I knew it was to good to be true!  Paul had everything organised for Thursday.  Parts, diver, no wind (well I think that was more luck than organisation from Paul but everything seemed to slot into place.  We motored (due to no wind) up to Volos.  By the time we got there, there was too much wind and we were unable to safely moor alongside the quay of the yard.  We had to go across to the town quay and wait overnight until we were back to no wind!

I was very impressed with Pauls driving into the town quay with one engine.  Luckily there was lots of room for us to go alongside the quay rather than stern to which is the norm in most places.  The wind would drive us onto the quay, there were no bollards for me to lasso only rings which is more difficult and means we need to step over the side of the boat onto the quay to thread the rope through the ring.  


I love our boat but she wasn’t designed with this in mind.  She has a very curved side which is very difficult to step off onto the quay. But Paul managed to slow her right down so we glided up to the quay so gently it was easy for me to step off and tie us up.  We were lucky that the height of the quay was just right, but it all went to plan and once more we were safely positioned whilst waiting for the wind to settle.

The wind continued so we decided to stay in town and get some chores done.  We forgot that the quay side is the spot to be when you are young and carefree.  Our quiet spot on the long quay became the place to be until 3am in the morning.

Sometimes we forget how thin our hull is. If it was cold we could have closed the hatches but when it is still 29 degrees during the night you need your windows open.  It was very noisy!

 The boat next to us were staying a week.  They really didn’t mind the noise or the lights and we were reminded once more of what old, miserable Gits we have become!  We had taken the opportunity to refill the larder and to update our cruising tax which was due in a few days time.  The trip into the town was not our idea of fun.  The main issue is always that the pavements are full of trees and unsuitable for trolleys, which means you have to walk in the road.  Luckily we hardly ever have to go into towns, which means you don’t hear us moan very often!

The one consolation was the beautiful sunset and the opportunity for me to practice taking photos of people in low lighting. But we were ready to leave in the morning and thankfully there was absolutely no wind whatsoever.

We managed to moor up alongside another boat and waited for the owner of the yard and the diver to come and do their stuff!  The diver was down for 2 minutes before coming back to report on a new problem.  There was no drive shaft on which to attach the new propellor.

Ah, major problem.  So that was the reason the propellor had dropped off.  The drive shaft on the sail drive had corroded and snapped.  We needed a new drive shaft at least and for that we need to be out of the water.  

So we have a new plan.  We have ordered more parts which are due to arrive in a weeks time.  We have booked a lift out by the yard here in Volos.  This will be interesting as they use a trailer under the boat.  We might as well anti-foul again so we don’t have to be lifted in the winter. So what was to be a little job is now turning into a major job.  

Once again luck is on our side, we are in the perfect place, away from the Meltemi winds, in a quiet none touristy place where there is room at the yard for them to take us at short notice.  If you are going to breakdown, this is where you want to break down. I am still counting our blessings. 

So we have a week to explore the Gulf of Volos, we have found a lovely bay and will stay here until Sunday.  We then will need to find some water and so will attempt another alongside manoeuvre.   By the time our engines are fixed we will be experts.


Note about the handling of the cat with one engine.

TopCat is extremely wide with very small rudders, so when going slowly with one engine she goes in a large circle.  Once we are up to 3 knots of boat speed we can go forwards quite easily.   Going backwards is not easy at all.   Testing the anchor is not easy because for this you have to drive backwards.  Consequently when we drop anchor the wind takes us one way and we cant drive the boat around to pull the anchor tight.   So far we have only had very very light winds so we are ok. 

We are Free to Sail 57

We are Free to Sail 57

We are back on anchor and free to sail.  (In the image above is the bay we are now sitting in). Well that is the theory anyway!  In reality we need to do another shop and we need to pick up a parcel that hasn’t arrived yet So in the meantime we can test all of our...

The Sunday Lunch Club 56

The Sunday Lunch Club 56

Overwintering on a boat in Samos Marina, on the beautiful Greek island of Samos could be quite a lonely affair if it wasn’t for the live-aboard community, let’s refer to them as the ‘exuberant partakers of the odd libation’.... so one naturally forms, The Sunday Lunch...


Don't Miss the Boat


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