Five Year Report

Five years ago this month i was fearful, excited, eager and apprehensive as i left the comfort of my lifetime home, Puget Sound. As Stephen Stills said at Woodstock, “this is our first gig and we are scared shitless” that sort of wraps up how i felt. Like CSNY, it all turned out brilliantly. Today i have traveled half the globe, been to dozens of countries, lived within many cultures and had the experiences few will ever attain. Each year i do a report in sections: boat, voyage, crew, captain.


Again Furthur as performed miraculously, little problems, some maintenance, some new items. We now have 6,645 hours on the Cummins QSL 9 engine. That is more than any other Selene and twice as much as most boats get in a lifetime. The oil is still clean at the 300 hour oil changes and we have not used a drop of oil between changes. Sometimes i get a little smoke at the exhaust but that is usually fuel related, recently i had fuel from two different sources in the two tanks, running on one i got smoke, switched tanks and clean as a whistle. The perils of third world cruising.

i am now in Thailand where i always do major work and catch up on things i need help on or ya things i just do not want to do. My Tecma heads have been incredible, my guest head gets more use than any non commercial toilet on the sea! With up to 5 girls on the boat at once its life is not easy. The waste hoses get clogged with salt residue and constrict like hardening arteries. Also i have not used the holding tank in 5 years and do not intend on using it. So we cut the hose run in half, eliminating the Y valve and preplaced all the hoses on both heads. We are replacing all the components, valves, motors and switches.. should be smooth sailing.

The big addition this year was to add solar panels, clearly in the “why didn’t i think of this before” as i am always were the sun shines! so now we get 900 watts of rays from the sun, enough to cover most of our daily use at anchor.

As a past Commander of the United States Power Squadron and certified old school navigator, this comes hard, but after going half way around the world and never looking at a chart, never once, it is time to acquiesce to the digital age. I have 4 computers with two navigation systems and 5 GPS’s working on them. The piles of unused charts that take up the area designed for an ice maker are going away, and we are getting a real icemaker!

In Sand Diego i installed a small A/C unit in the pilot house, a typical sea water cooled system. It has never worked, never run for more than a week without failing. There is an aircon/refrig guy here i really like, he is the one to get my Frigaboat freezer running perfectly. He took one look and determined the hoses were the wrong type and collapsed easily. They replaced the hoses with the proper ones, rebuilt the motor and after test period all is well. The most common complaint by the crew is the lack of air circulation and heat in the guest stateroom. i have pondered solutions with no luck but the pilot house AC sits right on top of the room, so they ducted vents into the two staterooms and yahooo AC !! i warned the current girls that the past crews will be very jealous!!

i am hauling out to replace my PSS shaft log, it has served ten years and so many hours and it is just a good idea to replace it. We might pull the stabilizer that we did not redo last year as well. A touch up on the bottom paint and new zincs and a way we will go. Interestingly the zincs have lasted two years, we spend so little time in marinas and i think the 220v system creates far less stray current than the 110v US systems.

So we will embark on our next big adventure in October, back to the Philippines with the boat standing tall and cool drinks in our hands.