Tuesday, 11/17/09

After a fun several days travel from Oriental, our poor boat is broke again. One of the chances you take with purchasing “rebuilt” equipment is there may be problems with it. Well… Our “new” transmission we purchased 6 weeks ago died yesterday as we revved up the engine to motor against strong currents near Carolina Beach, NC. The boat gradually slowed down in the currents and we thought they were too strong for our slow boat so we anchored for a couple hours until they calmed down again. We tried twice to motor against them with no success. I guess the transmission was slipping all the time and gradually got worse until it wouldn’t go at all in forward. So… I used my sailboat backing technique (which has become much better lately) to back into the protected anchorage and we dropped the hook on a beautiful calm day.
Earlier in the morning we had left Wrightsville Beach and motored about 10 miles to Snow’s Cut. Along the way we had listened to a great off-shore weather forecast and decided to go out the Cape Fear River and do an overnight passage to Charleston. This would bypass some of the big problem areas of the ICW near the NC – SC border. There are a couple inlets there where the bottom is very sandy and the water shoals along the ICW channel. It’s common to have a couple sailboats (which have deep keels) to run aground there every day. Also, this stretch of the ICW between Carolina Beach, NC and Georgetown, SC doesn’t have any good anchorages so we would have to pay for a marina somewhere around Myrtle Beach. Going off-shore around all that is very desirable for us.
Anyway, after we anchored I called the marine supply that had sold us this transmission. They told me they didn’t have any spares to send me and I would have to send this one back for a rebuild. That would put us here probably 10 days or so – not awful as this is a beautiful area. Later in the afternoon they called me back and said they had found a “core” (broken transmission) that matched mine and would rebuild it on Tuesday for us. The plan is to ship the transmission today and we should have it in 2-3 days (hopefully) then I can ship this one back in the same container.
There is wi-fi Internet here but it’s very expensive – $9.95 for a day, $24.95 for 3 days, $44.95 a week, $59.95 a month or $84.95 for 3 months. YIKES. Not bad if we were going to stay here a year! So, I’ve spent a little time figuring out how to update the blog using the Internet access on my cell phone. This is my first try so I hope it works ok.
We have a few boat jobs over the next few days – low priority stuff that I’ve been putting off – and will spend time taking the dinghy around and checking out this place. The beach is supposed to be beautiful and we’re looking forward to some long walks on the beach and around town.

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