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Old 13-05-2010, 19:58   #16
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Just read my post again after a couple of hours.. not sure if I got/said it right.. but hope you understand what I mean.
No big sponser, no loads of fancy sat comms to call for help and no Navies keeping an eye open.. you'll be on your own... and there'll be times you question your sanity, curse the boat and swear you'll never go out there again...



Till the next time... usually about a week or so...
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Old 14-05-2010, 04:55   #17
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Wow. I think you're either amazing or crazy...
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Old 14-05-2010, 05:15   #18
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There's lots of us Crazies out here...
JESTER AZORES CHALLENGE
2008

and advance notice of the
JESTER CHALLENGE
2010

Press Release Number One
Following the Jester Challenge 2006 - and by popular demand - the inaugural Jester Azores Challenge will take place in 2008 (JAC 08) and the second Jester Challenge to Newport in 2010 (JC 2010). The JAC 08 will be the next in a growing series of trans-ocean races for small sailing vessels and their Corinthian skippers and will continue the experiment in self-reliability at sea with skippers accepting full responsibility for every aspect of their vessel, voyage and conduct. Camaraderie, fun and a lack of formality are the guiding principles: in effect these Jester Challenges are organised by those competing in them.We believe the JC 06 was a success despite only two finishers (and unseasonably-appalling weather) as all ten skippers exercised good seamanship with their decisions; no one called for help and all made safe landfalls despite some trying seamanship problems to overcome . Prospective participants in JAC 08 can keep up-to-date through the website www.jesterinfo.org but the basic arrangements will be much the same as for the JC 06:
  • a race for sailing vessels between 20 and 30 feet (including multi-hulls) but marginally larger vessels - clearly compatible with the Jester and Corinthian spirit - acceptable by invitation of the other skippers
  • as the rise in numbers is beginning to indicate, the start is expected to be south of Plymouth Breakwater (probably off Rame Head) at the end of May or very beginning of June, 2008
  • entries and cancellations accepted up to the day before the start
  • single-handed to Ponta Delgada, Sao Miguel
  • age of skipper over 18 at the start
  • no entrance fees
  • no inspections
  • no regulations: skippers will be entirely responsible for the equipment they take based on their own experience
  • no time limit
  • although the JAC 08 is a race there will be no serious prizes - other than personal satisfaction
The Jester Challenge - Just Plymouth
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Old 14-05-2010, 06:28   #19
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Mickey,

Boatman gives some good advice. The Internet is littered with stories of wide eyed would be sailors, outfitting a boat, and taking off for the big trip, on their FIRST long distance attempt with the boat. They get out there, break something on the boat or their person, or realize they are over their heads, and head back home, never to try again. Worse, they sometimes end of abandoning their boat in the middle of the ocean, looking to the coast guard as their savior.

Chris

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Old 17-05-2010, 22:45   #20
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Mickey, You can sail a 20 ft across the Atlantic, you may even get her around the Cape of Good Hope. BUT it will take some modifications to your vessel and a lot more money than even 5 plane tickets to Africa. It will also take a lot of seamanship.

Boatman gives great advice (actually everyone has given great advice) and I'd like to add a few things.
When sailing offshore, sailors rely on a seaworthy boat and their own good seamanship. Since you will be a bit green in the seamanship department you will need to rely heavily on the seaworthy vessel aspect of the equation.

The Balboa is a good vessel, but because of her size and relative light weight she is not the kind of vessel you can make many errors on offshore. I don't think she is the ideal boat for a new sailor looking to make a easterly trip to South Africa. But hey, take one step at a time - fix her up, sail her for a while, and see what happens.

If the goal is to sail to Africa, and you sound as if you have plenty of time, what about crewing on boats? It is a bit like hitch hiking. It is fun, costs you nothing (in fact you may even get paid!), and involves zero investment. Plus you meet the neatest people! Check out Crew Find

Sailing is the most expensive and the slowest way of getting anywhere. But it is also to most beautiful and fun. I say follow your dream, God plants them in our hearts for a reason.

Godspeed,
Erika
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Old 18-05-2010, 07:02   #21
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What type of modifications are we looking at?
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Old 18-05-2010, 08:20   #22
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usmc mickey,

Agree with all other posters comments, experience, mental preparation (toughness) is a must. Most people intending to challenge the elements, work up to it by gaining physical fitness in the process, so.....

You will need to test yourself as Boatman 61 says.

Sufficient water ( I would go as far as 4 litres/day minimum) safety provisions; sufficient stowage allowing for quick access when required; Hull speed, time and distance calculation ability; basic navigation and boat handling an absolute minimum requirement.

I could go on and drive everyone nuts, but most have covered all.

Expect the unexpected as you don't get many second chances out there on the oggin; and spare a thought for the poor unfortunates that may have to go out in terrible weather to search for someone who was foolhardy enough to go off on a journey ill prepared and with a minimum of experience.

Wish you all the best if you are still keen after your intended shakedown cruises.

Halberd.
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Old 18-05-2010, 08:44   #23
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Think of her as a submarine, that is about what she will be in heavy sea.

1) Ports beefed up (maybe lexan deadlights)

2) put a false floor in the cockpit, level with the seats, this will keep the majority of a crashing wave out of your cockpit. Many times vessels are poop'd and that can spell disaster in a big way. Even with the false floor I'd add more scuppers.

3) sea hood

4) not familiar with her centerboard configuration but it wouldn't hurt to hire a surveyor who understands your plans to look her over and see what is most vulnerable. And design it (or re design it) in a way that there is no way you can take on water through the centerboard area, no matter what fails.

5) external chain plates and make em bigger much bigger.

6) Her rudder is not strong enough, so I'd beef that up too and carry a spare (including new pintles and gudgeons as that is one place they usually fail)

7) I don't know if she has any through hulls (?) but if she does, maybe fill them in (zero holes below water line) or replace them no matter how "good" they look.

And that is just for starters, that is why we are all saying it is cheaper to fly. BUT if this is your dream, to sail this boat, then the above would be a good beginning. Maybe start a thread "make my Balboa 20 seaworthy" include as much info as possible with pictures too. You will get the usual you are crazy! reply but you might also get some constructive input.

BTW you are crazy but heck, what off shore sailor isn't? There are quite a few small boats sailing in "big boat" oceans. Seek them out (some may be lurking here), they will have the meat and potato info you need.

Cheers,
Erika
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Old 18-05-2010, 09:14   #24
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Ocean Girl

Agree with your sentiments re getting a lift.

Definitely the cheapest and probably the safest way to experience the trip to South Africa.

Someone will need a crewey though an experienced one is more desirable. (Not sure I'm happy with the way that read Lol!)
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Old 18-05-2010, 09:33   #25
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Cost of navigation

Best of luck to you, but don't forget the cost of your navigation devices alone will be comparable to the cost of flying. After all, just heading East won't really work. Assuming you decide to use electronic chartplotters, you'll have to buy the unit, possibly the electronic charts, a battery bank to power it, and a means to recharge the batteries. A handheld device for $99 is not appropriate for this kind of trip. If you went with a sextant, a good sextant for crossing oceans isn't really much cheaper than a chartplotter (not to mention the difficulty of getting accurate sightings from the deck of a 20 foot sailboat). You'll need the associated publications as well (more money) and of course the knowledge to use them all. That knowledge can be obtained easily enough but you'll want to be pretty darn accurate and competent with the sextant before setting off. You'll need charts for the African coast along with anywhere else you plan to stop along the way.

Also, for what it's worth, I recently bought a Cape Dory 33. I'll be sailing it from Maryland to Florida this summer and expect to spend about $10k preparing it for the 800 mile trip. This figure doesn't directly relate to your trip in anyway, but just remember there is always something to fix/upgrade/add to your boat prior to a long trip and it always costs a lot.

It might be worth considering sailing the American coasts for a year visiting churches along the way to raise money for your trip and eventual building projects.

Marines are known for doing more with less, so best of luck on your epic journey.
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Old 18-05-2010, 09:59   #26
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thanks alot. I think the new thread thing is a great idea. You all are most benificial and have given me much to contemplate. agian thank you all
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Old 18-05-2010, 09:59   #27
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In addition to Boatman61's excellent advice I'd add, have your boat professionally surveyed. Tell the surveyor what you plan so he'll be checking things over with an eye to any thing that will fail at some critical time.
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Old 12-06-2010, 10:27   #28
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Good luck!
kind regards,
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