Singapore Harley Davidson Owners Group Golf Tournament

As our base of supporters grows so does their inventiveness at providing that support. This year on Sunday March 11 the Singapore Harley Davidson Owners Group held the first annual Special Mission Golf Tournament at the Pulai Springs Resort & Golf Club, Johor.
... find out more »

HOG Poster

HOG (Harley Owners Group) Singapore Special Mission Golf Tournament

This prestigious Golf Tournament raised funds to purchase medical supplies for the midwife and health worker kits. There were raffle prizes and a special “Hole in One” prize of a brand new Harley – sorry to say no one managed that hole in one. The event was a great day out with some serious and not so serious golfing taking place. The over all winner was just 4 strokes over par! For a first time event the attendance was very good and I can easily say a good time was had all around. I even had the chance to stand in front of a bunch of Harley Bikers raising money to buy drugs – many a good-natured laugh was had over that one.

First prize for the raffle was an afternoon sail for 2 on board Vega. That prize was won by 13 year old Kiara and her friend. Here are a few pictures of that afternoon outing and yes Kiara was really steering Vega not just posing for the picture.

We hope the club will be pleased with the way we apply their help this year and continue supporting us next year. This fun event went a long way toward providing the drugs that are so badly needed by the communities we help.

KIara with her friend enjoy their sail

Lars Nerhus visits VEGA at the 2012 Boat Asia Show Show in Singapore

This years event was enlivened by VEGA’s official 120th Birthday celebrations and a visit from Lars Nerhus, the great great grandson of Vega’s builder Ole Nerhus. more »

The 2012 BoatAsia Show was a great success with entries from all over the region. Actually it should be called a Lifestyle Show, as there are so many other interesting things to see and learn about than just the boats. I would not at all be surprised to see helicopters or even a private jet on display.

Lars Nerhus visits Vega

This years show was enlivened by Vega’s official 120 th Birthday celebrations and a visit from Lars Nerhus, the great great grandson of Vega’s builder Ole Nerhus. Lars brought along Vega’s original half model, which won an award at the great exhibition in Oslo in 1898. Lars was able to visit us thanks to the generosity of who sponsored his return tickets and Moduspec who sponsored his accommodation in Singapore.

Even though the weather was not kind thousands turned out to see the show and visit the exhibits. Children of all ages seemed to enjoy not only seeing “The Old Pirate Ship” but also had a chance to meet some real Caribbean Pirates – and no I do not mean us! Vega enjoyed pride of place right at the entrance with all our flags flying I like to think we added a lot to the color and feel of the show. Hundreds of visitors came on board and learned about our adventures and the work we do. Many went home with Vega Polo shirts or packets of Spice Island Spices and the donation box showed encouraging contributions – all of which helped this year’s running costs. We always enjoy the boat show even if it is hard work getting ready for it and talking with so many people. We look forward to the 2013 event and hope they will invite us back again.


Friends in Thailand provide needed medical supplies

Some of the most difficult supplies to find every year are the basic every day expendables like masks, gloves, tongue depressors, scalpel blades, as well as simple items like clinical thermometers and suture holders or tweezers. more »

Friends in Thailand provide needed medical supplies

This year our new network of friends in Bangkok, Thailand headed by Udom Techakijkajorn went a long way toward meeting those needs. Udom and his friends looked at our lists on the website then took up collections to purchase the most needed items. Udom then drove over 10 hours – each way – from Bangkok to Kantang - where we were in the boat yard - to deliver them to us. There is a small film showing that delivery posted on our facebook page.
...view the movie »


A big thanks to our friends at SK Intertrade in Langkawi about their important help »

A big thanks to our friends at SK Intertrade in Langkawi

Once again the Khan family, owners of SK Intertrade in Langkawi, collected an impressive contribution of basic school supplies and books for children in Bahasa. This is the second year that the Khans have taken it on themselves to mobilize their friends in Langkawi gathering school supplies to help our efforts. It is friends like them that make our work so successful.

Seeds from Kuala Lumpur

Thanks to our friends in Malaysia we can help small communities to improve their nutrition. more »

Food for schools & orphanages

Seeds from Malaysia

One of the important aspects of our work is helping these small communities to improve their nutrition by delivering seeds that can be grown locally and thanks to the seeds from the first crop replanted into the future. These include everything from Tomatoes and carrots to beans, herbs, and spices to make life more enjoyable and meals more nutritious. This year our friends Toh May Fook and his wife Robyn from Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia provided a major donation of seeds to help this simple but very effective program along. Topping those up with the seeds that Alexis found in Oz mean our small island communities will have a very good assortment to work with this year. Improved nutrition means healthier bodies and fewer medical problems. It also means children can grow to reach their full cogitative potential.

All right ya bunch of shellbacks pull up a coil of line and have a sit. Pipes allowed if ya has your own fixins. What we be talking about this watch is called seamanship. And a few of you could well do with a bigger dosing of it. A few days ago the marine insurance company (QBE) sent out a circular about certain new stipulations they be adding to their policies.

Read more of this tale here »

Bosuns Locker

What I be seeing is those stipulations all require policyholders to practice various aspects of good seamanship. Something that should be a given, or at least it used to be.

These days more and more people go to sea in Condomarans and other floating objects without the least idea what seamanship is or even if it should be eaten, drunk, smoked, or spoken about in a hushed voice. The fact is these days anyone with enough money to buy a boat can cast off for the next continent. That in itself is not a bad thing. After all that lure of freedom from the system is one reason sailing is so attractive and many a great adventure started out exactly that way. First time I crossed the Atlantic I had 2 charts, a clock, a compass, an almanac and an old boat I found abandoned on a beach in West Africa. I did know how to navigate though– and sail.

The problems start with those who are not the least bit concerned with becoming good seamen. As one said to me, why should I waste my time learning all that stuff when I have a great chart plotter, GPS, radar, gimbaled beer holders, etc, etc. It never even occurs to them that things go wrong out there, electronics break down, systems fail, and you cannot simply call AAA to come fix it for you.

Over thousands of years sailors developed a system call “good seamanship” with one simple objective – to get them back home safely no matter what the sea throws at them. Ignore those millennium of experience at your own risk - and not taking risks is what it is all about.

During the year we see some of the world’s top racing sailors at work. It is amazing how fast those guys can push a boat on two puffs of wind or a can of beans and some brown bread. When it comes to going fast hats off to that mob. When it comes to good seamanship it’s often a different story. Pull in, toss out the under weight / size anchor with no chain on a light floating line and all ashore for the party / hotel / bar. Not always in that order. The last thing they worry about is the boat – after all it is insured isn’t it? Besides who wants to miss all the fun to keep anchor watch?

Well insurance companies are getting wise and starting to require proper anchors, chain, anchor watches, and a whole host of practical stuff any real seaman takes for granted as “the way it’s done”. Being one who hates rules, rubber stamp-o-holics, or should I say Stamp-o-paths, I am not preaching for more rules or what ever. But I do think the insurance companies have the right idea and they have a practical method of forcing more attention to safety and practical seamanship. Ah, your boat washed ashore and was lost because your anchor was too small; there was no chain, and no anchor watch at the time? Hummmm, hope you enjoyed the party because it was an expensive one. We are not about to pay for boats lost due to poor seamanship.

For what it is worth, on Vega we always set a 24-hour anchor watch the first day on any new anchorage and / or if the weather looks like it might deteriorate. The anchor watch rota follows the normal sea watches so no great drama there. This has saved us several times from what could have become a very sticky situation and a few times kept a sticky situation from becoming a disaster. The good part about anchor watch is you can have the helm lights on and enjoy your book or movie as long as you’re watching out for nasty’s that might sneak up. Knowing someone is on watch lets the rest of us get a good night sleep even if we do have to break it to take our turn. Bottom line is; if you think there could be a risk - do something about it. Even if the crew does mutter at least the boats safe and if they have any pretensions at all to being seamen they should understand the reasons without being told.


Meggis culinary delights

Empanadas, originally Catalan we modified for Vega. ...the recepie »

Empanadas “Vega Style”

Empanadas, originally Catalan make a good snack to take with us when we make our deliveries on shore. The recipe is very simplified, I just use a pizza dough and the filling is whatever we got on leftovers - chilli con carne is good, just add a bit corn starch and fry it up with maybe eggplant or another veggie. Spinach & feta are another delicious option...

  1. Ingredients for the dough
  2. 4 tsp. dry yeast
  3. 800 g wheat flour type 550
  4. 4 tsp. salt
  5. 2 tsp. sugar
  6. 6 tbs. olive oil
  7. 460 ml cold water
  9. One, with 2 tbs. milk, beaten egg
  11. The filling can be anything
  12. from nutela to minced meat
  13. but make sure it is not to liquid
  15. ....hope you enjoy it
  1. Combine flour, yeast, salt and sugar in a bowl and stir so that all ingredients are well mixed, add the olive oil and water and beat until all is combined.
  2. Turn dough out on a lightly floured surface and knead for 4-5 minutes, dough should be smooth, but still a little bit sticky, after kneading. Place dough in a large, oiled bowl. cover bowl with plastic for 2 to 3 hours until it nearly doubled in size.
  3. Turn out dough on heavily floured surface, divide into half and pull each into a 12 inch sausage. Cut from each 10 slices and place on floured surface. with a roller or bottle roll out the circles into a round shape of aprox.10 cm ø.
  4. Brush the edges of the dough with the egg/milk mix. Place one generous tbs. of the filling in the center of the dough circles, and fold over. Flatten edges first with your fingers and then push down with a fork.
  5. Place on pans and bake for 15 – 20 min. or until evenly browned on top.

Dentists to the rescue

Dental hygiene is an important part of community health. Children need toothbrushes & health workers need basic equipment more »

Singapore dentists to the rescue

It is all too easy to forget that dental hygiene is an important part of community health.

Children need toothbrushes, education about dental hygiene, and health workers need basic dental tools to do their jobs, but until now there was nothing useful we could do about it.

For several years we have been aware of this, but have not been able to find even a modest solution. We knew the community Health Worker Kits needed a basic dental kit. At least the basic tools for proper examinations and extractions. Currently many health workers only have normal motorbike pliers and small screwdrivers to do the job. Most school age children have never even seen a toothbrush much less used one. Something had to be done.

Now thanks to the students at the Singapore Dental College we will have over 500 toothbrushes and the health worker kits have a good basic set of examination and extraction tools. This may seem a small thing but for the places we assist it will be a major step forward in community dental care. Now all we need to do is convince the Jakarta University Dental College to translate “Where there is no Dentist” into Bahasa Indonesia.

Kit's for Kid's

Thanks to students at the German European School Singapore (GESS) this years deliveries will be more effective for the small schools we assist. more »

The students of the German European School Singapore (GESS) provide “Kits 4 Kids”

Late last year Meggi and I had the pleasure of meeting with some of the classes at the GESS. For several hours the students grilled us on what we do, where, and how we accomplish our work. It was great fun sharing with them our adventures and hardships. I could see more than one was right out there with us when it was blowing or we were straining our limits to get Vega off of her reef.

Long after the bell rang we were still trading tales with no one looking longingly at the door. As the session ended several of the students presented us with a “First Installment” of educational supplies they had gathered and promised to create class projects to gather more to be delivered when we returned in March of this year.

Well, they surpassed all our expectations. The primary school gathered over 350 “Kits 4 Kids” bags along with computers, crutches, and many other important supplies that are badly needed. This response to our new “Kits 4 Kids” program was very encouraging, although it did pose some major storage problems.

This is a program where students in a developed country help students in a not so fortunate place. Each of the fortunate students provide a school bag filled with the items from a list of needed supplies as well as some small private contributions of toys or books. We then top up those kits with toothbrushes and other additional supplies.

It is that type of help that not only warms our hearts but also makes such a difference for the small schools we assist. Educational supplies are difficult to gather and we never seem to have enough yet they are the very basis of the future for the children who will use them. Without proper education – or in some cases any education – what future can those children have? So, when we see children in places like Singapore giving their time and energy to help out other children less fortunate than they are it really does inspire us to continue that difficult part of our work. There is a film showing those kits arriving on board Vega posted on our facebook page
...view the movie »

Jotun Singapore donate medical equipment for midwives and health workers more »

Jotun Singapore donate medical equipment for midwives and health workers

Everyone knows that two of the most important basic health care tools are the stethoscope and the blood pressure cuff. For several years we have been trying to find a way to provide the health professionals we assist with these important basic tools. The problem is they are expensive and we needed about 100 of each.

This year Jotun Singapore came to our aid by providing those important tools for the kits. Now thanks to Jotun every resupply set and new midwife or health worker kit has a professional blood pressure cuff and stethoscope. Jotun also provided the professional carry all bags for this year’s resupply sets and kits.

Thank you Jotun for your kind assistance and public spirit.

ModuSpec Singapore

Many of the donations we receive save lives, but few can claim to do so with the regularity of the neo natal resuscitators and suction devices donated by Moduspec Singapore this year. more »

It has long been our dream to be able to include these two simple life saving devices in our midwife and health worker kits. The fact is they were just too expensive for our budgets. At last after years of effort the Laederal Foundation of Norway agreed to provide us with 100 units each at their cost. That is when our friends at Moduspec came to the rescue and sponsored the units. They also managed to convince DHL to sponsor the shipping costs from the factory in China to Singapore. Now that we are out making our deliveries these superb pieces of equipment are causing quite a stir among the midwives.
Thank you Moduspec for all the newborn lives your kind donation will save.

Moduspec also provided 100 hand towels and 200 pocket size notebooks.

Viking Singapore

For the second year running Viking RFD of Singapore kindly provided bandages and other important basics that form the core of the expendable supplies in our healt kits. more »

The expendable supplies from Viking RFD are a major contribution and one that is so basic a need it is often over looked. Thank you Viking for all your kind help and assistance. Without that help our kits would not be nearly as complete as they are. Have a look at some of the pictures and if you need a new life raft have a look at their website

Keppel Corporaration & Marina at Keppel Bay more »


This short film on our facebook page shows our friends from Keppel loading the computers on board VEGA »

Keppel Corporation and the Marina at Keppel Bay have helped us several times in the past in various ways so it was a real pleasure when this year they decided to join with our supporters and provide computers and several of the other important items needed for our lists. We hope they will be pleased with the way we apply their assistance this year and continue to help us in the future. Together we can accomplish a lot to help the communities we assist improve their standard of living, health care, and education.
Welcome aboard and thank you for your assistance.


Not just supplies but knowledge & training thanks to

Jotun - Indonesia more »

Where there is no doctor and Midwife guide booksThis year our midwife and health worker kits contain not only supplies and equipment, but also several important publications to be used as references and for self-training. These well-respected books are in Bahasa Indonesia, translated from the original English. Finding them in Bahasa took us over 2 years. It was finally fellow Vegabond Indi Soemardjan in Jakarta who tracked them down and Jotun Paints of Indonesia who agreed to sponsor them. Thanks to them we received 100 copies each of “Where there is no Doctor” a book specifically for health workers in isolated rural settings with little or no outside support and “A book for Midwives” specifically for midwives in those same isolated settings.

Acora Foundation provides VEGA with 5,000 liters of much needed fuel more »

Acora Foundation provides Vega with 5,000 liters of much needed fuel

Acora is one of Indonesia’s largest energy companies producing over 85 million tons of very low sulfur coal every year. This year while in Jakarta I was fortunate enough to address a group of their top level executives and at the end of that little talk they volunteered to assist us by providing 5,000 liters of fuel available in Jakarta and the Banda Islands. Those of you who follow our adventures know that fuel is one of our biggest expenses and a constant worry. Thanks to Ancora this year it will be much less of a burden.

Thank You!


Maarten Veerhofen

Peter and Kia Moore »

Kia found the foot operated sewing machine for Nila and many more things, together they helped us get our new sun awning.

Thomas Hoffman »

Also known as “Hoffi”, who helped out a lot by not only spending hours up the mast doing some very important work, but also for helping to up grade Vega’s power tools.

Arie & Loes
Koortens »

Arie and Loes Koortens who sponsored 100 solar rechargeable hand Torch lights for examinations - a very important addition to the midwife and health worker kits - and a wonderful dinner where we managed to do some serious damage to their cheese supplies.

Kurnia For Hope »

Kurnia For Hope in Malaysia who sponsored 50 Doppler Fetal Heart Beat monitors and 2,500 Natal clips

Dr. C.J. How »

Dr. C.J. How of Singapore Who sponsored 1.0 absorbable sutures and 3.0 sutures non-absorbable, as well as finding a donation of 16,000 3 ml disposable syringes that were badly needed.


As always very special thanks to
Jean... »

... who must own stock in Subway by now.

Sam... »

...without whom we would still be stuck in Langkawi scratching our heads over the broken shaft bearing.

& Jo... »

...who being a long time Vegabond is used to our mad ways, for looking after us in Singapore and somehow managing to solve all the little problems we run into, find the things we couldn’t, and in general make it possible.


The Captain’s Log

The captain's log

ell once again we are on anchor in Dili harbor, East Timor. It has been a long time since the last newsletter, a very busy time for all of us involved in Vega’s Missions of Mercy. Last years Mission was a great success but only served to highlight the impact of what we do and the scope for us to expand that assistance. There is a review of events from August last year until April this year that you can read here »

We often post things on the VEGA facebook page long before these newsletters get out. We also post lots of small successes, pictures, day-to-day news, etc that never make it to the newsletters. If you cannot find the page for “Historic Vessel Vega” try my page at “Shane Granger”, I am the one in the reddish shirt. Please do feel free to send me a friend request.

In keeping with the United Nations Millennium Development Goals VEGA’s 2012 Mission of Mercy continues to target the reduction of maternal and infant mortality, better nutrition, and improved education by delivering donated tools, supplies, and training information for teachers, midwives, and health workers in the communities we assist. It is estimated that the Midwife and Health Worker kits alone help reduce maternal and infant mortality by as much as 40%. We are very proud of that, but it would not be possible with out your help. As always the real heroes in this story are our friends and supporters who provide the supplies and equipment we deliver.

See how we stowed all contributions from Singapore on board »

A lot of small things have happened since the last newsletter including the addition of 2 wind generators to VEGA. Granted we can only use them when we are at anchor, but then again that is where we spend much of our time. Together with the solar panels they supply what we need during most daylight hours and often add enough charge to cut our generator running time in half or less.


Another Vegabond joins the gang
It seems like more and more of our volunteer crew is from Indonesia. Since so much of our work is with the small islands of Indonesia this is something that really pleases us. more » » »
Images from the trip from Singapore to Jakarta »

Indonesia is a huge country of over 17,000 islands with a land mass of 500,000 sq miles, over 5 million sq miles of water, and a population equal to Europe or the U.S. What most people fail to realize is that this nation has one of the greatest cultural ranges in the world: from tribes still living as they did in the stone age to some very advanced educational and research facilities.

We were very lucky for the trip from Singapore to Jakarta to have Nino Krisnan crewing with us. Nino is a naval architect and enthusiastic sailor from Jakarta. His fascination is with sailing vessels and historic ships. Nino came to us very highly recommended by fellow Vegabond Indi. After all those miles I can safely say it was a pleasure having him on board & thanks for the great pictures and video.

Impressive list of DIGNITARIES greet VEGA’s arrival in Jakarta

Being accustomed to quietly going about our work you can imagine our surprise more »

Impressive list of dignitaries greet Vega’s arrival in Jakarta

Being accustomed to quietly going about our work you can imagine our surprise when over 100 important members of the community and government turned out to welcome Vega on her arrival in Jakarta. Among the most notable were the Vice Minister of Tourism, the past Minister of Maritime Affairs, an Admiral from the Navy, the Swedish Ambassador, and the head of INOVAR Norway, along with important leaders from the local business community. I admit I was so over whelmed I missed half the introductions, but the spirit, good will, and energy were amazing. So were the drinks and food – we sailors do have our priorities after all. A special thanks to Peter Vaughn of INOVAR and “The Center for Maritime Studies Indonesia (CMSI), Vegabond Indi Soemardjan who together with Vegabond Nino Krisnan and our friends at Jotun made it happen. The event was kindly SPONSORED by Yard Indonesia.

Dr. Ruth Indira accompanies VEGA on our 2012 Mission of Mercy

Several of the islands we assist have not had official medical assistance since 1978 – and that was a health worker - not even a nurse. more »

Dr. Ruth will provide clinical services for the communities and advice for the local health workers and midwives we visit this year. She will also be assisting Dr. Dan And Dr. Aida with their mobile clinics and other needs while we are in East Timor. This will be a major help for those communities as well as for the children. For many of the islands we visit this will be the first time a real Doctor sets foot on their island. Along the way she is compiling a study of the existing conditions and how best to respond - as well as what comprises the “Perfect” midwife and health worker kit. We would like to thank Dr. Ruth for taking time away from her busy practice in Jakarta to sail with us from Jakarta to the Banda Islands to help the communities we assist. We would also like to thank Pak Pal who so kindly sponsored Ruth’s flight back from the Banda Islands to Jakarta.

Thanks to several friends in Jakarta and Singapore we have almost all the required drugs for this years deliveries

This year we were very fortunate more »

Thanks to several friends in Jakarta and Singapore we have almost all the required drugs for this years deliveries

Purchasing drugs is always a big problem for us. Not only are they expensive, but also we have long lists and the quantities are rather large. Try 70,000 paracetamol tablets, 2,000 Oxytocin ampoules, or 50,000 Ibuprofen, for an example. Jakarta, Indonesia is the place we always purchase our drugs - for regulatory, cost, and language reasons. Until now the drugs we could provide were few mostly due to our modest budgets. This year we were very fortunate in that the Harley Owners Group in Singapore along with Antoine Sukarmin and his father as well as CMSI in Jakarta provided almost all the drugs on our lists. Thanks to them this years midwives resupply and new kits as well as the health workers kits will be almost complete including the long hoped for Vitamin A supplements for children.

This had one rather amusing side effect in that we did not expect all those boxes so most cabin space etc was jammed with them as far a Dili. We had warned Pedro and Resanti that they might wind up sleeping on deck. As it turned out luckily Resanti could sleep anywhere even standing on his head I think.

<Pulau Nila

Pulau Medang is a small island just off the North West coast of Sumbawa Island, Indonesia. With a population of around 2,000 this peaceful little island boasts 2 schools and two nurse/midwifes. This was VEGA's 3th visit and it was great to see the improvments on the island, thanks to last years support.
... find out more about this years activities»

See pictures of our visit to the island »

Our first deliveries of the year

Medang is one of our favorite stopovers. It is a peaceful little island with very friendly people and a good anchorage, one where we always enjoy strolling about. After the hard slog around Java Island Medang is a very welcome sight. The houses are lovely being raised on stilts in the traditional manner and painted in bright colors that contrast nicely with the greens of the island. Alex calls Medang Munchkin Ville after the children that always seem to be peeking from the doors. For the past few years we have been assisting one of the local schools with educational supplies and the nurse / midwife with medical supplies.

This year we established a complete computer lab for the middle school we support on Medang Island as well as providing stationary and other needed school supplies. That lab had been at the very top of their request list last year and they had such confidence in us that they had already put it on their organizational chart. Highly appreciated was the LCD projector. The same night it went into service the school held a meeting with an outdoor movie and a DVD football match. They already had plans for weekly community education mixed with movies. Have a look at the pictures of us delivering the computer lab.

While I was busy helping set up the computer lab Dr. Ruth held a class on oral hygiene and basic health. The high light of that session came when every child received their own toothbrush so they could practice what she had been teaching. That was only part of Ruth’s work on the island she was over every day deep in conversations with Dewi and Mitha passing along her knowledge and even helping out with a difficult miscarriage.

A bit later we met with our friend Ibu Mitha, the islands Midwife to pass over the upgrade and resupply set for the midwife kit she received last year. This year we were happy to learn she has been busy training Ibu Dewi to be the islands additional midwife. Fortunately we always have a few extra midwife kits for such occasions so Midwife Dewi proudly received hers at the same time.

The Center for Maritime Studies Indonesia (CMSI) & VEGA join forces to develop the Vega model of providing assistance to those most in need more »

The Center for Maritime Studies Indonesia (CMSI) & Vega join forces to develop the Vega model of providing assistance to those most in need

After long and very fruitful discussions an MOU of understanding was signed between CMSI and Vega to develop the Vega model for assistance to small communities. Together we feel it will be possible to expand the Vega model to include additional purpose built vessels each with its own route and communities to be assisted. The objective being to bring the benefits of what we on Vega accomplish to even more communities this time with Indonesian boats crewed by Indonesians aiding Indonesians. With over 17,000 islands there is a lot of scope for each boat to have its own route visiting and assisting its own communities.

Indonesian Navy adopts VEGA for our 2012 Mission of Mercy

Vega now proudly fly’s an Indonesian Naval Flag when in Indonesian ports or when meeting Naval ships at sea more »

Vega’s ancient electronics retired at last

Vega’s electronics, our GPS, and other important navigation instruments were well past their retirement age. These important electronic aids help us navigate between the small badly charted islands we assist. Without them our job was becoming more difficult and even dangerous.
Read more here »

Vega’s ancient electronics retired at last

Having managed to squeeze almost 6 years out of them Vega’s electronics were at the end of their working lives. These are tools we depend on daily for navigation and many other important functions. To our speed, wind, depth, GPS, and our computer based electronic charts / tide tables we dearly needed to add a small radar scanner and a plotter that can be seen from the steering to help position ourselves better when entering badly charted anchorages. Some of the islands we go to are as much as 2 miles off from their charted positions. Radar would show that and help us correct for it. When the reefs are close in even a small difference becomes critical.

Our budgets are almost non-existent and these electronics are expensive. The fact we wanted to get away from Ray Marine for a more dependable product line made it even more complex. Thanks to our friends in Jakarta at the Harley Davidson club – Pantai Mutiara and the Jet Ski Café as well as support from the Indonesian Tourist Board we were at last able to change over to commercial grade Furuno equipment, including a small radar and high definition depth sounder, a major improvement over the “Pleasure Use Only” Ray Marine gear. Although we cannot install the complete system until we haul out the next time, what we have been able to install is making a big difference.

Here lies the body of Michael O’Day
Who died maintaining his right of way
He was right, dead right, as he sailed along,
But he’s just as dead as if he’d been wrong.

The moral of this little poem is: Always assume the other guy is down below making a coffee and never even saw - much less read - a rulebook.