Our experiments with electric propulsion

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Electrical propulsion on the other hand, requires a switch from this mindset, from considering power abundant to scarce. Scarce however doesn’t mean non-existent, it simply means that your reserve has to be cared for and maintained.

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Walking in America

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As live aboard cruisers we end up in random places where we need to get supply, or just visit particular sites, and we don’t have a car, mainly because we cannot carry one with us onboard I guess. Everywhere we need to go, we go on foot, hire a cab or rent a car if that requires long traveling. And we feel strange.

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Sea legs and watch system

It took a long time to get our sea legs and cruising routines back on track. Sea legs are what keep you standing (or sitting) on top of a vessel accelerating and decelerating under the action of wind and waves. I suspect sea legs are a combination of motor control (governed by the cerebellum in the brain) and muscle tone of the core, so it takes training and exercise to establish a harmonic posture in relation with a shaky floor…

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Video tour of Tranquility

Thanks to our friend and mentor James Baldwin, now we have a youtube video that shows our Columbia 29 MKI in and out after the refit project.

We had always thought about making a video ourselves, that showed all the upgrades and modification, but as many other brilliant ideas it got buried under the contingencies of life until James decided to show up at the docks with a video camera. We probably were not “ready” and didn’t sport our best acting skills, but it’s D for done (as another mentor of ours, Mandy, would say).

James and Mei have been a point of reference in our most recent life. James circumnavigated the globe twice and lived many other sailing adventures before deciding to spend a little more time on land. We learned about him on his website, atomvoyages. James and Mei introduced us to Coastal Georgia almost by accident but sure enough Brunswick became one of our many homes, and the place where Tranquility took a new shape.

Here we enjoyed sharing our experience with other cruisers that were as well attracted by the gravity force of the Baldwins. Among them are Brian and Debbie, Fernando and Marlise , Richard and Bill. Even though now all of us have taken different courses I think we share a similar pattern and legacy.

The “good enough” boat

I spent a ton of time reading and researching about 12v fans, the ones that swivel and the ones that don’t, multi or single speed, and so on. When this was not enough I sought the opinion of experts and when finally I was very close to hit the Pay Now button the constant fear of settling for something not optimal made me delay the purchase. I was paralyzed by the fact that there could be something better or the same product for a better price, just few clicks away.

On a list of items necessary for a safe passage at sea fans surely sit at its bottom. So try to imagine how this would go for all the more important items an empty boat needs to be fitted for ocean passages.

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News from New Year

Mountain wilderness has always fascinated me, long before the ocean did. The Alps are just at a stone’s throw from my hometown in Italy, and most of my growing up memories are related to walking in the woods, swim in mountain lakes and climb rocky peaks.

When it was time to figure out where to travel for our New Year’s Holidays it wasn’t difficult to pick the mountains.

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Honorable mention

We met James, Mei, Buddy and Atom one year ago in Coastal Georgia. James took us on a trip of the surroundings and let us understand how advantageous was to spend the winter here in Brunswick, GA.

Due to random favorable conditions, we ended up spending an entire year and counting in the marshes of Glynn, and this led to many changes and improvements in our Grand Plan, soon to be updated for the incoming 2015. Needless to say that James, with his experienced and tinkering mind, is a very resourceful person to discuss boat improvements and cruising strategies.

We will keep you posted about our plans, in the meanwhile we received an acknowledgmente on James’ blog, where he recounts a bit of our story. Enjoy reading!

Important imperfections

 

To help us in this job navigation technology has improved dramatically in the last 30 years, as well as the cartography of the oceans. Electronics and instruments have become more and more important aboard new yachts. Also professional sailors have to comply with ever more complex and strict standards through training and study, which include non-electronical navigation (as dead reckoning and astro-navigation), in case something goes wrong with electronics onboard.

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The dream boat

After too much sanding in boat restoration projects my mind broke loose of all the Zen techniques and started to escape rushing in a daydream modality. I failed in redirecting my concentration, and instead of engaging in a useless fight I encouraged this spontaneous roaming, as a prototypical member of Homo Ludens (alternatively, “Playing Man”) species would do.

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