Power

Greg removes the old sail and slugs from the mast.

When we last heard from the crew of Blue Wing, they were creeping toward Marsh Harbor to find the parts needed to attach half of their sail back to the mast…

“Pistachios? Oh yes, we’ll take those” said Judy. That made all three of us happy. I was standing in front of the hardware store with Paul and Judy of the sailing vessel Trinity. They had given me a handful of the slugs I needed for our main sail. Duwan, suspecting that they wouldn’t take money, had sent me with a 7 oz. pack of roasted pistachios from our hidden stash reserved for guests. (Hidden from me or they would all be gone by now.)

None of the retailers in Marsh Harbor had the slugs or anything that could be cobbled together to act as them. So we radioed in to the morning cruisers’ net after the weather report and ads, and asked for help. An hour later I had the parts and Paul and Judy had some extra snacks.

Since we were fooling with the sail anyway, we decided to swap it out for our backup main. The backup is a lighter duty sail, but it looks less worn.

Greg is enveloped by the sail as he removes the old slugs.

Boy, a full mainsail gives the boat so much more power than it has with just half! It’s real pleasure to travel to our favorite spots in the Abacos at our normal breakneck 6-7 mph speed.

It’s also been fun using oar power to propel our dink, Fever. (Well, there was one really windy day when my progress was slow, but we did get to where we were going.) We should put the motor on and run it once in a while, but I just like rowing too much.

Powering the new batteries has been more of a challenge. As long as we have a good breeze, the wind generator helps. We have a solar panel, too, but the days are short now and the sun is low in the sky, so solar just won’t cut it. Most days we have to run the diesel engine to charge the batteries enough to power our fridge. Had a problem with this at first. A wire on the alternator had worn through. After I put a new connection, though, it started working again. Gotta make sure Duwan’s delicious leftovers stay cold so they’ll keep. After all, man does not live on pistachios alone.

The new sail looks great!

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