Passage to Sarawak

Michael Hughes and Ger White
Sat 7 Jul 2012 09:56
After our relaxing time in the islands off Terengganu, we decided to make passage for Miri in Sarawak--some 650 miles, around a 5 day passage. I write this blog after covering 350 of these miles--a tough passage so far, let's hope it gets better.
Before setting off we had a couple of technical issues to deal with!!  As well of course lots that can wait!!  Our alternator stopped charging while we were on Redang Island--not a catastrophe, as I have a generator, but I wanted it fixed. After some investigation, it seems we had an alternator fault, and also a faulty smart regulator. The alternator was fixed--and I also bought a spare. But the regulator is microchip stuff--not really mendable--so we fitted a cheap and very unsmart regulator to see us through while we wait to replace the smart one.
We also had a leak coming from somewhere in the salt water cooling system for the engine when it was running--small and manageable, but annoying. Replacing the water pump impeller and o-ring seemed to do the trick, but now mid-passage I find we again have a small leak---the engine is so tightly fitted, it's impossible to find exactly where the leak is coming from---we'll have another go in Miri--but for now, we're sailing--who needs engines!!
And the passage itself has been pretty tough--winds up and down, everything from 40 knots to nothing--and some remarkable changes in direction.  Heavy rain squalls with thunderstorms--we're using the radar to try to dodge the electrical storm cells--but it makes for less sleep than ideal and with a nasty choppy sea things like cooking are difficult.
But hey-ho---rough with the smooth--in a couple of days we'll be in Miri, exploring Sarawak---and maybe tomorrow the sun will shine!