Saved by a beer

A lonely Doom Bar in the cellar

Scoresby Sund Expedition 2022

Day 8. 18th June 2022

Position: Still in Dunstaffnage

Wind westerly strong, showers.

I know, I know, I’m meant to be recovering from Covid so why am I having a beer. To be honest, I haven’t really noticed any effect from Covid so I’ve just been keeping myself to myself and tinkering with little jobs on the boat. I’ve had my tea (as they say) and finished the quick crossword. I even started to read a book but soon got bored and then the idea of a swift Doom Bar started swirling around my head until I eventually succumbed. The beer is kept nice and cool in the bilge for I have no fridge, or indeed want of such a power hungry thing. I bent down to lift the bilge board only to discover, to my utter alarm, WATER!

Now you might think that water in the bilge of a wooden boat is pretty normal, but Sumara is a dry boat, at least in respect of her bilges. I left her here for six weeks with no automatic bilge pump (another contraption I’d rather avoid) and there was hardly a drop in the bilge. So, to find water sloshing around was a touch alarming.

I quickly checked that the engine sea cock was off and I shone a torch aft to check nothing was running in from the stern gland. Then I remembered that I had shipped the through-hull paddlewheel log in the afternoon and maybe that was the cause. I lifted the bunk boards and saw water running out from the fitting. I hadn’t seated it properly into the locating notch and with a quick twist the problem was resolved.

The through hull log

So, it was a very good job I decided to have that beer. Maybe I ought to “check the bilge” more often!

Technical Details

The through-hull log is pretty useless. It changes readings from tack to tack and frequently gets fouled up. It feeds the information to a Raymarine Tridata screen in the cockpit which also gives me the depth and sea temperature. The temperature is very useful as you can normally expect ice when the temperature falls to 2 degrees C. All the through-hull transducers have to be bronze on wooden boats. The depth sounder had to be 9″ long to get through the hull at a vertical angle. The cost was eye watering!

I do have a proper trail log onboard which gives very accurate readings and needs no power but I only use it on long voyages.

The Walker Trail Log – sorry rubbish image I’ll change it later

4 responses to “Saved by a beer”

  1. Deborah Murphy avatar
    Deborah Murphy

    Don’t understand all the technical stuff, but glad the leak is sorted & you’re not sinking. Good that Covid hasnt affected you much too.
    Is Tillman with you?
    Happy sailing.

    1. Hi Deb, No, I feel fine maybe a tiny sore throat but marginal. Tilman went back to London with Grit in Saturday so I am by myself until we sail – hopefully tomorrow. Regards, Alasdair

  2. Mark Crowther avatar

    Hello Alasdair, It’s Mark from BMF Blackheath. Sorry to hear you have contracted COVID. I hope you recover soon so you are at full strength for your upcoming sailing expedition.

    1. Thanks Mark, Sod’s law that I get it now but I feel fine so I hope to sail tomorrow and make some progress north. Just hoping I’m not pushing my luck!

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