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s/v Sand Dollar
Saturday, July 7, 2007 - Arrival in Papeete
Don
07/07/2007, Papeete, Tahiti, French Polynesia

Sand Dollar completed the passage from Huahine to Tahiti this morning and dropped anchor amidst about 100 other sailboats in Papeete Harbor. The passage was mostly a motorboat trip but I was able to sail the last 1/3rd, about 35 miles. Now it is R& R until I catch up on lost sleep.

Friday, July 6, 2007 - Finally Underway
Don
07/06/2007, en route to Tahiti, French Polynesia

The weather is now cooperating, sort of. The swell is way down but there is no wind. I departed Huahine early this AM for the 110 mile sail to Tahiti and should arrive sometime early Sat. morning. At the present time I am about half way there and have been motoring the entire time. At least the batteries are getting charged.

Yesterday's report was returned by the postmaster for some unknown reason. There must be a problem at the central server. It certainly could not be on my end! I've re-submitted so we'll see what happens.

Thursday, July 5, 2007 - Island Tour
Don
07/05/2007, Huahine, French Polynesia

Today I rented a car and toured the island covering a total of about 50 miles. The vegetation is very lush and the terrain mountainous. I did not stop at the ubiquitous pearl farm. The weather is forecast to improve so I may be leaving for Tahiti tomorrow morning.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007 - Happy Fourth of July
Don
07/04/2007, Huahine, French Polynesia

Last night the wind blew very hard in the anchorage, up to 30 knots, which means I did not sleep very sound. This is actually a good thing. If Sand Dollar is going to drag her anchor I don't want to sleep through it. The 35 lb. CQR anchor is down 90 ft. with a 3/1 scope (anchor line-to-depth ratio) and is holding just fine on a mud bottom. Today I rented a car and brought some provisions to the boat. Tomorrow I will tour the island while waiting for the weather to improve. All else is well onboard. I'm sorry the Kiwis lost their attempt at the cup.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007 - Batteries Back to Normal
Don
07/03/2007, Huahine, French Polynesia

Most of the morning was spent removing the failed alternator and installing the back-up. Most of this was pretty straight forward except for the frozen nut on the mount which had to be changed to fit the new alternator. However, over the last ten years I have become very familiar with frozen nuts (that's why I'm now in the tropics!). A combination of penetrating oil, vice grips, and a cold chisel and sledge hammer did the trick. The back-up unit is new original equipment but puts out only half the current as the old, heavy duty one so I will have to have it rebuilt or replaced in Papeete. Fortunately, the sun was out most of the day so the solar panels brought the batteries back up.

It's a good thing I did not leave for Tahiti today as the boats I talked to on the radio this afternoon reported 25-30 knots of wind from the east which is the direction I want to go. They were having a sleigh ride going west, but for me it would have been punishing. I may be here for awhile yet.

Monday, July 2, 2007 - Alternator Failure
Don
07/02/2007, Huahine, French Polynesia

Battery power is now limited because of a failed alternator and lack of adequate sunshine for the solar panels. Subsequent log entries will be brief or sporadic until normal battery charge can be achieved.

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Sand Dollar
Who: Don Pratten
Port: Beaux Arts, WA
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