The adventures of Yacht Flirtie

08 July 2022 | Italy, Rocella Ionica, Porto delle Grazie (position: 38 19.266'N 16 25.835'E)
05 July 2022 | Sicily, Siracusa (position: 37 03.382'N 15 16.675'E)
04 July 2022 | Sicily, Portopalo (36 40.184'N 15 06.769'E)
30 June 2022 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
10 March 2022 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
05 March 2022 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
01 March 2022 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
10 January 2022 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
16 December 2021 | Ashton under Hill
16 August 2021 | Sicily, Boat Service Trapani (position: 38.00.840'N 12.31.297'E)
14 August 2021 | Sicily, Trapani (position 38 00.427'N 12 30.245'E) eastern anchorage behind southern breakwater
12 August 2021 | Sicily, Cornino (position: 38 05.712'N 12 39.510'E)
09 August 2021 | Sicily, Terrasini Sud (position: 38 09.412'N 13 04.709'E)
07 August 2021 | Sicily, Palermo, Nautica Galizzi (position: 38 07.372'N 13 22.218'E)
01 August 2021 | Sicily, Termini Imerese (position: 37 58.851'N 13 42.872'E) & Artemar Marina
27 July 2021 | Sicily, Cefalu (position: 38.02.042'N 14 02.463'E)
25 July 2021 | Sicily, Contrada Rais-Gerbi (position: 38 01.673'N 14 08.546'E)
24 July 2021 | Sicily, Capo d'Orlando, S.Carra (position: 38 09.354'N 14 47.674'E)
15 July 2021 | Sicily, Milazzo (position: 38 13.206'N 15 14.741'E)
10 July 2021 | Vulcano, Spaggia di Cannitello - Aeolian Islands (position: 38 22.318'N 15 00.287'E)

Volvo Penta 2003T, Reverse Gear MS2B - sticking gear shift mechanism

10 March 2022 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
Bruce & Caroline Trott
With what we believe to be the biggest critical job out of the way "holes in the poop tank!" , it was time to face the next job.

Since we've owned Flirtie, selecting forward, neutral and reverse gear on the starboard engine has never been a smooth operation. With the port engine always there as reference the difference was always noticeable. During last season it was becoming worse and we were fearful that without some love and attention there was a good chance it was going to fail us at a critical moment like coming into a marina or approaching a dock.

Unfortunately the setup on Flirtie is more complex than on a lot of boats because we have two engines and dual controls - above and below deck. This means there are significantly more control cables and complexity. By way of example on a typical yacht of similar length you would have a single throttle cable and single gearbox cable. On Flirtie we have 4 throttle cables and 6 gearbox cables and a couple of mechanical transfer boxes. These mechanical transfer boxes are controlled by yet another cable.

Previously we have checked, adjusted and greased the transfer boxes, checked the cables themselves so we knew the problem was associated with the actual gearbox gear shift mechanism.

To better understand the problem we started the exercise by downloading the workshop manual Volvo Penta MS2 Workshop Manual

The workshop manual is pretty detailed and there is a section specifically dealing with the gear shift mechanism.

Taking the mechanism apart looked pretty straight forward on paper but it was apparent that we would need a few parts for the reassembly like washers, seals etc. In the end we decided to order the following parts before we drained the gearbox oil and started the disassembly.

Marinepartseurope

1) 40, Sealing Ring, 958838
2) 36, O-Ring, 925065
3) 37, Spring, 814184
4) 41, Clevis Pin, 942871
5) 42, Spring Pin, 951924

We were keeping our fingers crossed that with a good clean and the new parts we'd be back up and running but we really wouldn't know until we got everything out and we could inspect everything closely.


complete shift mechanism


complete shift mechanism


disassembled shift mechanism


bearing housing


close-up of the bearing housing showing wear


close-up of the bearing housing showing wear

Everything looked fine with the exception of the bearing housing. Putting money aside we would like to replace the bearing housing but we were also pretty confident that if we ground away the ridges we could get the mechanism to work reliably albeit not necessarily as smooth as a new one.

Being careful with a needle file set from amazon and finally emery paper and oil we set to work to remove the ridges and polish the surface.

With everything reassembled and the gearbox filled with oil it was the moment of truth!!!

Success!!!

We must confess it still isn't quite as smooth as the port gearbox selection, but it's certainly a vast improvement and we're now confident it won't let us down.



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Meet our new crew member - "Stick"

25 April 2021 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
Bruce & Caroline Trott
In previous blogs (Windy Wind Vane Steering) and (Windy Wind Vane Steering (part 2)) we were researching wind vane steering options for Flirtie. After many email exchanges we decided to purchase "Windy" https://windyselfsteering.com/selfsteering/, a servo pendulum wind vane steering solution with a customised mount specifically designed for Flirtie. "Windy" is manufactured in Estonia so fortunately there was no import duty or additional charges payable in the EU.....something that unfortunately doesn't apply to the UK anymore :-(

After the payment of a small deposit, Imre Aljas started the build. Delivery was scheduled for approximately 4 weeks.

True to his word, "Windy" was ready for shipment 4 weeks later and after paying the outstanding balance we received "Windy" here in Porto Turistico Marina di Ragusa just 1 week later.

"Windy" was shipped in a custom made plywood box and arrived safely without any damage.


plywood shipping container

Everything inside was extremely well packaged and secured so we would be confident that "Windy" could be shipped anywhere in the world without sustaining any damage.


"Windy" well packaged

As for the installation, it's fair to say that it was extremely straightforward. Just 4 x 8mm holes through the teak planks and the stainless steel framing beneath on our bathing platform after ensuring the mount was on the centreline.


"Windy" mount clamped on the centre-line

The accuracy of our measurements and the engineering from Imre's perspective ensured it fitted perfectly with the mounting bolts in precisely the right location.


holes drilled

After that it was just a case of sliding "Windy" into position and securing it in place with an oversize thumbscrew.


"Windy" in place

With "Windy" now mounted on the bathing platform we turned our attention to the steering drum which is attached to Flirtie's wheel. This wasn't quite so straightforward to fit requiring three nylon blocks to be shaped to match the angle of the steering spokes of our wheel. Imre provided stainless steel pipe clamps, self tapping screws and leather cloth to secure these nylon blocks in place but instead we preferred to use stainless steel U-bolts for the purpose. Either solution was perfectly acceptable but we felt our solution was slightly neater and a little stronger.


U-bolts securing nylon spacer blocks

With the nylon blocks in position it was then just a matter of bolting the drum to the nylon blocks.


drum in place

Next we needed to mount a couple of blocks by the wheel and on the pushpit.


turning blocks adjacent to wheel


turning blocks on pushpit

Finally all that was needed was to feed the 6mm dyneema line (low stretch) from the wind vane to the drum.


dyneema control lines

It was about this time that we happened to receive a video call from Caroline's sister Jo. Caroline explained what we were doing and turned the camera towards "Windy". Jo not fully understanding responded with 'you mean that "Stick" thingy? '. Since then "Windy", our third crew member has been christened "Stick".... Lol.

All that remained was to see how "Stick" performed.... take a look at the brief video below.



It goes without saying that this was our first outing in favourable conditions but from what we've already learnt and experienced we're extremely confident that with practice "Stick" will become a crew member that we can both trust and rely on. I'm sure in future posts "Stick" will certainly say hello on occasions.

Windy - Wind Vane Steering (part 2)

07 February 2021 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
Bruce Trott
In my previous blog "Windy - Wind Vane Steering" I was about to contact Imre Aljas https://windyselfsteering.com/selfsteering/contact-us/ for more information about his Wind Vane Steering solution.

Specifically I was looking for him to tell us more about the mounting options for our particular yacht/transom style and I was keen to see further pictures focusing on the quality of his engineering.

Whilst Imre provides a standard mounting bracket that would work with many yachts


standard transom mount

...in our case he recommended a customised bracket that could be attached to our bathing platform.

On the Windy website, Imre details various transom styles (Type 1, 2 and 3) and the measurements that he requires https://windyselfsteering.com/selfsteering/order/ but in our case he needed additional measurements which he clearly communicated with the aid of drawings. It was all very clear and simple to follow. This was the outcome once all the dimensions were provided:


customised mount

As for the quality of the engineering, I think you'll agree it looks "Pretty Dang Spiffy" - Mads Dahlke Sail Life's youtube channel... thanks Mads for the catch phrase ;-)


detail of bronze drum and control wires


vane attachment and counterweights


steering oar and mounting


standard mount on a vertical transom


without remote control


with remote control


a unit ready for shipping


To be continued.
Vessel Name: Yacht Flirtie
Vessel Make/Model: Trident Voyager 40
Hailing Port: Dartmouth, UK
Crew: Bruce and Caroline Trott
About:
Welcome to Sailing Yacht Flirtie's blog. We are Bruce and Caroline and this blog serves as a personal record of our adventures and experiences since leaving the UK in 2012 whilst allowing family and friends to keep up-to-date with our whereabouts. [...]
Extra: Find us in real-time using SPOT Tracking
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email us: bandc.trott@gmail.com
skype us: distant.drummer797
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Yacht Flirtie

Who: Bruce and Caroline Trott
Port: Dartmouth, UK

Where are we now?