Day 372 [10/10/09] Radar glitch delays departure

Radar recalibration problem is revealed; everything else seems fine or fixable in preliminary sea trials
53 11 S, 70 55 W --- Rafted in a harbor in Punta Arenas, Chile

Today's Report [0950 JST]

Initial sea trials held yesterday revealed, predictably, that the radar needs to be recalibrated after the faulty magnetron was replaced last week. This became apparent once the vessel was on the open waters of the Strait of Magellan. Saito-san said it appears to be off by about 10 degrees.

The jib furling system, rudder and hydraulic rudder control all checked out, Saito-san reported by Iridium sat phone from the fishing harbor in Punta Arenas. The Iridium signal faded as he gave details, but basically he said that everything seemed to check out except for the radar. Another sea trial will be conducted in the next few days.

He said the engine needs a bit of work, after a mechanic from Hanaoka-san's company determined that the starter relay needs replacing. The part can be sourced locally.

Saito-san said he expected the radar recalibration and final engine adjustments to take place Monday and Tuesday, delaying his departure for a few days.

He said the Chilean Coast Guard made a departure inspection yesterday and BMW Shuten-dohji III passed. However, they noticed his visa had expired recently and so a visit to the immigration office has now joined Saito-san's list of last-minute departure tasks.

Additional Report from Saito 8 Safety Officer

The following report was additionally supplied by Mike Seymour, Saito 8 Safety Officer:


- Rudder and autopilot are ok and functioning normally. Hydraulics are good.

- Jib furler and staysail are good to go.

- Generator is operational, however he is unable to get more than 2000 rpm out of the

main engine. Probably due to carbon build-up. They will clean the turbos and try again.

- HF radio seems to work (he was able to contact Chilean coast guard) but is unable to

reach Japan or America from his current location. He probably won't be able to test it

until he gets above 40 degrees.

- VHF [the short-distance radio] is down and will require a new antenna. They are looking for a replacement now.

- Radar is 10 degrees off. He doesn't have a manual and doesn't know how to calibrate it.

He will contact the local Furuno agent for help.

- Both the surveyor and insurance agent visited the boat and inspected it before the test.

- Everything else is good to go.


- He has overstayed his visa! Hanaoka-san is now talking with the local authorities, but it

appears he will have to pay some kind of penalty. Monday is a national holiday in Chile, so

they will not be able to do anything before Tuesday.

Accordingly, he will not be leaving tomorrow. The visa issue seems to be his biggest concern.

Hopefully Hanaoka-san can work it out for him. He will call again after talking to immigration

on Tuesday.