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Old 02-10-2017, 07:46   #1
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The "Phoenix Voyage"

Hi all. Unfortunately I have to abandoned my attenmpt to get my boat home to Canad. I was unable to get a berth while in Panama and the result was that she got flooded. The engine is a right off. The only other problem is some minor seeping at the gareboad seams. She is a 32ft wooden boat very well built in Iroko on traditional lines. It is impossible to get her shipped home from here and there is nowhere around that I can afford to have her hauled to do the work needed ($3k just to haul her for a month) so my only option is to strip off all the gear I can and abandon her. If there is anyone locally who can step in and claim her please send a PM. I will be working on her this week then heading home. As you can imagine I don't feel good about this and will ensure on pollution issues result but sometimes you just run out of options.
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Old 02-10-2017, 09:21   #2
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re: The "Phoenix Voyage"

So sorry to hear this, Roland.
Good luck going forward.
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Old 02-10-2017, 20:31   #3
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re: The "Phoenix Voyage"

Update
Things are looking up. I have been offered a new engine from one of the local liveaboard community. Going to measure up tomorrow and check it will go in but it's looking more hopeful.
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Old 02-10-2017, 21:11   #4
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re: The "Phoenix Voyage"

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Originally Posted by roland stockham View Post
Update
Things are looking up. I have been offered a new engine from one of the local liveaboard community. Going to measure up tomorrow and check it will go in but it's looking more hopeful.
Roland

Thread bump.

That engine shows us all what the community can do. There are plenty of forum members who want to hear more about your story. Can you share images as you work? Is your plan still to eventually sail to Canada? I can't say for sure but I strongly suspect there may be forum members who would want to help you. Many people want to learn to sail and might throw in some help preparing your boat. Wouldn't hurt to lay out your plans a little more and if you are open to further help.

Hoping this works out well for you !!
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Old 02-10-2017, 23:13   #5
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re: The "Phoenix Voyage"

Ok, here is a very brief history of my trip. I got Voya in 2000 pretty much as a bare hull. She was originally built to race in the English channel and I believe did take part in event such as the fastest but was then laid up for more than 15yrs. Wen I got her she had no electrics to speak of and wasn't set up for anything but flat out racing. I spent 5yrs completely refitting her as an expedition boat to sail places like the west coast of Scotland.
We got badly hammered in the housing crash and decided to emigrate to Canada. This all happened fairly fast to did not have that much time to prepare. So in 2010 my wife (who is. Canadian) flow out and I followed in the boat. I was a novice in terms of ocean sailing but had many years of costal and a bit of delivery stuff with plenty of bad weather experience including 50+ kns crossing Biscay in winter (yes that was a delivery!).
So all went OK as far as Portugal sailing solo. I had hoped to make Canarias but did not quite make before the end of the season. The following year I picked her up with a crew, sailed for the Canarias and the Atlantic crossing. We had a rough time as we cought the effects of Sandy about a week out, spent 10 day in 30-35kn but had big cross seas sweeping the deck. It stripped every bit of canvas off topsides and was so wet we even slept in oilskins. She had a small aft mast rigged like a yawl but also holding the radar, the tangs broke and we had to lower it. The other failures where the autopilot and nav computer, both due to water ingress. The cockpit was filling several time a day and spraying through the cracks. After Sandy we hit flat calm and had to hand steer for 900m motor sailing. Got in Christmas Eve and left her in the marina in St Lucia. I had planned to make the BVI but had to divert South to get any wind at all. Next season I went through the boat, checked everything and did a repaint as the weather had stripped the top coat on the bows and all the varnish.
The next leg was to Panama but that did not work out. We again has some strong wind but only in the twenties although with pretty steep waves and had problems with her wanting to surf and I had concerns about the stresses. Sure enough the main staring cable failed and left us adrift with Columbia as a close lee shore with shoals about 50m off and a rising gale as it got dark. Calle Aruba CG and they said the was a ship that was offering a tow. So choice, pick a tow at night in 30kn or Hove too an pray I could fix the steering on the morning before we went ashore. Given the chance of survival if we had washed up on an offshore bank in East Columbia I chose the tow. I was expecting a fishing boat but we got a large freighter. Brillant seamaship but they clipped us and ripped off the stantions down one side. The tow was a nightmare and the bowsprit got ripped out leaving the anchor flogging against the hull, we secured it but could not get it back on board and I got swept of the deck trying. Both pumps eventually burned out their switches and I spent the last several hour hand pumping 20min in the hour. Well we survived and hauled out in Aruba. The next season I spent on repairs including replacing the steering with a much stronger hydraulic system, new pumps and deck repairs. The hull was fine which was suprising given that it was hammered by a 35lb anchor for quite a while.
Set off the following year poor Panama aiming to get to Costa Rica. The trip to Panama was good and we made record 175m + on one day but then took more than a month to get through the Canal. By the time we got through it was May and the wind was very light. Three boat that had headed North where either floating around going nowhere or had had to head in to resupply. Also the starter was playing up badly so decided I was not prepared to risk it. Then I found there where no berth available. I mean literally nobody had a space at any price. I did manage to rent a mooring with someone to keep an eye on her, not good but all there was. When I got back home had more problem as my wife's job had packed up and our landlord has sold the house so we had to move! So the short stay in Panama turned into a longer one. All was fine for a while but then something went wrong with the pumps and she flooded. I flew down and fixed the pumps and set up a genny so the boatsitter could charge the batteries as a temporary step as I was in the middle of a course and could not move her for another six weeks. When I got back it was to find that the engine was a write off batteries about dead and still nowhere practical to work on her or even get her hauled. I discovered the the leaks where from the garboad seams probably the result of all the heavy weather. So seamed that I had an useawory boat, nowhere to work on her and the pumps using more power than the solar panels could supply given the state of the batteries. I was ready to salvage what gear I could and let her sink.
When I told the guy that had been watching her what I was planning he came up with the offer of an engine. Quite old but a good runner when it came out. He had removed it for someone who wanted more power. I have also been offered the use of the ferry jetty to work on her so providing this engine will fit I looks like the crisis may be solvable. I am really looking forward to getting back to places that have services! Cruising is one thing but a 10,000m delivery is quite different.
So that's my tale. If I can get her seaworthy the plan is to head up the coast in stages until I get home hopefully with some safe places to leave her when I have to go back to work. Probably Costa Rica next then Mexico and San Francisco.
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Old 03-10-2017, 09:33   #6
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re: The "Phoenix Voyage"

When you get to San Francisco, let us know, Roland. You and your wife deserve a toast for keeping it all together for so long and so well. All the best to you on the repower. I wish you well and Godspeed back home.
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Old 03-10-2017, 10:05   #7
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re: The "Phoenix Voyage"

Quote:
Originally Posted by roland stockham View Post
Ok, here is a very brief history of my trip. I got Voya in 2000 ... Cruising is one thing but a 10,000m delivery is quite different.
So that's my tale. If I can get her seaworthy the plan is to head up the coast in stages until I get home hopefully with some safe places to leave her when I have to go back to work. Probably Costa Rica next then Mexico and San Francisco.
Wow! What a tale, Roland! More power to you (pun intended) for all of the patience and determination. Best of luck on the repower.
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Old 03-10-2017, 17:06   #8
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re: The "Phoenix Voyage"

Hi, Roland,

Good luck with it, it seems like she's really a nice boat, and glad you can work out the re-power. It's still quite a long passage you have left to do: I wish you fair winds for it.

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Old 03-10-2017, 17:34   #9
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re: The "Phoenix Voyage"

Just to add my luck ,,, and admiration of your tenacity in the face of such adversity .
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Old 04-10-2017, 22:52   #10
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re: The "Phoenix Voyage"

Wow! That IS an amazing tale! And I thought it was bad when I had to replace a through-hull!
I hope you will let us know when you are in the southern California area too. And it's true, keep us posted, there are many of us who may be able to help all along the way!
By the way, shall we change the name of the thread now???
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Old 05-10-2017, 06:21   #11
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re: The "Phoenix Voyage"

Yes perhaps we should change the tread name but don't know how to do that. Thanks for all the support it really does make a difference just to her it. As you can imagine this week has been something of an emotional rollercoaster. I will certainly keep letting you know how I am doing. The main thing that will help getting North is if anyone is able to keep an eye on the boat at times. I am not going to be able to do the rest in one go and so far the problem has been getting boat sitters who actually understand cruising boats. Just simple stuff like how to keep a battery charged or what to do if a pump switch failed.
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Old 05-10-2017, 07:04   #12
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re: The "Phoenix Voyage"

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Originally Posted by roland stockham View Post
Yes perhaps we should change the tread name but don't know how to do that...
Don (or any Mod') can do that for you/us.
Why don't you suggest a title?
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Old 05-10-2017, 09:29   #13
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re: The "Phoenix Voyage"

[QUOTE=roland stockham;2492897]
Quote:
.....The main thing that will help getting North is if anyone is able to keep an eye on the boat at times. I am not going to be able to do the rest in one go and so far the problem has been getting boat sitters who actually understand cruising boats. Just simple stuff like how to keep a battery charged or what to do if a pump switch failed.
Just let us know where and when. With the flexibility to port my work, but some upcoming commitments, I'm good for boat sitting probably anywhere between Monterey and Mendocino when you get her this far north. Definitely between San Francisco and Half Moon Bay would be no problem at all. Good luck!!
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Old 05-10-2017, 11:23   #14
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re: The "Phoenix Voyage"

The cruiser marina in Golfito, CR will watch your boat while it's on a mooring right in front of the marina office. It looks like a protected area.
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Old 05-10-2017, 19:59   #15
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re: The "Phoenix Voyage"

Just let us know what you want the new title to be and we'll change it! I bet we could think of some good possible titles too!
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