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Recent Entries


Our first roadtrip in Arizona - circa 1978
Young adventurers Matching tees - just like old times! Genuine Hockley Our rough touring route? Taking a practice ride in Florida

Quick Fix: 26° 24' N / 81° 53' W
Shore leave: Florida
September 30th 2014 (day 2,679)

Returning to AZ
With my older brother, Stephen, sporting a sheath knife on his belt (he was always the practical one), and me a blue bunny rabbit's foot for good luck, we first explored Arizona together in 1978. Perhaps it was because our parents dressed us alike (two-for-one deals at Kmart?), but people just assumed we were twins. For almost two years we did everything together - exploring the Wild West with a feral carefree excitement and enthusiasm that comes so naturally to two boys, aged just seven and nine, who had just moved from a damp, overcast England to the vast bright adventurous expanse of cowboy country.
But time and travel changes most things, our family moved back to England, we grew up, chose different roads, and rarely, now, have the opportunity to spend time together.

But in just ten days Steve and I will return to Arizona where we'll once again share the same road, side-by-side, for an epic tour on the back of Harleys. We'll cruise the Grand Canyon State, Nevada, Utah and New Mexico. Ride on classic Route 66, explore Whisky Row, Vegas, Sedona, Monument Valley, old mining towns and forgotten highways. I've designed some tee shirts for us to wear - so we'll match. It'll be just like old times without, perhaps, the blue bunny rabbit's foot.
See you soon in Arizona, brother!

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Money well spent
Money well spent!

Quick Fix: 26° 24' N / 81° 53' W
Shore leave: Florida
September 24th 2014 (day 2,673)

Buy! Buy!! BUY!!!
There's an awareness we have when returning to 'civilization' not to get sucked back into the fast-spinning vortex of consumerism. It seems everywhere we turn businesses are trying to sell us something: upgrades and services - stuff that promises to make our lives better, more convenient, even happier. And the scary thing is, after a while you begin believing in it! Our lifestyle for the last seven years on Dream Time has been blissfully simple and has given us a very clear view of what really matters to us, and it's freedom. Freedom to appreciate the moment and pursue passions without unnecessary distractions, clutter or complications. So even though we're buying more stuff than we can carry right now, it's all boat gear, and that means it's money well spent.

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The new fridge/freezer unit

Drainage tubes have been installed and the cupboard prepared for the unit and insulation The new fridge/freezer unit is in place The new fridge/freezer unit is in place Detail of interior The new fridge/freezer unit is in place
The new fridge/freezer unit is in place Exterior paneling has been installed - insulation is ready to pour Polyurethane foam has been poured around the unit Note the thicker insulation around the freezer compartment Counter foundation and lid recess in place
Fridge/freezer openings Ready to receive teak counter Detail of lid recess    

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Cap'n Neville Day 2,663 - New Zealand (36° 37S 174° 47E)
09:25hrs - September 14th 2014
A Cool Winter Project - Part Two

We're on shore leave, but the good folks at Brin Wilson Boat Builders are in the midst of installing our new fridge/freezer unit. As outlined in Part One of this project, we decided to build a custom unit, rather than simply installing a new off-the-shelf evaporator plate, as we wanted to maximize the space and durability within the fridge/freezer compartments and, more importantly, replace the thirty-three year old insulation.

Our new unit has been fabricated from stainless s steel with coolant pipes wrapped around its exterior walls. The unit has been built to ensure that both the freezer and fridge compartments maintain the correct temperature balance (a swanky new digital thermostat will make it easier to control/regulate, too), and we designed the most versatile (slidable / adjustable - to any height / removable) shelves that will give us the greatest storage options - which is important, as you never quite now what provisions will be available when you're world cruising.

How to best insulate a fridge on a sailboat is a topic that some debate passionately. We're keeping it simple: we chose a closed-cell foam (to eliminate issues of water penetration), and an insulation that would be durable, impact resistant, would expand to fit every void within the cabinet, and that would have an R-value (thermal resistance) high enough to keep the heat out and the cold in.

We're using Norski polyurethane pour-in foam, which will give us an R-value around the fridge of approximately 25-30, and 35-40 around the freezer - plenty for the tropical climes we love to cruise in.

We've had a 12-volt, air cooled compressor on Dream Time for 14 years, which in 2010 we upgraded to a BD50. The compressor is housed in the sail locker (under the starboard cockpit seat, with a duct rigged to draw cooler air in from the cabin rather than the locker (which gets hot when the engine is running). The system is simple, flexible and it works well for us.

Phase three of this project will be the fabrication of a new counter top, lids, seals and a custom extension to give us a little more surface area.


What's New

Click here to read our story in the September issue of Cruising World magazine
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Read our story in the September issue of Cruising World magazine >


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Finding our balance in the windy city
103 floors above the city of Chicago

Quick Fix: 41° 52' N / 87° 38' W
Shore leave: Chicago
September 7th 2014 (day 2,656)

Sea Legs!
We're back in the U.S. and currently finding balance in the windy city of Chicago on the 103rd floor of the Willis Tower. After 3 manic months of boat projects, we're taking a little shore leave to see family, friends and sponsors. As we'll be sailing up to Vanuatu, over to Australia and into Asia when we return to NZ, we don't know when we'll have this opportunity again. While we're back in America we'll be stocking-up on gear for Dream Time - a starter motor, impellers, gaskets, filters, cetol... and we'll be making a few road trips, too. In 5 weeks, while Catherine relaxes in Florida, I'll be doing a little cruising on two wheels - touring across Arizona and Utah with my brother on Harley Davidsons. The idea came after renting mopeds in the Cook Islands last year - epic!

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