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  • A Call to AntarcticaOn March 10, 2009 at 13:43:19 French time, Skipper Rich Wilson and Great American III crossed the finish line at Les Sables d'Olonne. Race time: 121 days, 41 minutes and 19 seconds
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Day 62 - Winch repair

  • Jan
    10

    1813utc 46/01s 146/17w, 10 knots speed, 15 knots west wind, reacher and one reef, sailing deep, aiming directly at west end of west Pacific ice gate, plan to gybe immediately to head southeast to try to escape before extra-tropical low arrives. It will be close.

    I'm having problems with the utility winch in cockpit--the low speed is not catching all pawls. Since this winch is an important piece of equipment, I have to make some kind of repair. The winch is difficult to remove as two bolts go through bulkhead, and you really need two people to loosen them (one on one side of the bulkhead and one on the other side). So I devised a plan with advice from some refit experts that I emailed at the Maine Yacht Center. They gave me advice on how to get the winch off the bulkhead.

    Once I removed the winch, I tried some serious freshwater rinsing of the winch interior (pouring hot water into it so it flushes things out), and that effort seems to have reclaimed the use of the first gear, at least for the time being. If I decide to take that winch apart, I will have to pick the right moment, because it is hard to control the boat without it. I'll need calm conditions.

    Currently I'm near the longitude of Fairbanks, Alaska, where my mother went in 1938 to work at a radio station. People still think Alaska is a frontier--imagine what it was like 70 years ago for a single woman! She was the original adventurer in our family. These longitude milestones are good to tick off.