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Old 15-08-2013, 14:26   #16
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Re: Break Downs at Sea

You don't have to carry spares for every conceivable eventuality. It a good idea to carry a couple of V belts for the appropriate applications, usually what I do is change the belts periodically and save the best looking old sets as spares. A set of impellers for the jabsco pump, same idea, install the new one and save the old one for back up. I have a couple of rolls of stainless steel wire, hose clamps, heat shrink solderless connectors, various sizes. zip ties, packing for the gland. Lots of tools, mostly scavenged from pawn shops, or garage sales. Same with fasteners, I pick a lot of them up off the ground, and when I deconstruct something I save all the SS fasteners in a gallon zip lock bag. Electrical tape, duct tape. The odd hose barb fitting. I keep a repair kit for the hydraulic system hoses, which is small. Lots of small pieces of line. 5 gallon bucket, which can be used to steer the vessel if all other things fail. Sail repair kit, sewing palm, thread and tarred nylon string. After cobbing things together for so many years, I have a feel for what fails most often and I try to anticipate that, keep those parts as fresh as possible. Pay attention to what is telling you it needs attention. Running rust is a good tell tale.
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Old 15-08-2013, 14:29   #17
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Re: Break Downs at Sea

Great topic. Not only am I building my floating retirement home, Im compiling a maintainence schedule / service manual, so she gets the attention she needs when she needs it. Everything from corrosion prevention to oil changes will be in there. Each section in the manual has a place to initial and write notes. Its a little over the top, but whats the harm if it keeps me off the rocks?
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Old 15-08-2013, 16:03   #18
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Re: Break Downs at Sea

Here we are back into the simplicity talk.

When the boat and her systems are simple, you need few tools and materials to fix many possible break-downs.

When the boat is complex and dependent on many varied systems (electric, hydraulic) it is next to impossible to have all likely material onboard.

So I am for simplicity of the boat and few materials and tools. Off course, this implies a kind of 'simplicity' mindset that is neither common nor promoted these days.

b.
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Old 15-08-2013, 16:12   #19
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Re: Break Downs at Sea

I took the logic (which I hope actually works) of buying a boat that seemed basically sound, but with enough room in my budget to go over it from bow to stern and renovate/replace/repair each bit and in the process, get to understand it fully and establish a documented baseline service record for everything.

I suppose there is a risk I will waste money on fixing things that were fine, but at least now I feel that any of the systems I have worked on to date are something I would not be daunted by should they break away from port.

Of course there has been a downside of wasting a fair amount of cash on one fault which was caused by my inexperience (I now know that a boat that has been sitting for a while probably has a lot of water in the diesel tanks) but on the upside, I am perfectly comfortable working on the injector system of the boat, at least to point of giving it a chance to limp home.

And the lessons will continue.

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Old 15-08-2013, 16:27   #20
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Re: Break Downs at Sea

I appreciate the simplicity of my boat. Small, a minimum of electronics required to assist in navigation and facilitate communication. An EPIRB.

I've had a chainplate part just below the top bolt and replaced them all in the next port.

I;ve had a single backstay wire break and was able to replace it under way because I was carrying on board the old backstay that came with the boat when I purchased her in 1993. I also carry the old shrouds and forestay... Sta-loks to facilitate repair and replace with new wires.

Twice I've had hand operated bilge pumps stop working due to match sticks holding open a flapper valve. My fix was covering the pick up from the bilge with a mesh material. Will bring a new replacement pump on board as a back up. No fun using a cup to empty the bilge...

Tiller steering so minimal possible complications there. Pintles and gugeons are large and attached well to the stern.

Minimal number of through hulls. One is unused with a sea cock, available to cool the engine if ever the primary pick up is blocked by debris and conditions prevent unblocking. Quicker to just swap water inlets.

No head problems because I use a bucket. No reefer problems 'cause I don't have one of them either. No generator problem for the same reason.

Torn sails? Lots of times. So, I have spares. Repair is facilitated by carrying old sail material, contact cement, thread, palm and needles.

Not much else to go wrong with the boat except worn packing and the omnipresent possibility of wiring glitches. Familiarity with your wiring system before leaving is imperative. What goes where? Makes tracing and fixing problems so much easier. And, it's usually a ground or corrosion at a connection to the alternator, starter or panel.
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Old 15-08-2013, 16:46   #21
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Re: Break Downs at Sea

You can have complex systems, just don't make them critical.

From another thread where someone abandoned.
Don't depend on refrigeration - have canned/dried food at least as backup.

My GPS can run on internal batteries, or have spares. And some paper charts.

Have sail repair items, or realize that you can sail under main alone.



For my sail to Hawaii a bolt on the autopilot came off and the main jibed except where the preventer stopped it. New bolt on autopilot, 3 sections of aluminum U channel putting the boom back together and 2 hours of work had everything going again. The U channel was just one of the many pieces of metal and wood that I threw on the boat to fix I didn't know what.

Taking down the jib in a squall I let it get caught in the anchor and next morning repaired the hole. Didn't even have to sew that, just sticky insignia cloth was all that was needed there.

Wand holding the wind instruments broke off, up the mast to disconnect and used the wet finger method after that. That was scary in the middle of the night hearing something banging in the rigging thinking the mast was about to come down, running around with flashlights trying to figure out what it was.

Windvane was homebuilt, could have fixed almost anything on that. I've done 2 offshore deliveries as crew with crazy racers that didn't believe in autopilots, so know that while not fun you can actually hand steer a boat day in and day out.

We made an emergency rudder and put gudgeons on the the transom. Would have been a royal b**ch to deploy, but we had one.

I'm also one of those people that imagine disasters and try to figure out what I'd do.

John
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Old 15-08-2013, 17:14   #22
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Re: Break Downs at Sea

Quote:
Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post
Here we are back into the simplicity talk.

When the boat and her systems are simple, you need few tools and materials to fix many possible break-downs.

When the boat is complex and dependent on many varied systems (electric, hydraulic) it is next to impossible to have all likely material onboard.

So I am for simplicity of the boat and few materials and tools. Off course, this implies a kind of 'simplicity' mindset that is neither common nor promoted these days.

b.
And yet simplicity works! Go figure! ))
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Old 15-08-2013, 19:21   #23
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Re: Break Downs at Sea

rebel heart wrote: "If your rudder falls off, well, that can be a different story...very few people are inspecting their rudder shaft and related steering." ==> How true. I recently put my cat on the beach to replace the plastic thru-hull and valve with bronze, so I figured that if I was on the sand I might as well renew the anti-foul. One of the workers noticed that the port rudder behind the propeller was wobbly - but on closer inspection one could see that the 3/4 inch stainless steel rudder post had corroded through just above the rudder - no corrosion anywhere else on the shaft and grinding showed that the corrosion did not go far either up or down - and the starboard rudder post was fine. The builder was perplexed and postulated that a piece of wire had gotten wrapped around the shaft there and that electrolysis cut through the shaft in that local area. I have no clue - but I will look at them more now. I am a firm believer in closing the barn door after the horses have run off.
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Old 15-08-2013, 21:44   #24
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Re: Break Downs at Sea

Haveing a system of maintaince of your ships equipment is to me of great importance, we keep a ships mechanical log, with times and dates of all oil changes, lube times, bilge pump cks, thru-hull cks and lube times ect ect, all dates of batt instulation, times to ck batt fluid leavels if needed, as many things as I can remember, are in this log, and we add things as we go along! We also keep a storage log of where we have our spares stored! saves ya some time when ya need something fast ! I know this sounds anal, but has made our sailing life a lot safer, and has made fixing stuff at sea a little easier! ( i even keep all my tools in one place LOL)
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Old 15-08-2013, 22:40   #25
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Re: Break Downs at Sea

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Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post

So I am for simplicity of the boat and few materials and tools. Off course, this implies a kind of 'simplicity' mindset that is neither common nor promoted these days.

b.


If it is not installed on the boat, you will never have to fix it.

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Old 15-08-2013, 22:50   #26
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Re: Break Downs at Sea

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Originally Posted by bobconnie View Post
Haveing a system of maintaince of your ships equipment is to me of great importance, we keep a ships mechanical log, with times and dates of all oil changes, lube times, bilge pump cks, thru-hull cks and lube times ect ect, all dates of batt instulation, times to ck batt fluid leavels if needed, as many things as I can remember, are in this log, and we add things as we go along! We also keep a storage log of where we have our spares stored! saves ya some time when ya need something fast ! I know this sounds anal, but has made our sailing life a lot safer, and has made fixing stuff at sea a little easier! ( i even keep all my tools in one place LOL)
no bob, that's not anal. I do the same thing. I also keep a log of alternative part numbers for everything so when I can't get the original, I can use something
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Old 15-08-2013, 23:50   #27
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Re: Break Downs at Sea

That Anal Attitude to Documentation that I found out that the Americans Have,

I take my hat off to you for it,

Is one hell of a life saver for the new buyer, My Documentation on my boat is Total, and fully inclusive,

I have every document from purchase for every thing on board and the manuals and parts lists as well, Including repair manuals,

I had a Brand New spare part for every thing on board, and some times two or three,
Filters, I had by the Boxfull, For every thing on board,

All repairs were documented,
All in sealed water proof heavy plastic tool boxs, Which all floated and were undamaged,

Thousands of dollars worth of paper maps ended up in the rubbish as sodden pulp,

In five years this boat had been sailed to Bundaberg and New Caledonia to comply with Visa regs in Fiji, Every 18 months you must leave the country, get your pass port stamped in another country, and then you can stay for another 18 months,
The PO flew, and the boat was sailed by a crew,

The PO only lived and worked on the boat fulltime, He never sailed it any where, The lady in the Marina told me this, Hahahaha
Used his dinghy and the Ferry to Fiji, The boat stayed on the swing mooring just off the beach,
In Muscat Cove, Beautifull spot, Paradise,

It is easier for me to say what this boat didnt have, It was fully optioned, and that means a lot of Systems,

I did not have, A generator, An anchor windlass, or a spare mainsail, A Satphone, None of which I needed,

Or a Spare universal drive for the motor to the drive leg, Which I had to manufacture myself in Bundaberg,
Unobtainium,

So I am a travelling hardware shop, Which is rare, Electrics are not my Forte, Mechanicals, no problems,

But it is still a 10 year old boat, thats been swinging on a mooring for years,

Stuff deteriorates just from exposure over the years, Its impossible to replace every thing, or examine every thing,
Even with a list, you will be adding to it forever,

I do believe in Murphy's Law, 200 miles from nowhere, Pissing down rain, 3 oclock in the morning, Thats when you will break down, Did you ever break down at you local service station, Hahahahaha

I dont worry about things till they actually break, Thats if I havent picked up on them while they were failing,

Then its just a matter of fixing it,

But I do like to think what if's,
Not much else to do when your putting across an ocean, The boat is doing its thing totally by itself,

Your eyeballing the horizon, One eye on the GPS and one eye on the depth sounder, That just becomes automatic, Just like you can feel every little change the boat does, Your senses get very keen, Well mine do,

What can I do if that breaks, This isnt fear, Its just common sense, I am on my own, I need to figure things out before they break, Not after,

I looked at the sky once, and I said to the sky, Why me Lord, Why me, and a big booming voice said, Because you **** me, Thats why,
So if He (or She) isnt going to help me, No one else will, Hahahaha

I still havent been able to find those overnight yacht stops yet, A floating Macca's in the middle of the Pacific, Servo, Chandlery, Next day delivery of any parts you need, Hula girls Maybe, The mind Boggles,

Sorry, My vivid imagination got the better of me, Hahahaha
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Old 16-08-2013, 00:13   #28
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Re: Break Downs at Sea

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Simple mistake on my part due to inexperience with the GPS, I was using the wrong map in the GPS,
Seems to me that your mistake was not to use proper blue water procedure, which means that you plot your position on a paper map as well as using the convenience of GPS. If you had tracked your position on the paper map you wouldn't have gone 'round in circles. And besides, as you already mentioned, manmade things can fail and then what do you do? Always keep a record on the map of last known positions.


Onno
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Old 16-08-2013, 00:57   #29
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Re: Break Downs at Sea

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Originally Posted by JazzyO View Post
Seems to me that your mistake was not to use proper blue water procedure, which means that you plot your position on a paper map as well as using the convenience of GPS. If you had tracked your position on the paper map you wouldn't have gone 'round in circles. And besides, as you already mentioned, manmade things can fail and then what do you do? Always keep a record on the map of last known positions.


Onno
The GPS was going round in circles, Not me, I was going west at 7 knots, I was also drifting sideways north about 4 or 5 knots,

I knew precisely where I was, By this time, I had abandoned the GPS and was running on the compass,

The new map and the paper charts had the same info on them, Identical maps,
My GPS chart, ( the right map,) had all the fine detail the paper ones didnt,

Checking the right map the next day. I did have a clear run between the Islands the night before, I could not find any rocks, reefs or Islands on my course that I was on originally,

The run thru Vanuatu was already planned 3 or 4 days previously, As I had plotted my course thru the islands with great care to not choose a narrow passage,

My course didnt need to be on paper, Its in my head, Thats enough,
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Old 16-08-2013, 01:41   #30
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Re: Break Downs at Sea

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You can have complex systems, just don't make them critical.
I think that is very good advice , don't have to go hairshirt, just be able to - and if they are critical for "you", IMO do really need to have a good plan B. It might not be fun (no cold beer mid ocean ) but means fridge not working does not become an EPIRB event (I exaggerate of course!).
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