Collapsed Bunk Repairs

Well......... haven't I had a busy day. 

Something that I haven't mentioned in my previous blogs is the fact that soon after I left Albany I noticed that one of my top bunks on the boat was lying a skew...  After a closer inspection I realized that the small circle that the aluminium frame of the bunk slots into had snapped in two.  I think it was all a bit too much, carrying all the food bags...  Anyway, as I was still just settling in I was avoiding doing anything about it.  Whilst I don't generally get sick I often do feel queasy on the first few days at sea and tackling a massive job like this was just not on the cards that early in the game.  It did however need to be completely repaired before any bad weather to eliminate any risk of the food bags flying around the cabin.

Photo Credit Brad Harkup

Photo Credit Brad Harkup

Mum - Text from Lisa at 11.00am QLD time
Just sitting down to breakfast now. It is not too cold yet. Feeling energised to tackle repair which is good.

So this morning was 'd' day and after psyching my self up for the task the night before I set about removing all the food bags and items off the bunks so that I could get access to the repair area.  This done I tried to remove the old fitting.  It was unfortunately bolted through the bulk head...

To get to the nuts on the other side I needed to kit up completely with foul weather clothing, life jacket and tether.  Try to imagine what tools I may need as I was not intending on just walking back through and then go outside brave the swell and climb into my very small lazarett...  To access the nuts I needed to negotiate the obstacle course of stored items and tanks wiggling my way forward until I could get to the nuts.  One was an easy removal however the other one had another fitting in front making it very hard to get any tools in to crack it.  After 20 minuets of bouncing around on top of the water tanks I figured enough was enough. 

I wriggled my way back out and safely made my way back to the main cabin.  Shed the many (now wet) layers I had dawned to go out, dug out my hacksaw and cut the offending bolt in half...  Well it was 'a' solution even if not the best.

I also needed to make a new holder for the bunk.  This required me to butcher the shelf under the stove who's sole purpose was to stop the food falling into the bilge.  Armed with a jigsaw in the bouncing sea way I made something that would at least do the job if not look very good doing it.  I have to say I am no expert in fine jig sawing but when bouncing around down here in 5 m swell I was quite proud of my efforts.

Mum - Text to Lisa5.25pm QLD Time - How is the bunk repair going.
Lisa - Frustrating but will get there.

Once the new mount was up I reinstalled the bunk and set about re-arranging everything.  About 3 hours later and I am taking my first rest of the day to tell you all this story...

Winds are currently between 18-25knots.  I did put the third reef in while I was getting the work done and will make the most of the remaining daylight to shake it out again back to reef 2.



Mum to Lisa - I am a little alarmed that your tracker is putting you at 3 meters above sea level.
Lisa at 6.10 QLD Time - Ha Ha - Swells not that big....... going good, nice and slow while I make repairs. 4 nautical miles from 45S. Will sail 10 - 15 min then gybe east. Bunk repairs almost finished than tidy up cabin.

I have also achieved my first big milestone of the trip and have sailed below 45S today.  When Fedor set the world record in 2008 he was competing in a race called the Antarctica Cup Ocean Race. 

This meant he departed from Albany sailed in to a gate entry at 45S and completed his circumnavigation of Antarctica between 45 and 60 S.  So whilst I am going for the first women's record I also want a shot at breaking Fedor's record of 102 Days so in order to comply with the governing body of the World Sailing Speed Record Council I need to conform to the same requirements that Fedor had and sail between 45s and 60 s.

Even though I am not officially racing on the Antarctica Cup Ocean Racetrack........ I have just entered the first gate...  Wahoo.  Weather doesn't look too severe for a few days however the swell is due to increase. Bob has asked that I stay as close to 45S as I can for the next few days.  Sunday/Monday will be my first storm..........