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2019 Summary

For us, 2019 was the “Year of the Canal”. We spent much of the year cruising the Baltic Sea, and passed through an incredible 98 locks while transiting several major and minor canal systems, including the Kiel Canal across Germany, the Saimaa Canal through Russia to Finland’s Great Lake Saimaa system, and the Gota and…

Return to US

Following METS, we spent a relatively quiet week in Amsterdam, completing a few boat projects and hosting some visitors. In early December, we returned to the US for a couple of weeks where James spent a week at the AWS re:Invent conference in Las Vegas and a couple of days at the AWS data centers…

Spitfire Arraow the World

When we first started planning our boat trip around the world, we expected that cruising internationally with our cat Spitfire would limit the countries we could visit, because we did not want to subject him to lengthy quarantines. In reality, the French territory of New Caledonia was the only destination that we opted not to…

Fuel Cooling

On arriving into Nuku Hiva in the Marquesas Islands in 2013, the fuel temperature in our supply tank had climbed to 180F (82C). What was happening is the engine circulates about 50 gallons per hour and yet only burns a tiny fraction of that.  Most of this fuel flows through the engine fuel system and…

Maretron Firmware Upgrades

Readers of our blog know we’re heavy Maretron users and big fans. The products are well-priced and easy-to-use, with great customer service. Read more about our Maretron usage at Maretron N2KView on Dirona. Firmware upgrades to any company’s devices are always risky, so we typically try to avoid them. But firmware upgrades sometimes are necessary,…

METS 2019

METS (Marine Equipment Trade Show), held annually in Amsterdam over three days, is the world’s largest boats and marine equipment trade show. This year’s attendance reached 17,792, with 1,670 exhibitors from around the globe. Exhibitors range from superyacht builders and marine yards, to yacht designers, to engineering and composite products companies, to manufacturers of anything…

Kar-Tech Mini Guider Proportional Calibration

The Kar-Tech Mini Guider is a good wireless remote control for the Steelhead ES-series of cranes including the ES-1000 and ES-1500. It’s easy to use and works quite well. For install instructions, see Steelhead Wireless Remote. Part of the installation is configuring proportional control, and the Kar-Tech instructions are a bit opaque. But once calibrated,…

Amsterdam First Two Weeks

During our first two weeks in Amsterdam, we enjoyed being back in familiar territory with the city already lit up for the winter. We revisited some of our favourite restaurants, found some new ones, and stocked up on supplies and parts from known vendors. We also completed a fair number of larger boat projects, including…

Return to Amsterdam

We normally prefer not to return to the same location, particularly for a long-term stay. But in looking at stop-overs for this winter, where we would make a couple of return trips to the US, we couldn’t find anything that came even close to Amsterdam in terms of marina location, restaurant and entertainment choices, and…

Flevoland

The 82-ft-long (25m) Veluwemeer Aqueduct, opened in 2002, is one of the shortest in the world. The water bridge carries boats with a draft of up to 9.8 ft (3m) and unlimited air draft over the road connecting mainland Netherlands with the province of Flevoland, the world’s largest man-made island. Other possibilities considered were an…