Friday, December 23, 2011

Stocking Filler

Dear Santa


If you have not yet wrapped my yacht, can you please put one of these in there too?


Sincerely 


smilicus




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Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Harbour reflections

Lunch at the Local Fish & Chips joint

Seagulls resting at Biblia

An oldie getting some new paint

One of the old fishing boat wrecks

And another one

Fisherman going out to catch

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Nav Light

Came across this very smart and useful nav light for small craft.


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Monday, November 21, 2011

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Get seasick much?

In all my years of sailing I have never felt the queasiness of the sea (touch wood, touch wood, touch wood).  But many of my fellow crew have.  How do you avoid seasickness?

Click for - How to avoid seasickness on Messing-About-In-Boats

Or is it only in your head?  gCaptain has just posted a new post on seasickness and 50 ways of preventing/curing it.  But mainly they say it is all in your head. If so, get cured and go sailing.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Anchoring system for tidal areas

There has been a lot of chatter on the John Welsford Yahoo group about a anchoring system fro tidal areas,  Here is a system short description of a system we used when I was younger.


We used to camp next to a tidal river and we used a system similar to this to change the  position of our boat (reel in to board at high tide or move the boat further out at low tide.  It worked pretty well and you could almost get in without your feet getting wet.


Click to see full size




The System - drop your anchor in deeper water with enough anchor chain and a small length of rope.  At the end of the rope secure a good quality marine pulley.  Then you create a loop of rope with two hook clips on (boat length apart on that loop - to clip you boat on to)

Then there is another anchor on the beach with a line that is connected with a pulley to the loop. This way you can reel your boat in and out from the boat or from the beach.  You use the free side of the loop (the side where no hook clips are) to cleat it off at the correct position you want your boat. 

It sounds complicated, but once you set it up once it is a piece of cake.


USE AT OWN RISK

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Friday, October 14, 2011

What's on the pond?

In the winter I was building a scale model ship and enjoyed it so much that I decided to start doing small model boats out of Balsa wood just for the fun of it. No works of art, just something to get my mind off work.



Meet Frederik, he is now the local fisherman on my Goldfish pond and hopefully he will soon catch the "big one" for supper. 




More detail - Boat - 4 inches / 10 cm    Frederik 2 inches / 5 cm

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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Aloha Joe

FINALLY my postcard came that Joe sent me on his last trip to Hawaii.  Living in South Africa, one gets used to waiting some time for your mail, but luckily it is always reliable even thou it is sooooo slow.



Thanks Joe, your postcard is on its way, might be there by Xmas.

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Monday, September 19, 2011

Aaargghhh!!

Aye me matey, its talk like a pirate day. 


Come on all ya scallywags, join the fun on sailinganarchy forum

P.S. Talk like a Pirate, meaning the fun times we had as children, not the current problems we are having near Somalia.  Our thoughts are with the kidnapped sailors and their families today


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Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Sailing Yin Yang

So here I am fighting the age old struggle of yin and yang, but more so “sailor's yin yang”. I have been putting some time into deciding what kind of sailor I am, but the more I read about boats and sailing, the more confused I get. I once heard in an old western the following line: Outlaw “Are you a bad dog or a good dog?” Hero “You have both in you, it depends on which one you feed most.”

So am I a racing sailor or am I a cruising sailor? The more I feed my need for speed and to outsmart the next sailor, I feel I am a racing sailor, all guts and glory. BUT the more I read about other sailors adventures over the horizon I become a cruising sailor again.


So what to do? Maybe only time will tell, but for now maybe I should race, since I am still young and don’t want to be the odd one out on a laser when I am 70 trying to cheat the nursing home.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

B-O-A-B

We all know that BOAT stands for Bail-Out-Another-Thousand, btu the Yacht History Supreme takes it to a whole new level that one would need to use BOAB - Bail-Out-Another-Billion.



The 100 ft yacht has a price tag of $4,8 Billion and one can believe it if you look at the following trimmings:

  • 100 000 Kilograms gold & platinum 
  • Meteoric Stone wall inlays
  • Petrified T Rex Bone
For more visit G Captain

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Monday, June 13, 2011

Over the Top

Part of my winter hibernation routine is getting a good "yachting" biography, this year it is Over the Top.  It's the story of Adrian Flanagan, the first ever person to sail solo Vertically around the world.


 Adrian, like most of the solo sailors, could feel the ocean calling him from a young age, but other than most of us, he took the plunge and made his dream a reality....hats off to you Mr Falangan

This is quite an interesting read about a guys obsession of sailing the seas alone and challenging the conventional sailing routes. It reads more like a story than a boring biography sand I would definitely recommend it for some arm chair sailing this winter with a glass of port or red in hand.
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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The Ice Dream


What would be better than a glass of pure icy water with a good measure of bourbon?

A glass of pure icy water with a good measure of bourbon enjoyed on your yacht in Greenland while the sun sets.

.....now, that would be a perfect ending to a good day sailing.
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Saturday, June 4, 2011

Bad Weather Sailing

J.S. Elcano 1:250 scale

Every year when winter approaches and the rain starts falling, I start building model boats. It keeps my hand steady and me day dreaming of the days of old square riggers and majestic clippers.

The one I am busy with currently was a present from the wife and is a 1:250 scale relica of the J.S. Elcano that was launched in 1927 at Cadiz.  It was a Spanish Navy training vessel and was capable of 15knts.  She was 94.13 meter and could carry 36 Officers, 143 Sailor trainees and 70 marines.

This model has many small bits and pieces and very, VERY tiny intrinsic rigging work, so hopefully I will finish before the summer time.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Taxman

..Let me tel you how it will be
Theres 1 for you, 19 for me
'cause I'm the Taxman
Yeah, I'm the Taxman..

~ from Taxman by The Beatles ~


The Beatles knew and so do we....Damn the Taxman.  These days there is Tax on everything, even when you are on your boat, in the middle of the ocean visiting the head, Readers Digest in hand, you are reminded in bold letters VAT incl.  You cant escape him, not him, not the Taxman.



But if you are so lucky to escape the Taxman at sea,  you still hear "theres 1 for you, 19 for me".  

Davy Jones takes as he wants and has no need for forms, records or formalities. His locker has claimed quite a few items from me over the years, there was my favorite baseball cap, a few anchors, dive mask , etc. But the worst was the last bottle of beer on a hot South African day.  I still wake up some nights in a cold sweat and scream:"No, not the Heineken!!!"

Out of what have Davy Jones conned you?

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Monday, May 16, 2011

Fitness? What Fitness?

In summer time we all have our own ways of keeping down the weight and staying fit.  Tillerman likes to run (away from the nursing home I presume);  O Dock does an ever increasing list of repairs on his yacht (thanks to Sir Neptune); Joe likes to, well, I actually don’t know what he does. Me, well I like to do some Mountain biking and gym’ing.

As winter creeps up on us, there will be less duelling it out around the cans and more sitting in doors than is good for us. But this post is not about physical fitness but rather mental fitness and what one does to remain sharp for the coming summer’s regattas.



So how does one keep ones wits up during the winter?.  I guess everyone has their own method. I presume Tillerman keeps “fit” by duelling an online game of Nautical Chess with Kasparov.  O Dock on the other hand likes a bit more mischief and keeps  “fit” by finding new clever ways of yanking Tillerman’s chain in the comment section of Propercourse Doc Häagen-Dazs is like usual keeping himself busy on Virtual Regatta.  Joe, well again, I don’t actually know what he does, but then again, do they have a winter season in paradise?

What will I be doing this winter?  Well, I still don't have the faintest idea.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Rally the troops

While I am on the "save the ocean " wagon, here is another good clip called Ocean Story.



Do your bit and sign the petition & send your message across the ocean. Click Here
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Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Adventure at night

South Africa is the place to be in April.  We have so many public holidays that one almost don't need to take a day off to have a good short holiday.

If only I could've slept like them

BUT somehow my short holiday left me more tired.  With the rain season finally here, I have spent a lot of time researching boats that I can build in my garage and this left me with night long adventures, rolling around in my sleep.

Every night I would dream of a new adventure : Sailing the high seas in a Paradox, Wining the Mykonos pursuit race on board an I550 and just kicking it old school in a Pathfinder


Waking up in the morning I would be tired stretching for that first cup of coffee, but felt like I had the time of my life on the water.


Am I weird, or are there more "sleep sailors" out there?
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Monday, April 18, 2011

Lets declare war!!

Sailors we need to unite against the war on waste in our precious oceans !!


The plastic pollution is ever in creasing and there has been numerous accounts of sea life struggling to survive due to mankind's slow poising of the earth.  The latest - turtle poop plastic for a month 
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Thursday, April 14, 2011

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Endless summer



Almost mid April and we are still having some good beach days.  Come Easter weekend the rain will begin and send us into winter- our unofficial date for the start of winter
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Monday, April 11, 2011

A French man, a quadriplegic and a Labrador on a yacht.

Sounds like the opening line of a bad joke, but alas it is not.  A list of the crew on the first yacht I raced on.

After my first sailing course, I put my name up on the notice board - Competent sailor in need of boat to crew on for beer can races - call .....




It was not long before I got a call and a spot on a boat for the coming Wednesday's Twilight Race.  I jotted down the details and heard what I should bring - Jacket, Sunscreen, Beer  and other alcohol. So off I went to the club that Wednesday with a sunscreen, a jacket and a ice cold pack of beer.

Got there, found the boat, but no one on-board - wash board still up, jib stowed, etc.  It was an old 30ft Miura that needed a few buckets of paint and a good scrubbing down.  A few minutes past (20min) and finally a random bunch of people came.

The crew was a mixed bunch, almost like the A-Team and had nothing in common except sailing:
  • The French man, who raced in the med on luxury yachts, but was working in South Africa now
  • An English woman, who was a skipper, but played waitress on-board
  • A Elderly man that was deaf and played the role of Bowman and line man - can you believe
  • Me, an Afrikaans 24 year old - grinder, shark bait and all things wet and dangerous
  • The Skipper - still not there
  • Crew no6 - still not there

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Last days of summer



Winter is slowly approaching, but luckily there is still a good few sunny days left to go to the beach before our yearly rain season starts.
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Friday, April 1, 2011

Water, Drugs and submarines

Lately there have been a lot of reports and coverage on piracy all over the oceans.  But behind those headlines another evil on the high seas is showing its head - Drug smuggling via semi submersibles.

Luckily a lot of these subs have been seized and the effort to stop drug smuggling increased.



Complete story and pictorial by TIME
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Thursday, March 31, 2011

Always wanted Sebago Docksides

I always wanted Sebago Docksides, but have actually never bought myself a pair.  I felt there was just something about these shoes that screamed - sailor, life of luxury, you are the man.  But after I saw this photo, I knew I had it all wrong and I wanted one, not a pair, even more.


Even if they are not on your feet, they will take you places.

for more on the shoe boat gcaptain
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Friday, March 25, 2011

M-Class Storm

No, it is not a new type of Mercedes ML.  It is the latest Solar storm, a class M storm that will have some affect on your weekend if you are going to be in the sun.


The effects of the storm that occurred on Monday will hit us this weekend and have some effect on electricity, ultraviolet rays, etc.

Be warned, stay out of the sun this weekend.

For More - ABCNEWS
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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Water Ninja

For some while I have been envying the moth hydrofoil sailors with their fast, high tech boat skimming above the water at speeds over 20knts.

This weekend my imagination got the better of me and I floated off into my parallel universe, where I am Johnnie Sailor and life revolved around the wind & tide and not your work & home mortgage.  I dreamed up this idea of a new division for the navy, the Water Ninja Squad


GO Ninja


A fleet of highly trained special ops sailors embarking on convert operation to save their country.  They are quick and stealth is there middle name.  Their vessel of choice the combat ready V3000XT Moth Hydrofoil equipped with  the latest gadgets and silenced small caliber automatic on the bow.  Created in a lab one can only image, they have colour changing sails which can match their surrounding and camouflaged hull that can so they can go undetectable by the human eye.

They are dropped from a low flying bomber plane and as soon as the hydrofoils touch the water they are off on their mission, flying on top of the waves, aiming their sites on an enemy coast.  Undetected by radar, they....."Honey your dinner is ready"

Getting back to reality, I reach for my knife and fork and think - What if that could be a real..........

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

With wind there is life

This is an old clip, but these creatures still amaze me every time I see it.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Power Idiots!

My annual vacation is usually just after New Year, when most of the power idiots get back to work.  Usually you can then find a parking near the beach, without doing a half marathon just to get to the water.

This time of the year is also the only time I keep my head low when passing fellow sailors.  See my parents own a ski boat and usually on holiday I play a bit around on the water and leave sailing on the banks of the lake.  As I speed across the lake, I am astonished to see how idiotic and uninformed the power boating community are. To them "Rules of the road" does not exist, especially after the first beer.

Now if you think "Rules of the road" is a foreign concept for them, wait till you see them trying their hand at mooring.  On the lake their is small "coves"  where they beach their boats for the night. Since it is protected water, none of them even think that the afternoon/evening 30knts + wind can kick up a bit of a swell and a cross wind that could move their moored boats around.



One such power idiot could not give a S@#$ about it and needless to say irritated the hell out of me.  In the evenings he retired to the warmth of his braai (bbq) while nurturing his 1 millionth beer for the day.  Only using a very SLACK bow line to keep his boat from drifting off, his rubber duck floated a bit higher in the swell and turned sideways in the cross wind.  This would've been okay , except his stern, with his prop protruding, was bobbing millimeters away from the smooth side of our boat.  Haven't he heard of a stern spring before???

Trying to be of service to the greater boating community, I suggested a few mooring ideas to MR P. Idiot.  But to no avail, every late afternoon I had to get wet and re-moor his rubber ducky.

Note to Power Boat Association - include mooring techniques in syllabus for skipper license.  

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Puppet Master


I live in a world ruled by one. The dictator rules with a monkey’s fist dangling from the side of his throne.  Nudged along by the breath of his ancestors, he skillfully guides his realm. In his ears he hears soft whispers coming from his mistress as she constantly lingers beneath.

Born with two Y chromosomes and enough testosterone to power a continent, he is the Alpha dog, the Top Dog.  Barking and snarling, scratching and biting at the inner being of his minions with verbal abuse and worthlessness, he gets them to obey his every command. 

Called by many names, the one he holds most dear is Skipper or just Skip. He sees himself as the puppet master controlling everyone in his realm, pulling their strings by his constant shouting, cursing and howling.  For no one he fears, except the puppets at the bow, for they have too many strings and a good helping of copper balls.  So he gets louder, foaming at the mouth, barking, snarling and hoping his drool will whack them in the head, getting them to jump and gibe.

His motto is no questions, no back chat, have your beer, do your job and shut up.  All you ever get in return are 

”BECAUSE”

I am the Skipper.  I am the puppet master.


in response to Sailing Anarchy writing project

Friday, February 18, 2011

Aliens shot down our statelites

I like gadgets and the more features it have the better.  One gadget every sailor cant go without on the sea is his chart-plotter and GPS.  Now all the manuals and reviews of each product assures you that they are accurate and that with them on board, you will be confident in your ability to navigate any stretch of water.


This is obviously only true till you run out of power or have a malfunction like we did in a previous post : Got the grey matter?   Or even worse, all the satellites are shot down by aliens.

So do one trust the gadgets with your life?

One should always have a back-up - be it extra batteries or anti alien missiles.  But the one thing an old sailor learned me the best backup was a chart and a compass along with the knowledge to use it

Remember -  Always keep a compass near and plot your position and course 
on the chart (paper chart) every half hour.

in response to  Tillerman's writing project