09/08/2007: "Waiting for repairs and a storm"
We are still in Oriental waiting on repairs. We are still in the water so we have air conditioning but it has added considerably to our daily commutes, especial since Cori leaves for work too early to catch the ferry and has to drive all the way around through New Bern. The V-drive has been sent to the manufacturer for refurbishing or replacement. We are waiting to hear the verdict from them. The mounting platform for the V-drive is being rebuilt and new engine mounts are being ordered. Then it will all go back together and our vibration problems should be solved along with some corrosion issues. For those of you not familiar with them, a V-drive is a gearbox that allows the engine to be mounted further back in the boat, actually in our case just above the propeller. The engine is mounted backwards; the shaft goes forward to the V-drive which then turns the prop shaft. The two shafts form a V lying on its side, therefore the name. Diagrams can be seen at: www.waltergear.com/vd/ we have what they call the “Remote Mounted Model”.
We are getting ready for another storm, Gabrielle, just upgraded to a tropical storm. Storms are rated by their wind velocity: tropical depression, sub-tropical storm, tropical storm then it is classified as a hurricane with various classes, again determined by wind velocity. The forecast is for 40-45 knot winds with higher gusts, but they are having trouble deciding where it will make landfall. Two of the five computer models show it coming ashore between Wilmington and Cape Hatteras. I will give you one guess where we are. That’s right, dead center between the two. As far as getting ready we removed the solar panels and the sails to reduce windage and doubled all of the dock lines. The winds should be manageable but the water is expected to rise 3 – 4 feet. It depends on where it makes landfall and the actual direction of the wind how much the water will raise or fall. For anyone interested they can get a visual by going to www.towndock.net and going to the harbor webcam. We are in Whittier Creek, just on the other side of town. It is expected to start raining and blowing tonight with the eye making landfall sometime Sunday. Maybe by being hunkered down for a day I can get caught up on loading photos into the web site. We will let you know how we fare.