small world sailing

Blow Out!

Well, what a day, thourally bored now and still in Ft Lauderdale. I left this morning at dawn into fairly high winds, F5/6 and the pretty steep seas of the Gulf stream. Alas the small tear in the Genoa blew out into something of a large hole which was in some ways disappointing and in other ways a relief. Disappointing in as much as I new I was heading back to Lauderdale to spend even more money but a relief in as much as I knew it would happen and as I need spare sails on board it’s good that it happened now. The sail is rotten, the previous owner had patched it up for some reason with very heavy canvas when he should have thrown it away, same as the main sail really although thats not quite so bad but does need a repair when I get back to Nassau.

So I was back berthed in Harbor Town Marina by 9am after a rather hairy entrance to the port as there was a lot of shipping coming in and out and as the port entrance is just a river running out onto a beach there’s quite a swell.

So I asked about, Lauderdale bills itself as the yachting capital of the world for some strange reason, I think they only understand yachts that have about 1000 horse power because there’s only one sail loft and they only do repairs.

Anyway, I phoned and spoke to Amy who said I should bring it down right away and she would see what she could do. I got a taxi across town and we spread the mess out on the table, there was a very big hole from luff to leach which could have been re-sewn but the main edge of the sail which has a rope in it which feeds into the forward stay to hold the sail in place had also broken and torn the sail around it, this is a very serious issue as you can’t mend the rope and it would have needed to be replaced.

I said I would prefer that it be thrown away, it should have been anyway, and did she have any second hand sails. She did and after a search we found a very heavily made sail, a little short and only a Jib, ie, a small fore sail but nicely made and in heavy cloth with a few patches but well found.

I was charged $250 which it very good as the new sail I’ve ordered is about $1250 although that is about 50% bigger. Pleased, I came away and got into my waiting taxi. I was back at the marina by noon. I spent the afternoon hanking the sail on and compensating for it’s slight shortness, it’s good, it’ll be a good emergency sail.

About 10oclock this morning it started to rain, heavily, it hasn’t stopped. What was going to be a breezy day has turned into a named tropical storm which wouldn’t have been the greatest fun to sail in although I’m ever more confident in the boats ability as the weather has been consistently heavy, without the rain, for over two weeks now.

So I’m stuck here waiting, I’m going to see about the weather in the morning and see if this has blown north by then, otherwise the option is to leave late and cross the banks Sunday in daylight which will knock 15miles (3hrs) off the journey as I was going to go around them for safety on the overnight leg of my passage back to Nassau.

Really coming down now, when it rains here it really rains, I’ve not known rain like it in the UK, the Capital of rain, it’s big and warm and very wet rain. I can see a film of water running like a waterfall over my windows, not droplets but a constant even flow like someone has a bucket and is just poring it over, crazy.


Anyway, these are all good lessons and I’m really beginning to feel like the boats coming together, it was a lot less ready to sail than I’d originally thought but each little setback brings me closer to a boat I can feel happy and confident in, we’re really starting to get on well and those of you who sail will understand what I mean by that.



June 2, 2007 at 02:20 Comments (0)

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