SV Lequesteau's Quest

02 February 2017 | Mount Hartman, Grenada
14 January 2017 | St. George's Grenada
14 November 2016 | Clark's Court Grenada
14 November 2016 | Clark's Court Grenada
08 November 2016 | Clark's Court Grenada
08 November 2016 | Clark's Court Grenada
08 November 2016 | Clark's Court Grenada
08 November 2016 | Clark's Court Grenada
18 August 2015 | Hartman Bay, Grenada
14 August 2015 | Hartman Bay, Grenada
08 August 2015 | Hartman Bay, Grenada
08 August 2015 | Hartman Bay, Grenada
04 August 2015 | Rodney Bay, St. Lucia
26 July 2015 | Rodney Bay, St. Lucia
19 July 2015 | St. Maarten
17 July 2015 | St. Maarten
12 July 2015 | St. Maarten
11 July 2015 | St. Maarten
07 July 2015 | St. Maarten

Time Flies In Grenada

02 February 2017 | Mount Hartman, Grenada
Caroline, Hot!
We launched the boat from Clark’s Court Marina on the 17th and it’s been two weeks already! Time really does fly when you are having fun.

Greig sanded the CopperCoat over a couple of days to open up the copper, I finished our new stack pack for our main sail, and together we did all the other things that needed to be done before launch. We were ready on time, in fact, our time slot for launch was moved up by an hour, as the boat that was in front of us found a big crack in their rudder just that morning. Needless to say, they delayed their launch to have it fixed, so we got their launch time instead. The yard staff did an outstanding job at getting us in safely with no hiccups. Well, maybe just one, but it was on our end not theirs. Once we were in the water, Greig started the engine, which started first go and was all smiles, then just as the staff was going to let go our lines, the engine died and would not restart. We finally got it started and believe that it was an air bubble in the fuel line that was created when the fuel filters were changed. No great worries and the old girl is running like a top.

We motored around to Hartman Bay and dropped the pick, three times! The first two times we were a little too close to folks and we weren’t quite happy with the way the anchor was holding, so we moved out to the suburbs and are well stuck in. After a couple of days of getting the canvas back up and the sails back on, we were ready for some fun, and who comes prancing down the harbour to help us out with that but Nancy Lu of Chat ’n Chill Rat Pack fame. We hooked up with Kathy and Mark on Nancy Lu and have been having tons of fun with them out and about Grenada.

We have listened to the terrific sounds of the cruiser’s jam night and enjoyed Secret Harbour’s hamburger specials, don’t order cheese on it! The hamburger and fries were 20EC (Approx $10 cdn) each. Good deal! There were four of us and we each ordered cheese on our burgers which was considered an extra. No worries, except when the bill came, we were charged 32EC ($16 cdn) for 4 slices of cheese! Do you know how many slices of cheese I can buy for $16 cdn? OK I feel better now. We also went to Whisper Cove Marina for their Friday lunch special of fish and chips…very yummy and big chunks of fish. We have taken the bus into town to show Mark and Kathy where to catch it and where all the markets were.

This last week has been Grenada’s Sailing Week. What fun! We went to Grand Anse Beach to watch the workboat races. That is some tough sailing. They use the traditional work boats with a bamboo mast and boom and home made sails. They have to push the boat into the water and then jump in at the start of the race. They go around the race course and then land back up on the beach. A couple of the boats leaned just a little bit too far and tipped over. Unlike normal sailboats these boats don’t roll, they just sink up to their gunnels. They then have to be towed back into the beach to be bailed out. The crews just took all this in stride as part of racing. The boats, colours and sounds were everything Grenadian. What a wonderful time.

We are looking at leaving Saturday Morning for a few points north. Greig is chomping at the bit to actually do some sailing so next stop Tobago Cays.

Hospitalization in Grenada

14 January 2017 | St. George's Grenada
Caroline Carroll, Still hot!
Everything was going along swimmingly, the bottom was done, Greig was working on the woodwork and I was busy sewing up a new stack pack, when two days before launch things weren’t so good anymore.
During dinner with the crew of Mowzer, I experienced some pain in my chest so everyone thought it would be a good idea to go to the hospital to get it checked out. Greig ran next door to Sidney’s house (the owner of the apartment building we were staying at) and asked for a ride. Thank goodness he was there, as we would have not known how to tell the ambulance where to come and we did not have a car and even if we did, we wouldn’t have known where to go. Sidney was a life saver…literally!

After a brief visit to the emergency room, which was dated, but the staff were very professional and a couple of tests, I was admitted to St. George’s Hospital. I was wheeled over to the main hospital and taken to the women’s ward and given a bed where I would spend the next week.

The good: The staff were very attentive and the doctor’s very knowledgable. It was a teaching hospital so there was never a lack of attention. They were able to get me healthy enough to fly home to Halifax and for that I am eternally grateful.

The bad: The food was skimpy a best, one breakfast consisted of a piece of dry bread (no butter, jam, or pb) some lettuce, and some shredded carrots. At worst, there was one night where they had forgotten to feed us dinner at all. It wasn’t until I asked that some food was brought in at 2100. It came in take-out containers and wasn’t too bad compared to the other meals. When Greig took me to the hospital that first night, we didn’t bring much with us. It wasn’t until the next day, when he was allowed to come back and bring me my toiletries and PJ’s. What he did not bring with him and the hospital did not supply was the following: No towels, no johnny shirt (yes I slept in my clothes), no top sheet for the bed, no pillow, no water, and worst of all no toilet paper! So when Greig came to visit I had to send him back home again for all the things most north americans would take for granted.

The ugly: The hospital and the equipment were very dated, and there was limited technology. There was not enough equipment for each patient, so there was only one rolling table to share among six patients along with blood pressure cuffs, pulse sensor, and stethoscope. This may not have been a big deal, except the lady I was sharing with equipment with, died of Hep B within an arms length of me one evening. During my stay, Greig had to personally hand deliver my blood samples across town for testing. I also had to be transported to another private facility for tests. They would not move me to the test facility until Greig had gone down to the clinic and paid for the tests in advance. The only way to summon the nurse was to yell down the hall, as the call bell consisted of nothing but a wire with a frayed end. Ugliest of all, was that I couldn’t put anything in my side table because it was crawling with bugs. I’ll try to upload a video of it on Lequesteau’s FB page.

Total cost for week in hospital, a ton of tests (including a CT scan), an ER visit and a ton of drugs: $1,500 CDN. You wouldn’t get that in North America!

After a brief sojourn in Halifax, we have returned to Grenada with a bunch of Christmas presents, pasty white skin and best of all a clean bill of health. Launch is scheduled for this Tuesday coming, so back to a crazy work schedule to be ready on time.

CopperCoating the Bottom Continued

14 November 2016 | Clark's Court Grenada
Greig Carroll, Still Freakin' Hot
When we got back to Grenada, we looked for a stretch of 5 days of no rain. We cleaned the bottom of dust and dirt with water and a scrub brush. The directions advised against a chemical cleaner. We put on a couple of coats of AmeriCoat to top up the original barrier coat, one in the afternoon and one the next day. According to an email from the company, you should wait only 2-3 hours before starting the CopperCoat layers or when it was dry to the touch and could still leave a mark with a fingernail.

When we had the correct conditions we started the first layer of CopperCoat with the help of some good friends, Greg and LizAnn off Lagniappe and Dave off Mythago. To do the job properly, you need more than one person. Let me just say here that without their help we would have been hooped; with CopperCoat you need to apply 4 coats minimum and it must be done in one day.

CopperCoat's website is pretty good and has videos as well (http://www.coppercoatusa.com/application.php). We also made sure that we added one capful (CopperCoat part B lid) of 94% rubbing alcohol per kit. We had 4 of us rolling on the CopperCoat and one mixing. The directions say to only mix one kit at a time. Pour part A and part B into a container and then add the alcohol. Make sure you mix very well before slowly addng the copper a bit at a time. Mix for about 5 minutes. Once it is well combined, pour a small amount in the tray and away you go.

**What I missed in the video, were the rollers. For a good and even coat, you need to use 6" or 8" mohair rollers not the 4" rollers. This was the "almost good advice" we got from TOBY's. Because all we had were the smaller ones, the Coppercoat didn't go on as planned. The first coat went on and looked horrible but Greg, who did his a few weeks before, said it looked like his did, so we carried on. The second coat went on and it was worse. We had runs and sags but there was nothing we could do about it, we just had to carry on.

The directions say to put on thin coats, with a minimum of 4 coats. We found we could do the whole bottom with 2 kits. We held back one kit to do under the stands. We ended up putting 5 coats on. Once done, we had to make sure that if it rained, the rain wouldn't wash away the CopperCoat as the CopperCoat is actually water based. So we tented the boat with some plastic drop sheets we had brought from home and plugged the scuppers and left it for the night.

Of course, for the first time in a week, it rained pretty well all night. Fortunately the CopperCoat held up. 3 days later we had the stands moved and I did under the pads. When you only need to do small bits like this it's a waste to make up a full kit. Most of it goes to waste. One of the great things about this product is, if you need to split the kit, it works on a 1 to 1 to 1. So one part of part A, one of part of part B and one part of the copper. I used 2oz (the container was in imperial) of each part and it was just enough. I even had a bit left over.

The next step was to let it all cure for about 5 days then give a light sanding. It goes against everything I believe in where bottom paint is concerned. You have to sand the bottom to take off the layer of epoxy and expose the copper. This is done with 330 grit. The website shows how much to take off and what it should look like. Once that's done, you can launch any time and carry on with the fun stuff. All you need to do to clean the bottom in the water is use a green scouring pad and wipe. No more spending hours under the boat with a scraper taking off a small reef system and layers of paint. You only have to replace the CopperCoat every ten years or so they say.

Stay tuned for updates on how well it's standing up to real world conditions. And now back to our regularly scheduled blog,

Peace, Out, Greig

CopperCoating the Bottom

14 November 2016 | Clark's Court Grenada
Greig Carroll, Freakin' Hot
Please pardon this interruption of our regularly posted blog. First let me give a little background. Before we left Canada in the summer of '14, we had the bottom soda blasted down to gelcoat to get all the years of built up paint off. This ensured we were starting with a clean slate. We had new barrier coat put on, then we put on 4 coats of Micron CSC (see http://www.sailblogs.com/member/lequesteau/325944). We were hoping this would last us at least 2-3 years. It didn't.

On our travels we talked with several other cruisers and decided we were going to use a fairly new product called CopperCoat. This, if applied correctly, will last up to 10 years. This has so many pluses! Imagine no bottom sanding or painting for 10 years!!! And yes, you can haul and relaunch without repainting. We picked up all the stuff we needed, 12X1L kits of CopperCoat and 4L of Ameracoat. Both part A and B in St Martin (no tax and no duty) at Time Out Boat Yard (TOBY) on the French side. We were advised to get the small 4" lint free rollers, handles, trays and a couple of mixing pots. Good advice, almost.

We were hauled out at Clarks Court Boat Yard where they power washed the bottom. We told the guys they didn't need to be careful with the bottom paint. They changed their nozzles and blasted away so what was left was what we had to deal with. We brought out the generator and sanders and started the bottom. Our plan was to sand off only the bottom paint but leave the barrier coat. We figured it was only two years old and still in pretty good condition. It took us 5 days and the replacement of our 2 year old Black and Decker 5" orbital sander. It literally flew apart half way through the job. Fortunately our friend, Steve on Slow Flight, loaned us his sander and I went to Ace Hardware to get a new one, which of course had the European power requirements. Crap! On the 6th day we moved the stands completed the task. What a horrible mess we were during this process. The guys in the yard started calling us Smurf and Mama Smurf. Once finished, we left Grenada hoping that by leaving the boat for 3 months the bottom would dry out thoroughly and be ready for painting upon our return. To be continued.

Starting the Chores

08 November 2016 | Clark's Court Grenada
Caroline Carroll, Sunny and damn hot!
Kudos, to my hubby, who braved the blistering sun, and went down to the boat today to get started on getting her set back to rights. He got her cleaned and sorted on the inside while I went into town on the shopping bus to get groceries. The next day, we got the dinghy off the foredeck and on the ground. We are hoping that on Monday, we can get the dinghy back in the water so we will be mobile again.

We took the anchor chain out and laid that on the ground so that we could switch it end for end and remark it. We are not very happy with the state of the chain but feel that it will last us another couple of seasons. We looked into how much it would cost to buy it in Grenada, and the price tag would be well over a couple of thousand. Soooo, we will wait until we are on a duty free island or back on US soil to order the new anchor cable. When Greig went to put the chain back in, half way through the windlass quit working. At least we were in a boat yard, and he could walk over to Palm Tree Marine to get it working again for a price. A price we were willing to pay, because no body wants to haul in 200 feet of chain and a 25kg anchor by hand every time you move.

While Greig was proceeding with other boat chores, I stayed in the air conditioning at the apartment and started cutting and assembling our new stack pack. Sailrite’s instructions were very easy to follow, and went smoothly, except for one seam re-do; my fault, not paying attention to detail. *NOTE if you are using the Sailrite sewing machine and hot knife and plugging it into 220V, make sure you use a proper step down transformer (cost approx $60) instead of the little travel adapters. You just won’t get the same power for sewing if you don’t. Also, don’t plug the hot knife and sewing machine in at the same time. It draws too much power and you will blow the fuse on the inside of the transformer.

It seemed like we were working all the time, but we did stop for a few fun times. We celebrated Canadian Thanksgiving with the crew of Lagniappe hosted by the crew of Mythago. Thanks Dave for an awesome meal. We also took the Saturday off to take a tour of Grenville with a bunch of boat friends. It was so much fun to play hooky for the day.

The other big job we had to do was painting the bottom of the boat, which I’ll let Greig tell you about in the next instalment called Lessons Learned with Coppercoat.

Finding Our Girl

08 November 2016 | Clark's Court Grenada
Caroline Carroll, Sunny and damn hot!
The next morning after having coffee with Sydney on his veranda, we walked down to the boat yard. Greig was very eager to see his girl after three months. Unfortunately, when we arrived she was not where we had left her, so Greig spent a few anxious minutes wandering around the yard looking for his baby. At the very end of the yard at in the back corner, we found her all safe and secure.

When we went on board we burned our feet on the deck, as there is no canvas up, but when we went inside she was as clean as when we left her. She looked like she had been raided but there was no mould and she smelled fine. Before we left, we used vinegar on every hard surface we could reach; both inside and outside cupboards, deck heads, bulkheads, and decks. We opened all the cupboards and floors, and stood up all the cushions on their sides to allow air circulation. We had sails on the seats and rolled on the deck, and all sorts of canvas decorating both the sleeping cabins. But it was all good, and all we had to do was put it back in place, and give her a wash on the inside and she would be right as rain.

Too bad, we couldn’t say that for the outside. We still have a ton of work to do out in the blistering sun. We can start that tomorrow.
Vessel Name: Lequesteau
Vessel Make/Model: Niagara 42
Hailing Port: Toronto/Halifax
Crew: Greig and Caroline Carroll
About: We are retired Royal Canadian Navy sailors who have been working towards "The Dream" for a long time. It is now a reality.
Social:
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Lequesteau's Photos -

SV Lequesteau

Who: Greig and Caroline Carroll
Port: Toronto/Halifax