Weather or knots…

Been pretty slow going

We just been tooling around Banderas Bay, stayed a bit at Punta de Mita.  It was our first time ashore there.  It is a different little town and not at all what we expected.  When seen from the boat, you see the resorts on the water on the west side of the point.  But the town is a classic Mexican village, with a lot of gringos mulling around.  When leaving after a couple days of 20+ knot blows we sailed south across the bay, motored east a little then sailed west back to La Cruz.

Saw, from the water, places we hiked a couple years back…

Bad photo but we been floating past the end of dock 11 at the marina for last few weeks and it finally hit us what’s wrong with this picture???  The dredge SANK!  The dock crew are trying to float it with bladders and air pump maybe?


Not a lot, we did try a new paste wax and are still happiest with the Collinite #884.  Close second was Big White but the Collinite goes on and comes off so easy it’s a pleasure to use…

Image result for paste wax whale        Image result for paste wax collinite 884

Re-built the old raw water pump with the rebuild kit we got from, thanks again Lisa from Beta and our mules from Denver!

Techie stuff

Sailing, or moving your house around like we do, is very dependent on the winds and weather.  Most mornings here in Banderas Bay there is a Banderas bay cruisers net on marine VHF channel 22A  and Mike Danielson from PV Sailing and North Sails,,  performs the boating community a great service by offering a sailing oriented weather forecast on the VHF.  Mike also helps this community out with their longer range sailing weather windows as well.

Besides the local help, here are a couple of wind and weather forecast internet web sites, both are excellent at combining ocean swell, wind swell, currents, etc., to make a little better picture of what to expect when sailing:,-105.688,6




There are lots more, including US Navy and NOAA sites and commercial sites and downloadable GRIBS, GRIB (GRIdded Binary or General Regularly-distributed Information in Binary form) and satellite weather services and… everyone has their favorites!  Pick one!



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We been pretty mellow so far…

Whats up:

Hi all, we been pretty mellow this season.  After leaving Marina Vallarta, which has really updated over the last few years, we have been over at Marina Nayarit both in the anchorage and at dock.  We went into dock to better facilitate for guests boarding and disembarking the boat.

Yeah visitors, they found a centrally located airbnb for $42 usd a night and they were pretty happy!

Our visitors came from Denver for a few days and we did the boat on the bay thing for a few days.  It took us a few days to recover and now we are back on the bay, at anchor and putting around.  We plan an trip back to Denver in March then back to boat after a couple weeks getting our judo fix out of the way!

Oh yes they got to see whales!

And dolphins:


Projects… Jim started cleaning the standing rigging in PV a few weeks ago and when we were on dock this last week finished the cleaning of the back stay.  He dose not want to repeat that one again soon bruises and skinned shin and all.   But not that he has the system down, it should not be a problem next time.

We also finally got some material and re-covered the folding deck cushions.  The foam was getting soft with age too and so we added some of the foam we cut off of the V-berth king size topping foam we got last month and life is better!

The old cover and new cover on frame, the new one is turquoise, ha!:

We recovered both of them…

Jess likes!

Techie time:

Visitors, ( mules ), brought some boat parts for our enjoyment! A new raw water pump was the most appreciated one!

We put it into the boat as fast as we could… It only took about 5 minutes!

Have not really looked at the rest of the stuff we got from the mules yet.  May be some more projects there!  Still need to paint the motor where the old pump was leaking salt water…

Notes on WAX.

We tried a local wax and hated it,  and then we tried a new, “Big White”,  one and still the best boat wax we like is the COLLINITE #885.

Tried and is OK but not the best, It went on cleanly and came off OK, and if I had never tried the Collinite #885, it might be OK! :

But still the BEST, goes on easy comes off easy.  Best we have tried!


We will head to Denver in March for the Youth Nationals  (judo) and stay for the Denver Judo Spring tournament and return to boat to continue the season.  We hope to get up to Guaymas and put the boat on the HARD to allow us to re-work the mast and paint the bottom and replace the standing rigging and get ready to move south of Mexico (maybe)!  Mexico is soooooo easy, it is a hard decision to make, but we are thinking of Panama in the future!





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Eight weeks in Mexico, so far – 2019


We arrived in Mazatlan December 05, 2018, Jim started his residente permanente work on the 14th of December and finished after the holidays on the 10th if January 2019.  Jessica started on the 10th of Jan and is still waiting for the final notice to pick-up her card.  We gave up on waiting in Mazatlan for the finger print notice a couple weeks ago and headed south.  Mazatlan to San Blas to Jaltembe to Puerto Vallarta.  Spent a week in Puerto Vallarta, Marina Vallarta,  visiting with the Bergers and now we are hanging out in the Marina Nayarit anchorage.

Jim got some boat waxing done in the marina, Jessica took a bus ride to Mazatlan, 8 hours, stayed the night and got fingerprinted and paid her final payment on the residente permanente process and then got on a bus to return to PV.  All told a thirty two  hour adventure.

Photo bits:

Old Harbor in Mazatlan:


Boat work while waiting around for IMM…


Trip south, Jess finds the best spots to stand watch (and off watch)…


Puerto Vallarta…



Waiting patiently for visitors…

INFO bits TECHIE TIME – Fees for residente permanente. ( and it took 4 years)

  1. Consulate in Denver with proof of income and savings ( needed passport photos too), receive a visa sticker in your passport.  approx $50 USD per person.
  2. Visit immigration at the Mexico border and get a special visa, no extra cost and start a 30 day countdown to visit your resident state immigration office in Mexico.
  3. Get your paperwork in order, we used a lady near the Mazatlan Immigration office and it ran about $25 per visit and you see her the first time, at the end on one year, and at the four year mark.  Total about $75 USD.   She takes required photos and originates and gets your paperwork in order so you can walk over to the IMM office and start/continue/finish the process.
  4. Each visit to the office there is a “change in status request fee”, you are required to pay this fee and then any fee required for the resident card itself.  The first visit it was under $1000 pesos, maybe $800 or so, it’s hard to remember 4 years ago but let’s call it $1000 peso for each of the 3 card visits. totaling about $150 USD.
  5. Each card visit periods takes about 3 to 4 weeks.  Day one is to pay the change request fees and start the paperwork moving.  Ten days later you are called in to get fingerprinted and pay the resident card fee, different fees for one year card vs three year card, etc.  Mazatlan required us to do a one year card followed by a three year card after 12 months and then 3 years later we were allowed to apply for the permanent cards.  One year card fees were around $3000 pesos, 3 year card was around $7000 pesos and the permamnete card was $5200 pesos.  Totaling around $15000 pesos or around $800 USD per person.  And taking 4 years.
  6. Grand total $50+$75+$150+$800=$1075 per person

So why do it?  First thing we did not know the true cost when we started the process.  And other consulates and immigration office combinations in Mexico seem to work under different rules which allow for quite a bit lower fees.  Some Mexico Consulates are rumored (on the internet blogs and pages) to process you directly for a permanent card.  This would reduce your fees to around $7000 pesos plus the paperwork/photo fees or around a total of maybe $500 USD per person.

So why do it?  What you receive if you make frequent and long term stays in Mexico are:

  • If you fly, you can get refunded to VISA fee that is default purchased on every plane ticket.
  • You can stay in mexico, legally, for over 6 months at a time without leaving the country at the end of your 180 day tourist visa.
  • You can open bank accounts, we did not try to open an account with a tourist visa only, but don’t think it works?
  • You can import your household goods into mexico, one time, without import duty.
  • Is easier for spouse of card holder to apply, I think?

Why you may not want to do it?

  • A temporary import permit for a motor vehicle (car/truck/etc.) may not be possible for a resident card holder.  ( I think this does not apply for marine vessels).

Not really techie was it?

Fin for now

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2018 Back to Boat

Hi all,

We been in Mexico since the 5th Dec 2018.  We flew American Air to Mazatlan via Phoenix this year and flight was delayed three plus hours.  So it was nice that we had rented an Airbnb at the marina for couple if nights in order to allow opening the boat. Hajime is in lower left hand corner of photo, on dock 7, and Airbnb was on ground floor of red roofed complex near walk to pool…  Logistics were GREAT!

2018 airbnb

Items we brought down to feed boat’s appetite.

X-3 Shaft Zinc 1″ Diameter
9 1/2 Wire Crimping tool
Mexican Train Dominoes
2 set Shoreline 1/2″dia.x20′ Blue + 1/2″dia.x25′ Gold/White
Cobra 400 Watts Inverted
Dive fins used
12v 5L/Min 115 psi pump “micro electric diaphragm pump”
Quiet 12v DC solar circulation pump 8-1,8-2
Beckson Port light screens
Beckson Port light gaskets
Home Depot thumb screws
Bilge Pump ebay
Bilge pump Amazon
Ocean Systems EPIRB Battery
LOWES Fittings and tube (1 lot)
Fittings 3/8 and 1/4 (2 each = 1 lot)


LiFePO4 Battery UPDATE:

WOW, we put the batteries away in March 2018 with no charger and no usage connections (except for a switched voltage meter which was off except when taking the readings).  Here is the chart of readings taken by our boat management people over an eight and one half month period of time.  The batteries self discharged about 0.08 volts or 0.6% over 8.5 months.  I was delighted.  We are starting the third season with these batteries and they still seem to be treating us like new batteries.
Yes, we will do another discharge cycle chart when we get to dock for a several days to check against our prior discharge data to see if we think we see any degradation in the batteries so far.
Since being back on boat we tend to use about 20 to 25 Amp Hours over the nights      (a change in refrigerator control is using less power now).  When we are off the boat the solar panels are recharging the batteries completely every day.  Even now during the shortest daylight time of the year.  When we are on boat all day, computers, lights, pumps, etc. we tend to induce around a net 30 to 40 Amp Hour deficit daily.  Shore power charger or running the engine (alternator) keeps up charged but we can last 5 or six ‘on boat” days without recharging, way nice!
2018 LiFePO4 storage

Boat opened well, only a couple issues.

So about the refrigerator:

It turns out that lightning hit the dock Hajime was on this summer and caused some havoc with some of the other boats.
The only thing we found on opening the boat was that the refrigerator would not start when powered.  The original refrigeration system we installed in 2010 was the Isotherm 4701.   We put it into the original built in Ice Box on s/v Hajime.  The compressor was installed aft in the lazarette and the cold plate inside the ice box.
isotherm    Hajime-Ice-Box.jpg  IMG_4613
Last year we replaced the cold plate with a Nova Kool RT4 Boxed Evaporator with 12 Foot Line set.  We were trying to make it so we could make ice for the margaritas!!!
It worked out last year and we did not change the old isotherm controller.  This year the refrigerator would not power up.  We got out the volt/ohm meter and chased it down to the isotherm control module was not exciting the compressor to operate.
Last year, just in case, we picked up a Yeeco mechanical cooling thermostat and decided not ti use it. This year we found it in the spares kit, whew!
Yeeco thermostat_
What isotherm does is take a standard 12/24 volt DC compressor.  Ours is a Danfoss BD50F.  And they put their control module ( the blue one in our case) between the Danfoss control connectors and power hookups.  Then they run a thermistor resistor into the ice box and a control panel to mount for the refrigerator temperature control.
The  POS cooling water pump and pump control module, which were the isotherm raw water cooling system, we replaced in 2013 after our pump/control module failed.  We replaced the high cost isotherm parts with a horn relay and a 12v solar water pump.
12v Solar pump
So we pulled the blue isotherm module off the Danfoss and
ran boat 12v power to +/- terminals
and ran the cooling water pump relay +/- to the Fan/- terminals
and ran the Yeeco cooling thermostat leads to the C/T connectors without a resistor
and she runs nice and quiet at 2000 rpm…  And the compressor/pump system looks to draw around 3.5 to 4 Amps.
  danfoss bd50f  danfoss bd50f 101N210 220 500 Danfoss speed
It did take a bit of time to do the research…

Air Breeze Wind Power Generator:

Finally did the repair kit on the Air Breeze  200 Watt windmill.  We bought the repair part electronic control board a couple years ago and finally got a control board that goes inside the machine up on the post. And did the replacement.  We let it run in 60 knot winds back in 2011 and it has not been right since!
After replacement of the circuit board, the wind machine is working pretty well again.  It likes to shutdown with a “too high wind”  alarm at around 25 knots wind speed and restart after 30 sec.  Book says design is for 35 knor wind speed for this function, but other than that it seems to be working well.  We are getting 3 to 4 Amps in 15 knot winds.

Raw water pump too:

Also we seem to have a water pump problem.  Seems that the raw water pump on the Beta 30 is dripping salt water (occasionally).  Last year it started and I emailed for parts availability to in the USA and they were VERY HELPFUL.  I on the other hand forgot to order the parts when we got back to the USA last season.  My bad!  We ordered a rebuild kit and a replacement pump and hope friends can bring them down next month.  Probably a good idea to have spare raw water pump onboard.
It turns out that the original pump design had issued with the raw water seal and they have devised a spacer and “O”-ring modification to help fix it.  We probably have the original pump with the design issue.  Pump was made by and both pump and re-build parts are available in USA from Beta Distributors.
beta water pump pf40b small file revised (1)
Part# 15 and #16 are the added parts in the above revised list…
beta pump raw nc

The procedure for the re-build is as follows:

PF40B ‐ (207‐08922) Raw Water Pump Q‐500‐003‐001

Pump Repair Guide – Disassembly Procedure

1. Remove the pump from the engine.
2. Remove cover screws (18), Cover (2) and Cover Seal.
3. Remove Impeller (11) with suitable removal tool, and remove the Wear Plate (14).
4. Remove the Retaining Tube (15) and the Retaining Tube Centring Ring (16)
5. Remove the Oil Seal (17) with a hooked pick or similar suitable tool.
6. Remove Circlip (12) with Circlip Pliers.
7. Push Shaft and Bearing assembly out of the pump body by pressing the shaft out from the impeller end.
8. Remove the Water Seal (7) and V‐ring Seal (13) using a suitable tool.
9. To remove the bearings from the shaft a bearing press plate should be used to offset the bearing spacer to one side and sit behind the engine side bearing.
10.The engine side bearing (3) can then be pressed from the shaft.
11.Remove the bearing spacer (6).
12.The seal side bearing (3) can then be pressed from the shaft.
13.Remove Circlip (10) from shaft is required.

Parts Inspection
All parts should be inspected for wear / damage before reassembly / re‐use.
It is good practice to replace all Seals with new parts during re‐assembled.
If the water seal (7) has worn a groove in the shaft (4) then the shaft should be
If the pump has leaked and the bearings are contaminated with water they should
be replaced.

Assembly / Re‐assembly Procedure
1. Ensure that Circlip (10) is fitted to the groove in the Shaft (4).
2. Press the “seal side” Bearing (3) onto the Shaft (4) until the inner ring rests against the Circlip (10). Ensure the inner bearing ring is supported by the press tool to prevent damage to the bearing.
3. Fit the Bearing Spacer (6) between the two bearings and press the engine side bearing (3) onto the shaft until both bearing outer rings are in contact with the bearing spacer. Ensure that both bearing press tools support both the inner and outer bearing rings of each bearing to prevent damage to the bearing.
4. Press the bearing / shaft assembly into the pump body (1), ensure the press tool pushes on the outer bearing ring to prevent damage to the bearings.
5. Fit the Circlip (12) with circlip pliers.
6. Fit the new Oil Seal (17) by pressing into place against outer diameter, lubrication may be required to fit correctly / easily. Once the seal is fitted, use a plastic pick or thin tool to displace the oil seal lip and release any air trapped behind the Oil Seal (17).
7. Push the new V‐Ring seal (13) down the shaft until is seats on the counter face inside the pump body, it should be deflected slightly by the counter face to seal the bearing housing.
8. Press the new Water Seal (7) into the water seal seat ensuring the seal lip is pointing towards the impeller end of the pump. To seat the water seal correctly the seat and seal should be lubricated with a small amount of water or rubbing alcohol.
9. Fit the Centring Ring (16) to the outer diameter of the Retaining Tube (15) and push into place behind the seal (7). Ensure the Centring Ring (16) is still in place on the tube once fitted.
10.Fit the Wear Plate (14) inside the impeller housing.
11.Lubricate the impeller bore and wear plate with l a neoprene rubber compatible lubricant (silicone lubricant or Glycerol are acceptable).
12.Fit the impeller (11) all the way into the housing, ensure it engages with the shaft and that the drive pin is fitted.
13.Fit the Cover Seal (5), then lubricate the impeller and seal with neoprene and nitrile rubber compatible lubricant (as above).
14.Fit the Cover Plate (2) and fix in place with 6 Cover Screws (18).
15.Re‐install the pump onto the engine.


Cushion recover:

We are going to re-cover the foam settee cushions and bunk cushions, again.  We did them in 2011, all but the V-berth cushions, and they have collected quite a bit of grime from the 4 years of full time live aboard et al.   We bought the fabric for around $50 today and we can reclaim the old zippers.  It should only take a couple/three days to do the work (once we start).  We will photo…   Here are the old cushions from 2011…

 Mattress topper:

We also picked up a mattress topper, 2 inch gel foam memory foam, from and had it sent to the Marina Mazatlan.  We cut a king size (74″ x 74″) down for the V-Berth where we sleep and are feeling the love…  It has improved the comfort of the 4 inch thick, 40 year old, foam cushions tremendously!  And it was only around $60 USD delivered… Woohoo.

Propane detector:

Just got a new Trident Marine 1300-7760 L.P. Gas Control and Detection System, 12V , Solenoid control.  The old xintex S-2 was screaming all the time and we decommissioned it a couple years ago.  It felt right to replace it!  Looks nice installed…




Jim got his residente permanente, “GREEN CARD” , on the 10th, last week, and Jess started her paperwork with immigration on the 10th.  Permanent residency for us is the suggested method for folks returning to Mexico often.  The six month “tourist visa” you get with a plane ticket to MX is not meant for folks who stay longer than six months at times.



We finally got to Irimi Dojo, Federico and Aida’s dojo in Colonia Juarez here in Mazatlan this last week.  It is great to see everyone and play a little judo.  I sat out the first night, Wednesday,  with a little stiffness still from the header I took at the masters in Cancun, but couldn’t stay away and dressed on Friday.  Saturday we took a bus to Culiacán for the state qualifier for the cadet  national judo tournament in Feb.  Both of the Torres boys qualified for the National tournament.

Fin “again”

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Dojo upside down cake…

Return to boat:

Jess and I are heading back to svHajime in Mazatlan on Dec 5th.  So in the spirit of “techi stuff” and getting back to blogging, I thought I would start the blog up again.


Summer consisted of painting the building east side or “front”: before and after:

We did judo camp in preparation for the 2018 World Veterans in Cancun:


Camping in WY:

Road trip took us west to Lander WY, Bend OR, Eugene OR, , Down to SF, and back through Yosemite and Ely, Ely, Ely:


Jess did a women’s judo workshop in Pateala India and visited brother Tim in SF.:

And… judo tournaments in Round Rock TX, Grand Rapids MI, Chicago IL, Denver CO, and Dallas TX.  Denver Judo won the team trophy (again) at the Denver Judo Fall Classic.


Oh, and of course:

We have the most handsome grandson ever:


Techie – background:

Back in 2005 when we purchased the middle unit of a triplex at 719 Mariposa St. in Denver, we remodeled the warehouse we purchased and put in the judo workout area.  The building has concrete floors but for a dojo floor we wanted to put in a flexible or sprung floor under the mats.

So in 2005 before we did anything else, we experimented with some 7/16 plywood sheeting and samples of available ethafoam we obtained from a supplier.

So off to the dojo and we built the floor on a little larger scale.

But from the beginning, we had the problem of retaining the mats and floor sheeting so that it could FLOAT but not come apart under the mats.  The long walls worked to retain the floor in one direction, but  the other direction was open to movement. We tried straps and Velcro:

And we tried screwing the layers together.  None of this seemed very effective.  The floor sheeting scooted apart under the mats and developed openings between the mats.  Dangerous in judo, easy to catch a toe in the cracks and someone could get hurt.  Over the past 13 years we have re-set the floor 3 or 4 times.

This years issues with the floor:

After building the Denver Floating Floor back in 2005, we placed the plans for the floor on the internet, free for the asking.  Many judo and jujitsu clubs have built the floor.  And long ago we changed the “How To” documents to suggest retaining the floor with 4×4’s bolted to the building flooring and floating the sprung flooring inside these retaining 4×4’s.

So finally after 13 years, this week, we just finished bolting retaining 4×4’s  to the floor at Denver Judo.  All it took was 4 each 10 foot long 4×4’s, a concrete drill, and some concrete anchors, a few drill bits, etc. :

    IMG_20181125_110953624  floor dwg

Looks like it should keep the floor and mats together and everyone’s toes safe!

By the way it takes moving approximately one hundred 40 pound mats ( 4000 pounds ) at least a couple times in order to straighten out the sub floor in our dojo!

See y’all on the boat !

FIN – Jim and Jess

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Back in MX but for a Judo Event

Hi all, Jess and I got to go down to Cancun, QR, Mexico last week for the 2018 IJF World Veterans Judo Tournament.  Have not seen official numbers, but they were expecting over 1000 contestants.   I got 5th place out of 13, lucky draw to get a buy first round, won next one, then lost next two.  Jessica won 3 out of 4 matches to take silver .

There are around 10 age divisions for veterans starting at age 30 and progressing in 5 year increments.  Then there are weight classes and men play with men and women play with women.  It makes for a lot of divisions.  It took 4 days to play all the matches starting at 9:30AM each day and running to around 4:30PM.

We were there 9 nights at an Airbnb, it was a good place to stay for that long.  At the event hotel it would have been USD $240 a night for the two of us, USD $2160 plus taxesif you add in 2 omre for 5 days and 2 more at 6 days, it’s like USD $5280 more…   Totaling USD $7440.

At the Airbnb we did 9 nights for USD $685 plus USD $200 for food and drinks for 6 of us.  And we ate out a hand full of times too, maybe another $350.  Totaling  USD $1235.

Some photos of the event :

Some photos of food and sights:

Some photos of the house we rented:

Here is a link to the whole photo album:

Back to boat in December?



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The rest of 2018. We have not been at the boat since late March…

So what have we been doing?

( this is for our friends who like to keep track of us and hate Facebook)

We left s/v Hajime in Mazatlan March 22, 2018 in order to make it back to Denver for the Denver Classic Spring Judo tournament on March 24th.

The event was a success as usual thanks to the efforts of Scott and Heidi Moore and the whole Denver Judo team.

Colorado Judo State tournament followed closely April 14th.  Jim played, not very well, for the first time since around 2012.


Apr 15 through 21 we drove to Indiana to see Mom and Grandson, Whitney, who was born this year on February 9th.

Senior nationals Judo tournament was May 9 through 14 and we drove to Round Rock TX and back for the event.  Both Jim and Jessica played and got medals, woohoo!


June 9 through 15th we helped friend John Kuony move the 48 foot Ketch, Perseverance, from Port Everglades FL up the coast to Hilton Head Island SC.  It was the first time sailing/motoring of the east coast for us.  Way cool!

July 5 through 8 we attended the USJA/USJF summer Nationals in Grand Rapids, MI to referee for Jim and mostly to see Daughter Amanda, Steven and the new Grandson Whitney James Rainey.

July 25 was Jim’s 62nd b-day.

On the 26th he drove to Chicago to help out at the (brand new event) Komatsu Cup juniors only Judo clinic and tournament.  Then to IN to see family before coming back to Denver.


Mix in the botanical gardens here in Denver, visits with friends and family,  and lots of Judo workouts. Andrew bought a house and some remodeling, and that catches us up on the summer so far.



Still need to paint the front of 719 Mariposa St. here in Denver.  Soon as we get Andrew settled a bit more…

Jess wants to road trip west in the middle of September.  There is a veterans Judo tournament in Cancun, MX in October and Jessica is maybe going to India to help with a women’s development program in November.

We have to be in Mazatlan MX in December for our residency permits.

Caught up!

FIN (for now)


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Boat season wrap-up

Short season for us

But first:  My daughter, Amanda and husband, Steven Rainey have created a son, their first!  Only seen via Skype so far!


Back to Boat:  It has been a short boat season for us this year, 2018.  Jess says that maybe we will come pet the boat in July or August and try for the Sea then.  We shall see!

Last post got us to early February.  Since then we returned to Banderas Bay from locations south or there.  Jess did some dental work at a local dentist in Bucerias Nayarti MX.  Where a crown runs around $2000 peso or $108 USD.  WooHoo!  Jim got a case of dengue fever and was down and out a couple weeks.  We stayed at dock in Marina Riveria Nayarit for the dental and fever stuff.

Friends Jeanine and John from SF area came to stay a week in Yelapa, Jalisco MX on the south shore of  Banderas Bay and we got to play with them a hand full of days.  Way fun!

Season ended with a very quiet motor up to Mazatlan, a record breaking short time for boat closing and a couple nights hotel stay to see how the other half do it.  Then a CHEAP flight back to Denver via Phoenix from Mazatlan on American Airlines.

AIRLINE RANT:  The airline people who are making the rules that the people actually doing the work have to run with are the ASSHOLES.  The people we interacted with during our flights were first rate!  Have to say, we did a 5 wee trip on maybe 6 different European airlines last June/July and seating and baggage rules were ALWAYS excellent, not to mention the drinks and snacks which put US based airlines to shame!

Last projects; we find that the port lights remain sound if we keep the rubber seals clean and closed tightly!  Have put replacement seals and a screen and maybe a lens or two on the parts list for next season.   We are finally getting the wood toe rail and misc. teak parts on the boat clean of the varnish and ceatol which we have used in the past.  I think we will just plan to keep them washed when needed.

We found the sealant failed under the salon hatch.  The rope seal we replaced this year did not do the trick so we pulled the hatch up and sealed it with butyl tape.  Worked great!


I am going to blame the leak, 40 years after the boat was constructed, on the method used to install the hatch.  The hatch is screwed down with a coarse wood screw into the fiberglass coach roof surface.  The installer drilled a pilot hole for the screws but failed to make the countersink at the hole surface so ALL the screw holes had spalled around tthe screw hole.  This condition made it difficult to tighten and seal the hatch base properly.  A blow up photo at a spall.

Salon hatch detail

The photos:

Bay with friends:


Boat wrap up:

That last hotel:



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Been there…

Happy Valentines Day one and all…  For us it was also an Anniversary, 12 years this year! Woohoo!

We been there, south to Barra de Navidad area and back to Banderas Bay, this year and are in La Cruz de Huanacaxtle at Marina Riveria Nayarit doing some boat cleaning.  Jess is doing some dentistry over in Buscerias…

Some photos from Barra de Navidad:


Some photos from La Cruz de Huanacaxtle:



Besides all the bobbing and rolling in the anchorage, we have done some projects, here is a before and after photo of some sun screen material we have had on boat since putting the dodger on board back in 2010.  So we turned it into a dive bag and have another to make from a second piece of screen material:



Batteries – LiFePo4 update:


Boat LiFePo4 battery final few discharge cycle readings, load was between 8 and 15 Amps for these readings  (NOTE this data is just the last hour of the discharge test):

2018 0215 test

The new Shore charger is now pumping at a rate of 40 Amps back into the 400 Ah battery bank again.  Remember that it is an adjustable charger so you can set it up to not overcharge the LiFePo4 batteries above a safe 13.8 volt charge limit (it seems to work well for these batteries):

Marine Grade Battery Charger, Pronautic 30A, 3 Bank 30 amps

So it looks like we may have lost some capacity from the bank, the last check was March 2017 where we had -321 Ah at 12.6 volts during the discharge cycle test.  This year looks like around 290 Ah plus/minus…  That would be around 9.5% capacity reduction.  I think we will run the test again soon as we can to verify this!



In that vane, here is the test starting 2-16-2018 we drain the battery bank again:

2018 0216 discharge LiFePo4

OK, I tried to collect  a little more data this round.  And from the chart, If I had to guess i would say it was probably around -315 to -318 for the 12.6 volt mark.

So April 2017 discharge test we saw at -321Ah about  12.6 V, we did not discharge down to the 11.8 volts mark.

This February 2018 full test was more controlled than yesterdays, and we saw -315Ah  at the 12.6 volt mark.

If we did loose capacity it looks like 6/321= around 2%.

And loads of room for errors in my testing.  Enough for now, not so bad as I thought yesterday!  Worth doing a couple times a season!



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SHIPWRECK – Punta de Mita

Thought to blog this information since it is so hard to search the information out online…  I am not a novice at the internet, been online since before Al Gore…  And I find the editing/censoring that goes on in current search engines is pretty tough to work around these days…


On New years eve one year ago, Jess and I were sailing s/vHajime around Punta de Mita and had just turned the corner to make the reach to La Cruz de Huanacaxtle when a couple 100+ foot long motor yachts racing with each other played chicken with us (we were under sail).  The 100+ foot jet boat who cut 50 foot in front of our sailing vessel moving from our starboard side to pass us to our port side (we were under sail).  The 100+ foot  jet boat was found on wrecked on the rocks in Punta de Mita that evening…  Try as I might on and off for weeks afterwards and to this day I can find no online information regarding the wrecking of a 100+ foort jet boat onto the shore at Punta de Mita, Nayarit Mexico December 31, 2016.  Interesting huh???

So since I thought I would document what I could on the vessel that ran aground recently here at Punta de Mita, Nayarit MX.



A sailing vessel recently wrecked on the rocks at Punta de Mita, Nayarit Mexico, the NW point of Banderas Bay, Puerta Vallarta area and the word on the docks is that they were using the Garmin charts for their main navigation aid…

Here are some photos of the wreck:

Here is blog from a prior owner of the vessel:

Here is a link to the current owner’s blog:

We are saddened by the events and our hearts go out to all those involved…


Garmin charts have gotten a pretty bad reputation from the cruising community in Mexico:  The accuracy of the California/Mexico charts VUS021R is poor.  This is the Garmin chart we just purchased and updated to the 2018 release on s/vHajime.

We are/have been trying to send Garmin Error reports when we can in order to help get the charts updated…

Error report link:

Garmin has been responding to the reports and we hope to start to see some of the chart errors revised as soon as possible…  I’ve already blogged some of these issues if you look back to the last few blogs, here are some more screen shots from our recent trip down to Barre de Navidad and back:



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