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Mr Bean at Sea
Darwin to Kupang, West Timor
16/07/2006, Darwin

Photo,s above of all the Rally Yachts anchored in Fanny Bay, off Darwin's Sailing Culb

No Photos in Blg, See Photo Gallery

Sunday 16th July 2006

Had a lovely slow start to the day, it was a bit rolly in the anchorage, and didn't like the idea of working on the boat in these conditions. Got up at 0900hours, and the sea started to calm, so began work on the bow head, it took time, to a line the pipe, and the head pump, a too stop the leaks. By 1300hrs it was all done, and tidy up the sea-cock area's and cleaned down the shower room etc.
Lindy had left the boat at 1000hrs to go into town with some of the girls, and go to the movies. My next job was to check out the two under bunk storage in the spare cabin, as I needed the check on a new raw water pump, which I had, the exhaust elbow, which I found, and oil filters counted 7, and alternator belt checked 7, for the small alternator ; and the big, also 7.
Throw some of the old stores out, tidied up after the engine was brought forward, cleaned the spare cabin's carpit.
Lindy called at 1700 hours, asked if I would pick her up, so I came over to the Yacht Club, had a shower, then we had a drink and dinner at the club.

Monday 17th July 2006

I phoned Ray at 0730hours, to let him know the pressure plate number, and he said he would get right on to saucing one, also said I would take the old pressure plate ashore, so if he needed it, I could bring it to him
I was picked up by Rob at 0800 hours to pick up the hire car, Rob has a very small dingy, and a very old 6hp outboard. the sea was very choppy, and the mile motor to shore was horrendous, water was pouring in over the transom, and I was bailing to stop us sinking, we got ashore safely, totally soaked, so we both had a hot shower.
. At 0830 hours Ray rang back to said he needed the old plate, because he could not sauce the exact model, so he needed the old one to machine the one he's got, to the exact same size, so got it to him by 0900 hours.
We three boys went shopping in the car, I got all I needed, new 3/8 socket set, angle grinder, set of ring metre and imperial spanners and a spare head pipe. We were back to the sailing club by 1300 hours.
Ray rang to say he needed me to take the fly wheel off, so that he could have the pressure plate machine more accurately, on telling Huck, he said this wasn't necessary, so he will ring Ray up tomorrow morning.
There waiting on the beach was the 10 cases of Shiraz, ordered from a mates vine yard, at a very good price, so Gary and I spent the next hour ferrying the wine back to our boats.
Had lunch at the sailing club, Lindy arrived back from her shopping trip with Maggie, at 1430 hours, who she had ferried in, on our ding, at 1000 hours.
The six of us then went to the hotel, for the rally briefing, got back by 2030 hours, had a drink at the club, then back to boat.

Tuesday 18th July 2003

Took Lindy, Libby and Maggy ashore, then went to Tipan to see Huck, I wanted him to ring Ray about taking out the fly wheel. After lots of discussion, and Ray looking at the now delivered pressure plate, said there would be no need to remove the flywheel, Thank God, it would have been one hell of a job!
Rang home about Tesco,s Card, they said all was well, so will re-try it, order three bottles of single malt as part payment to Huck, plus we have brought him some sandles.
Spent the morning fitting the new exhaust elbow, which I found very hard work, I don't think I could do major engine work any more, good job we have friends that can !
Picked Lindy up after a shopping trip, on the way in I took Huck's sandal's to him, with more promises of things to come when the job is done.
Ray rang at 1600 hours, said he needed some info on the fly wheel clearance, so I flee over in the dingy to get Huck, brought him back to Mr Bean, he checked the clearance, and call Ray back, and seems OK, and will be able to pick the part up tomorrow.
Spent the evening on Mr Bean, it was lovely to just relax, we need to get back out of civilization, it is needed, but can be imposing.

Wednesday 19th July 2006

Had to ring customs up to apologise for forgetting to go ashore, and get pre-checked out, it should have been yesterday, they where fine about it, and I made another appointment to see them 1400 hours at the yacht club today.
We went ashore at 0800 hours, to pick up the meat that Gary and Libby had picked up for us, Lindy, took it back to the boat and I went with Gary into town to take the car back. After returning the car, we walked to Francis Bay to pick up the pressure plate, Ray had made a first class job of it, I also arrange for the gear box to be sent on to Raffles Marina in Singapore.
Had a cup of tea and a pie with Gary, before catching the bus back, I went one stop further, to buy oil, radiator coolant and transmission oil, then walked back to the anchorage. Called Lindy, she came ashore in the ding, she went off to town, and I went back to the boat.
Went back ashore at 1300 hours to pick up the duty free and do customs clearance. Before customs arrived, I rang them to check what I needed, and they told me that Lindy, should be present as well. I asked, as she was in town, could she pop in and do her bit at the office, they said OK, so, got in touch with Lindy, and she went to their office.
Saw customs at 1400 hours, filled in the forms, got $350 back in duty, and it came apparent that LIndy hadn't filled in her form, so she will have to go back to town tomorrow, to do so, and pick up our clearance papers.
Went back via Tipan, to see if Huck was free, he was helping David take his propeller shaft out, but he came over for an hour and fitted the pressure plate, hopefully we can finish it all tomorrow.
Took Huck back to Tipan, helped them with their shaft removal, David had to remove the pro etc, by diving over the side with the battery operated compressed air unit. Lindy called on the VHF, so picked her up, got the shopping stowed on board, them went over to Gambori for drinks and soup that Libby had made.

Thursday 19th July 2006

Huck was knocking on our hull at 0730 hours, ready to get on with the engine, progress was good, and by 1230 hours, there were just the water pump, starter motor, exhaust pipe and a few bits too do.
We had to dash off to the medical centre to get advise on what precautions we need to take in Indonesia, we can away with Malaria tables, also we had a flu jab and a Cholera vaccine, the whole lot cost $653.
Before going to the Medical Centre, we had time to go to customs, so we are now cleared out of Australia, I also had a haircut.
Did a big food shop, then got a taxi back to the yacht club, had a quite evening in.

Friday 20th July 2006

Started work on the engine at 0730 hours, as I knew Huck was busy this morning, later in the morning we heard that he was in hospital of tests, complaining of chest pains.
I was in mild panic, not having my guide with me, but managed to get the engine running properly by 1530 hours. Tided the boat up, went ashore to get water, and brought it back, and filled up the tanks. Went ashore again, had a shower, picked up the cruising permit, had our last night at the yacht club, now ready to leave tomorrow for Indonesia. It was lovely to see Huck again, his test where fine, but they told him to rest for a couple of days.
We had a long call to Michael and Sue from Persistance, they are in Cairns, the wind is blowing 35 knots for the next three days, so they are hold up there for a while, they are hoping to get up as far as Lizard Island.

Saturday 22nd July 2006

Woke up excited, we are going sailing again, after all the hassles Darwin has brought, this buzz makes it all worth while.
Huck came over to check the engine, all was right, gave him three bottles of single malt, of his invaluable efforts.
Got the dingy up, hoisted the spinnaker pole, at 1050 hours hoisted the full main, the 10 minute gun was fired, got the anchor up, and off we went. There was boats every-where, 96 in the race, Lindy wasn't comfortable with it, but soon got in to it, it was a one off, sight seeing boats, with people cheering, TV camera's, the photo's do not do it justice.
We had great wind, 15 knots on the beam, flat sea's, Lindy wasn't sea sick, and 480 miles to go to Kupang, in Indonesia.

The wind died just after sun-set, and our speed went down to 2 knots, at 2200 hours when Lindy came on watch, we put the motor on and took down the fore sails. The engine was well needed, as the batteries were down 240 amps, and I don't like to go below 300.

Sunday 23th July 2006

I had a lovely sleep, with the fan blowing cool air over me, I woke at 0200 hours, Lindy hadn't called me, we are doing three hour watches, I re-set the sails, gibing the main, and bringing out the foresails, still motoring, but got an extra knot.
I gave Lindy an extra half hour in bed, but this doesn't really work, because the watches do not finish at the right time, the sails need the proper configuration at first light and checking in on the nets, etc etc. so we have agreed to stay to the proper times.
A day of slow sailing between 3 and 4.5 knots, the sea had quite a swell, which made the sails flap noisily. Had to pole Ganny Pants out, because of the swell, and the brand new sheet wore through where it was rubbing on the pole, but because their was not much wind, it was easily retrieved.
By sun set the boat speed was down to 3 knots, so put the engine on. Lindy near the end of her watch was able to turn the motor off,, but near the end of mine 0330 hours on Mon, had to put it on again, as the wind dropped right down.

Monday 24th July 2006

Motored most of the night, starting sailing at first light, light winds all day, using full main, and poled out Gandy Pants, and a steadying staysail pulled in tight, put the motor back on at 1630 hours.
Investigated the sea water in a upper bilge, outside our bedroom door, I found some in there a few days ago, and there was about 10 litres in there again, pumped the water out, using a pump on the electric drill, worked well, left it a while, and there was nothing, switched motor on at 1630 hours and checked again, a there was a few litres of sea water in there.
I thought it may be a leak from the engine exhaust, so it was time to check, looked under our bed, after taking masses the stuff out, anchors, tools, wet gear, and there was water in there too, the exhaust pipe did not have any leaks, but there where signs, of water coming from the lazette.
Pulled loads of stuff out of there, bags, a canoe, boat cover, had a looking after lifting the plywood floor, and it looks like the rudder glade had been leaking, pumped it full of grease, and hopefully the problem has been solved, will check tomorrow before putting every time back in it's place.

Tuesday 25th July 2006

Motored all night, wind built at sun rise, turned motor off, and where sailing at 5 to 6 knots, should be in lunch time tomorrow.
The wind continued through the day, sailing between 5 and 7 knots, at 1800 hours it became a bit squally, so put two reefs in the main, and we needed to slow down , we were still doing over six knots, may need to slow down later, as we want to reach the entrance to Kupang, between Timor and an Island, at 0700 hours, at the earlyish, to catch the tide, as if the tide is against, you can have three knots against and rough sea with wind over tide.
We have had reports that there are un-lite fishing lines, one yacht caught his prop in one, so glad we do not have to run the engine, and risk the same.
Heard from Gary on Aquarius, that his auto pilot has failed, and is having too hand steer, what a bummer.

Wednesday 26th July 2006

At 0000 hrs, Lindy woke me, and said that we need to reduce sail because we are going to fast, and will reach turn whist it is dark and the tide will not be favourable. Took the main down to three reefs, took all the head sail down and still we where doing 5 to 6 knots, so dropped the main completely, now bare pole, and still doing four knots, so let out two thirds of the staysail then backed it, and we were down to 3.5 knots.
By now ahead of us, we have about 20 little fishing boats, lite up by what looks like a candle light, we will try and miss them! And all around are rally boats, about 10 all with proper nav lights, all trying to get to the entrance to Kupang at first light.
When things settled down, we put the baby out, and sailed with that, but at 0600 hours, Lindy woke me, and said we need to reduce speed, so took in the main and where bale poled, still doing up to 6 knots, spooky, all worked out right, the light started to come, and we come make are turn to Kupang.
Along the straight, tried to put out the Genoa, but the sheet had got twisted, so it only opened a little , then got stuck, then it got jammed, and started flogging. We just had to leave it, till we get to the anchorage.
Got to the Kupang, anchorage, at 1130 hours, Darwin time, that means it took us exactly 4 days (96 hours), the anchorage was very rolly, decided just to secure the Genoa today, which we did using the bosons chair, and halyard, Lindy tried it first, but the higher you got, the more it sward you around like a rag doll. We changed places, I did achieve the mission, but not before swinging around the forestay a few times.

Thursday 27th July 2006

The leak has now defiantly been contained, so we where able to clean up area's that were touched by sea water with fresh water, then sprayed with anti- corrosive spray, then we put all the bits back in there rightful place.
Customs came on board at 1100 hours, no problems, I had altered our registration papers, changing the tonnage from 22.5 tons to 17.5 tons, as if we were over 18 tons, we would have had to check in and out of every place we go. No problems there, so we can just check out when we leave Indonesia.
Dingyed into shore, had a drink at Teddies Bar, this is where all the action takes place, then went for a walk along the main street, very busy, noisy, and lots of fun, saying hi to every one.
Had a meal in the town square, very good, 7,000 rupees,50p for the two of us, went back to the boat, watched a film, put 60 litres from jerry cans, into the main tanks, and will order some more before we go.
Went back in, spent time with Been along, Wings, and a few others, good night, went back to boat at 2030 hours.

Friday 28th July 2006

Took advantage of the early morning calm, and took the ties off the Genoa, unleasted sail, freeing the stuck starboard sheet, took the sail down, checked it out, the only damage is about 2.5 metres of stitching had come un-done, it will take a good day to hand stitch it proper, still plenty of time, and quite pleasant sitting on the bow stitching. Photo below of me up the forestay un-leashing the sheet and sail.

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Who: Malcolm Robertson
Port: Eastbourne, UK
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