Voyage of Traveler / Blog

December 4, 2009

Position Report, Dec 4

Traveler’s Dec. 4 Position Report:

Our 1300 utc position, distance made good over the previous 24 hours, and nautical miles to go (MTG) to Barbados are:

Dec. 4 - Day 13
17-10N, 047-33W
147 nm
738 MTG

All’s well onboard Traveler, again.  But it wasn’t for a few hours.  At 0500 this morning we discovered we had a low-flow fresh water leak.  But where was it coming from?  I say “low flow,” but it was leaking steadily at about a gallon an hour or so, which is significant when we still have five days to go to Barbados.  We decided to wait a few hours until the morning light before looking for the source of the leak and try to fix it, hoping it would be just a loose hose clamp on a hose somewhere.  At 0800, we discovered it was coming from our hot water heater, which came as a bit of a surprise since it is less than a year old, having replaced the one we started with while we were in Singapore. After a half hour or so, with master plumber Yansen taking the lead and Larry, Brian and me helping–Team Traveler!, we had the leaky water heater disconnected, removed and in the cockpit. We soon found out that the leak could not be repaired.  So, now how do we plug the water lines so we can turn the water pump back on and have pressurized fresh water for the rest of the trip (which is needed to drink, cook, flush the toilet, etc.)?  We had to come up with something to jerry rig two plugs to cap the ends of two hoses, and they had to be just the right diameter.  The nearest plumbing store is about 750 miles away in Barbados.  Necessity is the mother of invention.  After a few minutes of searching the boat, we found two perfect plugs: (1) the tapered handle end of the plastic toilet scrub brush, and (2) a cork from a bottle of wine.  For this special occasion, I selected from the Traveler wine cellar a fine 2008 Moroccan cabernet savignon. Our hose plugs worked!  So we celebrated by drinking the cabernet with our pancake breakfast.  Cheers! (As Jimmy Buffet said often, “It’s five o’clock somewhere!”)

Living the Dream,
Crossing the Atlantic,
with Brian, Yansen and Larry

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