Sunday, October 11, 2009

Wonderful Willy and Angry Otto

Winds were slow but steady as we left Isla Graciosa and hoisted the colourful halfwinder to take advantage of some motor-free progression. After a tip on blade angles from a fellow Canadian-Dutch cruiser, Seb was able to get the windvane working properly. The windvane or windpilot is an autopilot that steers based upon the angle to the wind rather than the more common electric version that works by compass course. The Pjotter was finally silently steered and powered by the wind – what a great feeling. Emma was very impressed by the windpilot and promptly named it Willy.

The winds became rather light and we switched back to our electric autopilot (now named Otto) to stabilize our course. We still have to tweak Willy a little . Otto must have been a little angry to have its position usurped and it conked out completely after about 2 hours. Back we went to Willy and together we completed a very restful night under full sail. Otto, the temperamental autopilot will undergo an overhaul/ replacement in Tenerife.

Again, no dolphin sightings on the way to Tenerrife. I hope that they are not angry with us.

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