Saturday, August 25, 2007

Hi It is me Matt.Dad drove me to Marion to meet Nana and Grampa.Dad left at 7:oo AM. We took off and sailed.There were some big waves.It was fun.We saw a lot of birds. After all the big waves the boom fell or with a loud noise. It was scary, but we fixed it. Then we got to Cuttyhunk Island..I also started my model of the U.S.S. Missouri. and then we had dinner. the end

As you can tell from Matthew's blog, we had an adventure today. At first the adventure was the sailing with 10 to 15 kt winds and 2 to 4 ft waves (wind against current: short, steep waves). After awhile it became obvious that we would never make Cuttyhunk at that rate since the wind was exactly out of the direction of Cuttyhunk (what else is new?) So we pulled in the head sail and turned on the iron genny. With that "sail change" we made 7 kts towards Cuttyhunk although not without occasionally taking water over the bow and some pretty good splashes. Matthew enjoyed the spray and splashes!

All was well until we neared Cuttyhunk and decided to take in the mainsail. I noticed that the roller furler was rather stiff, unusual since it's always been an easy pull in the past. Looking up I was astonished to see the boom on the coach roof, free of the mast! Seeing something so unexpected, you're a little dumbfounded for a few moments before your mind re-engages. Once it did, Ann and I went forward (engine in idle on autopilot) and Matthew stayed in the cockpit. I called for a screwdriver and Matthew went below to locate one. A couple of the lines had to be released and Matthew did that from the cockpit, he was a big help. Meanwhile, Ann and I were wrestling with the boom in the waves and wind, trying to reattached everything and finding got it cobbled together after about 20 minutes of tossing about.

Once in Cuttyhunk harbor, I reattached everything correctly and tried my hand at finding out what went wrong. It seems that the boom is held in place on the mast by a single pin with a set screw. There is a place in the pin for a cotter pin but it was missing. Either is fell out or it was never put there when the mast was replaced in June. We were lucky that the pin and associated washers stayed on deck and didn't wash overboard! Replacing that pin would be an airmail effort from Florida and today was Saturday!

Well, everything is back in place now. I put a ring cotter pin through the hole in the pin so it will not fall out again!! Meanwhile, fog has returned and we can't even see the shore and Cuttyhunk is a small anchorage! We plan on staying one more day before heading west to Newport, RI. Such an adventure is sailing...

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