DAY 7: Monday 3rd - Lessons Learned "19:00.81N 39:01.29W"

Lee and Andrew
Tue 4 Dec 2012 10:49
We’ve had consistent winds since starting and last night it once more blew for a while to 35+. We know we have a hole coming up and have been hoping that its just long enough for us to rerig our main in some fashion and now sort out the Jib etc. So just when you think you have a plan – something new comes along.
At 8am while changing shifts our headsail let go at the shackle, considering we are sailing at the moment with only the staysail and the headsail this wasn't a welcome event. With sail retrieved and back on deck Andrew headed up the mast once more this time to try and retrieve the halyard after a while being beaten about at the top trying to hang on and sort out the jammed swivel and other complications he came down with a lot of serious bruises and no halyard or swivel. . This is when you wish you didn’t have a 31 m mast, you were 20 years younger and that we had packed a crash helmet as part of the safety gear – buying one of those in St Lucia.
With Plan d, e or is that f now in place and we are back sailing again. Next time we are using a lashing on the snap shackle as a backup and changing some of the allen head shackles to ones with eyes as thread locker is not sufficient in these bouncy windy conditions.
Even with the hiccups with sails we've been able to maintain around 8 knot averages or 200 mile days – even now with the headsail flying from the A3 Halyard with the staysail out to give it some protection from too high load we are still running well. If the wind drops a little more we will have to find some more power as we move closer to St Lucia but we will work that out when it happens.
Now just over half way and into our third S-H we are still enjoying gourmet meals with lee cooking a Chicken and secret tomato sauce Fettuccini last night with Garlic bread. The only thing missing was the red wine as the 4 of us have decided to stay off the alcohol for the 2 weeks (so far so good). It will be an AFD combined record!