Ian Shepherd <g4ljf@...>
Hi to all that have emailed. I shall answer everyone in one email to keep downlaod to the minimum for those who might be on a Sat phone.
Regarding the poles, I simply hang them on the rails. BUT, I have whipped the hooks and also the rails where the pole touches them so that neither the rail nor the pole gets marked up. I think Amel should do this as standard. It seems a shame to produce all that brightwork only to have it marked almost straight away. When whipping the hooks, I used a little adhesive to get the thin cord to stay put, and it has worked well. I coil the aft guy and hang it on the pin at the end of the pole, and the yellow sits very nicely in that rope groove in the rub rail that Amel so cleverly designed.
You can find info on Mer via Google. I don't know where you are right now, but a good link is http://www.extremeautoaccessories.co.uk/products.php?section=1180 I am sorry that you wil have to type this as the embedded code did not transfer for some reason. I forgot to say that although Mer is marketed for car use, they do say that it is suitable for gel coat too. It contains a remarkable water repellent that does away with salt stains on the rub rails and hull. I noticed from the site that it is being sold there for under half what that convincing entrepreneur at the Southampton Boat Show sells it for! I shall have to go back! I guess though that there will be P & P on the web purchase.
Thanks for the web site info on 303. I will try and have a look. Yes I do single hand Crusader much of the time. The only time that I have had another well qualified crew member on board was for the initial leg from La Rochelle to Gibraltar non stop in August 2000. Since then I have accumulated 29, 240 nms of which more than half have been single handed. For the rest I have had various female companions though most had never sailed before. If ever I find the right girl that is also addicted to the cruising life, then I shall gladly give up sailing alone!
There are advantages to being single handed:
The food lasts longer and it is always cooked the way you want it.
You only argue with yourself.
You only have to tell yourself off from time to time.
No one has to suffer my guitar playing.
I can play the music and watch the DVD's that I like.
There is no embarrassment about clothes being 'optional'
You have only yourself to blame if things go wrong.
You get to do all the boat handling.
You can snore all night if you want to!
There are of course disadvantages, but best left unsaid!
Ian & Judy
Good to hear from you. I think we were about a week apart when I took delivery of the first boat. I did not take the rotary autopilot option as I find the space about the sink very useful for stowage of a decent sized toaster and a food mixer. Also, seeing how easy Amel had made it to change the ram, I thought it best to purchase a second ram as a spare and simply change it should the installed one go wrong. In fact, it never has though I did have the sea talk plug fall out of the underside of the control panel once in mid Atlantic. It was a heart stopping moment when the pilot quit but fortunately it was very easy to fix once I had discovered what was wrong. It does seem poor that this plug is only a push fit.
Good luck with your voyage south.
Anne & John
Yes I agree with you about having some autopilot spares, especially if you are sailing on your own. I have heard too that the plastic gears were a problem, but thankfully I got the brass type. I would be pleased to hear from anyone as to whether they have had any other component in the ST 7000+ fail?
Seasons Greeting to all