Post Brazil catch-up

dodger montageSo what have I been up to since the “Dodgy” update?Well we finished the dodger in early June, apart from the windows as we didn’t have any acrylic, before I headed of to Rio de Janeiro and Paula headed to Cambridge in the UK where she had a short term fellowship with the British Antarctic Survey. I was in Brazil, not for the World Cup, to meet “Pelagic Australis” to take over as skipper for a couple of months. We were parked in Marina Gloria in Rio for a week or so until the outgoing skipper’s flight departed and then sailed to Ilhabella to have some work done on the main sail in the North loft there. Marina Gloria wasn’t a very nice spot and they have some work to do before hosting the sailing events for the next Olympics!

Ilhabella on the other hand is beautiful place and friendly to visiting yachts offering four days free parking and the use of the yacht club facilities; which seems to be quite a common courtesy in Brazil. After 10 days or so in Ilhabella getting the sail repairs done; well it was Brazil, there was the world Cup on, we hadn’t booked in, and they were busy building new sails for the local regatta season, we headed south to Punta del Este in Uruguay.

Once in Punta del Este the crew, Thomas and Rupert flew home to Germany and England respectively and left me take care of the maintenance and get the boat through its annual DNV inspection. This inspection happens every year but once every five years it’s a slightly bigger affair, this was one of those years. Prior to the inspection I had to make sure everything was working; which it was, have the life-rafts, fire extinguishers, life-jackets, flares, etc. etc. serviced and checked. The inspector came over from Buenos Aries and announced that he had never done a yacht before, that the procedure was all new, and that it had changed from the old 42-page check-list to containing a staggering 89 pages! Well we eventually got through the inspection with just a couple of emergency exit signs to replace.

That gets us to the end of July on the calendar. I bought a few things in Uruguay for Morgane; acrylic for the dodger windows and some wood for the saloon head-lining being the main things. The crew, Dave, Thomas, Paula and Duncan, converged on Punta del Este and we left for Stanley and home. We had a swift sail south, basically being hard on the wind in two weather systems with just the last 16 hours or so downwind. We were quite efficient covering 1067 miles over the ground compared to a rhumbline distance of 1000 miles and taking just over five days; giving a very respectable average daily run of around 200 miles.

The saloon deckhead insulated and ready for the cladding.
The saloon deckhead insulated and ready for the cladding.
On arrival back in Stanley it was back to the grind of refitting “Morgane” for Paula and I while the others stayed on “PA” for a winter climbing expedition to South Georgia. Check out this video of their sail to South Georgia.

Since then “Morgane” has had the following jobs knocked off the list:

  • the deck-head insulated with 75mm of closed cell foam board,
  • a new timber deck-head in the saloon,
  • the quarter berth similarly insulated and lined with white painted plywood,
  • the heads redecorated,
  • saloon hatch rebuilt on a new raised bezel (thanks to Carl Freeman for doing the welding),
  • the rig pulled and overhauled,
  • main sail controls re-designed and main-sheet moved to the dodger roof,
  • new engine mounts,
  • a new battery box, and new batteries,
  • saloon table make-over,
  • new radar installed on a new H-pole also holding the wind-generator,
  • electronics checked out, new Furuno GPS and sonar with all displays in the new dodger.

I think that about covers the main jobs, but naturally there have been 1001 other “little” jobs that have had to be done along the way.

We have also taken delivery of the new liferaft, a Plastimo Transocean 4-man model, and some new ‘proper’ long oars for the tender.

Welding the saloon hatch
Carl Freeman helps out with welding in the new saloon hatch bezel, thanks Carl.
The medical chest has been stocked, the Iridium minutes topped up; only another 30 or so jobs on the main list (yes there are sub lists) and three weeks or so remaining before it’ll be time to start looking for a weather window for the hop across to Puerto Williams in Chile.

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