Posted by: catamarantwooceans | December 17, 2013

Richards Bay–finally afloat!

16.12.13 – Monday – The past week saw some progress; the batteries were installed, two coats of antifouling and the area that was repaired on the port hull were painted. The thing that was holding us for a long time was the sail-drive shaft, the arrival of which was delayed time and again. Last Monday the third crew member arrived; Menachem Sagiv, almost 67, is a seasoned sailor, has a Jeaneau 40.3 in partnership with three other people, sailing mainly in the Med. I collected him at the airport and he meshed right in.

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On Friday the shaft arrived; Barry and his kids installed it quickly. We were hoping to launch the boat on Monday but it turned out it was some kind of a holiday and we had to postpone to Tuesday. The weekend was dedicated to a road trip in Hluhlluwe Game reserve. (See the previous post).

This morning we wanted to install the folding propellers; while making our preparations we discovered that when the bolt holding the fixed prop was dismantled, a part of it broke and was left inside the shaft inner thread. Barry knows a guy with a company called "Thread Repairs" who would be able to fix it but the day being a holiday he was not reachable; we’ll wait for tomorrow.

We did, however install the starboard prop with me reading the manufacturer instructions, Dany doing the actual work and Menachem supervising.

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17.12.13 – Tuesday – The broken bolt was extracted from the shaft; after some hesitations regarding the different way the two props were rotating (the starboard was turning more freely) we installed it and were ready to launch the boat. This was done with a trailer positioned between the hulls.

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At 1430 we were in the water. Port engine started but no water flow was seen coming out of the exhaust. Starboard started after a few tries and operated satisfactorily. Barry and his son, Michael, followed us to our "parking" where I fixed the port engine. The same thing happened to me after a long stay on the hard in Thailand and the trick was disconnecting the pipe going from the saltwater pump into the heat exchanger until water came out and then replacing it.

The forecast indicates that we could leave on Thursday and have about four days of good weather, wind from the north; we aim to go directly to East London, 342 miles away.



  1. let it be a begining of a flawless sail.

  2. Congratulations on the end of the repairs and good luck

  3. menachem…..You look great (as usual) Glad to hear you guys ae almost ready to go on your exciting adventure. Safe sailing…Love, Michaela and Muli Margalit

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