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Old 05-11-2010, 01:20   #31
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Originally Posted by dana-tenacity View Post
Hey I just noticed senior cruiser under my name, what's with that? I'm just a baby at 54.
My sentiments exactly ... that's why I made up my own.
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Old 05-11-2010, 01:57   #32
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I don’t like writing posts that will delay people getting out and cruising. It’s a great life and I have seen too many people wait too long until sadly they are unable to pursue the dream, or have to give up due to ill health.
However I would rethink the idea of going without a main engine.
I spent a couple of months living on the boat with an engine failure. Including a long blue water passage to get the engine fixed. Engineless sounds romantic, but the reality is most of the time its just scary.
My yacht sails well in light air and I have a fair bit of sailing experience, but there are a lot of situations where things become difficult
Consider the following scenarios as an example.
A crowded anchorage (and crowded in the med means a boat every few boat lengths) and the anchor drags in the middle of the night.
You are in a busy shipping area at night the wind dies completely and the latest forecast says fog is expected (this one actually happened in the two months)
These are only a couple of routine situations become a nightmare without an engine.

If you are going engineless and have an outboard. as others have suggested fit a bracket for it .( I have towed my own 47 foot yacht and others surprising well in light conditions with the tender and only a 5Hp outboard. I have just finished making an emergency outboard bracket for my yacht to be tested in the next few days)
However if you are looking to save money ditch the outboard for the tender and keep the main engine.
Good luck. Get out and live the dream, but as you are only 24, consider working a bit longer to get a reliable main engine. It wont cost much to run if you leave with it in good condition.
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Old 05-11-2010, 03:34   #33
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Old 05-11-2010, 04:50   #34
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Originally Posted by pressuredrop View Post
Jim i always appreciate your perspective since you have been out there a while, thanks, i will touch all those points now...

i am 24, ive been sailing since i was 10, i cut my teeth racing opti's for years and then lasers, i was always at the top of my class, and won many a regatta (got a rack of trophies to prove it) because i knew how to use the current to my advantage, just some innate ability i suppose. i have been working on (rebuilding) boats since i was 14 and when i finally set off on my allied seawind i will have done 100% of everything myself... i am confident in my boat and my abilities, hopefully not overly so...

PD, I certainly didn't mean to dis your sailing skills, but the realities of getting in and out of atoll passes (and many other difficult entrances) under sail might still be overwhelming. We've also found that many such passes have peculiar current patterns that will confound a vessel trying to tack in or out. And interestingly, I find that the very clear water in coral reef areas makes it harder to "read" the currents.

now why the engine must go.

for me, cruising is not a 2 or 3 year vacation and then i return to the real world, cruising is going to be my life, at least for the next 10-20 years. open ended passage making is the goal, i would like to see the world on my own terms, and spend as much time with as native a civilizations as possible, and learn what i can from them so i never have to return to this wretched cluster**** we call society

Well, we too are in it for the long haul, and have learned much from the indigenous populations of the South Pacific. Many of the places we've had the best interactions with the locals were ones that would be quite difficult to sail in and out of

motoring down the ICW is not my idea of cruising...

Too right, mate!

now not being on any real schedule, i am not so concerned about the doldrums, if im adrift for a week, so be it, wind will come eventually. my boat is 30' x 9.25', narrow and heavy, she is made to sail, and when there is wind she will, and when there isnt she wont.

I can agree with the ability to sail through the doldrums... we've done it a couple of times. This does not address the issue of getting out of the way of merchant/fishing vessels when becalmed. PD, this is a NON-trivial consideration, but something that comes up surprisingly often. You surely do not need to retain your inboard engine if you don't want to, but having a means of moving the boat sans wind is pretty important. And yes, even a tiny outboard will suffice for such situations, or possibly a long sweep or sculling oar... but ya gotta have something.


removing the engine not only frees up space for more water tankage, there is also the increase in performance achieved with a true steamlined hull with no appendeges

True, but not huge improvements in performance... and the outboard solution does not interfere with these conditions, nor would the oars


i know how cheap i can live, and i will not leave until the boat is 100% (new standing and running rigging, new sails)
i finally realized that i can go allot cheaper and allot sooner if i simplify simplify simplify
plan is to sail around aimlessly and when i need some money stop somewhere and work with my requisite skills...
i could rebuild the engine and have all the requisite spares, or i could buy a new suit of sails (which i will need anyways before i go), ill go with the sails...

if i do have an engine i will hardly ever use it, then when i decide to use it because im too lazy to sail off of a lee shore, well surely the fuel filters will clog up and now im back where i started...

PD, here you are making some shaky assumptions to bolster your argument! Not valid...


only time i ever plan to get near a dock is every few years for haul out...

I feel a bit mean for bringing this up, but especially if you are engineless, having a VERY clean bottom is critical. You ain't gonna get away with painting every few years, mate!


makes sense to me, guess im feeling lucky, now remind me again why its not possible

So PD, I'm not trying to tell you that you must retain your inboard engine (although I think I would in your place), but I reckon that having some means of moving the boat in calm conditions is imperative. Give it some thought...

Cheers,

Jim and Ann s/v Insatiable II lying Gladstone Qld Oz southbound
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Old 05-11-2010, 10:08   #35
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Thanks for all the feed back guys, the med is not high on my priority list, i will intentionally seek out uncrowded anchorages, i plan to build/aquire a sculling oar, i reckon that and the dinghy motor will do just fine...

i would rather spend my time and dollars on ensuring that my rig and sails are 1000% then justify their marginality by having an engine in the event of their failure

common sense says i will not leave a port until the forecast calls for sufficient winds for a few days to get me well out to sea, shorter island hops will be done when sufficient wind for a sufficient duration is forecast, when there is no wind, as they say in nicaragua "mucho take it easy man", i will also be sure to steer clear of all the major shipping lanes...

anything else gentlemen?
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Old 05-11-2010, 10:11   #36
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and since you guys like what if situations pertaining to enginelessness...

suppose i do have an engine and i motor into a desolate atoll that would be impossible to sail into or out from, then when i go to leave the motor dies, maybe better to have not gone there in the first place...
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Old 05-11-2010, 10:36   #37
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there was a site dedicated to this called the oarclub. I just tried to find it in my old bookmarks but it is linkdead. the founder wrote a book on the topic of engineless sailing.

cheers,
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Old 05-11-2010, 11:52   #38
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Originally Posted by pressuredrop View Post
and since you guys like what if situations pertaining to enginelessness...

suppose i do have an engine and i motor into a desolate atoll that would be impossible to sail into or out from, then when i go to leave the motor dies, maybe better to have not gone there in the first place...
Exactly! Have a plan B.
An engine is an extra safety, only as long as you have the skills to handle your yacht without it, and don't assume that the engine will start next time you push the starter button.

pressuredrop, I like your plans, don't be discouraged. BTDT!
Good Luck!

More atolls than you think are accessible under sail, I've been to 25 -30 atolls, ...engine-less..
A few observations.
*An outgoing current, off course not to strong, is generally a good thing. A tidal race with overfall's and rough seas is often present at the entrance, but very often in a limited area that can be avoided. An outgoing current always gives you a way back out again. Slow your boat down to less speed than the current and you drift back out again still in control. A following current that sets you towards coral heads or shallows is not very "pleasant". Many times the critical part is between the inner end of the pass and the lagoon proper.
*Some passes always have an outgoing current, and tides generally are not reliable. Depending on the hight of seas and swell and the hight and layout of the surrounding reefs and "motus" the lagoon fills up with water that has to go somewhere.
*Know your boat, know your own sailing limitations. What is the minimum width of a channel that you can tack up? Any chance of missing a tack with your yacht? What is your plan B in such a case?
*Never commit yourself to enter before actually having a careful look around. Have a plan B.
*Have your anchor ready to go!

A few comments on passes in French Polynesia, just as examples.
Raroia: Pass facing East but wide enough to beat into... 2 cables, Strong outgoing current mostly tidal.
Makemo: East pasage is no problem. West passage OK to leave from the lagoon side.
Fakarava: Both Passes OK to enter an leave. The Northern pass is very wide, a non event really. The Southern is narrow in places and a bit trickier.
Rangiroa: Two sail-able passes quite close together with slightly different axis.

Takaroa is a good example of a pass you better give a miss.

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Old 05-11-2010, 13:05   #39
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I was in your same situation only a few years ago, but with a pearson vanguard instead. I practiced sailing into the marina, up the icw, and everywhere that I could. My reasoning was that the A-4 wasn't going to be worth using much at all. In the end I decided that when it was time I'd just put in a one lung yanmar or kubota engine in just to move the boat seeing as the useable power from the single diesels would have been roughly the same as the A-4. I wanted to have the engine for battery charging and entering the places where sailing wasn't going to happen. As you can see I've since upgraded and now have the 2nd generation of your boat, again I'd still prefer to short tack up a channel but the crew revolts from "excessive grinding"
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Old 05-11-2010, 17:08   #40
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suppose i do have an engine and i motor into a desolate atoll that would be impossible to sail into or out from, then when i go to leave the motor dies, maybe better to have not gone there in the first place...
Well, aside from the fact that there are not all that many desolate atols that you find accessible, with or without engine:

> the first thing is a diesel engine is not very likely to die on you,
> the second thing is an engine can be repaired,
> then there is the outflow,
> then maybe you can sail out too,
> or you can ask for a tow out from a local boat,
> or - from another cruiser.

Provided the other cruiser has a motor, which implies it will not be you helping others out.

I think the list of pros for a small inboard diesel is such a long one that going without, much as no doubt it can be done, seems the wrong decision if anybody's target destinations are atolls.

If your decision is to go without, I respect it. If you think you will make any converts here, good luck ;-)

b.
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Old 06-11-2010, 08:31   #41
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Originally Posted by pressuredrop View Post
and since you guys like what if situations pertaining to enginelessness...

suppose i do have an engine and i motor into a desolate atoll that would be impossible to sail into or out from, then when i go to leave the motor dies, maybe better to have not gone there in the first place...
That's simple,

Learn how to repair what you have, and keep parts. Not to mention you have raised your survival chances. I wonder why you even asked? Seems your mind is made up! You asked, and we answered, but all you seem to do is keep justifying your decision. Once again BEST WISHES in getting outthere with, or without an engine..........i2f
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Old 06-11-2010, 08:46   #42
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your right i have made up my mind, but i didnt ask if it was possible or a good idea (but you would think i did by the answers) i asked which atolls to seek out...
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Old 06-11-2010, 12:58   #43
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your right i have made up my mind, but i didnt ask if it was possible or a good idea (but you would think i did by the answers) i asked which atolls to seek out...
Well, I think I will disappoint you that the geography of atolls is such that the windward side is often lower because of constant wave action and in fact quite often there is a natural pass there but it is neither for the engineless nor for the fainthearted. Departure would be upwind and into rough water.

There is often another pass, or two, sometimes artificial, on the lee side - again, because the winward side tends to be lower and the ocean runs onto it, the outflow at the lee pass is often continuous (little or no inflow time). This is the side the cruisers tend to get in - because it is relatively easy to motor in against an outflow - in full control and relatively slow against the bottom (and any possible coral heads).

So, because of the nature of the atolls (and human activity), you will find 9/10 atolls to have only windward and leeward passes.

I remember Maupiti has a cross-wind pass. But one look at the chart and you will know why negotiating it without engine is a less than perfect proposition. I remember sailing in and out of Raiatea-Tahaa. It is also possible at Moorea, Huahine and Bora-Bora. However all the above are not proper atolls as they have tall islands in the lagoon. Such and island will influence local winds, so here again, having an engine is a good safety measure.

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Old 06-11-2010, 13:49   #44
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your right i have made up my mind, but i didnt ask if it was possible or a good idea (but you would think i did by the answers) i asked which atolls to seek out...
Twenty more atolls to sail into, and there are many more.
In some cases below, the biggest obstacle isn't the pass, but the "red tape" and bureaucracy involved.

French Polynesia:
Mopelia
Cook Islands:
Suwarrow
Penryn - Tongareva
Tuvalu:
Funafuti
Nukufetau
Kiribati:
Abemama
Tarawa
Abaiang
Butaritari
Micronesia:
Majuro
Wotje
Oroluk
Nomwin Atoll
Namonuito/ Pisaras I
Puluwat
Australia:
Cocos Keeling Island
British Indian Ocean Territory:
Salomon Island
Peros Banos
Diego Garcia
Egmont Islands
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Old 06-11-2010, 23:09   #45
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I think Fiji and the touomotos are out. Good luck and fair winds..
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