Top Tips for happy sailing

We have bought some more camera mounts, in last weeks blog so this week we decided to go out into Belfast Lough and try them out. There was a few teething problems, but that is normal on our channel. We did a little maintenance on our toilet and for what can be a very messy job, was all of a sudden quite clean and we put into practice some tips from one of the sailing legends.


Beverley and I have been watching Tom Cunliffe of late and in particular a video on how to secure the boat, there were a few tips that we got from the video. One was on how if you go through a loop on to the cleat, then you are able to remove any line while still keeping the other lines attached, while the other was about reducing the number of lines on the boat, for example we usually add another line on the front of the boat, so that the boat is more secure, but we had never realised that this extra line is in fact a spring line, stopping the boat going out into the marina, so now all of a sudden you can reduce the number of lines. The other idea of going through the loop will be so useful when we have to share the same cleat with another boat.

More camera positions

At the moment we are still trying out the various camera positions and we have not got it right which is why we have a lot of headless shots, but we were out experimenting. We have a lot more experiments to go but we have decided that we need to

  • Put the cameras on the same side of the boat so that they go across the cockpit.
  • Make sure that we have plenty of charge and plenty of memory in the cameras
  • Remember that we are important and we need to keep engagement with the audience
  • Think of another position so that there is less vibration in the camera

So far with our new camera positions all we have managed to video is us hoisting the main and we had not got the reefing lines correct so there was a few issues, so we are not perfect but equally we don't claim to be. Watching the video has really brought home to us, some of the things that we do without really thinking such as:-

  • The importance of team work
  • Repeating instructions, This just insures that both parties are really listening and that both parties know what is going on
  • Keeping tension on the furling line as you pull out the Genoa - This stops the rope in the furling line from tangling and getting riding turns
  • The person at the helm is in a lot better position to see what is going on and give instructions
Replacing the gasket in the heads

Replacing anything to do with the toilet can be nasty and smelly, but it doesn't jave to be that way. we have had a Jabsco toilet now for quite some time and we have found the following things help reduce the smell from the toilet

  • When in a marina only use your toilet for wees and not big jobs
  • When in a marina use fresh water rather than sea water
  • Do not put toilet paper down the loo, use a nappy sack instead to collect toilet paper
  • Air pump after each time you use the toilet, this makes sure that the water goes to the tank and does not stay in the pipes
  • Use vinegar, once a month to keep the calcium build up down
  • Use the seawater at least once a week because the organisms that are in that pipe die and they start to smell

When you actually need to service the toilet

  • Rinse the toilet with a lot of fresh water
  • Air pump a lot, at least 20 times to remove any water in the pipe
  • Use a long screwdriver so that you can undo the screws easily
Raising money for the RNLI

The RNLI turned 200 years old on 4th March 2024. So as sailors and people who promote the joy of sailing, we thought that we would like to raise just £200. What we hope is that other people take up the shout and raise their own £200. In the last 200 years the RNLI have saved over 144,000 lives and yet they are funded entirely by people like you. They are not government funded.

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