S/V Crazy Love

Our tracker is here.

Finally Ready

Well it has been over a month since our sayonara party and yes we're still here in HI ... but not for much longer.

The boat is finally to a point where we're ready to throw off the lines and sail off - I know you've heard this before but I feel really good about our final plan! Its been a very busy few weeks with a few unanticipated boat repairs (as always!).

This is the plan:

  • Final walk through and turn in apartment keys Friday, 15 June
  • Visit Customs & Border Protection for our exit papers Friday, 15 June
  • Fresh provisions Saturday, 16 June
  • Return rental car Saturday, 16 June
  • Relax at marina Sunday with any final boat fixes
  • Monday, 18 June which is only a little more than 2 weeks late, the usual for cruisers ... sail off (of course the forecast has very light winds at this point... but fingers crossed). Our first destination - Fanning Island of Kiribati.

Aloha!

We're Still in Hawaii

Our first day sail with the new sails and newly working engine.  We tucked in a reef very soon after this photo was taken

We're still in Hawaii but we're 95% ready to go. The last couple weeks have been quite busy. This is what we've been up to:

  • New sails fitted & tested!!! They are glorious.
  • Engine repair complete (new shifter installed, fuel tank reinstalled)
  • Car died & donated to Make a Wish Foundation
  • Broke wind vane, repaired wind vane
  • Replaced gaskets - hatches, ports, and engine access
  • Revived the head - sea water pump didn't work but we fixed it for $0
  • Galley water pump doesn't work, but we've ordered a replacement from San Diego
  • Successfully tested navigation lights
  • Installed shelf in closet to store fresh stores
  • Resurrect the depth sounder. It only needed a little more anti-freeze.
  • Replaced the other jib sheet lead car after the sheave broke during our first day sail
  • Moved dinghy to marina (Thank you Chris!) and launched for the first time
  • Stocked boat with water (bye bye waterline) and dry stores.
  • Given notice to Kailua landlords and marina management
  • More going away parties than we can count - we've made a lot of great friends in Hawaii
Intricate surgery was require after Dave broke the windvane (and help from a local welder).
He floats! More about the dinghy later

Here's what we need to accomplish before we can head South:

  • Vacate apartment
  • Move everything else onto the boat - kitchen & clothes
  • Organize everything on the boat
  • Provision fresh produce
  • Get exit papers from Customs
  • Test wind vane under sail
  • Close bank, electric, gas, etc accounts
  • Check the weather
  • Throw off the dock lines already!

Fingers crossed, we head South to Fanning Island next week.

Rosie and Dave under sail for the first time in a while.

Our Current Plan

Crazy Love this afternoon after a bubble bath ready for new sails.

We've updated The Plan.

Headed South

Dave and our neighbor Braden sitting in the nesting dinghy we built.

We're a year later than we expected, but we're getting ready to move onto the boat again. Our plan is to head toward Australia and stop in Fanning, American Samoa, Tonga, Fiji, and New Caledonia along the way. The trip will likely take 18 months because we'd like to take a leisurely pace and we can't sail during Southern cyclone season which is November to May. During the off season we'd like to travel via airplane and car in Australia, New Zealand, and Thailand.

But that's just the plan, and few of our plans work out the way we draw them up. And that's a good thing. This is an adventure, not a vacation.

We plan to sell the boat in Australia in about 18 months. But that's only if the money lasts that long. She might be for sale sooner.

Our stuff nearly ready to be shipped to San Diego.

The movers come tomorrow to ship our stuff to storage in San Diego. We've spent much of the last 10 days packing the stuff we want to keep and throwing away or donating everything else.

Using a 12v power supply to Make sure the stereo still works.

The boat projects are moving along slower than we'd like, but they're moving. We ordered new sails in February and hope to get them any day now. The new dinghy is complete and ready for a test run - we need oars though. The leaky water pump has been fixed, but there are other engine projects needing attention. The issue that's got me really nervous right now is the engine shifter. There's a lever at the back of the cockpit that's supposed to change gears (forward, neutral, reverse) and adjust the throttle. Only the throttle is working. I've spent hours thinking, researching, and tinkering, but I'm not sure how to fix it. I've called two marine mechanics but can't get a call back. I'll keep hacking away at it!

Finished (for now)

View from Hykilau Beach on the windward side of Oahu.

It's been 6 weeks since our last update. Not much has happened since then, but I'd like to remember where the time went when I read this again in 20 years, so I'll write the boring stuff too.

Our application at Ke'ehi Marine Center was approved in early September and we moved the boat there on the 9th of the same month. This was a big win for us. The cruising guides say getting a permanent slip in Hawaii is nearly impossible, but 40 pages of application and $1,200 earned us a permanent slip on Oahu. Woohoo! We're even allowed to live aboard.

We've arrived in our new home. Huraay!

After 15 months without a permanent home, it feels good to "have a place." No more begging for a slip every time we come into port.

Now that we have a permanent slip the job search can begin. Carolyn and I have both updated our resumes and have applied for a few positions. That's all I'll say about the work side because this is a cruising blog!

Since the boat's going to be here for a while we updated the registration.

We've started some boat projects. The first thing we had to do is register the boat in Hawaii. That had the nice side effect of getting us off the tax register in San Diego, but getting that done was a full day of paperwork. Also we sold our inflatable kayak and life raft. Thank you CraigsList!

Our biggest issue, comfort-wise, on the crossing was the leaks. Thinking that the windows would be a good place to start (wrong!), we yanked out the aft port side window. It was a pain to get out, but we've cleaned it up, verified that no water got into the deck's plywood core and are ready to re-install it. The issue is replacing the gasket. Apparently we need to get that from the original manufacturer. Ugh! The boat is 30 years old and I'm sure the manufacturer is out of business or has no record of ever making windows for JJ Taylor in 1984. I still need to confirm that. I would appreciate any happy thoughts you could send my way.

We're also on the way towards replacing our compromised forestay. The issue there is that I don't know if we want to re-install the roller furling or get rid of it. I've talked to a dozen or so salty cruisers and racers with strong (strong!) opinions on both sides. Leaving it off the boat means reducing the number of possible failures (and headaches) in the rig. Putting it back on means we don't have to go to the bow everytime the wind strength changes. We have a big decision to make.

While the job search and boat work are still going, we're living in the marina. The facilities (restroom & showers) are first class - especially compared to the state harbors - but the dust from the boatyard is substantial. We'll survive and I have learned to use a sponge.

Boat work, job search, and paperwork don't take all of our time. We rented a car for a week ($90 at Lucky Owl) and drove all over the island - West Side, North Shore, and Windward Side. Costco was our first stop with the rental car - that's how we do tourist in Oahu. We did some hiking and saw some beautiful sights.

View from a hike we took with our friend Don and his puppy Rosco.

We've also been out for a few day sails aboard boats owned by new friends. Here's me aboard Demasiada:

Dave enjoying a tame day sail aboard our friends' C&C 42 Demasiada.

Real life considerations: the marina is in an industrial district so its a bit of a hike to the grocery store (1.2 miles), coffee shop (with WiFi), or restaurant. The distance is a good thing as it allows us to stretch our legs and it keeps us out of trouble (read: spending less cash). Although the tiki bar next door is quite fun!

We've slowed down for the time being, but we're sticking with the plan.