The Boatist

Sailboat Ownership, Translation Work and Tales of Minor Adventure

Retire early, be passionate, don't worry, die poor

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Sailing south...soon

The race against time continues, but I'll be sailing south soon - the latest on August 2, me thinks. 

Thursday afternoon I drove out to Peniche with my newly acquired Barlow 28 winch. It's heavy, I tell you.

Changing the bearings on the Rutland 913 wind generator was the priority. No way I'm going to run the engine to charge the batteries. Besides, I'll be leaving the boat anchored in Culatra for a while, and I need power for the anchor light. The LED bulb I'll be using won't draw much power, but the house battery is going on 7 years and not holding its load so good any more.

Rutland 913
Ready for the beheading.
I lowered the post, pulled out the turbine, cut the wires and then called Fernando the electrician. He's too busy, way too busy, so I called Luis the mechanic. Luis loves to fiddle with new gadgets so he told me to bring it on over.

Next, I dismantled the Barlow winch. It was all dried up and gummy but the gears and bearings are in great shape - must have been owned by a non-sailor. I removed the part I needed, stuck it in the other winch and installed it. 
Barlow winches
The winch operation. Nurse, hand me allen key no. 8.
Like solo sailing, solo maintenance also requires a certain ingenuity. How do you hold a nut inside the boat and turn the screwdriver on deck?
Vicegrips for boat maintenance
Vicegrips, a solo sailor's best friend.
On the way home, took the wind generator to Luis' shop and wrote down the URL for a Youtube flick for him to watch. 

Why didn't I do it myself? I already did it once years ago, but it took me all  day and I'm busy.
I crave the day when I'm not always so fuckin busy. It better happen soon.

Your boat slave...better a boat than a car, but that's just my humble opinion.


  1. Boat slaves rule! The bolt holding trick reminded me of my windlass instalment walking from the bow to the cockpit to the anchor locker to the cockpit etc numerous times. Good to see you back at it. Question... why again haven't you solar panels?

    1. I don't have solar panels because they're not in the budget. But my Rutland wind generator has definitively bit the dust, not even bearings could save it. So, yeah, solar may be in the cards. If I could afford everything I wouldn't be a boat slave...I'd be a money slave, does that make sense?