When I was a young man I remember reading the phrase “amputation with a dull spoon is possible, it is just very slow and very messy.” Wind steering with an improperly adjusted Monitor vane is possible, it just doesn’t hold a course very well. We have had almost continuous rain for the past 35 hours wth gusty and changing winds. Since the Monitor keeps Reboot at a constant wind angle I was under the impression that we kept heading up because the wind shifted. Tonight I realized thet the direction was not changing, just the intensity. This led to the conclusion that there was a problem with the adjustment of the vane. Now I hate to do anything at night – I prefer the light of morning\. We were sailing so poorly that I decided to give it a shot, After several attempts I finally dit on the correct combination – all of a sudden we were heading on the desired course independent of the wind speed. Since we were trying to head almost directly down wind the (*heat went down, the motor cooled down and that’s when I heard that highway sound”) ride became much better and the strain on the rig and the sails was greatly reduced. So lesson 1 is: Make sure the vane and a telltale attached to the boat are both pointing in exactly the same direction. Turn the wheel until the boat is maintaining the desired course. Then engage the wheel. What I was doing was misaligning the vane to steering wheel connection. Getting it correct makes a huge difference.
I have been sitting in the salon most of the last couple of days because of the rain. About every 10 minutes I stick my head up and do a visual scan. I am comfortable with this as Reboot has both Radar and AIS – both of which have proximity alarms. I found that I was having a great deal of trouble staying awake. I finally realized that with e everything battened down for the rain that the cabin air was stale. I cracked two of the hatches and my difficulty staying awake was greatly reduced.. Yes I am tired as I write this, it is the middle of the night. But not near as tired as I was in the stuffy cabin.
Fair winds and following seas (that at the moment are running 10 to 12 feet!_