Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Day at the Dock

Mark and Judy took Windbird around the world over six years and took a dock something like five times. Dawn and I made it nine days! I jest...we put Windbird in a slip at Halifax Harbor Marina in Daytona Beach so I could fly to Atlanta tomorrow for a doctor appointment on Friday morning. But we took advantage of the time on the dock today to take our mainsail down and do some major surgery on our stackpack. We've had continuing issues with the zipper fabric ripping every time we zipped the stackpack closed - the last time after I spent two hours precariously balanced in the stackpack in freezing cold weather hand-sewing a patch on (it subsequently ripped in a different spot). Taking the mainsail off proved surprisingly easy, but Dawn ended up spending a good four hours reworking the zipper with her sewing machine. First she went over the zipper seam everywhere it was ripped with a Z stitch, then she sewed on reinforcing patches down the full length of both zippers. She has an older Kenmore sewing machine that seems fairly stout, but a Sailrite it is not, and she had several delays while she worked through issues. Meanwhile I made Curried Rice & Shrimp for lunch and then took the Votran bus on a run to Publix. Oof, rough-looking crowd on that bus.


Dawn was almost done when I got back, and then went about bending the sail and stackpack back onto the boom and mast. It went much, much smoother than last time, everything fits better, and it looks great. I zipped the stackpack closed, no rips, and this time the entire sail fits down inside it. Once that was done we hurriedly set about cleaning the boat before our friend Traci showed up. She's a SWA pilot who lives at the nearby Spruce Creek Airpark, which is pretty much pilot heaven. We met her through the AirVenture Cup Cross-Country Air Race which I participated in for several years with my flying club Piper Cub and then our Piper Pacer (Traci and her husband Mike raced their Diamond Twin Star). We had a really lovely evening showing her our new home, enjoying sundowners in the cockpit, eating grilled steaks & a strawberry-spinach salad, and talking boats and aviation.

Piper's DogVacay sitter picked him up at the marina at 10am this morning so he missed most of the excitement, but she's sent Dawn text updates with photos showing him having a great time with her four dogs in their expansive backyard. After Traci left tonight Dawn and I zipped up the enclosure in preparation for leaving the boat. We'll be up early tomorrow and have a couple more things to do before catching an Uber to the Daytona Beach Airport.


  1. Since you must have WiFi at the dock did you consider a nest cam for when you are away from the boat?

  2. Colin-- Hmm, hadn't considered that...but a pretty good idea, and easy to do without a ton of expense. It'll probably be a while before we put Windbird in a marina on her own again, though.