TRAINING DAY 2
Location - Solent
Saturday 5th March 2011
Team – Myself, Colin Jefferies & David Renshaw
Today was the 2nd shake day sail to test everything and make sure Watermark IV was ready for the start of the trip – only 3 weeks to go now. The current plan is for David and myself to leave the Hamble around the 29th/30th March for Plymouth. The rest of the crew will meet us in Plymouth from where we’ll head south for Gibraltar. Yo......
There were some set objectives for this training day;
- Hoist and fly the new Cruising Chute
- Hoist and fly the Storm Jib
- Continue testing the newly installed GPS
- Run the generator whilst underway to see how much charge went into the battery bank over a 30 min period
- And, generally give the crew more experience.
Glad to say that we successfully achieved all of this and some learning's came out – better now than in the middle of the Bay of Biscay.
Weather conditions were very quiet this time round. We started with about 8knts from the N/NE which faded throughout the day. Infact the wind disappeared to such an extent that we ended up motoring home – the only way back.
Firstly, the Cruising Chute. Well – it’s bright. Designed by Cathy in her favorite Mediterranean colour – BRIGHT ORANGE!!!!!! Take a look below;
The one issue we did have with the setting of this sail was the run of the Tack Line. When the sail was full it pulled the turning block at an angle which pulled the Tack Line across the Furling Genoa Turnbuckle. It was obvious that this was acting just like a knife and would not take long to cut the line. Need to think about this one and chat with Ancasta tomorrow.
Have to say that we have had all the new sails up and they’ve turned out really well. A great effort by Ivan and the team at ARUN SAILS in Bosham. For those of you looking for sails try giving them a call;
Phone - 01243 573185
As for the storm jib, well, in a falling wind it’s not going to do very much...... Again, it was the brightest of orange, day-glow infact. All worked well and we got to test the removable inner forestay setup. Need to think about the split ring and pin concept for attaching it as it’s quite fiddly and would be in any sort of sea – looks like a quick internet search for a drop nose pin, much simpler and quicker !!!
The rest of the stuff was all good and I’m now very happy about Watermark IV and the trip.
A great day testing on the water and we are almost coming to the end of 4 months preparation. With the last of the training days done, Cathy, Charlie and I are now focused on moving the rest of our personal gear and the last of the sailing gear onboard.
As an aside, Cathy and I present to Charlie’s year at Meoncross School tomorrow. We’re there to explain the trip and what Charlie is up to. Hopefully there will be a cameo part from Charlie himself.
It’s now beginning to feel very real and time is closing in on the leaving day for me. Just hope that the weather pattern in Biscay stabilises over the next few weeks.