27 February 2020
Uproar sipped diesel like a virgin sips beer on a first date!
My passage from Fakarava to Tahiti turned out to be just a motorboat ride. Still, it was 250 miles of open ocean and my first solo passage of this length. Wind was very light or non-existent as forecast. That also meant the seas were pretty flat. There was a swell from the south that was impressively large to view, about 2 meters. But it had such a long period between swells, I could not even feel Uproar undulating with the passage of the crests. There was a little roll from leftover wind chop but not bad!
That left the passage up to Dr Diesel's fantastic Yanmar 4JH2E, 50 hp. And it ran perfectly for the 50 hours at 5 knots. This engine is 25 years old and never misses a beat. Knock on wood, I have not had to replace or repair any part of this engine in the 10 years we have owned Uproar.
Back to fuel economy, Uproar got 10 nautical miles/gallon on the passage. That's about 11 MPG on land. Not great for a car or truck but Uproar weighs 22,000 pounds! We used to own a 1973 Cadillac Fleetwood stretch limo that got 11 MPG, city or highway. And it did need some tlc to keep it running.
Thanks to technology, I got plenty of sleep too. Radar and AIS (radio ship collision avoidance system) gave me a clear view of who was out there. I encountered only one boat. AIS accurately told me the closest point of approach was 2 miles, no worry. Our Raymarine chart plotter transmitted the screen via wifi to my Samsung tablet. I could lie in bed and watch the instruments for traffic. I slept an hour or two at a time, would wake up and take a look and go back to sleep.
But remind me not to buy a powerboat for cruising! With wind in the sails, Uproar is held steady in the wind chop. With no sails up she rolls a bit. Again this was not bad but I'm used to a different ride. Plus, the drone of the diesel drowns out the delightful hiss and gurgle of wind and waves.