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Old 31-07-2013, 09:58   #91
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Re: Regret to Inform Have Lost my Boat off Honduras...

With tongue firmly in cheek I ask myself WWJD?

He would walk home. (Sorry it had to be said)
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Old 31-07-2013, 10:01   #92
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Re: Regret to Inform Have Lost my Boat off Honduras...

We spent a month in Roatan in March 2013. The island of Roatan, although Honduran province, is about as far right of the mainland as possible. The locals are in much better shape than the mainland population financially and living conditions are much better. The island survives on tourism and they are about as helpful as you can get.

Unfortunately, the Honduran Government is a different story....The country is broke and the mainland population is about as poor as you get in Central America, with one of the highest homicide rates in the world.

One thing is for sure, when the Honduran Government reported they had no gas... I believe them.

When we were on Roatan four months ago, the Honduran Police Department in Roatan, had three police cars sitting in their parking lots with flat tires or mechanical problems and did not have the money to repair them. Local Roatan Security Guards made almost twice the wages as a Federal Police Officers of Honduras, which sort of put things in perspective.

Another thing for sure... If the boat does drifts onto the mainland of Honduras, it will be stripped by the people there. Another cruiser was pirated by locals last year, although the owner was released unharmed, his vessel was stripped and abandoned.

This also brings another story to mind... When we were in El Salvador, there was a sailboat moored in Bahia Del Sol that belonged to the first El Salvadorian Sailor to circumnavigate. When he triumphantly returned to El Salvador, their Navy was unable to escort him into the Bay, because they had no fuel.

I am sorry to hear this happened, but unfortunately in the third world, rescue is not always possible.
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Old 31-07-2013, 10:09   #93
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Re: Regret to Inform Have Lost my Boat off Honduras...

Westmarine have a product similar to the Baja Filter that is much cheaper and really does work.

WEST MARINE 006_180_003_517 at West Marine
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Old 31-07-2013, 10:54   #94
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Re: Regret to Inform Have Lost my Boat off Honduras...

Mr. Funnel, the 15 gpm unit is $50

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Old 31-07-2013, 11:07   #95
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Re: Regret to Inform Have Lost my Boat off Honduras...

A lesson learned from this tragedy...1) If there was a gasoline powered Honda generator on board, it probably would have saved the day. Unfortunately, hind sight is always on target. I wouldn't sail long crossings without one. (Disclaimer: Not affiliated with Honda, in any capacity.); 2) A sewing repair kit, for sails, would have also stabilized the situation, and 3) A cell phone that covered the area, would have been a life savior. <Three items added to my list...must have prior to circumnavigation, around $5K USD.>

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Old 31-07-2013, 11:16   #96
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Re: Regret to Inform Have Lost my Boat off Honduras...

I'm laughing at all the West Marine/Baja filter references in this thread. Happily I'm old enough to remember the genesis of this "filter". It was created by motorists and boaters in the 50s-60s who traveled the Baja Peninsula. In those days there was usually only gasoline and diesel available in 55gal drums; rusty, filthy, water-filled drums. The very first "Baja filters" were chamois skins, carried on board in an old coffee can. When time to fuel, the chamois was wrapped around the fill nozzle to trap rust and wick water, before it went into your tank. When you were done fueling up you rang them out and returned them to their coffee can. They weren't perfect filters or separators but kept most of the junk out of you tank.

My post here has a modest point, that improvisation is the hallmark of all who successfully go on the path less traveled, whether turning a sheep skin into a filter or patching a sail with duct tape and salon cushion cloth.
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Old 31-07-2013, 11:18   #97
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SySerenity, I'm sorry for this outcome but thank you for sharing your experience. I'm glad you survived to tell the tale.

As crazy as it sounds a roll of duct (aka duck) tape may have helped you limp in. It is ridiculous and has many stereotypes but can hold some strange things together in a pinch. I keep several rolls in board for those times. It's ugly and about as ridiculous a solution as possible but may help if there is a next time.

Agreed on the Mr Funnel. The lower gpm units are hard to use at a fast flowing pump. Buy the higher rated ones for ease and less mess.

Fair winds!
SC
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Old 31-07-2013, 11:19   #98
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Re: Regret to Inform Have Lost my Boat off Honduras...

First of all, condolences to the OP on the loss of his boat, and a sincere "Thank you" for sharing your experience.



I'd just like to comment on the issue of water in fuel...

I had one of the West Marine "baja" type funnels on board when we were cruising, but after using it a couple of times, I was really put off by the amount of time it took to pass 60-70 gallons through it. The delay wasn't very popular with the fuel dock attendants or folks waiting behind me, either. I quit using it for that reason.

I came up with a pretty simple idea to tell me if I had a potential water-in-fuel problem. I attached an outboard gas tank hose with squeeze bulb to a length of copper tubing long enough to reach the bottom of my diesel tank. After each fill-up, and after the fuel had a chance to settle, I squeeze-pumped a sample from the bottom into a plastic jar so I could see if there was any water.

I was pretty lucky, because in the whole time we were cruising, I never saw any water, but if there had been any, the squeeze pump would have easily removed it.
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Old 31-07-2013, 11:20   #99
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Re: Regret to Inform Have Lost my Boat off Honduras...

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Originally Posted by rebel heart View Post
Look this is going to sound really harsh but some people just aren't cut out to be sailors.
I have to agree. Anyone so totally dependent on his engine really shouldn't be out there. Cruisers need to be able to fix problems as they happen. If a bad tank of fuel is enough to force one to abandon a sailboat 18nm from land, then that someone needs to take up a new hobby.
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Old 31-07-2013, 11:23   #100
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Re: Regret to Inform Have Lost my Boat off Honduras...

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A lesson learned from this tragedy...1) If there was a gasoline powered Honda generator on board, it probably would have saved the day. Unfortunately, hind sight is always on target. I wouldn't sail long crossings without one. (Disclaimer: Not affiliated with Honda, in any capacity.); 2) A sewing repair kit, for sails, would have also stabilized the situation, and 3) A cell phone that covered the area, would have been a life savior. <Three items added to my list...must have prior to circumnavigation, around $5K USD.>

Mauritz
The generator and gas to power it takes up precious space on a small boat. You don't even need a gasoline-powered generator to power a gps and the VHF. A solar panel would likely have been enough of a supplement. He actually had a wind generator that failed, so you're talking backup to a backup.

The sewing kit/sail repair kit and cell phone clearly should be on the short list, but likely the cell phone wouldn't have the range in this situation.
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Old 31-07-2013, 11:30   #101
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Re: Regret to Inform Have Lost my Boat off Honduras...

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Another factor is the rigors of solo sailing.
I think this has a lot to do with it. Everything is MUCH harder without some kind of help. It takes quite a bit of experience to overcome the fear.

Good suggestions on backups and alternatives to avoid/mitigate this situation.

I thank the OP for reported his loss, you will recover and sail again.
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Old 31-07-2013, 11:35   #102
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Re: Regret to Inform Have Lost my Boat off Honduras...

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SySerenity, I'm sorry for this outcome but thank you for sharing your experience. I'm glad you survived to tell the tale.

As crazy as it sounds a roll of duct (aka duck) tape may have helped you limp in. It is ridiculous and has many stereotypes but can hold some strange things together in a pinch. I keep several rolls in board for those times. It's ugly and about as ridiculous a solution as possible but may help if there is a next time.

Agreed on the Mr Funnel. The lower gpm units are hard to use at a fast flowing pump. Buy the higher rated ones for ease and less mess.

Fair winds!
SC
Gorilla tape. Resistant to the sun and weather. I use it in place of expensive rig wrap sold in the chandleries. Used to hold together the torn leech on my jib and for temporary spot sail repair. Useful when conditions make impracticable repair with thread and needle.
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Old 31-07-2013, 11:43   #103
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Re: Regret to Inform Have Lost my Boat off Honduras...

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Plus you can't discount the fact that relatively simple tasks - changing filters or stitching sails, for example - are multiple times more difficult when wallowing around in a seaway. In big seas, it may be near impossible to even make a cup of coffee!
One thing which I applaud OP for is bleeding the engine when at sea - some things you only fully understand how unpleasant and difficult and tiring a PITA they are by actually doing, and bleeding an engine at sea is one of them. I take my hat off for doing that multiple times - that would not have been pleasant, especially as would take someone with a stomach made of iron not to get at least a touch of the Mal de Mer, if not far more!

Also I think one learning point not mentioned already is that some countries do not have or are unable to despatch the rescue services that folks in the west get accustomed to having as back up. That is a norm which one has to accepted and plan around.....you may well end up being rescued, just likely will take a while longer than at "home" and not by any coastguard and instead relying on folks passing through (aka luck).
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Old 31-07-2013, 12:12   #104
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Re: Regret to Inform Have Lost my Boat off Honduras...



Mistakes
It could be that the purpose of your life is only to serve as a warning to others.
[from www.despair.com ]

The phrase comes to mind "There but for the grace of god, go I." Those who have lucked out or averted disaster, raise their hands. Empathy can be a good thing.

Or there's the old verse about "for want of a nail the kingdom was lost".

When folks pop up out of nowhere and say "I want to buy a boat and sail around the world" this is the kind of incident that shows very much why some of us would say to put the dream on hold for a year. Water in the fuel? Doesn't just happen unless something breaks. With experience and maybe luck, one should learn that deck fills have o-rings that need to be replaced sooner or later. Or, that fuel from no source can be trusted unless you've got tow coverage.

Torn sail? Right, that's a problem with not having a deck watch, one guy can't be everywhere and that means things may go unobserved. A second crew could have stayed on deck and might have cuaght that.

Or, a repair kit. Even a tube of glue or caulk and a strip of cloth.

But if you just grab a horse and take a ride...odds are you won't know about horseshoes, or the nails that hold them in, and there goes the kingdom. A very expensive lesson from the School of Hard Knocks. I've made mistakes and will continue to make mistakes so I empathize with the OP, but there IS a lesson to be learned here, and surviving the learning curve can be a good thing.

And those folks do have some pretty clever posters and post cards.
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Old 31-07-2013, 12:27   #105
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Re: Regret to Inform Have Lost my Boat off Honduras...

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I have to agree. Anyone so totally dependent on his engine really shouldn't be out there. Cruisers need to be able to fix problems as they happen. If a bad tank of fuel is enough to force one to abandon a sailboat 18nm from land, then that someone needs to take up a new hobby.
Was there a spare set of sails onboard the boat?

also, was the mainsail ok?

I just wonder because there are times I have gone out before and did not feel like hoisting my jib, so just hoisted the main. Other times running I decided to just hoist the jib.
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