Saturday, February 17, 2018

Day 636 to 637 of the Third Voyage: In which we hope to break the Raven cycle of “Debacle, delay, depart, repeat.”

So, we’re back at the marina thanks to local panguero Jesus and the efforts of every security guard in the immediate vicinity. We got back to La Cruz under sail and met up with Jesus about half a mile out from the marina, but since nothing—NOTHING! —can be easy, our genoa furler decided to stop working just as we needed to reduce our speed. Luckily, our new crewman, Brian, took the wheel and kept us out of the anchorage (and thus avoided pinballing off all the moored boats) as the Captain and I struggled to get the sail in—me handling the lines while he cranked it in three inches at a time. Editor’s Note: We are so thankful to have our friend Brian join us for the next month as we make our way toward El Salvador. Not only is he an awesome guy, but he has a ton of sailing experience. We’re also thankful that he hasn’t read this blog and therefore has NO idea what he’s about to get himself into. At any rate, we got Raven tied up to Jesus’ panga and he slowly towed us into the marina where four security guys were waiting to catch lines and guide us into one of the 100’ foot slips. We really appreciate the way they manhandled us into the slip and threw their bodies between the boat and dock to keep us from hitting. And we really appreciate that they didn’t get mad when we remembered after the fact that we have a bow thruster that could have totally helped with that.

The next day, our mechanic came out to see what was acting up in the engine room and found that, basically, a hose clamp with one job to do, didn’t do it. So, the oil went onto the floor instead of wherever it was supposed to go which caused the oil pressure to drop, which pissed off the engine, which led to our bobbing around in Banderas Bay. But after a couple of hours in the engine room, followed by a test run of the engine for another couple of hours, we’re confident the problem is solved. In summary, the engine had a screw loose. Which is pretty much how you could describe this entire endeavor.

On to the jib furler…and yes, this is the same one that had been fixed in the yard. And it was working perfectly until we really needed it to and then it didn’t work at all. Whereas before it had been a fuse, now it seems to be the solenoid and/or a component within. Editor’s Note: I really have no idea what a solenoid is or how it works, but apparently it does NOT rely on the power of the sun so, no, I won’t be asking that question again. The electrician is coming out this morning to see what can be done, and we’re hopeful that he can get us fixed up. But no matter what he is or isn’t able to do, we WILL be leaving this afternoon. We still have a main, mizzen, and stay sail and we can always tackle the jib furler down the road.

But if there’s a positive takeaway from the past three days it’s that we finally got to sail. And it was awesome!

Unfortunately, when you need to be towed into the most accessible slip in the marina, this is your neighbor.  The cockroaches say, "Hola!"


  1. You Hombres are a tough bunch! Seemingly up to every challenge! Murphy's law is apparently stowed away somewhere below deck and desperately trying to steal your joy! Hopefully you'll find Murphy and force him to walk the plank,soon! Continued best wishes to all! (Smooth sailing)!Wadus🤓

  2. You all are truly driven sailors -- you never give up...

  3. You all are truly driven sailors -- you never give up...