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Rigging Shop
Thu Aug 28 10:00:00 EDT 2008, Tenerife, Canary Islands

Rigging shop in Tenerife. The hydraulic machine that presses the ends onto the wires is the one that says Wire Teknik on it.

Comfortable travel
Thu Aug 28 0:00:00 EDT 2008, Canary Islands

In order to get a new stay (wire) made for the roller furling unit I am replacing, I had to go to Tenerife to get it made. I first tried getting it done via email and phone, but quickly realized that between the language barrier and not being sure exactly who would make the wire (the length and type of fittings are critical), it was better to go in person to be sure to get one that would fit.

I've made the sail on Issuma from Las Palmas to Tenerife and back a few times. It tends to take about 12 hours, port to port. Today I took this ferry (actually, I took a picture of this ferry from its sistership, which I am aboard), which only takes a little over 3 hours. I have to admit it is much more comfortable to travel by ferry :). This one has a bar, TV, comfortable chairs, and someone else to wash the windows and do all the navigating :). Not nearly as much fun as sailing, though.

Busy Repair Port
Thu Aug 21 0:00:00 EDT 2008, Las Palmas, Gran Canaria, Canary Islands

We are not the only boat doing a lot of repairs and maintenance in Las Palmas...there are several ships in dry dock. The advantage of being in a port with a ship repair industry is that a lot of materials and equipment are available. The disadvantage of doing it here is that parts that need to be ordered from overseas can be quite difficult (more on this later).

Wed Aug 27 21:34:12 EDT 2008 | George Conk

Well, it looks like if you need welding you're in the right place.

Rosemary Ruth is floating on its lines on the North River.

Fall is just about here - and the austral summer is approaching, with you sitting pretty much on the cusp.

Whre to now?-George
Water tank vents
Mon Aug 18 0:00:00 EDT 2008, Las Palmas, Gran Canaria, Canary Islands

George putting in place a new water tank vent system.

Issuma has nine stainless steel water tanks connected by four valves (several hundred litres in total). The vents for these tanks were all joined at the same level, then they went up to the deck. This seemed to cause a lot of confusion when filling the tanks, as water pouring out the vent hose was not an indication that the tanks were actually full. It meant only that one tank was full enough to overflow into the vent line and make the others appear to be full, and we would try to force water into the tanks under pressure until we guessed that enough was spilling out to indicate the tanks were likely full.

When we first filled the tanks, we stopped filling them whenever we saw water coming out the vent line. At the time, we did not realize this meant that we had not actually filled the tanks. On our first trip with Issuma, we were headed for the Azores (from France), but ran low on water after several days and went to Spain instead. We are hoping that this new water tank vent system, with each tank having a separate vent line will allow us to definitively know when each tank is full (the tanks do not have gauges and there are too many to want to install gauges). The vents are now inside the boat, close to where the water tank valves are, which should make it easier to check when filling the tanks.

Wed Aug 20 9:08:22 EDT 2008 | des
hi richard! i hope this new vent system is up and running a-okay. just think -- when all is said and done, you can truly say you built this boat from the inside out, top to bottom, left to right! it's truly an accomplishment. and from what britt says, it's all worth it, because issuma sails beautifully. best of luck, be safe and above all, have fun.
New Dinghy
Thu Aug 14 0:00:00 EDT 2008, Las Palmas, Gran Canaria, Canary Islands

We have a new dinghy now. Much as I like rowing dinghies, the Dark Dinghy (which folds for easy storage) is not the easiest dinghy to row. A stiffer (non-folding) and heavier dinghy would row better, but I haven't seen any really good rowing dinghies in the parts of Europe I've been to. So I bought an inflatable with an outboard engine (not shown) from another cruiser. This inflatable dinghy, made in China, sold in Portugal by Honda, uses unusual Florida-made valves, for which pumps are hard to find (which is why it is not fully inflated in the picture). I'm working on getting a pump adapted to fit the valves.

There is a very sad story associated with this dinghy. The fibreglass ketch it was from belonged to a couple of Dutch guys who had been here in Las Palmas for a while, and recently left for Puerto Mogan (south part of this island), Cape Verde and Brazil. Their first day out, two miles off the Gran Canaria shore, black smoke began pouring out from down below and, after trying unsuccessfully to fight the fire, they escaped in the dinghy and the fibreglass ketch sank. It is not known what caused the fire, though something related to a recent engine replacement was suspected. The water is too deep for diving, so they will never know. They found themselves on a beach with a dinghy and motor and not much else, and when they got back to Las Palmas, wanted to sell the dinghy. We've done a lot of things to Issuma to protect against fire (replaced all the fire extinguishers, fireproofed the engine compartment, added fuses to the main wires off the batteries), due to stories like this one.

Wed Aug 13 0:00:00 EDT 2008, Las Palmas, Gran Canaria, Canary Islands

It rained today! It may sound odd to mention but I've been in the Canary Islands for two months now, and today is the first time it has rained. It only rained a millimeter or two, and its not the kind of rain that makes you want to put on a raincoat, but it was quite unusual to hear the rain and see the deck wet with anything other than salt water. The air here mostly comes from the Sahara, and doesn't spend long enough over the sea to pick up a lot of moisture. So it is generally hot and sunny here, and hardly ever rains.

Brittany has departed for adventures ashore in Turkey and New York, and is missed greatly. George and I have been working on a lot of repairs and modifications. George does the vast majority of the work while I spend much of my time chasing down obscure parts in various ferreterias (hardware stores) with my very limited Spanish. Among other things, we've added a new cleat to make the mainsheet easier to handle, replaced the mainsail cover, replaced the main halyard winch with a self-tailing one, overhauled many of the winches and replaced many lights with LED lights (which take less power). One of the roller furlers died (the bearings inside broke, and replacements are no longer available), and we are waiting for a new unit to replace it with.

Punta de Antiquera
Tue Aug 12 4:52:21 EDT 2008

Punta de Antiquera
Fri Aug 8 10:53:25 EDT 2008, Tenerife, Canarias

Beautiful anchorage of Punta de Antiquera, at the northeast tip of Tenerife.

Tue Aug 12 9:48:55 EDT 2008 | Suzette
wow - i can't imagine sailing somewhere as beautiful as that. other than call the challenges, it must have been dreamy.
hope all is going well out there! wonder where the voyage has taken you since britt left. let us know!
Sun Jul 10 6:45:45 EDT 2011 | hector

browsing through internet i came to your blog. I am a local sailor from the canary islands and your comments about sailing here have made me very happy. I celebrate that you enjoy sailing at ours.... Best regards and sorry for my english ;)
Mon Jul 11 18:40:26 EDT 2011 | Richard Hudson
Hector, thank you. The Canary Islands are a really nice place to sail, glad to hear you are sailing there.

All Dressed Up
Fri Jul 25 13:03:07 EDT 2008, Las Palmas, Gran Canaria

Freshly showered and wearing clean clothes? Good golly, we need to document this! Before embarking on one of our festive evenings, a young sailing instructor passing by Issuma in his dinghy was kind enough to take this shot. I insisted that we get a picture before leaving Issuma, as we may not have looked quite like this after riding in Dark Dinghy. :)

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