Who's doing all this sailing?

It's Vince and Malcolm

Click to read more about Vince Click to read more about Malcolm


For charity of course

Click to find out more about Martin House

Click to find out more about the RNLI

Voyage Map Sponsors Home

Padstow to Scilly Isles/ St Ives 10/13th July 2007      

I have had a good day at Padstow and collected 20 ltrs of fuel from the harbour master. Sualis is heading for the Scillies as well, so we have decided to leave together, and to keep in radio contact for as long as possible, the weather forecast shows a good window for the passage, with a short stay in the Scillies, before heading back to the mainland. We will be leaving about 01.00, so I decide to get some rest and possible sleep before we leave. It will be another long passage 65 miles but the dawn will break early and we will arrive in daylight.

Departure time duly arrives and I leave first, but as I pass through the lock gates the engine high temperature warning buzzer sounds. I turn off the engine and unfurl the genoa to keep steerage, the tide is still coming in and there is only a light breeze. I give a quick call to Sualis, but there is no reply, and I decide to pick up a buoy as soon as possible. It’s very dark, and the buoys are hard to see, when I spot the first buoy, and attempt a pickup the tide pushes me back, so I raise the main to gain more way and try again with the same result, so I have a struggle on hand. It takes me two hours before I am safely tied up, and another forty five minuets before the impeller is changed, and I can set off again. The rubber outer piece including the blades had de-bonded from the bronze? Centre, which has been a problem in the past but I am told that the problem had been resolved.

I test the engine and leave it running for fifteen minuets before letting go and setting off once again. Clear of the entrance I set a course and head out to sea, I am motor sailing as there is little wind and it’s from ahead. I am five miles out when the warning buzzer sounds again, I turn off the engine and alter course slightly to keep up boat speed while I assess the situation. I don't relish arriving at the Isles of Scilly with no engine, and single handing, as it is a strange port to me, I like to have the sails away and motor to where I feel is a safe anchorage. I decide to return to Padstow under sail and pick up a buoy, while I investigate what the problem is. I arrive back and pick up the buoy easily this time, due to it being light, with enough wind, and the line led back to the cockpit so I can sail past thread the line through the buoy release the wind, and stroll up the deck, to shorten and cleat the loose end before furling the reefed genoa. I prepare some breakfast and a hot drink before having another look at the impeller. I find nothing seemingly, the impeller is whole and in as new condition, back together and running the engine the alarm is soon sounding again. The only other thing that controls the temperature is the thermostat, so I removed it, and boiled some water to test if it was working properly. As soon as I poured on the hot water the valve opened so that seems OK. I decided to ring Colin at Rodley Boat Yard, who is the Yanmar dealer where I purchase all my parts, and who is always helpful with answers to any questions I ask. He didn't have an answer this time but suggested that I could leave the thermostat out which I did. All back together and another test run, and the problem still persisted, what to try next? I inflated the dinghy and went ashore for a break, and to clear my mind. I returned to the boat and decided to leave well alone for today and to have another go tomorrow.

After breakfast I changed the impeller a few more times, before I decided to turn the impeller cover over, to see if the wear on the inside was causing the problem, I also added more grease than usual and hope it doesn't have an adverse affect. I again start and run the engine and this time there was no warning buzzer. At last, I only hope its problem solved!! I have lost the weather window for the Isles of Scilly so at 13:40 I head for St Ives bay. I round Trevose Head and set a course off the north cardinal marking The Stones Rocks off Godrevy Pt.

The voyage to St Ives Bay is uneventful as I motor sail south until I close the waypoint, black clouds and rain cut down the visibility, and the cardinal is difficult to see, I manage to clear the rocks and enter St Ives bay just after 21:00, I drop the anchor near another yacht, digging it in with reverse thrust from the engine, which is still running well. I take two bearings, and settled down for the night, just before 22:00 the skipper on the other yacht at anchor came over in his rib, and asked if I wanted anything, as he was going ashore, I quickly got ready, rigged the anchor light and joined him. We collected some provisions from the late night store and had a drink in the pub, One pint only for me, but several for him, before we returned to our yachts. We had agreed to round Lands end

together the following day weather permitting, and we decided to leave at about 12:00. Subject to me checking the tides again, I will do so in the morning. It was after midnight when we finally left the beach, but were soon safely aboard our respective boats, and I it wasn't long before I was giving it some ZZZZs in my bunk.