Tag Archives | Nordhavn

N.A.P. Dispatch

It seems after pounding through harsh conditions, paying their dues for the first day or two, old Neptune has given that bold fleet of Nordhavns a bit of a break. Messages and blog posts indicate things have settled into a nice cruise for the North Atl…


Envoy is in Lefkas Marina undergoing repairs for cosmetic damage caused by fire on an adjacent boat while we’re living ashore in a nearby village.
Tomorrow, Tuesday it’s a month since we got back to Lefkas and progress seems to have been painfully slow, but on Friday we got the insurer’s approval to proceed with repairs and our repair contractor, YachtPaint, started today. In fact they were on the job by 0830 – the earliest we can ever recall a contractor turning up for work on Envoy. Let’s hope that’s a good omen!

We had expected repairs to start much sooner but with insurance there is a process to go through and here’s a timeline of this whole affair so far:

Tue 25/4: arrive Lefkas the day of fire
Thu 27/4: meet assessor and YachtPaint manager
Fri 28/4: receive quote from YachtPaint to clean Envoy of fire debris and forward to insurer
Sun 30/4: organise accommodation and rental car as we can’t live on board
Tue 1/5: insurers approve cleaning quote
Thu 4/5 – Fri 5/5: crane hoists RHIB down from Envoy and YachtPaint clean Envoy so damage can be properly inspected
Tue 9/5: assessor returns for full joint inspection with YachtPaint and us. Degree of damage identified and YachtPaint to quote for total repair
Wed 10/5: original expected cruising start date
Fri 12/5: meet YachtPaint at Envoy to discuss repair quote
Sat 13/5: Sailand and I list all rigging needing replacement
Mon 16/5: Sailand remove all broken windows and portholes and send to glass factory. I obtain quote for 3 soot-damaged covers that need replacing. YachtPaint’s quote received and forwarded to assessor, who sends to insurer
Tues 17/5: Sailand do a considerable amount of non fire-related work
Fri 20/5: insurer’s verbal approval to proceed obtained. YachtPaint advised
Mon 22/5: insurer’s written approval expected. YachtPaint start work
Sat 24/6: projected completion date
Fri 30/6: projected launch and sea trial date
Tues 4/7: projected departure and start cruising date

Looking back it doesn’t seem so bad to get repair work started four weeks after the event, although with the benefit of hindsight we could probably have saved a few days. Presuming everything now goes according to plan we will have lost nearly two months of our 2017 cruising season.
There’s still quite a bit of non fire-related work to do, the biggest job being an overhaul of the Naiad hydraulic stabilisers expected to take 4-5 days. We’ll be doing our best to have work done concurrently, although it’s not possible during grinding, sanding and spraying.

Newport to Grand Banks

The first seven days of our 2,800nm passage from Newport RI to Kinsale, Ireland were a battle. We battled negative Bay of Fundy currents, low-pressure systems, and a water-ingress issue that threatened the boat and took us ten hours to resolve. On the positive side, we also got a push from the Gulf Stream and…

Newport Yachting Center

Newport Yachting Center was a wonderful place to live for a few weeks as we staged for our Atlantic crossing. The marina had just put its docks back in the water the week prior to our arrival, but we didn’t realize just how early we were in their season until we’d been there a month…

Passage Preparation

We generally keep Dirona ready to go to sea at a moment’s notice, and securing the cockpit furniture is typically all we need to do as we get underway. For multi-day passages, we do some additional preparation ranging from provisioning, to heavy weather preparation, to paperwork necessary to bring Spitfire into a new country. Highlights…


We are staying ashore in the hills behind Lefkas Marina, Greece where Envoy is on the hardstand awaiting repairs to heat and soot damage caused by fire on a nearby boat.

It’s over three weeks since the fire and not much has happened except for a major clean-up so the damage could be properly assessed. The broken windows and portholes have also been removed for repair so that’s a start. These windows are a bit unusual since each toughened glass pane is set into a stainless steel frame which is then sealed into a further stainless steel frame attached to the GRP cabin’s window cavity. All the windows have rounded corners and one is slightly curved as well. The insurance assessor and local contractors tell us that usually the boat’s manufacturer supplies replacements for broken windows but Nordhavn told us they don’t stock these, and in fact haven’t been very helpful at all.

The quote to repair Envoy was received Tuesday and it will take several days to get insurer’s approval for work to start. The contractor says he’ll have six guys working full time on Envoy and it will be completed within five weeks. So our best guess for completion is end June.

Now to Turkey – we’ve heard that lots of cruisers are leaving there, so here’s an update based on our best information.

Turkey has arguably been one of the world’s greatest cruising destinations with great anchorages, spectacular scenery, mostly clean waters, an interesting and different culture and cuisine, loads of excellent well-preserved historical sites dating back thousands of years, friendly honest people, low cost, political stability, reasonable safety, competent technical infrastructure and proximity to interesting Greek islands.

It’s also been a huge tourist destination with 42m visitors during the peak year of 2014, but in recent years some of Turkey’s circumstances have gradually been changing causing many cruisers to leave, fewer tourists arriving (25m last year) and a less certain future for the approximately 1.6m Turks reliant on tourism for employment.

For cruisers the first major change occurred with regulations limiting the time yachts can spend cruising some popular areas along the famed Turquoise Coast and requiring the purchase of a “Blue Card” (an electronic card) to record the discharge of sewage from holding tanks into shore-based or mobile pump-out stations. This card costs 280 Lira (about NZ$115) and although it appears this regulation is not being rigidly or uniformly enforced it’s causing consternation due to both its added cost and the limited number of pump-out facilities available making strict compliance next to impossible. The CoastGuard does board vessels to inspect their documentation and there have been cases of cruisers being fined 1,000 Lira (about NZ$420) because their card hadn’t been used within the last two weeks even when in some cases the local facilities weren’t operational. Other reports say cruisers have to account for grey water waste as well as sewage. Not many cruisers have grey water holding tanks so the whole situation is uncertain and worrying.

Basically this requirement seems to exist just so that authorities can show they’re trying to solve a problem that doesn’t really exist. In our time cruising Turkey we never found any areas with sewage issues except where the sewage originated from shore, although plenty of beaches and other areas were covered in serious amounts of general litter.

Thena regulation was introduced limiting the time visitors can spend in Turkey to 90 days in any period of 180 days, making Turkey similar to Schengen Treaty countries. Previously a visitor could get a 90 day visa, exit for a few hours to a Greek island before the completion of 90 days and then return to Turkey and get a new 90 day visa issued. A concession was later made for cruisers allowing temporary residency using their boat as an address, but the process still involves some additional cost and inconvenience compared to the previous 90 day renewable visa system.

Although like many countries Turkey has suffered isolated terrorist incidents and some comparatively minor bombings for many years, sadly this has increased since 2014 resulting in many governments including New Zealand, Australia, USA and UK to step up their travel alert levels. While there have been loss-of-life incidents at tourist areas in some major cities, notably Istanbul, thankfully terrorism does not appear to have hit coastal resorts and cruising areas.

Last July Turkey had an attempted coup resulting in considerable numbers of arrests and the declaration of a State of Emergency. This has recently been extended for three months, but it appears the government does intend to revert to normality soon after that. Meanwhile the government led by President Erdogan recently narrowly won a controversial referendum to increase its powers. Turkey’s post referendum direction remains to be seen, but many people are concerned that it may be more autocratic, less democratic and less secular.

Last year we heard from cruisers based in Turkey that many cruisers as well as charter yacht fleets are leaving. Incredibly, Turkish marinas have reacted by increasing their prices to compensate for the revenue loss caused by reductions in boat numbers. Previously average Turkish marina prices were quite competitive with, for example Greek marinas, but are now more expensive (although in both countries there is a very broad range of pricing). There are many cruisers who don’t concern themselves too much with the local politics of their host country, but nearly all cruisers are budget-conscious and these price increases have further increased numbers of departures.

Many Turkish based and owned boats are registered elsewhere (a surprising number in USA) presumably to avoid Turkish VAT. In an effort to encourage them to fly the Turkish flag authorities have very recently introduced two significant new measures (advised to us by major yachting agency BWA). Boats switching flags to Turkish will be allowed to become VAT-registered by paying a one off charge of one per cent of their insured value and paying a “harbour master’s fee” varying according to boat length but for 12-20 metres length set at 1,627 Turkish Lira (approx NZ$668)

Foreign owned and flagged cruisers can also change to Turkish flag under the same conditions, but I imagine that idea won’t hold much appeal as cruisers tend to move between countries and take pride in their own country’s flag, an exception being larger vessels and super-yachts whose owners mostly register in countries with lenient tax regimes.

We’re just glad that we immensely enjoyed part of several seasons cruising in Turkey during the easier less complicated times.

Here Ya Go —

For those who want a Porsche and a boat. And, it’s only $13M. You better hurry, they’re only making 7.Nordhavn 57-26 Istaboa

Steering Issue

We haven’t had steering issues in the past. Given they can happen anywhere, why the heck would it occur within hours of dead-center on our 2,800 nm trip through the North Atlantic? We have covered a lot of miles over the years and generally have seen pretty good conditions. The weather we’ve encountered has been…

Alarms at 1:15am

I bolted awoke at 1:15am to a shrieking alarm. We were 50 miles south of the Grand Banks, in large seas, on passage from Newport, RI to Kinsale, Ireland. I ran upstairs to the pilot house and Jennifer at the helm just said “high bilge water.” Yuck. Better than fire but far from good news….

Turning the lights back on –

It’s been a while since our last post; with not much going on, with not much to report, we’ve been quiet. Life on the beach at Jupiter is cheerful.

But, after many dollars and much work done aboard Istaboa, it’s now time to bust some kinda move.

So here we are at Old Port Cove, docked right in the middle of a pod of Nordhavns all bent on going the distance. The convoy’s plan is to cross to Bermuda, approximately a 5 day run, where some will hangout for a month or so and experience the America’s Cup races before pointing northwest toward Nova Scotia, the others are heading on to The Azores and then the Mediterranean. A relatively monumental plan and what these boats are made to do.   http://www.nordhavn.com/news/newsletter/april_2017/nap.php
It’s fun watching all the crews prepare for this significant passage. On the docks at OPC, the vibe of anticipation is thick.

This crew?

Were off to visit friends in the Bahamas, then after a run through the islands, we may point north to see what that brings. We still have an open invitation to visit Nantucket Boat Basin and we’ve yet to visit that area — so….

Lots of provisioning being done along with the last bits of mechanical and electronic preparation; all keeping us busy. It’s been a while since we’ve seen the Exumas and we’re looking forward to slipping back into the island daze we’ve always enjoyed.

After that? TBD


Nordhavn 57-26 Istaboa