we realised that there was a large crocodile waiting on the sandy
beach. Not too good for swimming and we did not fancy
taking the inflatable dinghy anywhere - would
merely be a small bite for a large croc... a good reminder
that it is not safe to swim.
After 3 hour delay we were on our way