10 Oct - 10 Dec 2012 - Part 2 - Back in the USA and the 2 weeks that turned out to be 2 months!

Tue 11 Dec 2012 03:10
The weather in November changed for the worse and hence work on the decks slowed down considerably. We were both working from dawn ‘till dusk, getting Nimue ready and we started to joke with the yard that we would be joining them for their Christmas Party! We had all got to know each other well and we cannot sing their praises enough a) at the quality of their work and b) they were all just really nice guys.
Then came the saga of the life raft. The Autoflug life raft, which we had purchased over 16 years ago had been regularly serviced and was due for it’s next service.  Unfortunately the company has been taken over several times and now there was no authorised dealership in the USA able to service it. Rather than take any risks, we decided to purchase a new Viking Life raft (a company with worldwide servicing), which was due to arrive on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving Day. The tracking details confirmed the raft had left Miami and delivered on Wednesday, but not to us in Deltaville, but to Wilsons in Richmond, over an hour’s drive away! Wilsons don’t deliver to Deltaville until Monday, so another wait!
So with that news we decided we would put the anchor chain away, but as we were pulling it in, the electric anchor winch kept on cutting out. After a few more attempts and it still cutting out; there was only one thing to do. Michael dismantled it and took it up straight to the workshop only to discover that two of the bearings had seized (again due to not using it and standing in the heat). The winch was now 12 years old and with the takeover of the manufacturers, Simpson & Lawrence, by Lewmar, it was almost impossible to get spare parts. So again, with our anticipated trip around the world, it was time to replace it. Adam, the Manager at Zimmerman's in Deltaville was still in his office and we discussed the purchase of a new anchor winch. With Thanksgiving Day, we agreed to order a new unit from West Marine (a huge chandlers throughout the USA). We had become ‘faces’ in their new Deltaville store and they were always very helpful in getting parts in for us. When we drove up that afternoon to order a new Lewmar anchor winch, Gus (a member of staff), advised that he could source one and that if we paid the courier charges, we could expect delivery the following Tuesday. He also mentioned that he never has a good experience when ordering Lewmar parts! We both worked on Nimue all through Thanksgiving and put the sails back on Nimue and the new running rigging. Tuesday came to collect the order and Gus gave us the news that it wasn’t going to arrive until Wednesday. Wednesday arrived and again not good news, as the anchor winch that turned up was not the correct model (not too sure who’s fault, but it definitely wasn’t ours)! The correct anchor winch eventually turned up on Saturday, which Michael successfully fitted to the new deck mount.
The ‘red-neck’ truck, which Zimmerman’s let us use. A real necessity to get parts, especially from West Marine!
Nimue in the working slip
Geoff working on Nimue to rebuild the new anchor winch base
Nimue’s pristine decks and Wendy standing next to Nimue’s new ‘posh’ sprayhood and bimini (an excellent job)
 At last, there was nothing holding us back, so Sunday was spent getting Nimue ‘shipshape’ and we took the first high water out of Broad Creek and into the Rappahannock River and down the Chesapeake to Norfolk.