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CYCA Event 16August- Preparing for a longer cruising journey

by Des Ryan on 15 Aug 2011
What he imagined vs what - most often - he got .. .
When Ted Nobbs and Nancy Knudsen set off for a circumnavigation, they thought that the difference between racing, which they were used to, and cruising was 'putting down an anchor every now and then.' They couldn't have been more wrong.

After six years' long range sailing with other experienced cruising sailors and a long and steep learning curve, they will discuss what they perceive as the essential differences between racing or short term cruising and the longer journey.

Their presentation will include boat preparation, boat operations, anchoring, MOB, seamanship and safety, with particular emphasis on short-handed sailing.

Ted and Nancy's previous presentation at the CYCA was a light-hearted talk about their adventures which appeared in Nancy's book on the voyage, Shooting Stars and Flying Fish.

This presentation, a shortened version of which they presented on stage at the Sydney Boat Show every day to enthusiastic full houses, will concentrate on the practical aspects of long range voyaging.

Join us at the CYCA on Tuesday 16 August from 6pm for a 6:30pm start to discover what you need to do to prepare yourself and your boat for a longer cruise, or a circumnavigation.

The CYCA Bistro and bar will be open for dinner after the Information Session - stay on and keep talking while you dine...

Please register your attendance at CYCA Reception on 02 8292 7800 or

Attendees are invited print-out the synopisis of the evening, reproduced here below, for ease of note-taking during the event.

Date: 16 Aug 2011 Time : 18:30 — 20:30

Venue: Freya and Morna Rooms, Cruising Yacht Club of Australia, New Beach Road Darling Point.


 Cruising Yacht Club of Australia

Cruising Information Evening

16th August 2011 6.30pm- 8.00pm


Synopsis of...


Preparing for short-handed, long-range cruising


with Ted Nobbs and Nancy Knudsen

Chapter 1. Keep it simple


  1. Batteries

  1. Charging System

  1. Dan Buoy

  1. Gas System

Self-maintenance in remote areas: “Will THIS break and can I fix it?”

Chapter 2. Sail Plan for short-handed long range cruising:

“What sails should I take?”

Say no to the spinnaker

Cutter rigged, yankee and staysail - perfect

The MPS (multiple purpose sail), no

We should have had The Code 0

Chapter 3. Single-handed setup

Chapter 4. Safety - for short-handed long range cruising

MOB? forget it – just STAY ON THE BOAT!

By concentrating elsewhere:

  1. Statistics of MOB situations

  1. No-one on deck unless the other crew present

  1. Clipped on always

  1. Length of tether issues

  1. Jacklines and UV issues

  1. Harnesses and wear

  1. Life jackets

The danger of the parachute flare

Diving for safety: Powerdive or scuba

Chapter 5. Provisioning and stowage

Bleach the vegetables


  • Wrap citrus in alfoil

  • Longest lasting pumpkin, cabbage, chinese lettuce (in fridge)

  • Turn unrefrigerated eggs every two days

  • Mung beans and alfalfa

  • Vegemince

  • Cryovac machine

Stowage Plan and the shopping list

Chapter 6. Water issues

Water filters for taking water onboard

Water vs Fuel tanks

Everyone can afford a ‘Do It Yourself’ Watermaker

Salt water tap

Chapter 7 Planning and Navigation

  • Seasons

  • Charts – electonic vs paper, Bellinghams

  • Cruising guides

  • GPS – primary/spares, inaccuracy

  • AIS

  • Radar

  • Autopilot/Fluxgate compass – affected by pitching, rolling and METAL

Radar overlaying the electronic chart gives comfort that the GPS is accurate

Route and timing planning using a spreadsheet

Yacht and crew identification sheet

Making your own log book

Websites:, (Yotreps)

and, of course,

Chapter 8. Communications

  • Sailmail/Winlink

  • Satphones – Iridium

  • HF – don't go without it

  • VHF – satphones do NOT replace radio

  • Informal Nets

  • Maritime Mobile Nets

Chapter 9. Anchoring

Length of chain, anchor weight, anchor alarm, anchor buddy

The new generation anchor:

  • Spade, Rocna, Manson Supreme, Sarca, Sword, Bugel, Ultra

The ‘Med’ Hook

Chapter 10. Choosing a boat

  • Plastic fantastics

  • The keel – encapsulated

  • The hull – osmosis

  • The importance of a survey

  • Length

  • Rig – masthead or fractional

What not to forget:

  • redundancy

  • Checking the rigging

  • plugs for hull outlets

  • Fire preparation

  • Grab bag

  • First Aid Kit – antibiotics

  • Holding tank issues

  • The Garden Light

  • Fuel filter at deck level

  • Knowing how to service the engine

Creature comforts:

  • Diesel heater

  • Microwave

  • Deep freeze

  • Dodger

  • Swim platform

  • Davits

  • The folding bikes


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