Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Haiti, No…. Ocho Rios, Jamaica Again…

Dear Friends,

We had mentally prepared ourselves for a nasty crossing from Cuba to Ile a Vache, in Haiti.. beating against the winds and the waves… And, although we were supposed to clear out in Santiago de Cuba, we sort of dodged this official dom, not to be disrespectful to the Cuban authorities, but it was just a 100+nm detour which I thought better not to take…

Was it maybe Fidels curse? Just over an hour or so on our way… first the starboard engine lost its revs (rotations per minute).. so I was rather upset about that… got the toolkit out and just about when I was going to check out what was going on… the port engine decided to do the same…

McGyver mode… what to do.. ? First I figured out that it was the bad quality diesel we had taken in in Cienfuegos, plus a dirty diesel tank (this I knew but never bothered to really solve the issue…) plus Racor primory filters totally clogged up causing the engines to get starved for fuel… Ok, so we knew what the problem was, but how to fix it? I had no spare filters and back in Cienfuegos, when I tried to change those filters, I managed to damage the Racor filter unit beyond repair… Our options were: A> returning to Cabo Cruz. B> trying to sail (no engines) to Haiti. C> trying to make it back to Jamaica. Option A and B were quickly aborted: in neither of those places we would find new filters and being able to clean out the tanks. So, although we didn’t like the idea, sailing back to Ocho Rios was the only option. In Ocho Rios, we had seen a bunch of charter catamarans and so, we figured there must be at least some sort of repair, parts situation present. Plus the fact that with the current wind direction, we actually could just sail the 80 nm or so to Ocho Rios, Jamaica. And so we did. In the early hours of the next morning, we were back and dare I add not whole heartedly as we didn’t really like the place.

Long story short: with the help of Dora’s brother in law, Andre, we located a local supplier of Racor filters (in Kingston mind you). A company called Durae’s (http://www.bizexposed.com/Jamaica/B/Duraes_Boat_Sales_and_Marine_Supplies-Kingston.php) and they were great… in no time we had all we needed (racor filters etc) flown in. Also, after having talked to some charter cat captains, was able to locate the diesel guy.. who told me that for US$ 300 he would clean out the tank. The tank cleaning took a day, and had to get, environmental friendly of course, get rid of the bad diesel and get new diesel. The next day, we bought some badly needed groceries and our way … Again beating against 20 knot winds on route to Haiti…..


Pumping out old diesel                                         … and also de sludge and slurry…



Allthough declared 100Pct clean..Mon…            ..only miles later, learned that it was not…Mon


Be good


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