The adventures of Yacht Flirtie

10 August 2019 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
09 August 2019 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
03 July 2019 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
02 July 2019 | St Paul’s Bay (position: 35 57.629’N 14 23.841’E)
26 June 2019 | Marsaxlokk (position: 35 50.121’N 14 32.961’E)
24 June 2019 | Dwejra Bay (position: 36 02.815’N 14 11.496’E)
20 June 2019 | St Julian’s, Budella Bay (position: 35 55.064’N 14 29.695’E)
15 June 2019 | Marsaxlokk Bay (position: 35 50.114’N 14 32.974’E)
13 June 2019 | Rinella Creek (position: 35 53.678’N 14 31.530’E)
09 June 2019 | St Julian’s, Balluta Bay position: (35 53.678’N 14 31.530’E)
05 June 2019 | San Niklaw Bay (position: 36 01.101’N 14 19.790’E)
03 June 2019 | Il-Hofra-z-Zghira (anchorage), position (35 50.210'N, 14 33.726'E)
10 May 2019 | Malta, Manoel Island
19 December 2018 | Gloucestershire
25 January 2018 | Gloucestershire
19 December 2017 | Gloucestershire
30 September 2017 | Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.869’N 14 32.705’E)
30 September 2017 | Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.869’N 14 32.705’E)
22 September 2017 | Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.869’N 14 32.705’E)
20 September 2017 | Siracusa anchorage (position: 37 03.612'N 15 16.811'E)

R&D flexible couplings for Flirtie

10 August 2019 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
Bruce & Caroline Trott
before - the standard volvo coupling

Warning: high yawn rating ;-)

Following our lift in Manoel Island Yacht Yard where we had both cutlass bearings replaced we have been keen to realign both our prop shafts just in case they were out and causing undue wear on the new bearings.

The actual exercise is relatively straight forward to undertake but like most things relatively time consuming requiring the coupling that joins the propeller shaft to the gearbox to be split (unbolted) and parted slightly so that a feeler gauge can be inserted around the flange at 90° increments. In an ideal world with a perfectly aligned engine and shaft the gap would be consistent but if it isn't the engine needs to be raised or dropped, angled up or down or moved left or right or any combination of these movements - a bit of a dark art as one of our cruising friends commented.

On Flirtie, access to the bolts to split the coupling is rather awkward in the first instance so no surprise the alignment exercise hasn't been performed in long time. What we really wanted was a solution that makes the job easier and this is where the "R and D flexible coupling" www.randdmarine.com/flexiblesc.asp comes in.

The R and D flexible coupling negates the first exercise of unbolting the coupling and instead provides you with a designated area (a machined red bolt) that you can insert a feeler gauge above and measure the gap. This means the gap can be monitored at leisure and any minor adjustments made as necessary. Additionally the coupling is semi flexible meaning it absorbs minor alignment errors of up to 0.25mm - a benefit certainly but not completely necessary.

The installation was relatively straightforward with the help of the clear instructions www.randdmarine.com/flexiblescinstr.asp. The only minor inconvenience being the new bolts that connect the coupling to the gearbox flange needed shortening by about 4mm to clear part of the gearbox casting. This was fairly easy for us with access to mains power and an angle grinder but would be a bit of a pain with only hand tools.


after - the white nylon coupling between the two halves of the standard coupling

With the installation complete and with just a minor tweak to a couple of the engine legs the gap is almost identical at all 90° positions so we're now ready for a proper sea trial ;-)

Sicily, Marina di Ragusa – summer is in full swing!!

09 August 2019 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
Bruce & Caroline Trott
there's still space for more!

Our return to the UK provided us with another excellent PSA result - that's four tests and four very positive results. However, over the last few weeks a strange looking bulge has developed in Bruce's pants... a bulge that really shouldn't be there! After a bit of poking around the consultant confirmed it to be an inguinal hernia and went on to say that the bulge was his bladder slipping into one of the keyhole voids created during the RALP surgery. A further minor operation is now required so we return to the UK late September. In the meantime, we're back in Marina di Ragusa to find summer in full swing.

The atmosphere is buzzing with most hotels and apartments now full. Cars and mopeds line every inch of the grid-like structure of the resort though the preferred form of transport is the bicycle, they're everywhere. For as far as the eye can see the beach is now a kaleidoscope of colour lined with umbrellas to shelter from the intense heat.



The local market has trebled in size with additional fruit and vegetable stalls, clothes and bric-a-brac. Summer stalls line the promenade all trying to tempt you to purchase their goods - jewellery, soap, arts, crafts and local produce and there's an entertainment schedule to suite all from fitness classes to art and cultural events.



As for the marina it has a steady flow of cruising sailors, mainly Maltese and Italian with just the occasional English, Swiss, French, German, Belgium and New Zealander flagged vessels. The noticeable change is the increase of additional sports boats and ribs berthed either side of the runway along three pontoons. The marina has laid on an extended golf buggy that offers a shuttle service around the marina grounds - to and from the beach, the office, the local bars and I'm pretty sure if we asked they'd take us to the shower block too! We're thoroughly enjoying our summer in Marina di Ragusa and despite the additional volumes of holidaymakers it's still very pleasant and relatively quiet in the marina.


daily swim with fellow cruisers Di and John

Malta, St Paul’s Bay to Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (MdR)

03 July 2019 | Sicily, Marina di Ragusa (position: 36 46.863'N 14 32.701'E)
Bruce & Caroline Trott
oh what a beautiful morning...

From the moment we left Malta we had near perfect conditions which allowed us to sail all but 12 miles from the Sicilian coast - that's approximately 40 nautical miles sailed... Ye-ha, happy days. We even sighted a turtle mid-channel.

Instead of 'following the wind' we pointed as close to windward as we dared to factor in for a few degrees of leeway - we didn't want to miss the entrance to MdR after all! The seas weren't particularly large so all in all it was a comfortable ride and far more enjoyable than our previous passage from Sicily to Malta.


a short video of Flirtie stonking along like a steam train making 7 knots at times... correction, 7.1 knots ;-)

As the entrance to MdR approached we swapped our Maltese courtesy flag back to Italian before being accompanied to our berth through the narrow buoyed channel that now exists down the fairway. It was a very satisfying day.

Total distance this season: 240.33 nautical miles
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.

Our 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. [...]
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Yacht Flirtie's Photos - Fowey 2011
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Yacht Flirtie

Who: Bruce and Caroline Trott
Port: Dartmouth, UK

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