Swing Set

May 26, 201311:09 AM

Swing Set: Cruising Full Time

Just When You Think Things Are Going Well

(page 3 of 3)

Rosie and I were the last to leave our group to head back to the marina. Everyone else had plans to visit a sushi restaurant, but Rosie and I were feeling the effects of not only the long travel day on Friday, but the late night at Johnny's nightclub the night before.

Taking the dinghy to the beach is somewhat of a trip. It's better to leave the dinghy at the dock of a yoga retreat and walk through the retreat and across Paradise Island over to Paradise Beach. As we walked through the quiet grounds of the yoga retreat, I was half tempted to join a swami and meditate as to how we ever decided to buy a boat in the first place. A person could dwell on that subject for days.

Nassau Yacht Haven is across the harbor on New Providence, right in the heart of Nassau. On our way back to Yacht Haven, we cruised with the dinghy through the Atlantis Marina. If we thought Highbourne Cay Marina was ritzy, the Atlantis Marina is definitely high rent.

Back to the boat, we left the dinghy in the water, locked, as per Rick's advice, and we were so happy to see Holly and have dinner. We ate the sandwiches Rosie had prepared for the beach but we never got around to eating. Then, we were both out of gas. We went to bed early, but at 10:30, we both woke up to gunshots. We are in the heart of Nassau, but it turned out to be a fireworks display over on Paradise Island. Gunshots would've made a better story, however.

After a big breakfast this morning, I sent an email off to the folks at Good Windlass, paving the way for a phone call to them that I'll make on Tuesday to find out what they think is wrong with our windlass, and to order parts if we have to. I'm hoping they deal with an outfit here in Nassau who can arrange things, but we'll have to see.

Rick and MP gave us the number of a mechanic in the area for us to call about our steering issue, but first I wanted find out a little more. Plus, I had no intention on calling anyone on a Sunday. No sense on making anyone mad right off the bat.

I laid out some cardboard and foam rubber over our water pumps and starting battery to enable me to crawl back and get a better look at the cylinder on our Sea Star hydraulic steering system. Unfortunately, I couldn't get as far back in the small area as I would've liked, because the cylinder is stuck behind our water tank and also behind our starboard exhaust lines, but I was able to stick one arm back and feel both ends of the cylinder and had Rosie actuate the wheel. I found out that the seal on my left-hand side of the cylinder was leaking for sure.

I can remove some equipment to allow better access to the steering cylinder, but I don't want to start tearing stuff out until I can find out if I can get the parts to replace the seals on the steering cylinder. If I'm going to go through the trouble of pulling the cylinder out, I'm going to replace everything on it possible, so it's good for another 17 years. This I assure you.

I won't worry too much about finding batteries at this point, or even ordering parts for the windlass, until I see if I can fix the steering. Without the steering, there's no sense on buying batteries here in Nassau at inflated prices, or waiting for windlass parts, if a trip back to the U.S. is necessary. We'll take one thing at a time.

Tomorrow, it not being a holiday here, I'll call Albert the mechanic and also visit Harbour View Marine, just across Bay Street from our marina. They are a Sea Ray dealer, so they may have the Sea Star parts, or be able to get them. If they have a smaller, nimble, savvy mechanic, we may just hire him to pull out the steering cylinder. (Rick and MP said that Albert was a "larger"  fella.) We'll have to see.

So, that's our story. In the last blog, I was all proud of my ability to fix our steering, and it turns out I didn't fix "doodily doo," like my dad would say. (Try to spell check doodily doo.)

If we can get all our stuff fixed and feel confident, we'll turn around and head back to the Exumas by the weekend. For the time being, a weather system is heading in and the winds are going to pick up in a big way, making travel in any direction very unpleasant. Whatever we do, we'll be here at Yacht Haven at least until next weekend.

Enjoy your Memorial Holiday. We'll just be chillin'.

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