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Old 18-12-2009, 06:21   #16
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but the weather patterns Ive been watching the last month dont seem to follow a pattern so getting any protection there seems just as likely as unlikely.
That is - the wind and waves of course generally come from between Italy and Tunis - but they seem to be 50/50 if they head towards Crete, or down towards Africa...

The West Med though seems of greatest concern. There have been some nasties that come of France and go down towards Algeria recently.

But in short - we plan to stay far from land in the open sea as much possible...
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Old 18-12-2009, 06:32   #17
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That is - the wind and waves of course generally come from between Italy and Tunis - but they seem to be 50/50 if they head towards Crete, or down towards Africa...

The West Med though seems of greatest concern. There have been some nasties that come of France and go down towards Algeria recently.

But in short - we plan to stay far from land in the open sea as much possible...
I agree watch out for that wind coming off of the French, Spain border area I came from Ibisa to Tunisia one year in November and had 50-60 knots at my back at times so your gonna be heading into this possably, just have a plan so if things do get ugly you know you can turn around and go with it- to a port in Algeria/Tunisia-I wish you good luck, you know there are many places in Sicly and Greece where you could stay the winter and no one would ask for papers, if thats the problum
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Old 18-12-2009, 06:39   #18
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In the past, you have dismissed what a few of us have identified as the significant risk of doing a series of tough passages with an unfamiliar boat, so that point is perhaps not worth raising again...but in your shoes, that would be my Concern #1. Good surveyors miss things (anyone pulled and examined the gooseneck pin?) and crew may not check all the things they even think about (who has run his/her hands carefully over the inaccessible sections of the engine hoses?). Stuff happens (e.g. wiring on used boats is always a bit of a mystery), spares probably are not complete (nor tools), and while all of us wish you a surprisingly swift and non-destructive run, keeping the boat 100% will I suspect be a challenge, given the conditions you'll be seeing.

If you are thinking about building a list of VHF wx f'casts, I'd encourage you to broaden your thinking a bit and consider how you will stay abreast of the synoptic picture (which in the Med especially is complex and ever-changing). VHF f'casts are going to discuss regional/local conditions moreso than the big picture. Are you leaving with a working SSB and the ability to download wxfax & text f'casts? Do you have the freqs & times written down? Are you carrying a Navtex receiver that really works (the cheaper ones are less reliable)? No need to brief us on what plans you've put in place, but I'd suggest you have multiple options for wx downloading offshore in hand before you tackle the first leg (Med), which I agree is the (only major) challenge.

Berthing has always been a bit of a challenge in Gib, so I'd call ahead to confirm a reservation, and have the Almerimar - Lagos leg in my mind as an alternative. In fact, both those locations provide total protection if waiting out a blow and that would be my preferred leg. Gib berths suck in a blow and who wants to be stuck behind the breakwater in the Lalinea anchorage?

Once you've made it to the S Iberian coast, I think you're home free and will find the departure & run down to the Canaries relatively easy to plan and execute...after which sun burn may well become your primary concern. <g>

Good luck on both the weather and the boat. Here's hoping I'm just being pessimistic.

Jack

Edit add: Just saw your exchange with Ram. I really can't believe that you are accepting crew legal limitations that will keep you out of a needed harbor of refuge. Dump that crew member and give the rest of your crew and your boat a decent range of options. That really doesn't make sense.

Having said that, as Ram points out, there are at least anchorages (and even some harbors) where you can wait out a storm without needing to provide paperwork. But I'd reconsider painting myself into the corner of having no legal options to stop at a any needed harbor where repairs can be obtained from Turkey to the Canaries. That sounds like a decision arrived at in desperation rather than one where safety is paramount.
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Old 18-12-2009, 06:46   #19
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I agree watch out for that wind coming off of the French, Spain border area I came from Ibisa to Tunisia one year in November and had 50-60 knots at my back at times so your gonna be heading into this possably, just have a plan so if things do get ugly you know you can turn around and go with it- to a port in Algeria/Tunisia-I wish you good luck, you know there are many places in Sicly and Greece where you could stay the winter and no one would ask for papers, if thats the problum
We absolutely can go backwards in a storm if need be. So long as we get out of here, once we are on our way there is no hurry and safety will be the prime directive. I'd love to know where those ports might be.. not for us to stay but maybe to shelter in a storm. As I said we have definite passport issues in the EU.... But it would be nice to have a place in case of emergency...
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Old 18-12-2009, 06:47   #20
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We absolutely can go backwards in a storm if need be. So long as we get out of here, once we are on our way there is no hurry and safety will be the prime directive. I'd love to know where those ports might be.. not for us to stay but maybe to shelter in a storm. As I said we have definite passport issues in the EU.... But it would be nice to have a place in case of emergency...
I will PM you
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Old 18-12-2009, 07:03   #21
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In the past, you have dismissed what a few of us have identified as the significant risk of doing a series of tough passages with an unfamiliar boat, so that point is perhaps not worth raising
Don't think I've dismissed them. We've done all we can to investigate the boats and chosen the best one we could. It's a boat that well known and was used in many regattas and races, as well as a crewed charter. Several of those helping us inspect boats know and have sailed the boat and know its seller well. There is always a risk, but we believe given the circumstances its a good solid boat. And at least 1 of our crew knows the boat well, so thats good of course.


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again...but in your shoes, that would be my Concern #1.
If thats your biggest concern, I already feel better. Because its the storms in the West Med that concern me a bit. So unpredictable at times...

Quote:
Good surveyors miss things (anyone pulled and examined the gooseneck pin?) and crew may not check all the things they even think about (who has run his/her hands carefully over the inaccessible sections of the engine hoses?). Stuff happens (e.g. wiring on used boats is always a bit of a mystery), spares probably are not complete (nor tools), and while all of us wish you a surprisingly swift and non-destructive run, keeping the boat 100% will I suspect be a challenge, given the conditions you'll be seeing.
I plan to have an resinspection of the rigging again just because Im paranoid, that seems to be a big point of failure on many passages in rough weather, and also a very dangerous one. Engine is serviced, but we don't plan to use it so its not as critical. I'm a strong believer in only using engines in marinas, and we wont be visiting them except under great duress, which of course the engine would be useful then....

Quote:
If you are thinking about building a list of VHF wx f'casts, I'd encourage you to broaden your thinking a bit and consider how you will stay abreast of the synoptic picture (which in the Med especially is complex and ever-changing). VHF f'casts are going to discuss regional/local conditions moreso than the big picture. Are you leaving with a working SSB and the ability to download wxfax & text f'casts? Do you have the freqs & times written down? Are you carrying a Navtex receiver that really works (the cheaper ones are less reliable)? No need to brief us on what plans you've put in place, but I'd suggest you have multiple options for wx downloading offshore in hand before you tackle the first leg (Med), which I agree is the (only major) challenge.
This is a big challenge. The boat has radar, chartplotter and VHF now. At minimum I want to add SSB. And likely more.. but its winter here and a lot of the marine suppliers are closed so our choice is more limited than normal. But I definitely consider this a high priority and am working to outfit it with such equipment. Ive several list of frequencies and times, but many are dated so Im still seeking more current ones. Navtex wfax of course being important on my list.

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Berthing has always been a bit of a challenge in Gib, so I'd call ahead to confirm a reservation, and have the Almerimar - Lagos leg in my mind as an alternative. In fact, both those locations provide total protection if waiting out a blow and that would be my preferred leg. Gib berths suck in a blow and who wants to be stuck behind the breakwater in the Lalinea anchorage?
Berthing really is not much of an option for us here. What do you mean by "Almerimar - Lagos leg in my mind as an alternative"?

Our plan is to wait inside the Med in calmer conditions, and time the exit right.

Quote:
Once you've made it to the S Iberian coast, I think you're home free and will find the departure & run down to the Canaries relatively easy to plan and execute...after which sun burn may well become your primary concern.
Thats our thoughts too.. Sun we can deal with! Our crew is mixed, but some are from very sunny places, and we've all spent time in both really hot spots, as well as really cold spots. -40 to +55 (celsius) on land... dont want to do -40 at Sea!

Quote:
Good luck on both the weather and the boat. Here's hoping I'm just being pessimistic.
Thanks for the input. But assuming our boat is sounds, and our crew experienced, and we watch and avoid weather as possible - this doenst seem totally psychotic does? Only uncomfortable and challenging?
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Old 18-12-2009, 07:08   #22
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The boat has radar, chartplotter and VHF now. At minimum I want to add SSB. And likely more.. but its winter here and a lot of the marine suppliers are closed so our choice is more limited than normal.
Since you're short on time, installing an SSB transceiver, tuner, ground plane and antenna would be both time-consuming and expensive. Consider a SSB receiver. Coupled with a laptop with proper software, you could then receive voice, text, and weatherfax transmissions.
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Old 18-12-2009, 07:53   #23
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Yes good point. My general intention was to get a receiver, as a transmitter I assumed would be expensive and we have to pick and choose certain items. EPIRB, life raft etc also need to be taken care of. Trying to find a NAVTEX now, but I think we'll be successful there. We are also planning lots of backups. We have a chartplotter on board already, but for example we'll have a marine handheld unit as a back up too.
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Old 18-12-2009, 08:05   #24
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Both Almerimar, Spain and Lagos, Portugal (and also two other harbors inbetween) offer inner basins with no surge in truly wild Med blows. My suggestion was based on the assumption you would want to 'wait weather' in comfort whereas you are apparently putting the presence of a crew member on the boat above the ability to call in to such ports, even knowing you'll have some tough conditions and don't want the boat to break. Respectfully, the priorities just don't seem reasonable to me.

Crews know the parts of the boat that have broken in the past, which is not the same as broad familiarity earned by an owner. You know the capabilities of the crew and the quality of the repair & upgrade work previously done on the boat, and as with all else, this is your call.

You have the Imray guides aboard, yes? If so, you'll have chartlets of all the hidey holes among the Greek islands, and along the S coasts of Sicily, Sardinia, Spain and among the Balearics. If you don't have these - and can't buy them at a shop - then beg/borrow them from the yachties wintering over and mail them back. Expensive but well worth the cost.

What I hear are a lot of forced limitations. Limits on where you can hide. Limits on the boat's wx gathering gear (and the skill sets to use it effectively). Limits on what a surveyor happens to see & comment on. Limits on the calendar. Limits on familiarity with the boat. None of them are deal-breakers. But each incrementally affects the overall odds of a safe run. Respectfully, I'd suggest you get off the computer and use the remaining window of time to exercise the boat repeatedly along with the crew. That will prove far more productive to a safe outcome of limited surprises than collecting feedback from us.

Jack
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Old 18-12-2009, 08:22   #25
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If it is a new boat to you, things will break. I challenge you to find somebody who has bought a boat, and not had things break during the first few trips. Hopefully, the things that break on your boat will not be life threatening.

Jack is right, go out and beat the snot out of the boat for a few days.

Chris
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Old 18-12-2009, 08:23   #26
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Thanks for the input. I have Garmin Europe charts on the computer and we're gettting charts for the chartplotter on the boat which is a different brand. We will also have paper charts of course. Will see if I can find the Imray specific brand you mention.

The priorities are not reasonable in a normal situation, but again there are many external circumstances beyond our control, like where some of us lucked out in the ovarian lottery (ie where we were born). Especially in this post 9/11, people are judged by their citizenship and people are treated far from equal. Combined with a completely accidental and unfortunate event here which made us stay much longer than planned, we're now in this situation. Show up in Spain with a Canadian passport no problem. Show up with a Pakistani, Iraqi, etc without a new visa and having overstayed the last one (albeit uncontrollably so, airline strike left us stranded...) - well you get the idea. Have a Muslim name, and it gets all the worse.....Its something that most sailors never have to deal with. The complaints that many of you have (rightfully so all the same) about over zealous, crazy, and rude officers in third world countries,... well for some people its like that at nearly every port of call

Re boat - Next week is reserved for that....... We have a few more weeks before we have to leave here, but we have to balance that against stocking the boat and also getting going before winter gets farther along... But yes.. I do agree you have good points and thank you for your concern. I too wish the circumstances were more optimal. If we really get in trouble, of course we'll declare emergency to a port master and demand we be let in for repairs, but of course we hope to avoid that.
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Old 18-12-2009, 08:23   #27
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If it is a new boat to you, things will break. I challenge you to find somebody who has bought a boat, and not had things break during the first few trips. Hopefully, the things that break on your boat will not be life threatening.

Jack is right, go out and beat the snot out of the boat for a few days.

Chris
Definitely will. And will take lots of spares and tools as well....
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Old 18-12-2009, 08:38   #28
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Here is a partial answer for your SSB dilemma:

http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/...mas-34086.html

Bill is a class act and a radio wizard; think about corresponding with him on this whole issue. And while Hud is correct re: the learning curve and the simplicity of just installing a receiver, there's nothing wrong with the 706 receiver and it offers an upgrade path to a transceiver over time.

Now...as for getting something thru Ankara and onto the boat, I've only heard horror stories.

Jack
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Old 18-12-2009, 10:39   #29
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You should be able to find an SSB receiver in Turkey--take a look at SSB Receiver ? and make a list of models which can work--you need USB/LSB capability. Connect the receiver audio output to the mic input on a laptop for weather fax capability using JVCOMM.

For some SSB weather background, see MF/HF SSB Frequencies

Regarding fuel, you should start with at least 100 gallons in the tank and jerry jugs.

You will attract far more official attention in the winter, as the authorities know the only ones running around at that time are crazy or up to no good. Even so, its better to deal with the authorities than the weather. I know of boats who had passport problems (like an Israeli passport in the Arab countries, or a Thai passport in the EU), there were hassles, but the worst treatment they got was that the crewmember had to remain on board and the boat had to leave when it was fixed or the weather subsided.

I would go north of Crete, to the Peleponnese peninsula, then jump to the south coast of Sicily, then jump to the Sardinia, then the Balaerics, then work the Spanish coast to Gib. Maybe I'm paranoid about the African coast, but I don't see a lot of natural shelter there and I would pick the places I'd rather be thrown in jail. The longest stretches of open water are only about 300 miles, and otherwise you can be within a day of a sheltering anchorage or harbor of refuge.
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Old 18-12-2009, 18:03   #30
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In good weather a Bavaria will make it, January or otherwise.

In bad weather you do not want to be there, Russian navy or Hallberg-Rassy 54.

Think WEATHER. You cannot beat it, good boat, six experienced captains or otherwise.

Think WEATHER and do not push and you will be fine.

b.
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