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The Voyage of 'S/V Röde Orm' - Sweden
Come on board and take part in our adventures while exploring the world at the slow pace of a sailing boat. We left in June 2009, heading south to escape the northern winter... to start with. Currently in Algarve/Portugal taking it one day at a time.
Waiting for the diagnosis
08/04/2008, Lehtma

I met the Tug Boat Guy as soon as I stepped up on the dock. The yard had no time for my little vessel and he advised me to 'sail back home' and do repairs there. That is obviously ONE option. Labour are cheaper here than in Sweden or Finland though, and since I am not skilled enough to do this repair myself, I think it could as well be done here ASAP.

Phoned my insurance company in Sweden, and as I already knew, the engine is not covered, and since it is built in '82 this could never be the case anyway. The insurence, however, does cover the expense for a tow to the nearest Authorized Yanmar workshop, and they helped me finding the name of it. This turned out to be a company in the capital of Tallinn, some 70 miles from here.

After a phone convesation with them - and thank G-D they spoke English - and to be 100 % sure of the magnitude of the damage, I disassembled the injectors and turned the ignition key. A solid and sad fountain of water from them.

What more to say, except the mood on board Rde Orm actually HAS been better.

Bad news! - Engine breakdown
08/03/2008, Lehtma

The high pressure system is now leaving us for Ukraine or wherever at Southeast from here. Grey skies and drizzling rain was discovered upon opening of the hatch.

Variable weak winds during the day, increasing a bit at night and then a blow from East and Northeast during Tuesday and Wednesday with winds uo to 3o knots. We wanted to sail 45 M to North during the night when the winds was supposed to picka up a bit and well before the blow. Otherwise, we would get stuck here for 3-4 days to come. Not an appealing proposition. We were promised to buy 50 liters of diesel from the Tug boat Captain and had to move the boat some 50 meters to the 'big boat dock at the pier. After filling diesel, while we had lunch, there was a strange sound of pouring water in the boat. Horror!

Quickly I got the stairs covering the engine away and saw water pouring from the tray under the engine and down the bilge! HOLY G-D! For a second, I must have looked like a fish on land with my mouth open, staring like an idiot on the scene. Every sailors worst fear.... a leaking boat.

Then to action. Pumped the bilges dry, bailed the tray under the engine and saw no signs of a leak. Took every thing out of the cockpit lockers and the compartment under the aft deck to check all seacocks and valves and hoses. No leaks, everything in perfect working order. Unfortunately this left me with the nagging feeling I got right away.... THE REAL HORROR! The engine filled with water.... With a heavy heart I tried to crank the engine by hand, no success, I even heard water when I tried it but couldn't turn the flywheel of course. Then I got the final proof when I turned the ignition and nothing happened. DEAD: I am no expert in diesel engines, but I do recall reading somewhere that this means bent valves and a removal of the engine head. This is the best scenario.... the worst is of course, to toss the old iron genny and buy a new one. A quite hefty investment for sure. I remember getting a qoute in Sweden a year ago for ?'? 8000 for a new 3cylinder Yanmaar including installation.

Such bad news.

The tug boat Guy helped me with the diagnosis, and promised to call a yard here on the island tomorrow morning, to see if they could help me.

A day of flying the Iron Genny
08/02/2008, Lehtma port; Hiiumaa (Dag) Estonia

A sunny, hot day almost calm. Seven hours of motoring added with 2,5 hours of fine fore-reaching in the evening
made it possible to get into the little port of Lehtma at the N point of Hiiumaa. A long breakwater stretching to SE is wat it is. Coastal freighters alongside at the outer part of the pier, than a Pilot boat, one or two fishing vessels, two Coast Guard boats, and then closest to shore 10 mooring bouys for pleasure boats. A Beneteau 50 flying a Latvian ensign and apparently a charter boat was docked here when we arrived. Aparrt from the sevice building with shower and toilet, there is nothing. 13 km to the nearest village and provisioning facilities.

Well, we are still carrying enough provisons for weeks, and intended to get a 'fresh' weather forecast here and then take off for Finland. In all honesty, I must confess to being fed up with this cruising ground by now. Some 20?'? in Harbour fee every night drains our kitty, obviously, but we are also missing the sweet life among the anchorqges that are so common in Finland and Sweden. The shallow and rocky waters along the shores combined with quite poor charts makes anchorages few and far between. A couple of Finnish sailors who has been cruising in Estonia several times verified that there is difficult to find a good anchorage here.

Exhilirating beam reach
08/01/2008, at anchor...

SW 16-20 knots. I woke up already at 6 and foiund the wifi to be more stable. Uploaded pictures and sent a few e-mails. We left Ruhno around 10AM.

CaptainClumsy had quite a performance when we motored out of the harbour. Rde Orm is a full-keeled heavy displacement vessel. This has quite a few advangtges, but at least one disadvantage. Her turniing radius is about the same as a small tanker. This feature makes manoevering in tight quarters, erh...interesting to say the least.

I misjudged her ability to turn around the head of the jetty considering the wind direction, and ended up in close contact with the bottom right at the breakwater. Since the wind pushed the boat onto the shoaal, it wasnt possible to get out even in reverse gear. However, a swedish couple in a Bruce Roberts 53, noticed our predicament and helped us with a long line. They could get us out of trouble with their huge genua winch, and soon enough we were underway.

Thank you - 'Joyride' hope to be able to give you a hand if needed sometime.

The original plan was to go 45 degrees to the tiny island of Kihnu (Kin) but this gave us an unnerving oint of sail, with flogging headsail in the choppy seas that build tremendously fast on these shallow waters. Mostly between 10-30 meters deep.

We decided to head north instead, to the next largest of the Estonian islands; Hiiumaa or Dag in Swedish, and then north across the Bay of Finland to the archipelago around Hanko (Hang).

The wind veered soon enough to West, and increased rapidly. The mizzen came down, then a reef too. we were still making 6,5 knots most of the time and this was actually superb sailing. I e as soon as we got used to teh seas. In 25-30 knots of wind, they grew rapidly and started t break. Not higher than 1,5 meters but short and VERY steep. This was, as a new experince even for me with many years of sailing in the Baltic Sea. Rde Orm rode the waves very nice as always, soft in her mottion even under these quite extreme circumstances.

When the wind decreased in the evening we anchored in 6 m depth in the shelter of a tiny island a couple of South of Muhu, with it's busy road ferries between the mainland (Virtsu port) and Muhu (Kuivastu port)

To Run in a dead calm
07/31/2008, Run; situated in the centre of The Bight of Riga

We arrived at 11PM, in the dark, starry and warm night. decided to anchor a mile outside the port. The weather was dead calm, so we falled a sleep to the slowly rockng motion of the boat in the gentle swells.

Dead calm in the morning too. After some 'fixing and tinkering' with the engine and some dry lube in the rigging at 11 AM, we felt ready to make our entry. Making jokes about 're-claiming the island for Sweden we came into the fancy, brand new marina. Built last year with funds from the European Union the slips were almost shiny. 20 guest berths, showers and a sauna (unfortunately too warm for me to even think of trying it out)

The island itself has 60 year-round inhabitants. 3 times as many during the summer. Swedish people were living here from at least the 13th century and to the WW 2. All names are still in Swedish and in the church, built 1644, everything was in swedish too.

Beautiful, a bit sleepy island with some very nice houses recently built in the traditional style.

Look at the footage here:

(http:[email protected]/

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Who: Magnus & Isabelle
Port: Falsterbo -Sweden
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