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    october 2017

 

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01/10/17 Sun.  Today's gripe is water!  There isn't any water in the loo's or showers and it's Sunday so the office and workshop are closed.  Each night since we've been here, the water pressure pump has been turned off at the end of the working day, which of course is no good for us yotties wanting to shower and clean up after working all day, so each night I have turned it back on.  This morning that isn't possible because the pump, which is in a cage, has been unplugged and the cage locked.  After making a few irate phone calls......order was restored!  Stripped remainder of pipes, fittings, cables etc from the cylinder head and removed it from the block.

02/10/17 Mon. Ordered the head gasket from Singapore through the yard and they say delivery will be about a week.  Fitted the missing u-bolts to the hull and clamped the exhaust pipe to the outlet, bolted both exhaust outlets to the hull.

03/10/17 Tues.  With the head gasket and bilge pumps on order, there is little more we can do here on Dulce until they arrive, so tomorrow we will make our way back to Labuan and the jobs waiting on Rhumb Do!

04/10/17 Weds.  Spent the day travelling!  Left at 0900 by taxi from the yard to Kudat town and another taxi from there to KK arriving at 1220.  No time for any lunch as the bus to Menumbok left at 1230 but Ana had made some sandwiches, so all was well.  Arrived Menumbok ferry terminal around 1615 and on the second ferry to Labuan.  Back onboard just after 1700.

05/10/17 Thurs.  Time to think while on the bus yesterday, and I've reached the conclusion (after thinking everything through) that Bob's engine problem is not the head gasket!  I now think it's backwash from the exhaust pipe, cooling water has flooded back in through the open exhaust valves.  No worries though, the head had to come off to clear the water and in doing so, I discovered broken hose clamps and broken electrical connections.

06/10/17 Fri.  Several jobs to do on my own boat, as expected.  What was not expected was a change of standing rigging!  The insurance company are now insisting on new rigging, so I will have to measure accurately and get all the new wire and end fittings shipped from the UK for fitting.  An expensive job.

07/10/17 Sat.  I have done a rough estimate of the cost of parts to re-rig the boat, and it's frightening!  I'm guessing around 1200 for the rigging excluding the forestay, which would need a complete new furling system (another 1200).  Again, the 'marine' tag kicks in with the cost of simple 'A' bolts for the deck (photo) which retail at 175 a pair!  I need 3 pairs, so I am not a happy bunny at the moment. 

12/10/17 Thurs.  Into town today for epoxy resin, some cable, fuses and switches - going to fit a washdown pump up fwd to clean off the anchor each time it surfaces.  Spent the last two days fitting the two stanchion bases - six bolts took forever to get off, the last one being in a most inaccessible place and fibre glassed over by the builder!  It's a good job Ana is small and can get into tight spaces!  The rigging issue is a constant worry which I still have to sort out.

14/10/17 Sat.  More contortionist moves over the last two days, climbing into the anchor chain locker to glass in a wooden base to which to screw a washdown pump, and run hose through to the seacock under the fwd cabin bed.  The weather over the last two days and nights has been awful, strong winds and heavy rain, so it was a surprise to see Paul over from Brunei yesterday and a speedboat today.

15/10/17 Sun.  Fitted the washdown pump today and fixed the chain locker pipework and electrics, just need to run the cables back through saloon and into switchboard, and connect the pipework to the seacock.  Ana re-spliced the anchor octoplait to chain and made an excellent job of it (it's not always an easy task!) then we stored it all in the chain locker again.

16/10/17 Mon.  We went to immigration, customs and harbour master to check out this afternoon - planning to leave in the morning for Muara but the weather is still awful and we got soaked on the way back to the boat.  Forecast for the rest of the week is no better!

17/10/17 Tues.  Sailed around 0830 into strong headwinds (26 knts) and a 1.5 mtr sea.  I could have tacked for 20 miles but that would have made the rolling worse, so I decided to just plough into the seas and motor the whole way.  We anchored off the yacht club at Serasa around 2pm, and the wind continued to howl into the night.

18/10/17 Weds.  Made a wet dinghy ride to the ferry port to formally check in with the offices there, and we had the usual circus to attend, run by the same clowns as usual.  2 hours later we were legal and made our way back to the boat.  Shortly afterward, we went ashore to the club and said Hi to our friends there.

19/10/17 Thurs. The weather remains bad, nights are spent rolling around with the anchor chain stretched taut, the dinghy doing somersaults at the end of it's painter.  This is all caused by a typhoon in the Philippines which is sucking the air from this area and making life uncomfortable.  We did manage to get a lift into town today from Regie, and did some shopping for the things not easily available in Labuan.  Our original plan to return to Labuan tomorrow had to be shelved because of the weather.

20/10/17 Fri.  Spent some time in the clubhouse to have a break from constant motion of the boat in choppy seas and windy conditions.  Sunday is looking like the best day to sail back to Labuan.

21/10/17 Sat.  Happy Birthday Sandra!  It's Trafalgar Day again and for the first time in years, I have not flown the flag of England at the mast - it would just get shredded in these winds!  We went to immigration at lunch time and checked out, this time without much hassle apart from the run around between offices and the countless copies of paperwork needed.  Alison was having a bit of a birthday get together around the pool this evening, so we attended and met up with old friends for a drink or two and a meal, making our way back in the dinghy around 10pm.  The weather is improving now and we should be OK for the trip back tomorrow.

22/10/17 Sun.  Up at 5am and sat in the cockpit having coffee before hoisting the dinghy onboard and stowing it away.  We weighed anchor at 0615 and went out with the tide, hoisting the genoa in the Muara channel.  The winds were light and from the SE, so we had a good crossing to Labuan and tied up alongside in our usual berth at 0945, Ana  cooking a full English breakfast then!  Our approach to Labuan showed some of the problems they had in the bad weather, a ketch was aground outside the marina, lying over on it's side, it must have dragged anchor in the night and gone up on the beach.  It later came into the marina seemingly undamaged save for the shredded Russian ensign.  The marina had suffered as well, broken pontoons (not unexpected with big heavy boats on them), boats with awnings and sail covers in tatters.

23/10/17 Mon.  Into town this morning to check in and do a little shopping for hose clamps.  During the evening we went to Kraken and Mortar with Lyda, Alan and Violetta as it was Violetta's 10th birthday.  Back onboard at 11pm.

24/10/17 Tues.  Pouring rain again! Said farewell to Alan and Violetta as they sailed at 0715 heading for Kudat - we will see them again in a few days when we go up there to complete the work on Dulce.

25/10/17 Weds.  Wired up the switch for the deckwash pump and checked it all working - I now have a 60psi wash for the incoming anchor chain, all concealed in the original foredeck anchor locker.

26/10/17 Thurs.  We caught the 8am ferry to Menumbok, then the 9.15 bus to Kota Kinabalu, arriving there around noon.  After lunch, we spent the afternoon searching the hardware stores for SC2000 adhesive for repairing dinghies - success eventually but he had none in the shop at the moment!  We can hopefully collect some on the way back through KK later.

27/10/17 Fri.  On the 8.30 bus to Kudat and arrived at about 12.30.  Bus was almost empty, perhaps 10 passengers, so ample room to spread out and recline the seats!  Spoke with Eric, Alan and Violetta in town when we arrived, bought a few essentials and took a taxi to Penuwasa and Dulce.

28/10/17 Sat.  Finally, the 100 metres of anchor chain were delivered this morning. The rest of the day was taken up trying to get the engine room bilge pumps to work, with only partial success.  I managed to get the stbd one working after finding a broken connection but the port one is proving troublesome.  There is no voltage at the junction box supplying the pump and I thought I had found the cause on discovering two blown fuses.  A quick trip into town to get the right type and size of replacements did not cure the fault.  Tracing the cable back to it's source is impossible as it disappears into the loom and trying to find the connection in the DC switchpanel only revealed a dead rat!  So, has the now deceased rat chewed through some cables and blown the fuses and shorted out the pump box?  I can't reach it as it is in a tiny space, so that will be tomorrow's first job.

30/10/17 Mon.  The rat has been disposed of - Ana crawled into the small locker and managed to remove it with a long broom handle!  We mopped the area with disinfectant afterward and now the boat smells a little better!   On the engine front I have come to a grinding halt - replacing the valve push rods this afternoon and saw number 6 was missing it's top cup.  I hadn't noticed when dismantling as the rods were stored in a card in order, the cap was stuck under the rocker arm by a film of oil.  I have never seen a rod damaged like this before.  Now I have to wait until replacements can be found/brought to Kudat.

31/10/17 Tues.  Last night's excitement was a large uninvited lizard in the shoreside showers, Ana and I running around trying to avoid it, Ana screaming loudly, the lizard hissing and snapping when jetted with water, both of us trying to push it out with brooms while trying to levitate so it didn't get our feet!  Eventually, it bit the end of my broom and I was able to lift it and carry it outside and put it in the grass.  Today, we took the old anchor chain out of the locker and replaced it in the port side locker, fitted the anchor to the new chain and stowed that in the stbd locker.  A walk around the town market during the afternoon.

 

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