Will there ever by a treatment for a sailor with a seriously incurable spell of WSS?

If you wonder about WSS – it is simply the marine version of PMS – Parked Motorcycle Syndrome – hence WSS is Winterised Sailboat Syndrome.

Do not know if it works, but in desperate search for some treatment, I mored the car with a rope to a pole before going off to bed this evening.


…… Oslo winters are not what they used to be – icy driveway, not possible to drive up – and down implies an completely uncontrolable slide along a stone wall – a slide that will have the garage applauding all the way to Vladivostoc. Perhaps I should leave the car like this till spring – and unpack the sailboat – that would be cure!

New stage – new tasks – upgrading knowlede of high lattitude sailing

After a bit of a makeover during the last months, Iris is becoming more and more ready for casting off the bowlines – but more about the ins and outs of the makeover and bowlines in later posts.

The question now is rather, is the skipper and crew ready for axing the lines? In an effort to arrive there it is becoming time for a makeover on the required knowledge. In an effort to upgrade knowledge to version 2.0, I came across a new book, High latitude sailing – how to sail the cold waters of the world, written by Jon Amtrup and Bob Shepton. Both should be well versed in how to sail in the not so hot parts of the world.

The book contains useful information on items like preparation of self and boat, sailing in ice, safety, North West passage, and the list goes on. I have started to dig into it and find it a recommendable read.

About 100 years ago there was a race between Scott and Amundsen to be the first to the South Pole.

“I may say that this is the greatest factor – the way in which the expedition is equipped – the way in which every difficulty is foreseen, and precaution taken for meeting or avoiding it. Victory awaits him who has everything in order – luck people call it. Defeat is certain for him who has neglected to take the necessary precautions in time; this is called bad luck”
                                          – Roald Amundsen, The south pole.

Hoping this book will move Iris and crew an inch toward the camp of Amundsen rather than the one of Scott. If you are interested, you will be able to find both kindle and paper versions at amazon.com, or you might just pop by your local book shop.

Disclosure: I nor the ship have received any benefit in money or in kind for writing article

Has something changed for the positive at Force 10

The Force 10 stove installed on board around year 2000 is clearly not behaving as desired and nor in accordance with the slogan of Force 10 – “cooking without compromise”. 
The issue is as follows; when used and the burners on the top is on, if then the oven is started, the burners on the top stop burning. While the oven is on, I do not manage to re-ignite to cooking burners. In an effort to fix this annoying situation, I have renewed the regulator – with no effect. This issue occurs in the summer when ambient temperature is between 18-25C.


After quite a bit of swearing and cursing I took the effort to contact Force 10 via email a year ago. With no response in return. More swearing and cursing – now over slack customer support. Yesterday I bit the bullet and started searching for replacement items – not from Force 10 – clearly. I also wrote a second email to Force 10 – and hoopla – 6 hours late an e-mail is ticking in. Have something changed for the positive at Force 10? 

Anyway if more people are having the same issues as me, then for the benefit of more, here is the response from Brad Clarke at Force 10 appliances:

“The issue you are having will likely be rectified with some simple routine maintenance. When was the last time you cleaned the orifices in the top burners? 

The issue you are having is that when the oven is operating, as it vents, the hot air reduces the oxygen level under the burners and the flame is reduces and the thermocouple shuts down the burner.
The top burner orifices need to be cleaned at least once per year as routine maintenance.
You will need to remove the orifices, soak them in methyl alcohol and then blow them out with compressed air.”

User manuals and problem solving docs: http://www.force10.com/product_documents.html

photo credit: SV Wings
Enjoy the day – and thanks Brad!

Stubling across a well of solid ideas and small valuable fixes

There are countless number of sailing blogs – just like this one – and the contents vary. This evening I stumbled across what I consider a very useful one.

The very able Armin Horn writes that he was smitten by the sailing bug a few years ago and is now enjoying his Bavaria sailing yacht Jalin. Among other things Armin is a professor and electrotechnical engineer – and I would add inventor. The blog is covered with major and minor improvements and inventions to common problems and issue. Really worth a read if you either are forced or just plainly enjoy tinkering with your vessel – like both Armin and myself.

The blog is in German, but google translates it if that is an issue. So go ahead and enjoy


Some of the inventions are also for sale in a web shop.


Sometimes the planet appears like a surprisingly small and very friendly place

Winter in Oslo this year is wet, windy and cold, so walking home late at night is not the most fun one can have with shoes on. Was in only old habit or a belief in devine forces hoping to make the eveing a bit warmer that made me check the mail box a midnight? How optimistic can one be?

As we all know the postman always rings twice, and while the mailman sleeps, DHL apparently delivers – late. Much to my surprise the hand grabbed onto a padded envelope carrying a DHL label.

Like a small child on Christmas evening I ripped open the envelope and out fell a nice black T-shirt with “New Zealand” written over the chest with big letters and a nice Christmas card. What is all this I wondered, thinking I knew that I did not know anybody in NZ. Was my knowing wrong?? It turns out I was partly right. So here comes a for me surprisingly nice story:

A great New Zealand T-shirt

A while back before Iris was bought, I looked at another vessel in the Netherlands – Stormvogel. I liked the vessel immediately being designed by Dick Koopmans and bearing much resemblance to Iris – pilothouse and everything. Stormvogel is, however, 5ft longer. 

Someone else bought the vessel, undertook at not to minor refit at the Hutting yard in Makkum, and then crossed the large pond during winter of 2012.

Beautiful vessel under sail

I found this and more in the blog of new owner, Peter Wiedekamm and his family. They have embarked on a long journey. Being interested to learn and pick up a few tricks I follow this blog. A months ago the they arrived in NZ, and I posted a comment on the blog.  

Surprise – Peter tracked me down and mailed the Christmas present. 

But I presume he first had to buy the t-shirt in NZ, carry it home to Germany where he now is taking a break from sailing, before mailing it to Noway.Who does that? Thanks for the present and for providing another proof of the good in mankind.

The blog of this remarkable person is found here: The travels of Wiedekamm and Stormvogel