The adventures of Yacht Flirtie

"Hi, we are sailing yacht Flirtie's crew, Bruce and Caroline. Welcome to our blog.

Launch day & sea trials whilst under motor

Flirtie - all clean, polished and ready for the summer ahead

Launch day. The day when we hope that everything that we've done below the waterline is watertight.

On this occasion the only potential for leaks were the Volvo seals. A quick check on them both confirmed no signs of leaks so the next task was to 'burp' them before we could start the engines to then motor out of the travel hoist area. The burping process is straight forward, just as long as you're feeling strong. Wrap hands around the seal and with a firm squeeze the air is forced out and replaced by sea water. The sea water then acts as a lubricant for the shafts when under motor.

Next was to test our new featherstream propellers with a brief sea trial. This involved us motoring around at different revs whilst we monitored our speed in order to determine if the blade diameter and pitch size were correct. We motored from Manoel Island Yacht Yard to the entrance several times before trying out reverse. If anyone was to look at our AIS track they would have wonder what on earth we were doing!

Flirtie has a three quarter length encapsulated keel and skeg hung rudder. Over the years we've learnt that she prefers to reverse in 'her own way' despite the captain's attempts to persuade her otherwise. It's something that we've become accustomed to. When doing our research on the featherstream props several cruiser's had reported a slightly better response when in reverse however we were unable to really notice any difference in our trial. Maybe as we get more familiar we will notice a subtle improvement but only time will tell. An hour later we concluded that both the 18" blades and pitch size of 12.5 was correct as determined by Darglow. If either of these had been incorrect it would have involved another lift and us speaking to them for advice.

Following a successful sea trial we returned to moor alongside the pontoon just outside Manoel Island Yacht Yard to hoist the genoa up in preparation for our return trip back to Marina di Ragusa. We can only hope now for a forecast that will allow us to sail as we're keen to see what difference feathering propellers have made.