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There is definitely a price to be paid for self-sufficency and sadly it is a high one. It almost brought tears to my eyes yesterday when I finally broke down and ordered a boat load of spares (spelled $$$$) for our Yamaha engines. I find it more than a bit strange to be ordering parts that I don’t even know their function let alone how to install them but I guess that’ll just make it more fun if we ever get to the point that we need them. Of course, our friend shared his Murphy’s Law corollary which says that by carrying a spare we have essentially guaranteed that that particular item will not break down.

We’re here in Melbourne, FL, where our friends and traveling companions on Knot Tide Down, Bill and Ana, first began their journey. Although they have been living aboard full time for over a year and a half, they still own property here. This was helpful for us because it gave us a shipping address to have our spare parts sent to. Sadly, once we receive them, we’ll be splitting up from our buddies as their intention is to remain in this area until after Christmas. This is par for the course as far as cruisers are concerned though and so will begin another game of catch up. Thanks again guys for chauffeuring us all over town yesterday to re-provision. You’ve one again helped to make our boat ride about (not pronounced a-boot as you think Canadians do it) 3 inches lower.

What will these guys do without us?

Flipper thinks they will be lost! 🙂


  1. Love that last picture of the dolphin! Anyway, hope you wasted your money and never have to use most of those parts. =)

  2. It’s nice that you’ve made such good helpful friends.

    • Even before we left to go shopping yesterday, we had the owner of the trawler behind us, who we had never met before, come up and offer to take us shopping in the car that they had access to. Awesome! Thanks Clint. 🙂

  3. I’ve also done a lot of traveling in my lifetime and I find it amazing how many people we meet along the way who will become lifetime friends. I am off to Cuba just after Christmas, not with friends whom I had grown up with but with friends whom I met while traveling 10 years ago. I find that while traveling, you have to have an open mind with people who cross your path as you never know just who will end up being your “new” lifetime friends! You guys seem to have found 2 with Knot Tied Down. Looking forward to your journey to the Bahamas, Mark

  4. The boat yard (spa) where our Knotty Cat is recuperating (enjoying some pretty expensive pedicures on our dime!) is also a Yanmar dealer and we too ordered a bunch of spare parts yesterday. Let’s all hope that if and when we need them, we know what to do with them!

  5. From a song about cruising that Karen and I sing:

    So we’re out there cruising,
    Life on the water now,
    A life that’s hard to beat.

    It isn’t just places,
    It isn’t just the sunsets,
    It’s the people that we meet.

    You guys get it…

    • Yes, I think we do:)

      Did you make that song, Jeffrey? What is its name?

      On a completely different topic, have you seen the movie “Get him to the Greek?”

  6. It really is hard to leave good friends behind, especially when you’ve been together as much as you and Knot Tied Down have been. There will be new friends, but not replacements, because you will meet them again along the way.

  7. That last picture of the dolphins is amazing! Earmark it for a contest entry sometime in the future.

    • Maybe we should have a contest on the ZTC blog where everyone can vote for their favorite pics. The prize could be a weekend sailing with us. 🙂

  8. Spare parts can be such a hassle. At least they’re less of a hassle than not having spares!

    An important point about spares: Each and every piece needs to be checked to make sure it has the correct gaskets, bolts and other odds and ends as well. It’s amazing how many parts come as what looks like a complete kit, but there’s one bolt with the wrong thread and the included gasket is for a slightly newer/older version that has the bolt holes in different places. (One of my favourites was a high-vacuum pump, used for composite construction, that had seized. The manufacturer had discontinued this model, and re-used some of its spare part numbers for a different design. Our machinist had quite a bit of fun re-sizing the replacement guide pins and such to fit!)

    • I have heard that it is a good idea to immediately install the spare part and then keep the original as the spare. I know I’m not going to be doing that with all of the things I ordered. I would have to tear the engine apart!!!

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