Buying our first sailing yacht – post #5

Joshua and Juley fetched Emil and I from the bus stop. I was so excited to see Salty Cow with the sails on. Finally she looked like a sailing yacht should. We had no idea though how she would handle on the sail from East London to Durban. There was no one we could chat to that had sailed on her either. We checked the weather forecast for the coming days, we knew it should take us around 3 or 4 days, depending on weather.

While Emil and Joshua got busy with the final prep work, changing the oil in the main engine etc., Juley and I started doing fuel runs. There isn’t a fuel dock at the Buffalo River Yacht Club so we had to go into town with fuel cans and fill at the local truck stop. The diesel is cheaper there. We hit a bonus also because the truck stop has a laundromat. The guys there were amazing, while we were running from the boat and back they checked on our clothes and put them into the tumble drier for us. It was super cheap also.

Our boat has a 400l fuel tank so yes it took us awhile to fill it. Emil and Joshua filled the 400l water tank. Then it was time to get provisions so off to the local supermarket went Juley and I. Now we have been on plenty camping trips that we had to provision for, but this was rather daunting knowing that if we ran out of anything really important it would be a big problem as we can’t just pop into the local town and replenish stocks. I don’t think I have ever taken this long to shop, and I had a list!!

Right so the boat was packed, we were preparing ourselves mentally for what lay ahead. We had enjoyed our stay at the Buffalo River Yacht Club, the people were awesome. While we were in Umkomaas during the time that the boat was moored there we dragged in a heavy storm, they were quick to get out to her and put on extra ropes etc.

Emil caught fish right off the back of the boat and we had an awesome fish braai (barbecue) at the yacht club. All in all it was great meeting everyone. We were very excited to leave though and get to Durban.

Post #6 coming soon!


Buying our first sailing yacht – post #1

This is the post excerpt.

This is my very first post.  I am completely new to all of this, so please bear with me.  A little bit of history.

My husband, Emil, and I have been married for 32 years, have 3 children (1 daughter & 2 sons) and a granddaughter, 11 years old.  We are finally moving towards our long time dream of sailing and cruising on our own yacht.  Two years ago, almost to the day, our son purchased a 40ft Samson Ferro Cement Ketch yacht.  We live in a small town, Umkomaas, in the Kwazulu Natal Province of South Africa.  The yacht was moored in a different Province.  So we took a road trip to East London in the Eastern Cape.  We had no idea what condition she was in, we had only seen the pictures that were posted in the advert.  We arrived at the Buffalo River Yacht Club ready to meet the current owner and eager to get an up close look at her.  Our main concern, being a ferro cement boat, was whether there was any corrosion coming through in the hull. Thankfully there was not.  The interior was just as was shown in the pictures.  As we walked down the companionway steps we felt at home, she had a peacefulness about her.  It’s difficult to explain, she was so inviting.  From the outside she did not look like too much as the owner had removed all the masts and rigging.  Apparently he had been trying to sell her for so long.  The advert our son found was actually an expired advert!

He told us unfortunately his wife was not interested in sailing so he decided, with a heavy heart, to sell.  We went over the whole boat, looking at all the possible things that could possibly make the decision on our behalf not to buy.   We decided to “sleep on it” and so took the long trip back home to Umkomaas.  As you can imagine the whole journey home was spent talking about the pros and cons of buying this particular boat. Fortunately Emil knows plenty about boats, he grew up fishing and building boats with his family.  He has built plenty fiberglass boats and RIB’s but not had too much to do with ferro cement boats.  He has always wanted to buy or build a steel yacht, so yes, a ferro boat was not our first choice.  Joshua our youngest son is the researcher, so on our return he was onto the internet researching everything he could on ferro cement yachts. We knew that this particular one was a factory built one, which is a huge plus.

So fast forward a couple of days and we contact the owner to say we will take her.  We pay the deposit and then plan our next trip down to East London to take ownership of the boat.  The owner had told us that all the equipment and rigging etc was at his house, we were definitely not prepared for everything that came with the boat!  There was double of all the sail configurations, except the spinnaker.

The balance of the money was paid over, the paperwork sorted and we made our way back home.  There was plenty excitement on the journey home, Joshua had just bought a yacht!  Emil and I have a scuba diving charter in Umkomaas and we needed to get back to prepare for the annual sardine run that happens every year on the Wild Coast.  The plan was to finish up with the sardine run and then go back to East London to put all the rigging and equipment back on the boat.  As newbies to yachting we had no idea how the rigging needed to go back, nothing was labelled!, so Joshua spent a lot of time on YouTube to see how it was done.

Post #2 to follow soon