After much consideration, Pam and I have decided to head south with Drift Away this fall. We really had much to consider. We both have jobs we like (I work in the sailing business and Pam is a vet tech), and we have a boat that still needs a lot of work. But the engines run, so we're not going to sweat the small stuff. I submitted my resignation last week with a final work day of September 2nd.
We put together a list of things to order for the boat. Luckily, because I work in the boat biz, I can buy things at a discount but the biggest item on the list is a completely new electronics package and there's little markup in electronics. I've decided to go all Simrad- broadband 3G radar, GS15 GPS, NSSB MFD 12" touchscreen display for the helm, NSS12 MFD display for the flybridge, NAIS-300N class B automatic identification system transponder, and an AP2802 autopilot. I decided on Simrad for two reasons. 1) they offer broadband radar (which is much faster than dial-up radar) and 2) they have a nice 12" touch screen display.
YouTube demo of NSS touch screen
I'm also ordering an 80 pound Manson anchor and 150' of 3/8" BBB chain. As you've probably figured out, I have two top priorities. 1) I want to know where I am and how to get to my destination without hitting stuff and 2) I want to stay put once I get there.
Yes, I'm also ordering paper charts for when the whole system shits the bed.
So Pam and I have about two months to get Drift Away in shape. I have an A/C guy coming today to charge the A/C compressors, I've ordered a new bimini (forest green Sunbrella), and I have a guy coming over to fiberglass the foredeck and the side decks to stop the leaks once and for all. Yeah yeah, I know.
I'll also get a mechanic to check out the engines to make sure they're OK, and have him see if he can get one or both of the generators running. If he can't, I'll stick a Honda gas generator on the flybridge as a temporary fix.
We will also finish painting the hull, paint the fiberglass decks, get the 13' Boston Whaler running and registered, sort out the problems with the navigation lights, etc. etc. etc. Anything not done can wait.
So this is our plan- leave on or about September 19th to NYC and then north up the Hudson. Keep the boat in Waterford or Crescent or Schenectady, where ever we can find a dock. Get married on October 1st. October 2nd or 3rd head south, arriving in Annapolis for the United States Sailboat Show. After that, at some point continue south somewhere, arriving someplace, where we will do something.
That's our plan and we're sticking to it.