Tag: Sailing

Happy New Bowsprit :-) and Clean New Look

Dazzler’s Bowsprit project part two.

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Sanding the surface and preparing for painting

After all parts removed were cleaned and/or painted, the process of re-installing parts back onboard began. While the bow pulpit was off and being cleaned, Jilly discovered a crack and hole on the lower aft corner. That was sent off to a welding shop for repairs and was returned the next day. Thanks to Haracio in La Cruz for his valuable assistance. First I set the bowsprit on the bow and bedded it with 3M 4000 bedding compound.

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Clean Boat Bling and Cha Cha. The Sampson Post and Bowsprit strap were bedded and bolted into position.

Next was bedding the windlass and installing all of its cha cha. Next was starting to re-string the rigging. All was re-connected except for the Jib roller furling which needed its lower bearing replaced. This was a bit easier and a bit more difficult than it seemed. First the roller drum at the base of the foil came off easily. This allowed me be able to work on removing the large oil/grease seal from the bottom of the drum. The center shaft that the bearing rides on has a heavy duty circlip retainer keeping the bearing in place and preventing the shaft from riding upward. This little tidbit will be revisited later. The center shaft could then be tapped out through the top of the drum. After I cleared the shaft from the drum, another oil/grease seal and another circlip is visible and attached to the shaft. It is important to note that the two circlips on the shaft index the bearing placement on the shaft. I was able to locate the necessary replacement bearing and shaft seals locally here in the Banderas Bay area as the seals and bearings are standard type machine grade parts. There is a large circlip that insets against the interior of the drum against the outer ring of the bearing to index it against the drum housing. After removing that circlip, I was able to tap the bearing out of the drum. The ProFurl bearing and seal kit was somewhere in the neighborhood of $350 USD … if you can get one. The rigging shop in San Diego would not sell it to me because they have to be the ones that install it. I found all the parts I need here in the Banderas Bay area for approximatel $95 USD.

Ready to put it all back together, it went back together about as easy as it came apart. I recommend that you have some kind of heavy duty circlip tool for removal and re-installing the circlips. Those rings are very stout. Pack the bearing and the area between the seals with a good marine grade grease, but not too much. I used a straight probe carefully inserted between the shaft and the inner part of the seal to allow excess grease and air to escape while tapping the seal into place. I could now re-install the drum on the headsails foil. The forestay furler was attached allowing me to start tuning the standing rigging. Dazzler is starting to look like a sailboat again.

After tuning the rigging, we hoisted the staysail and furled it up. Next was the headsail. We hoisted it up with its halyard and I put the extra tug to set it in place. Now was the moment of truth. Did replacing the bearing correct the stiff roller furling of the sail? The answer was yes, but as I looked at the drum something didn’t look right. The lower shaft had pulled the top seal almost out of the top of the drum and was elevated about two inches above where it should have been. Knowing how the drum was put together, I knew that the lower circlip had some how failed. Which meant I had to de-tune the standing rigging, drop the Jib Sail and remove the roller drum, AGAIN, to take it apart.

Well, the culprit was the lower circlip was too thick and did not seat into the grove on the shaft, which allowed the shaft to slide upward when I loaded the forestay halyard. I had another circlip that was a few millimeters thinner and that was the end of that. BTW, I was able to find the heavy duty circlip at another tienda here in Mexico also. Lucky or just holding my mouth right I guess.

The double repaired drum was re-installed, the forestay roller re-attached, the rigging returned and the headsail installed again. All was good!

Everything is back together and working great.
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The Guiding Star. All cleaned up, polished and ready to Lead Dazzler onto new horizons and adventures.

As part of this bowsprit project I decided to replace the stainless lifelines with Dynema material. Since I had already purchased the Dynema line, I only needed a few end terminals, which I acquired at the local Marine chandlery in La Cruz. Two afternoons of splicing and the lifelines were completed. Dazzler’s stanchions are equipped with rings welded onto them to allow the line to easily pass through. I carefully marked those locations on the Dynema and spliced Dynema covers onto the lifelines. It turned out very nice. If attempting to do these cover splices, I recommend that you complete the first cover splice and then mark where you plan to make the next cover splice. I discovered that the splice reduced the length of the line by approximately one inch for each splice.

Spectra covers at wear points
Spectra cover buried in the Dyneema Line.

The Dynema was so easy to work with and splice. I was able to remove a few splices and move the splice to the correct location. I used about 16” of Dynema cover for each splice. I also stitched each splice with Dynema whipping twine to finish it all off.

Parts List for the ProFurl furling drum and life lines

Bearing FAG #16010, this seems to be a standard number with different manufacturers

Seal Dichtomatik #39395, 80x50x12mm

Regular 3/16 Dyneema line with a breaking strength of 6,500 pounds

Johnson products were used for termination points.


Cruiser Nation

It’s no secret that one of my favorite things about this way of life is the truly wonderful people we’ve met along the way. Everyone comes from such varied backgrounds yet we all share one thing in common…our love of the sea!

Capt. Dan & Jilly with Todd & Donna from SV Single D

In a very short time I’ve met some amazing new friends. You see, you become friends quickly out here because you depend upon each other for information and assistance. When you part, you never know when or if you’ll see each other again. It’s just part of life when everyone is on their own adventure. After all, some stay only for the winter months. Others work four to six months a year to fund their cruising kitty so they head back to the states to work. Some come for a few years and then move back to land in the states. Others, like Dan and I, are on a mission to reach exotic ports of call around the world so our time in any particular area is limited. While I wouldn’t say we are on a strict timeline or itinerary, we do have an overall plan, which requires us to move more often than some. And, there are preparations to be made before we head to the South Pacific next spring.

We do, however, stop and make time to get together with other cruisers regularly. We meet for cocktails, food and tourist activities when we’re near a port. And when we are in anchorages we do beach parties, bonfires and lots of potluck dinners as few of us really have the space to prepare a sit down dinner for more than four to six people and let’s be honest, who wants to go to all that trouble anyway? It’s so much easier to have everyone bring a dish!

When you go to someone else’s boat for a potluck you bring your dish, your drink of choice and your own plates and utensils. That way no one is stuck with a bunch of dirty dishes. Out here we are all about easy! And, we are all working to conserve our onboard resources like water and power. It takes water to do dishes and even if you make your own, it takes power to make it whether you are using a generator, solar or wind power. And, even if you wash them in salt water (a common practice), you still need fresh water to rinse them.

With all the bunching up that we cruisers do, we all share information like the media shares fake news. The difference is that we are all dedicated to sharing “accurate” information with our fellow cruisers. After all, unlike the media, we cruisers have integrity!

We talk about everything from where to find the best groceries, beer and fresh vegetables to who caught the biggest fish, where and on what lure. In México restaurants are here one day and gone the next so local knowledge is invaluable to cruisers. After all, who wants to walk all the way across town only to find out the steak restaurant or taco stand that you loved last year is gone?

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Jilly & Capt. Dan with Laurie of SV Slipper.  Always had to get our ice cream after dinner in Santa Rosalía

We also share a lot of information about anchorages. Are the bees or Jejenes (no seeums) bad right now? Where is the best spot to anchor? Are there shoals or pinnacles to look out for when approaching from a particular direction, are there good hiking trails or is there good snorkeling or diving etc…?

And, we share recipes and tips on everything from food storage to maintenance to where to get the best free Wifi in town. Suffice it to say, cruisers are their own information super highway and if everyone wasn’t willing to participate in the sharing, it would be a much different experience.

Yes, I’ve found that cruisers are their own little nation. We live together, cruise together and take care of each other like a strong community. And, just like in any family there are those you enjoy more than others but when push comes to shove we would all help each other out in a time of crises…no questions asked.

I’m so happy to be a part of this amazing group of people and look forward to many years of friendship with the friends I’ve made here in the Sea of Cortez. Of course I’ll miss them when we make the jump to the South Pacific, but then there’s always Facebook! LOL

Here’s some pics of the great people I’m now fortunate to count as my friends. (Click on individual pics for larger images.)

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Until next time,


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(Thanks to Jody & Randy Fraser of SV Free Luff for sharing the featured image of the Survivors of Tropical Storm Lidia. You can see more from them at www.freeluffnation.com)