CAPTAIN'S BLOG

IRG Vessel Thunderbird 1

Real-time SPOT Connect GPS position.

Fourth IRG Captain (Acapulco, Mexico): Marta De Madariaga, May-6-13

Third IRG Captain (Zihuatanejo Por Los Ninos operation and on the way down the Pacific coast to Panama): Evelyne Dubuc Dumas Mar-13 to May-13.

Second IRG Captain (San Francisco, CA to Turtle Bay, Mexico): Jack C. Li 1-Oct-12

First IRG Captain (Delivery, San Francisco Bay operations): Evelyne Dubuc Dumas 12-Sep-12

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Comment by Captain Evelyne on March 27, 2013 at 12:15pm

Here is more pictures of the boat being put in the water and from to the fuel dock.

Comment by Captain Ray Thackeray, IRG on March 27, 2013 at 12:19am

Nice, the good old free La Paz dinghy dock! Below is the 2-day forecast from http://www.buoyweather.com. Rather calm and still, but you might get some nice spinnaker broad reaching in because of the flat seas allowing the chute to stay up in light air, definitely an excellent couple of crew training days, but you might have to motor a little. The long range forecast seems to be more of the same. Keep an eye open for whale sharks! I'm guessing if you get an early start, you should be in Mazatlan by Friday evening for the easiest passage ever. If you get away VERY early in the morning tomorrow, maybe you'll make port before night. Hope the propeller is spinning smoothly - keep away from lobster pots!! Fair winds and following seas, and get lts of great photos...

Model Cycle 2013 MAR 27 00Z     Time Zone: GMT - 8 Hours

Wednesday 3/27
Morning
Light and variable winds with smooth seas. Small short period wind waves.
Seas: SSE 0.2 to 0.3 meters at 8 sec. 
Winds: SW 5 to 6 knots
Afternoon
Light winds with a slight chop. Small short period wind waves.
Seas: SSE 0.2 to 0.3 meters at 8 seconds 
Winds: ESE 8 to 10 knots
 
Thursday 3/28
Morning
Light and variable winds with smooth seas. Small short period wind waves.
Seas: SSE 0.2 to 0.3 meters at 7 seconds 
Winds: WSW 4 to 6 knots
Afternoon
Light and variable winds with smooth seas. Small short period wind waves.
Seas: SSE 0.2 to 0.2 meters at 7 sec. 
Winds: WNW 2 to 3 knots
Comment by Captain Evelyne on March 26, 2013 at 11:27pm

At last, we got in the water around 1730 this afternoon, since the yard owner disapeared all morning and when he came back, it was too late for the tide! I was litterally going crazy so we borrowed a car and went to town for lunch and a last run of provisoning (including rhum and tequilla!). When we got back, here is what we found:

So after one last never ending hour of waiting, we finally went in the water, start the engine for the first time, do a couple of check up and cast of for our first stop, the fuel dock to refill water and fuel tanks:

Then, we motor slowly to downtown La Paz, where we picked up a new crew and anchored for the night, as you can see here

Comment by Captain Ray Thackeray, IRG on March 26, 2013 at 3:56pm
I know what's going on. It's Mexico versus USa in the World Cup qualifiers tonight, and all of Mexico has ground to a halt, right?
Comment by Captain Ray Thackeray, IRG on March 26, 2013 at 2:51pm
Still on the hard? it must be exciting getting into the water soon. Are you going to anchor off town by the dinghy dock to await departure across the Sea of Cortez, or turn right and just get sailing?!
Comment by Captain Evelyne on March 25, 2013 at 7:42pm

Today, we were suppose to get in the water and I beleived it until 5 PM since they attach our shaft to the transmission first thing in the morning

So we spent the morning putting back the boat together: table hinge, floor boards, stairs...

I paid the bill just after lunch and waited, waited, waited to find out that we still needed one more thing: just need a little zinc on our shaft. Good new is that the boat is looking good and nothing should prevent us to sleep at anchor tomorrow...

Oh, and the dinky need one last coat of fiberglass

Comment by Captain Evelyne on March 24, 2013 at 8:52pm

Bottom paint finished today (we needed to have the support of the boat moved to paint under). Since the yard is done with doing fibrerglass around the new strut, we spent most of the day to clean the mess left behind. Still waiting for the propeller to be torqued and for the set screws for the flange. Good new is that our forward watertank is fonctionnal, spinnaker sock is sewed, we made a new hinge for the engine cover, the propane is filled, most provisioning is done and the crew is more than ready!

Comment by Captain Evelyne on March 22, 2013 at 9:52am

This morning, two of us are gone to town for provisioning, Matt is still working on the table hinge and other parts of the floor and I just did set up the SPOT so you can follow our progress on a map here:

http://share.findmespot.com/shared/faces/viewspots.jsp?glId=0g9FHH8...

Comment by Captain Ray Thackeray, IRG on March 21, 2013 at 9:42pm

You guys are fantastic! Did the yard align the shaft and spin up the engine to test for vibration yet?

Comment by Captain Evelyne on March 21, 2013 at 9:34pm

Guess what? The shaft and strut is back on !

And here is some people pictures:

And we finally painted the bottom... when it was getting a little bit dark... so we can't wait to see the result tomorrow!

Comment by Captain Ray Thackeray, IRG on March 21, 2013 at 2:06pm

Get lots of people pictures. We love people pictures!

Comment by Captain Evelyne on March 21, 2013 at 2:01pm

The day is not over yet and I still hope the strut and shaft will be put back in place before dark. We are curently waiting for a coat of special primer paint to dry over a fiberglass repair on the front of the keel before being able to do the bottom paint.

The hole in the haul as been enlarged today to fit the new strut in and patiently sanded and cleaned by Matt and Jacklyn.

They also cleaned the bilge much better than I did yesterday!

Braden worked on the dinky all morning and we are about to put a new piece of plywood to replace the rotten part of the transum.

Speaking of the morning, once I got everybody started on something, I took the bus to Pichilingue (20 mins) to complete the temporary import of the boat that can officially now navigate in Mexican water for the next 10 years!

And to answer Ray's comment, yes, we are working on the table hinge now and also on the forward water tank leek.

Comment by Captain Ray Thackeray, IRG on March 20, 2013 at 8:56pm

Well done Captain Evelyne. I was confident you could free up those last seacocks. The boat must be in fantastic condition now! I was just thinking of that piano hinge on the dining table/engine cover - I wonder if a couple of big old hinges would do the job?

Comment by Captain Evelyne on March 20, 2013 at 8:50pm

First full crew dinner tonight with the traditional secret initiation!

The boat as been totally sanded by Matt and then pressured washed again. I finally got a ride to bring back our dinky and started to repair the rotten transom. We also unjammed the two last seacock so they are all working fine now! I also cleaned the bildge that was pretty nasty. Our new shaft and strut are ready... but still not back in the boat. With a crew of four now, everything should go faster!

The good new is that we now have the school supplies that we are gonna deliver!

Comment by Captain Ray Thackeray, IRG on March 19, 2013 at 7:22pm

Matt just left after helping me pack the schoolkids' donations as small as possible - let's hope the airline doesn't whack us with too much excess baggage fee... Well done on getting a good deal done and completing a bottom paint coat, you're a gem! Good luck with the dinghy.

Comment by Captain Evelyne on March 19, 2013 at 6:55pm

Today, I finish sanding, I cleaned every spot with thinner, I gave two coats of primer on each spot and on the cracks and I started sanding again. While the paint was drying, I helped the boatyard owner in a snorkeling operation that was pretty fun. Since he is very friendly, he decided to give us a really good prize for the paint so I decided that we may as well roll one coat of antifouling everywhere instead of just on the spots... specially since there is a lot of spot! So tomorrow, we need to sand and clean the whole bottom and we must be able to roll a coat of paint! The bad new is that the guy that is working on our shaft and strut did not show up to work this morning so no progress on that side :(

Tomorrow, the crew is arriving so I will put them to work and be able to take care of paperwork and finally go reclaim the dinky ;)

Comment by Captain Evelyne on March 18, 2013 at 6:43pm

Today I almost finish to sand the bottom of the boat.

With the dust from the blue bottom paint, Mrs Pink Block transformed herself in Smurfette:

So I went in the water a littlebit to rince the dust off and to test our kayak. The fiberglass repair is waterproof! And the kayak is floating even full of water and with me inside! It's easy to climb in while in the water and pretty easy to paddle, even with some wind and waves! Yeah!

Comment by Captain Evelyne on March 16, 2013 at 2:46pm

Today, while finishing the scaping of the bottom of the boat, I've been call a "fashionista" by the guys of the boatyard because my dust mask and bandana are both pink ;)

Comment by Captain Evelyne on March 15, 2013 at 5:30pm

Today, I swabed the deck and cleaned the cockpit. I put out all bed cushions under the sun and desinfect every bed area to welcome the crew in a moldfree(r) environment! I also finished the fiberglass job on the kayak and start scraping the paint off the bottom of the boat.

Comment by Captain Evelyne on March 14, 2013 at 7:35pm

Today, a lot of communications about crew and - guess what ? - it's coming together! Welcome to Jacklyn, my new confirmed crew from La Paz!

Other than that, I soaked more lines in fresh water and I organized the lazarette because we don't want heavy stuff to bump into seacock in heavy sea, because we don't want our extra 5 gallon diesel jar to spill on docking lines and because it's almost useless to have an emergency tiller if it's burried under fenders, lines, oars and brushes!

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