A Boat Too Far

30 March 2018 | Puerto Madera, Chiapas Mexico
21 March 2018
21 February 2018
21 February 2018 | La Cuz
21 January 2018
07 December 2017 | Santa Rosalia, BCS
26 April 2017
25 March 2017
17 March 2017
23 February 2017 | Cabo San Lucas
23 February 2017 | Bahia Magdalena
06 February 2017 | San Diego
23 September 2016 | Ventura West Marina
27 May 2016 | Bahia Asuncion
13 May 2016
30 March 2016 | Santa Rosalia
05 March 2016
12 February 2016
17 January 2016

Further down the coast of Mexico

30 March 2018 | Puerto Madera, Chiapas Mexico
Annette
After leaving Zihuatenjeo we made an overnight in Acapulco, but didn't linger in preference of more quiet, low key anchorages. Our timing was perfect for a two day stop at Punta Galera, which is a funky backpacker/surfer destination. It just so happened a pretty good south swell was coming through so Mike enjoyed 2 days of overhead surf with rides of over 300 yards. He's living his dream..... surfing good waves in warm water, with his catamaran just outside the surf break. Not to mention kayak shuttle service from the line up back to the boat with a cold beer and lunch ready and waiting. We also made stops at Puerto Angel, and Chachacual before resigning ourselves to a marina.
Marina Chahue, in Huatulco bay is the last stop for cruisers before crossing the Gulf of Tehuantepec. The Gulf of Tehuantepec is notorious for strong gales, AKA “T-peckers”. As it turned out we arrived in the marina on Tuesday with the next T-pecker forecast to blow beginning Wednesday through Saturday so we were staying put until at least Sunday. The first order of business when entering a marina is; I have a major cleaning frenzy with the hose from bow to stern, top to bottom, inside and out, while Mike fixes all the recent breakages. This time in the starboard engine compartment a very mysterious vibration developed. This was not an easy fix and took 2 long days of diagnosis through process of elimination to determine it's cause. With never a doubt in my mind, Mike found the problem, fixed it and in the process of elimination checked and serviced both props and engines, so we were good to go sailing again, but we still had three days left to wait out in the marina. Road trip!

Mainland mexico

21 March 2018
Annette
So far our overall impression of mainland Mexico is the wild life, both natural and man made. Since arriving to the mainland we've been sailing a slalom course of dozens of sea turtles, bobbing along sunning themselves then diving just before our boat hits them, or not. Between Mazatlan and Barra de Navidad we had numerous close encounters with humpback whales, many of which were mothers with their newborn calves. There were at least a hundred humpbacks showing off breaching and tail slapping as we sailed into Banderas Bay. It felt like being in Yellowstone National Park with geysers erupting all around us. We had read about the wild crocodiles swimming in the rivers and lagoons so in every anchorage with a river we'd peddled our kayak in search of these wild reptiles, eventually spotting two 3-4 foot prehistoric monsters lurking in the mangroves in the busy lagoon off Zihautanejo. They were so cute! Also in the rivers and mangroves we spotted green parakeets and roseate spoonbills which look just like pink flamingo's but with a spoon for a beak. Snaking through the narrow jungle rivers was like a deja-vu of Disneyland's jungle boat ride but without the hippo.
Then there's the other wildlife that exists between Mazatlan and Zihautenjao, which I refer to as the Cruiser's Circuit”. The majority of cruising boats are stored for the summer up in the Sea of Cortez for hurricane season and then come November they beeline it down from their summer hibernation to winter on the mainland. Never more than a day or 2 between anchorages, boats will stay put for weeks at a time before moving onto the next stop in the “Circuit”. Yatista Villages are established and mayors are appointed. At 9:00 am the radio nets broadcast over the VHF. This is where everyone in the anchorage checks in or out, shares information, initiates daily and special activities and makes sure peace and harmony exists amongst the floating residents. There is daily bocce ball on the beach, birthday parties, boat raft-ups, beach BBQ and music nights, and each evening as the sun sets a chorus of conch shells echo a continuous round through the anchorage as a good night to all. A lot of the popular anchorages are also vacationing tourist destinations. This is where the real wildlife is found. The beaches and hillsides are lined with fancy resorts and restaurants, beach bars and night clubs, fish taco stands and souvenir shops. The bays are a-buzz with jet ski's, pull-toys, panga fishing boats, super yachts and an occasional snorkeler. The party starts up at midnight and seems to never end. There is no solitude, no silence, no stars and the bits of natural beauty are exploited with with wealthy mansions, tacky resorts and golf courses. Again, quite a contrast from our experience in the Sea of Cortez. But, I have to admit we have had a blast sailing through the Cruisers Circuit. Each stop has been a wonderful surprise, meeting up with old friends and making new ones. Dining out every night, listening to good music, cruising around the anchorages in our kayak visiting, parties etc. We even had an improv Hootenanny on Rum Doxy!
Alas, we now have now sailed beyond the circuit. From now on the boats we meet will be on a similar path, that of adventure cruising and heading to distant far off places looking for new and exotic experiences.
One of the things I love the best about cruising is you ALWAYS run into someone you know along the way, and the further from home you go the quicker and easier it is to connect with the new friends you make.

Good bye Sea of Cortez

21 February 2018
Annette
February 13, 2018, another one of life's bittersweet moments as we motor out of the 4 mile channel exiting La Paz. Over the last three years the Sea of Cortez has become like a second home to us; comfortable ,easy and absolutely one of our favorite, most cherished places. However, the desire to move on and explore new places is beckoning us south. From the desert to the tropics we sailed 300 NM, southeast for 2 nights and three days, to Isla Isabela, nicknamed "The Mexican Galapagos" which is located off the coast of Pacific Mexico, between Mazatlan and Puerto Vallarta.
It was a good crossing with light to moderate winds from behind, so we sailed most of the way, including an entire day and night with the spinnaker. On the morning of the third day we were greeted by a large pod of spotted dolphins, which we have never come across before, who eagerly escorted us for quite some time until they got bored and decided to move on. Then as we were approaching Isla Isabela we saw a turtle floating on the surface sunning itself, then another and another until we had to keep a close lookout so we didn't run any over. There were dozens of them on our course. At the same time the humpback whales made themselves known and began breaching, tail slapping and spouting all around us, at least a dozen of them, as well. And above us was an air force of surveillance birds, frigate birds, white tail tropic birds, blue-footed boobies, brown boobies, pelicans and Heerrmans gulls. What a welcome!
Isla Isabela is rookery for the boobies and, having never seen one, we had to check them out. A short steep trail took us to the top of the bluff and landed us smack in the middle of their breeding grounds. It appeared they were in all phases of reproduction. There were couples engaged in they're mating rituals, females sitting on one egg in their nests (which were merely holes in the dirt), downy white chicks peeping out from underneath moms, larger chicks spouting feathers, teenagers studding their stuff, it was a very busy place. I felt like a complete intruder walking through their tribe, tip-toeing carefully, trying hard not to step on the unattended eggs and avoiding the "evil eye " and sharp beaks of the mothers on their nests. At the bottom of the bluff along the waters edge littered high and low thought out the shrubs and trees is where the frigate birds had their colony. Wear a hat and don't look up! The iguanas were either laying in wait or doing push ups on the rocks nestled among the shrubs and tress that the frigate birds were nesting in. They were all one big happy island family.

More photo's in the gallery located just above the blog.

Bottling Day

21 February 2018 | La Cuz
Annette
In preparation for bottling day we realized that we were going to need about 48 empty bottles. So we bought 2 cases of the local lager and got to work. It was a thankless job, but we persevered and by the appointed day we had out quota of empties. After two weeks of waiting patiently (not!) for the fermentation of the beer to happen, it was finally bottling day.
First we set up buckets, hoses, filters, and nozzles then sterilized everything, including 48 dark brown bottles to fill with the beer and sugar water combination. We had 5 and ½ gallons of beer to transfer into bottles. I was the "filler upper" and Mike was the "bottle capper". The first few bottles were filled and capped just fine (those bottles just happened to be bottles we had saved from beer we had brought with us from the states), but when we tried to cap the Mexican beer bottles we were foiled. As it turns out the Mexican beer bottles don't have a lip on the bottle neck which our "home bottle capper" needs in order to fasten down the cap. So now what? Luckily, in addition to the old IPA bottles we had saved a number of my plastic mineral water bottles to see how well the beer did in plastic, but still those weren't nearly enough. So we ended up emptying all the rest of my precious mineral water over board for the bottles, and dug out an empty growler we kept from a local brewery in Loreto.
Technically one should wait at least 2 weeks before sampling, this is to allow the sugar and yeast to carbonate and for the residue to settle to the bottom. After just 3 days the plastic bottles had become firm with pressure and we're hoping that the bottles are strong enough. For experimental purposes, after 7 days we had to open and sample our first Rum Doxy IPA. It was a bit sweet and very foamy but very promising.
One week later..........much better, tasty even.
Now a month after bottling day I can say that our first beer making attempt was a success. the plastic water bottles work fine and, as an extra benefit, are 20 oz instead of 12. We are now enjoying the fruits of our efforts like "nectar from the gods".

Brewing Onboard

21 January 2018
Annette
It was a no brainer.
The idea to brew our own beer on board Rum Doxy came about while we were in the boatyard in Puerto Penasco, where we met fellow cruisers Jack and Nicole on the catamaran "Let it Be", who brew their own beer on board. They spoke of how easy it was, inexpensive and fun, even with two small children aboard and very little room to spare. They said it was well worth the time and effort. As we sat with them, drinking our precious last bottles of IPA smuggled down from home, discussing how wonderful craft IPA beer is and how difficult it is to get any such beer south of the boarder, it became obvious that this is what we must do!!
The next day I emailed my brother Peter , who has been brewing beer for over 10 years and is well known for his outstanding beers and the original Rum Doxy IPA. I told him of our idea and asked him for his thoughts and comments. We immediately received a very enthusiastic response offering us his expertise, a personal home brew demonstration and a 24 hour hot-line support. With that we were committed and excited to get started. But now we had to wait.....we were setting off into the remotest part of Baja, Mexico without any contact to the civilized world so ordering stuff on-line to get started wasn't an option. Since we were going home for Christmas and spending time with family, this also became our opportunity to invest in our beer making endeavor.
As promised, Peter was on board right from the start by arranging a Brew Day demonstration at his home so that we could witness step by step what the process was all about. It was 48* outside where we brewed and we (I) froze my ass off but it was a blast and an incredible tutorial. Peter is a brewmaster and a good teacher and he LOVES making beer! He gave use specific instructions on what equipment and supplies we would need in order for us to brew our very own Rum Doxy IPA, suggesting modifications and adjustments for brewing on a boat. After our tutorial we rushed over to More Beer in Concord and bought a Home Brew kit, accessories and all the ingredients to brew our first batch of Rum Doxy IPA.
I have to mention there are two home brewmasters in our family, Peter as I have already mentioned and Allan Gomes, our nephew who has been brewing since he got out of diapers. Shannon and Alan hosted a wonderful Christmas celebration at their home in San Francisco which for us also became another treasure trove of additional beer making knowledge.
Now the hard part; packing up all the supplies, and ingredients to bring with us on the plane. An 8 gallon stainless steel kettle, a 6 gallon fermenter, a 6 gallon plastic bucket, 15 pounds of malted barley, hops and all the other miscellaneous beer making stuff. This in addition to all the cheese and boat parts we usually smuggle down. It's been several years since we've had to use the airlines to get stuff to our boat (we normally have our mules smuggle the stuff in) so we paid close attention to weight but kinda forgot the agriculture restrictions until we arrived in Loreto and had to go through customs. Needless to say we looked very suspicious loaded down with boxes labled "Brew Kit" and " 8 gallon Stainless Steel Pot", both weighing 50 lbs each. So of course they pulled us aside and asked to x-ray our stuff. Everything went through x-ray without any alarms going off, but in the time it took for Mike to gather up all the boxes I was pulled to the side and questioned about the contents of my little black suitcase, and carry-on. "Do you have any food with you" the customs officer asked me?", I showed her my lunch bag but she was not interested, "anything in the black suitcase?" she asked. Darn, that's were I had $50.00 of gourmet cheese (also difficult to get in Mexico). I couldn't lie so I said I had some cheese and gave her my Tillamook Sharp Cheddar block, thinking that should do it. "Anything else is in the suitcase?" and pointed to the insulated bag with the remaining cheeses.
Crap, I was totally busted standing there like a criminal being scolded, having my cheese confiscated. I was humiliated and sad because I LOVE my cheese, but as the customs officer went over the list of prohibited items with me which clearly listed grains,seeds, nuts etc I was relieved to see Mike standing outside the security area with our boxes intact waiting for me, grinning. We got lucky. Now there was only one more item that had to make it through security at the airport and that was the high output propane burner that Brian and Alison were bringing down with them; the price they were willing to pay in order to sail around the Lorteo area for a week. Like I said before we have our mules bring in the really suspicious stuff. When we saw them walk from customs into the terminal dragging a ginormous black suitcase and smiles on their faces I knew we were home free, and they earned their vacation.
So after a wonderful week of sailing, playing games, and drinking margaritas the party came to an end, Brian and Alison left us and it was time to make beer. The day before brew day we got all the equipment set up, we went over the notes and instructions Mike's been gathering, texted Pete alerting him of tomorrow and a few preliminary questions then emotionally entered into the beer making zone.
1/09/2018 at 9:00 am, the big propane burner was fired up and the fun began. It was an all day project from start to finish. 88 text's and photo's were exchanged between Peter and us. It was if he was there with us the whole time, guiding us every step of the way, Thank you Pete!!!!! It was truly a wonderful sense of satisfaction and accomplishment when at the end of the day, a wet towel was wrapped around the fermenter full of beer. Now we wait for the bubbles through the airlock, inhaling the strong aroma of fermenting "wort", Aaaaaah. Mike is religious about checking on his beer at least every hour from the first moment he wakes up till just before he turns the light off for bed.
We had been debating on what to do with the middle port hull, the last unfinished part of the boat. The plan had been to make it a kind of guest bathroom with a second toilet, but never mind that, our guests can pee outside, it's now our dedicated brewery.

See the Gallery (click on the "Gallery" button underneath the "A Boat Too Far" banner above) for more photos.

Back in the Sea of Cortez

07 December 2017 | Santa Rosalia, BCS
Annette
The hills are turning brown, the nights are cooling off and a heater is needed in the mornings it's time us snow birds head south for the winter. Southern California is just way too cold! So October 31 we packed the Element with a “boat load” of stuff and drove down to Puerto Penasco, where we left Rum Doxy for the summer. Before we left last spring we hauled the boat out and stored it in the boat yard, a large sandy, empty lot. When we hauled out there where only two other boats in the yard, when we got back the yard had filled up... old friends to see again, new friends to meet. We spent the next two weeks sanding, grinding, painting and patching up the boat getting ready for our next sailing season. While working and toiling away in the boat yard it's hard to imagine sailing around in beautiful sparkly water, gently rocking to sleep, waking up to silence and solitude but that's the reward when you finally launch and that's what happens and it all becomes worth it!!
Starting at the very top of the Sea of Cortez feels like we are cheating. At this time of year the predominate winds blow from the north so it's mostly down wind sailing and we did not have to sail against the wind for 700 miles to get to this most remote corner of the Sea of Cortez. Unless you have a boat you will not see the places we have been to. There are no roads to speak of, no villages,commerce or tourist boats to take you out on day trips and no cell service, not even many cruisers venture up this far north. From the moment we sailed out of the Puerto Penasco harbor on November 15 until we arrived in Santa Rosalia 18 days later we had no contact with civilization (except via satellite phone or ham radio) nor any pressing schedule. We surrendered to the wilderness, weather and the immense, overwhelming beauty of the Northern Sea Of Cortez. We made our first stop after leaving the boat yard at the very northern part of Isla Angel de la Guardia. It felt like being reborn. We could feel the energy of Puerto Penasco and their Annual Motorcycle Rally (a gathering of 5000 motorcycles competing to see who was the loudest and baddest) which happened to be going on while we we there, drain from our bodies. After three days we blew further down to the midsection of the island and the anchorage at Este Ton, the most picture “postcard” perfect anchorage, where we stayed for 4 days. After detoxing and reclaiming our sea legs we set off to explore new anchorages, zig zagging back and forth between the many islands and the east side of the Baja peninsula. What has made this trip even more spectacular is our new toy that Mike got for his 60th birthday. Something I've always wanted, a 2 person peddle kayak! It has added a whole other dimension to our cruising experience. It is unbelievable comfortable, cruises at 3-4 knots, we don't ever have to paddle and our butts stay dry. We get a great workout (exercise being something that was really lacking while cruising) all while seeing so much more of the coastline and underwater aquatics in the 6-8 miles we can cover. Check out the gallery for pictures of things we saw, and places we stayed.
The party is over now. We're docked here in Santa Rosalia waiting out the “First Northerly Blow” of the season, anxious to get going because we still have to sail another 100 miles down to Loreto (3 days travel) where we will leave the boat and begin our long journey home for Christmas. After securing the boat in Puerto Escondito (Loreto) we have a 5 hour bus ride to La Paz, a plane to Hermosillo, a 5-7 hour bus to Puerto Penasco and a 3 day drive to the Bay Area with a stop in Santa Barbara for my friend Judith's very special birthday party which I do not want to miss!
I just love being home with family and friends at Christmas. The times we've been away for the holidays have always been very hard for me. This year is an extra special Christmas as the “Torch of the Ringenberg Christmas Tradition” is being passed on from Gordon and Grete (Grandpa and Grandma) to Sabine (grand daughter) who is very happy to take on this responsibility, skipping a generation (me) which I am grateful for. Thank you Sabine!
After Chrismas we'll fly back and bring in the New Year aboard Rum Doxy with Brian and Alison who are coming down join us for a cruise around the Loreto area for a week before we make a serious effort to sail south toward mainland Mexico, Puerto Vallarta and beyond.

Vessel Name: Rum Doxy
Vessel Make/Model: 46' Custom Catamaran
Hailing Port: Santa Barbara, California
Crew: Mike Reed, Annette Reed
Extra: A "rum doxy" is 18th century pirate-speak for a woman of remarkable character and ambiguous virtue
Rum Doxy 's Photos - Main
11 Photos
Created 21 March 2018
We spent almost a month in the La Paz area and Isla Espiritu Santos, discovering new little anchorages and enjoying the comforts of old stomping grounds. On February 13, we finally cut the ties with the Sea of Cortz and set off for new adventures, beginning with Isla Isabela.
18 Photos
Created 24 February 2018
Over time we have become insufferable beer snobs. As such we found that we could no longer abide the marginal brews we find when abroad and were compelled to take matters into our own hands. We brought a brew kit and grains back to the boat with us after a Christmas visit home (see the blog post for 1/21/18), tied to a mooring in Puerto Escondido and got busy.
11 Photos
Created 21 January 2018
We left the boat on the hard in Puerto Penasco for the summer while we returned home to Ventura to work. We returned to the boat in early November and, after 2 weeks of work on the boat in the yard, we launched and headed straight for Isla Angel de la Guardia, where we took up where we left off in the spring.
27 Photos
Created 7 December 2017
We got a late start heading south this year, our mainsail warranty replacement having taken much longer than anticipated. Our plan, as we headed south, was to get to Ecuador this season so that we would be poised to head to Patagonia in the fall. Somewhere along the way, though, we realized that this would mean traveling every day; more of a delivery than a cruise, so we decided to spend another season in the Sea of Cortez, store the boat in Puerto Penasco or Guaymas for the summer hurricane season, and head to Ecuador next year.
24 Photos
Created 4 March 2017
39 Photos
Created 30 March 2016
After a quick haul-out in La Paz we headed out to the local area to do some exploring. We spent most of January and february sailing up and down the coast enjoying the Islands of Espiritu Santo, San Francisco and San Jose as well as some of the anchorages on the mainland.
34 Photos
Created 13 February 2016
We left our slip in Channel Islands on November 7th, bound for Mexico with stops at Santa Barbara Island, Catalina Island and San Diego. We arrived in Cabo one month later having harbor-hopped down the coast of Baja.
23 Photos
Created 8 December 2015
30 Photos
Created 19 September 2013
We made an unplanned detour to Alaska when the wind sent us there. Rather than spend time in the Salish Sea as we had planned we have been sailing from Kodiak to Prince William Sound and down to the Inside Passage with stops at icy Bay and Yakutat.
97 Photos
Created 1 September 2013
After leaving Yokohama we headed southeast to get below a series of lows coming off of Japan. This worked to some extent as the wind was always behind us, even if a bit strong at times. As we approached the Pacific High the winds lightened and we were pushed northward which gave us the idea to head for Alaska instead of Canada, a move we have not regretted. The great majority of the trip was spent under cloudy skies, rain or fog so there are regretably not many photos. On the other hand, Kodiak is having their best summer in 75 years with daily temperatures in the 80's.
17 Photos
Created 25 July 2013
43 Photos
Created 13 June 2013
We made our way from Luzon to Okinawa with a detour to Taiwan due to weather. from Okinawa we sailed directly to Shimuzu where we based ourselves for a week while we did maintenance and land travel.
36 Photos
Created 5 June 2013
19 Photos
Created 20 April 2013
We made our way from Miri, Sarawak to Kudat, Sabah where we hauled out for a bottom job and a few odds and ends. Then we headed north up the west coast of Palawan, spending some time in the El Nido area, where we met our friends from Miri, Roger and Jane on "Wings and Strings". We have been buddy-boating with them for the past week as we make our way through the beautifull Busuanga group. We are really enjoyin g the Philippines as the people are very friendly, the beaches clan and the water clear. The scenery is spectacular as is the snorkling.
60 Photos
Created 30 March 2013
Nearby Mulu National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, famous for it's caves. It sports the world's largest cave system, largest cave passage and largest chamber (100m x 400m x600m!). The BBC series "Planet Earth" filmed it's "Caves" segment here (think mountain of guano seething with cockroaches). We took a couple of days off from boat work and flew out to have a look.
39 Photos
Created 8 September 2012
We had an uneventfull passage from Singapore to Borneo, though a bit tiring as we had to hand steer for 3 days and 2 nights. We arrived in Borneo just after dark on the 3rd day, anchored and awoke to a scene from a Tarzan novel. Over the next week we made our way to Miri, just short of Brunei, traveling during the day and achoring at night as we didn't want to run afoul of the many floating logs in this area. Typically we would sail all day then drop a couple miles off the coast to (mostly) avoid the bugs. We were lucky with the weather and apart from the hydraulic steering exploding as I tried to avoid a log, we had a good trip.
19 Photos
Created 30 August 2012
After 2 years of working on the boat and migrating back and forth between Phuket and Langkawi, we finally moved. The trip down the Straights of Malacca was uneventfull but at times difficult due to the opposing wind and current. We did not travel at night for fear of fishing nets and buoys and so had long days between anchorages. The sky was a uniform dismal brown due to forest fires in Sumatra and the shoreline was mostly mangrove flats so not much to see.
26 Photos
Created 27 August 2012
With the dinghy done we set sail for Langkawi, leaving Thailand for the last time. We lingered a few days in the Butang group to take advantage of the clear water, then made our way to Langkawi, where we have been working non-stop on the boat ever since.
27 Photos
Created 25 July 2012
We've been knocking around for a couple of years now without a dinghy so we took the time to build one this trip. We got a spot on the "work dock", picked up some plywood in town and got busy. The rowing/sailing boat is from plans but heavily modified. It took 2 weeks all in. It might have been less, but when the wind wasn't blowing a gale, it was raining. Some people do this inside garages or sheds, but they don't know what they're missing.
24 Photos
Created 3 June 2012
After launch we did a "circumnavigation" of Langkawi to put the boat through it's paces and see if all our work was for naught. As it turned out, the leaks are all a thing of the past and the boat now makes a pleasant "squish" instead of "bang" when beating into a sea. After our spin around the archipelago we picked up Annette's parents, Gordon and Grete, in Langkawi and made our way up to Phuket where we met Sabine and her boyfriend Josh. Another spin through Phangnga Bay and it was time to button up the boat and head back to Santa Barbara for another 4 month work stint.
60 Photos
Created 22 January 2012
Annette's plastic cardboard fix allowed us to continue work despite the rain and we were able to launch after 2 months and 3 weeks. It's great to be out of the boatyard but we will miss all of our friends who we left behind, hoping we will see them on the water.
24 Photos
Created 29 December 2011
We discovered on our last trip that the boat pounds quite a bit when going to windward due to the flat bottoms on the hulls. The boat has a unique contruction in that the hull and deck both come from the same mold. The deck is just flipped uside down over the hull and they are joined down the middle. A clever idea, but it turns our what makes a good deck does not necesarily make a good hull. We also found that the Thai workers had sanded the hulls a bit too thin in some areas which allowed water into the core when the boat was working. Ungood. Our solution was to see if we couldn't improve things by adding a bit of "vee" to the forward sections of the hulls to help with the pounding and encase the whole mess in a layer of glass with a proper barrier coat of epoxy for the leaks. A side benefit is that we get a "minikeel" encased in the vee so that we can beach the boat if need be. It also would provide a crash compartment along the length of the bottom. We hauled out in the village of Chebilang outside of Satun in southern Thailand and dug in. The yard is on the rustic side and is used by the local fishing boats and ferry companies, but it is endlessly fascinating and the staff are very accomodating. We will also be doing work to the interior, adding bunks and a head, making spare rudders, working on the mast and fixing up the forward cockpit.
57 Photos
Created 18 September 2011
We came back from Thailand to meet our shipment coming ocean freight from Long Beach. 2 pallets of wire, rope, tools, materials and toys. Once we picked it up I was able to install the 12 volt electrical system which freed us from shore power. Now we are able to work on the boat at anchor and have been taking advantage by exploring the Langkawi Archipelago as we put the boat together.
24 Photos
Created 15 March 2011
A quick root canal and we headed back to Phangnga bay to pick up where we left off.
50 Photos
Created 26 January 2011
Between dentist appointments we took a spin up into Phangnga Bay for a couple of days. We were surprised to find a lot of solitude here as it is high season and a popular destination. There were a lot of tour boats but from 4pm to 10am we had even the most popular anchorages to ourselves.
24 Photos
Created 26 January 2011
As the major construction on the boat progressed, it occurred to me that I could move things along a bit by building some of the smaller bits at home and shipping them to Thailand. Even with shipping costs this saved a lot of time and money. We had rented a small cottage in Carpinteria that had an attached deck. Sabine lived in a tent on the deck and I set up a work area under some tarps supported by bamboo next to the tent. It worked out really well and I was able to build the dagger boards, rudders and rudder drums, hatch bases, stanchion supports, trampoline supports, nav station, galley and steps down into the hulls. After we launched in March, 2010 we had to return to SB to work for 7 months. We were living on our Catalina 30 in SB Harbor to save money but I was able to build a refrigerator/freezer, settee, lavanette, cabin beams, battery box and other small bits right there on the dock. I was not popular with the next door neighbor but again, it worked out well.
45 Photos
Created 9 January 2011
Just after the New Year we went back to phuket to get some dental work done and see Phang Nga Bay, which we had to skip the first time around. We had great sailing, taking 3 days to do the 160 miles to Yacht Haven Marina at the north end of Phuket. We had broad reaching conditions the whole way and got to put the boat through her paces.
11 Photos
Created 7 January 2011
Once launched we had to take the boat out of the country as the visa had expired. We took a week to leisurely sail down to Langkawi, the first stop in Malaysia. The boat was nowhere near ready to sail but you do what you have to do. There was no electrical system, plumbing or furniture. I had pre-fabbed the nav station and galley in SB and shipped it to Thailand, but it was still in the crates. The boat did motor well, though and we got to sail a bit, at one time doing 9.4 knots in about 16 knots of wind. Once in Langkawi we had to haul out again after only 2 weeks as there were some leaks around the daggerboard cases. We were now out of money so we had to return to SB where we got our old jobs back and worked for seven months.
44 Photos
Created 24 December 2010
After over 4 years in the boatyard, countless setbacks, redoes and hand wringing we quit our jobs and flew to Phuket New Years day, 2010 for the final push to get the boat in the water. The date was not arbitrary. The boat's visa ran out March 27, so we had less than 3 months to get the boat in the water and out of Thailand or customs would impound it. The worklist included fabricating and installing fuel tanks, installing the engines and controls, installing the hydraulic steering, glassing in the rudder drums, building a mast step, painting, rigging and stepping the mast, building and hanging doors, making and installing windows and hatches, installing the trampolines and all the deck hardware, scuppers, and prepping and painting the boat. This is just a partial list but gives an idea of what we set ourselves up for. We rented an apartment in the marina and got to work. In the end we were able to slip out of Thailand 2 on March 29, two days late, but who's counting.
37 Photos
Created 24 December 2010
From August 2006 to December 2009 the boat was on the hardstand at The Boat Lagoon in Phuket Thailand for a complete refit. As we had to stay home and work to pay for it we had contractors do the work under the supervision of a Marine Surveyor. I would send plans and money and visit the boat for a week or 2 every 4-6 months.
50 Photos
Created 16 December 2010
We bought this boat "as is" in January 2005. The idea was to replaces some bulkheads, do some hull repairs and sail it back to California to finish. After over 30 years around boats I knew better but what can you do? These are the "before" pictures. As you view the photos try to imagine the sweet tang of mildew and cockroach scat and the delicate sound of millions of tiny termite jaws feasting on the bulkheads.
13 Photos
Created 4 December 2010