Thursday, June 16, 2005

Leaving White Lake!

AND RETURNING! Yes, that's what we did today. We ventured out onto the big lake around noon and while it was pretty rolly it didn't seem too violent. We were able to motor sail almost due north into a NNW wind 10 - 20 knots. We went about ten miles trying to make Big Sable Point. The wind started piping up and the waves increased. We hiked out on a starboard tack and prepared to make another north run to clear the point. This time though with more wind and waves we could only steer 30 degrees. Well, that just makes a really long day to make it to one more town. We were hoping to clear the point and then fall off into Pentwater. It seems this north wind is never going to stop so we might as well charge into it and make whatever progress we can.

At this point Sue checked the packing gland (you know, she never used to do this before I repacked it.) for the prop shaft and it was spewing water in a rather alarming way. The engine had developed a nasty vibration and now it had rattled my packing loose. I tried tightening the packing nut but it would just start spraying again after a short time. We knew there was a lift back at White Hall and we were probably not going to make Big Sable point in the next 6 hours so we decided to turn down wind and head back to our slip in White Lake at the Crosswinds Marina.

It sure was a lovely sail back! Too bad it was in the wrong direction! Upon acquiring a slip I took the shaft coupling apart. It's a question of whether the engine-shaft alignment is off or the shaft itself is bent or running out of true for some reason. To me it looked like the two plates of the coupling were NOT parallel as they should be. So I raised the front end of the engine on its mounts until they were more parallel. I also put another piece of packing in the packing nut. This is fun when you are in the water because when you take the nut off to re-pack the LAKE COMES IN! Actually not all that fast but don't ask for Sue's opinion on this operation.

Tomorrow is north winds 10-20. Surprise! I think we'll use the morning to check some other systems and maybe have a real marine mechanic come look at the work I've done (of course if he laughs at what he sees I'll say, "Oh THAT work was done by my friend Larry back in Chicago!)Friday evening the winds are supposed to finally back down. Maybe then we can make our long trek north. The good news is nothing ruins this trip. We expect nothing and are glad to get it! YARRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGG

Gracie peed in our bed. Nice day.


Anonymous said...

Truly amazing-Why can't I have this much fun. Maybe you can work on your concertina (sic?) skills while you are waiting. BDR

Gracie Liberation Front said...

It was only a matter of time until Gracie shared her opinion on this liquified existance. If you dropped the boat idea and took up camel riding in the desert, your bed would be dry now (albeit with a scorpion or two - but, hey, scorpions can be kind of cute if you squint real hard).

All hail Gracie!


Cindy said...

I think the peeing in the bed is just Gracie's way of saying YARRRGGGGGG!

Gracie Liberation Front said...


Let the running dogs run - but they can't hide. We will pee in their beds at night. We will puke in their out of date canvas hat (the one with the blue paint) by day. We will purr as we use their spare sail as a scratching post. We will do this because the only thing we want from the sea is canned tuna.

Long live Gracie!

Cough Cough

Chairman Me-ow
on behalf of
The Gracie Liberation Front