Boom BangBang

Day 1 Azores to Brest (or somewhere nearby) and with the marina re-stocked with diesel we took on just over 600 litres before heading out. Each island has proved difficult to leave behind and Terceira was no different. Not the best island for restaurants (we walked out of two, Marcelinos Steakhouse and The Patio!) but the museums and cathedrals were terrific. It was very tempting to swing south to Sao Miguel but a weather window is a weather window! We couldn’t believe our hull’s performance through the water as we glided along the south of the island. Upon leaving St Martin we struggled to make 4 knots and gradually over a few hundred miles the hull self polished but we never achieved the levels of performance that we are now getting. We can only put this down to the fish cleaning service in the Azores as they have been pecking away at the hull for five weeks now. So why the 1970’s Eurovision title for today’s blog? After nearly 9,000 miles the boom has developed play at the gooseneck and with each roll in the waves when the swell is more powerful than the wind it rises and then falls with a bang, like dropping a bowling ball from three storeys. It looks as though the couple of mm of paint and epoxy primer each side of the friction bearings on the vertical pin have worn so there is now maybe 4mm of vertical play in the system. The current question is how to shim this gap? We carry delrin sheet so we could in theory cut a new washer but nobody is taking the main load pin out of the gooseneck at sea! Looking at alternatives; wrapping with thin bits of braided line, seizing wire, making open ended washers from margarine tubs. Nothing convincing came to mind when all of a sudden up popped a possible fix; making thin aluminium shims out of coke can sides which are open ended but of a shape and size that they will wedge in place. This is an idea for sunrise tomorrow. DTG Brest 900nm


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