A week in Mackay

Despite our engine service having been completed early, we ended up spending a week in Mackay doing boat maintenance and documentation while the 20-25 knot SE winds were not allowing us to sail south… Might as well use the time!

Hiding at the Marina

Mackay Marine Services have completed the warranty service of the engines, Wade has been busy wiping the stainless steel deck gear with phosphoric acid to remove rust stains, washing our very salty boat down and polishing the hulls. Anui now looks a lot more shiny and presentable!

We have lined up our bookings at the Boat Works, which will happen later than originally hoped: from 30th January onward. Let us explain. Apart from the usual clean up and antifoul of the hulls, repainting the chipped cockpit floor and sugar scoops, we also want to have some new davits made and solar panels installed on top.

During our offshore trips this year, we found that having the dinghy hanging low at the back of the boat meant that in choppy seas or swell, it was getting slammed by waves and at risk of getting swamped, with potentially disastrous results. Given that we are planning more of these ocean trips in the future we really need to store the dinghy further up.

The dinghy as it sits currently

It has been a contentious issue for a while. Chris in particular was against having some ‘scaffolding-looking contraption’ at the back and while mainly coastal cruising, the change was not warranted. We also need to be careful how much extra weight anything we do adds at the back of the boat. We don’t want to drag our bum and affect the performance of the boat.

We have now come up with an acceptable arrangement. So new davits are going to be made allowing us to raise the dinghy up high when we are travelling and with solar panels installed at the top following the roof line of the cockpit, so it does not ruin the looks of the boat. We are meeting with the metal fabricator on the Gold Coast in early December to finalise the design.  This also coincides with our usual medical, dental and veterinary appointments. Then at the very end of January, we will come back to Boat Works for the haulout, and this is when all the maintenance and upgrades will happen.

We’ve got Sir Walter back!

Remember Sir Walter, our DeWalt right angle drill we had been using as an electric winch? Well on our return from the Coral Coast in late August, it stopped working and was being repaired under warranty in Cairns. Eight weeks later we still had not got it back and we left Cairns without it, hoping to recover it somewhere down the coast. To cut a long story short the repair did not work and we have now picked up a brand new replacement. Many thanks to Daniel at Total Tools Cairns for coordinating everything and getting the new beast to us just before we left Mackay.

Story telling

Being stuck in a marina has its advantages. Chris has been documenting our Far North Queensland Reefs Adventure, which will be added to our Sailing Anui Cruising page soon, getting an Album Works book together of our best photos this year, and finalising a poignant magazine article about the state of the Great Barrier Reef. Over the coming weeks we will put links to all of this on our website.

Down to the Gold Coast we go!

We have now left Mackay and have three weeks to get down to the Gold Coast! No playing around at the Reef, we are sailing down south at a steady pace, crossing our fingers we don’t get stopped by too many unseasonal south easterlies! The weather has been very unpredictable, so we might have to do the hell run (overnighters) if it does not play nice.

Once the early December commitments are behind us, we will stay in Queensland. We intend to come back up to the Southern Reef and spend a few weeks over December/January floating around there, with a keen eye on nasty cyclones, ready to dash down again if needed. Fluid plans are the key with leading a cruising life.

7 thoughts on “A week in Mackay

  1. I can’t see in the photo how the dinghy is attached to Anui, but davits will be great. Just wondering where they will be attached. Be safe, guys!

    • At the moment there two stainless bars coming out from the transom up a little. These will be replaced and constructed to enable the dinghy to come up about 1.5m higher.

      • I see, that’s a great idea. I can imagine the waves pounding on the dingy with following waves. Not good.

  2. I just hope that the weather calms down and allow you to continue navigating. Take care Chris… 🙂

  3. Thanks for such a comprehensive update, Chris, that provides some fascinating insights into the myriad of issues, large and small, with which you must contend to keep the Anui running in tip-top shape–there are always tweaks to be made. Your last sentence sums it up well–“Fluid plans are the key with leading a cruising life.” Stay safe.

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