Sunday, November 17, 2013

Rigging update

A correction to the last post. There are two toggles at the mast head giving the rig a proper range of motion, so the failure was not due to this issue.

With the help of John on 'Sir Francis', Eric on Papillon, and Karen from 'Beau Soleil', we lowered the sail-wrapped roller furler foil carefully onto the deck of Ladybug, Even though we got up early, the wakes from passing powerboats were an issue, rocking us at critical times. We had rigged several control lines and halyards to control the descent, but even so I had to be hoisted to the mast head to guide the foil past the spreaders and clear some lines I had not lead properly the day before. Karen took the end of the foil in her dinghy, Eric guided the unit using the control lines, and John and Rani lowered it using three halyards. After a tense hour or two, the furler foil and sail are now lashed along our lifelines.

Today I bought a new length of forestay wire. I have learned that 7mm is considered equivalent to our 9/32 wire and will work with the existing Norseman fitting from the bottom of the stay. We traded for another Norseman fitting for the mast head end, so now we can do all our own rigging of the forestay. The furler bearings still need to be replaced, so I have left the furler unit with a machine shop in Ducos - an industrial area near Noumea. They will remove the old ones and fit the new bearings and seals. Note that bearings and seals are crazy expensive here - 3 times what we paid in Papeete Tahiti! We should have bought a second set then, but I thought I would get many years out of the last one :(

The forecast rain and higher westerly winds will likely slow down our progress, but we hope to have the new forestay and repaired furler unit back together within a week.


Anonymous said...

Dear Chris and Rani
We really feel for you and do hope that you can finish the repairs and have a decent passage to NZ. It was so good, and not unexpected, to hear that so many other yachties came to your assistance. We're still in Fiji on our way to Suva by car so jon can have an MRI scan - he's been struck by painful spasms in his back - made worse by walking, bus as there won't be very much of that involved in going to Opua he should be OK! Hope to catch up with you soonish. Take Care
Carol & Jon, Arnamentia

Chris Bennett said...

Hi Carol and Jon, Thanks for the kind thoughts. Very sorry to hear about Jon and our thoughts are with you. Hopefully it is nothing but a pulled muscle or two!

Chris & Rani