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April 2014 - England

April 25, 2014

England | Levington | Suffolk Yacht Harbor

Hi Family and Friends, Well we're still at Suffolk Yacht Harbor but one step closer to being able to leave. We got the generator running finally on Monday. It just seems every little thing we try to do turns into time...and money... Dropping one special bolt into the bilge resulted in hours of searching for it and ultimately resulted in cleaning the bilge before it was found. We went to an OCC (Ocean Cruising Club) gathering last Friday by boat. A member John here at Suffolk Yacht Harbor invite us and Alchemy to travel up river with him to the dinner. It was an enjoyable evening meeting several cruiser and sharing stories. We went to dinner on Saturday to celebrate Ginger's birthday.

Easter Dick drove us to mass in Felixstowe but the rest of the day was uneventful with light rain. The rigging company finally came and took down our furler but the bearing hasn't arrived yet and it's now Friday. So it looks like we won't leave until next week sometime. Once the furler is on we can have the genoa cut to the correct size and we'll be ready to go. The weather has been lovely. What little rain we've had, has been light sprinkles. The temperatures have allowed us to leave the boat open all day and only run the humidifier at night for heat.

We took a bus to Lidl's in Felixstowe for a major shopping trip. Unfortunately the bus driver let us off at the wrong stop and we had quite a long walk lugging groceries back to the boat. We did meet Sue (from the marina) and dog Alphi who showed us a shortcut from Levingston back to the marina. We enjoyed being off the narrow road and our journey past a bird sanctuary. Sue took us to Waitrose the next day so we could get cash and beer:-) Today the marina asked us to move our boat as another yacht is coming in over the weekend to where we were moored. So as we wait we continue to check off projects on our list. Hope all is well and happy weekend. Love and God Bless Sally and Al

UK | Levington | Suffolk Yacht Harbor | Artemis new bottom paint and wax

April 14, 2014

Hi Family and Friends, We've had a busy successful week on the hard. Artemis looks like a boat that loves her again:-) We sanded the bottom and put on two coats of Micron Extra (3 on the leading edges). We washed the hull twice and waxed it. The white/yellow boot stripe needed two washings before wax but it looks white again. The toe rail was sanded and two coats of Perfection Plus applied. These are not simple tasks. We are talking days of hard manual labor for two not so young anymore sailors.

UK | England | Levington | Suffolk Yacht Harbor | Installation of new Northern Lights Generator

But our biggest accomplishment this week was removing the old Westerbeke generator, preparing the installation for the new genset and today the actual drop into place of the new Northern Lights 6 KW generator. Then later in the afternoon the yard successfully re-launched the Artemis and we are quietly moored in Suffolk Yacht Harbor. Leaving on the hard for ten days is quite difficult:-( It's was very windy, dusty and just plan dirty. We had to rig a way to run the refrigerator each day and had to climb a twelve foot ladder "100" times a day:(

It feels good to be back in the water listening to the birds sing. Now we have to get the generator hooked up and working, remove the genoa furler to replace the bearings, get the genoa sail cut down to the proper size, find out what is binding the genoa halyard inside of the mast, put on the new weather cloths and sail covers that Al made, maybe install the new windex and anchor light on top of the it looks like we'll be here until after Easter.

We do have some play times. We met sailing friends Sandra and Ray (Strategem) that we knew from Kemer, Turkey for dinner one night and we've been out a few times with Dick and Ginger (Alchemy). I had a nice one hour walk to buy varnish on Saturday while Al did prep work. We are truly in rural UK. Nothing is close by and one needs a car for most things. My walk took we around a small lake, along several foot paths and bridle ways, over a railway crossing, through a farm to Seamark Nunn chandlery and then back to the boat again. Hopefully we'll be able to get out and do some more walking later in the week. Have a nice week and Happy Easter to all. Love and God Bless Sally and Al

UK | England | London | St. Katharine Docks | Artemis in her east basin winter berth

UK | England | London | River Thames | Artemis heading away from London down the Thames

April 6, 2014

Hi Family and Friends, We had a sad departure from St. Katharine Docks March 28th as we're not sure if they'll have room for us next winter. We certainly enjoyed our two winters there. Free lunchtime concerts with excellent musicians, free museums, wonderful walks, great location,and wonderful friends are just a few of the draws to a London home base. We were able to free-flow the locks out of St. Katharine's as it was high tide and motored quickly with the current down the Thames to Stangate Creek anchorage off the Medway River.

Then on Saturday we sailed across the Thames Estuary with a rising tide (0930) through some otherwise very shallow areas. We arrived at the River Orwell and picked up a mooring buoy outside of Suffolk Yacht Harbor, Levington around 1730. We watched the sailboats race in light winds Sunday morning before moving into the harbor around noon.

We had to take our genoa down as the furler needed to be removed in order for us to fit in the lift to haul out on Friday. First issue the genoa wouldn't come down so our friend Dick on Alchemy went up the mast for almost an hour before we were able to loosen the sail and drop it. We discovered the new genoa was made too long so it pulled too tight at the top and the bearing in the furler needs replacement.

Next we decided to check the compression on our troublesome Westerbeke generator. We will no longer have Westerbeke issues as suddenly the engine began to race and Al couldn't get it to turn off so had to do so manually. Oil running out of the side of the engine so we believe we probably blew a rod. We called Westerbeke and they no longer make an engine that fits onto that generator so we need to buy a new one. $11.000 later we'll be the proud owner of a Northern Lights 6.2 generator that will serve our needs. Al plans to remove the Westerbeke in parts and sell them on ebay. (suggested by Westerbeke dealer) We could ??? get a couple thousand for the parts. We know another Mason 43 that put a Northern Lights into his boat so we've got his experiences to get it out and the new one installed by Captain Al.

UK | England | River Orwell | Levington | Suffolk Yacht Harbor | Tall Ships sailing by for Ipswich

Friday we hauled out and Artemis is now on the hard until April 14. First order of business was to hook up water to our thru hauls so that we can continue to run our refrigerator/freezer while out of the water. Success!! Yesterday we washed the boat twice and then waxed the hull. We found a cleaner that made our yellow boot stripe white again so Artemis looks like someone loves her again. It's a windy, rainy day today so we're doing inside projects. Al's working on re-packing the packing gland, new impeller, and water into the batteries. Next order of business is to light sand and do the bottom paint either Monday or Tuesday. Love and God Bless Sally and Al

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