Spit and Bubblegum
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Spit and Bubblegum

Spit and Bubblegum

Spit and Bubblegum

You know you are in trouble when the first words in the manual are “Remove vane from stern of boat …”

The aft actuator shaft bushing on the Monitor looked to have succumbed after only 13000 miles or so. It was supposed to go 15000 but, hey, who’s to quibble over a couple of thousand. I was just glad it picks today and not Thursday to call it quits. At least today there was a glimmer of hope of getting something done about it.

Replacing the bushing means removing the upper gear assembly. No big deal save for the 80 delrin roller bearings that only want, as all bearings do, to splay themselves over as wide an area as is possible.

With Seaburban hove to and plunging in the swell, I set about the job harnessed in, hanging completely over the stern alternately half under water and half above. It didn’t seem possible.

Fishing around the aft end of the shaft wondering aloud how I was ever going to land then dimples for the set screws, I discovered what remained of the original bushing. The entire thing hadn’t been cheered to bits, only the flimsy flange was gone. The rest was serviceable. I couldn’t believe my luck and thought immediately of Randall Reeves solution to this same problem.

I took the new bushing and reversed it so I was pushing against the flange and used it to seat the old by simply guiding it over the shaft. To retain the two, I put some Gorrila tape over the frame that houses the shaft. I could make a proper job of it later with calmer conditions. For now, however, it’s almost as good as new.

What with the crazy glue, duct tape, and rubber bands, Seaburban is looking more and more like a floating garage sale. If I only had some gum on board I would be able to work some real miracles.

Follow my tracks in real-time:


  • Claude
    Posted at 20:39h, 29 March Reply

    In weather like today having a fellow partner would make the difference of the world.

    Heavy weather conditions are great only when you have enough energy to enjoy it. I wish you the time of your life.

  • Tony Yanca
    Posted at 02:58h, 06 April Reply

    Hi Bert, I came across your voyage on goodnewsnetwork.org looking for more positive and up-beat news in the world today. As we continue to try to isolate ourselves looking to conquer this extremely serious virus, you’re essentially isolated fighting the elements of Ocean Blue. I’m a surfer in Southern California and I’m always intrigued by extremely passionate individuals who take on these adventures, especially when it involves the ocean. I’m currently listening to some Reggae and enjoying a Pale Ale from our local brewery 🙂 Our Family is healthy and I’ll be working from home tomorrow, but will continue to follow your voyage rooting you on the whole way through. I wish you safe passage and pray that you will utilize all that you’ve learned to help you endure the many obstacles that come your way. You will make complete this voyage and I look forward to your future posts. Take care of yourself.


  • John T.Rice
    Posted at 04:06h, 06 April Reply

    Be safe..pulling for you!

  • Susan Conway Gray
    Posted at 05:56h, 06 April Reply

    What an incredible journey you have set up for yourself!
    I find your reflection on the coronavirus to be incredibly insightful.
    Self isolation as a time to reflect on what we want to become, what legacy we choose to leave behind.
    To many that level of self introspection will appear daunting and even impossible.
    To truly examine our minds, behaviors, and motivations while holding them into the light through the prism of our souls is an exercise most would not have the courage to do.
    But I hope some will take up that challenge.
    Good luck to you!

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