Category Archives: Hands-On Tips


When we aligned the engine in Greece, one of the bolts that holds the engine mounts was impossible to loosen.  The mechanic tried all the tricks in his book, but gave up as he did not want to break the bolt, which would have been a big headache.

Seawater had dripped from the raw water pump, directly on to the engine mount, down in to the thread.

I tried many different tools, WD 40 etc. but no success. It was frozen solid.

Back in Sweden  I did find some positive reviews of “OMEGA 636 ” oil.  It is an oil that is said to find its way in to the thread and loosen up corrosion.  Too good to be true!! I was afraid it was another “snake oil” product.   But as I had no better choice, I ordered a can.

Back on the boat I dripped Omega 636 oil on the bolt.  After a couple days I decided to give it a try.  Like a miracle the bolt moved with normal force!!

Corroded bult

Corroded bult


Yesterday we arrived to Almerimar after one month in Sweden.

Bella was covered with brown dust and needed a proper wash.  Next morning we motored over to the Almerimar Marine Service as soon as the washing was done.

Bella ready for new running rigging

Bella ready for new running rigging

Chris at Almerimar Marine Service was waiting and had all the new halyards in a box. At 11.00 they started to change the halyards. I had decided for the same setup as earlier, wire + rope.

Rigger goes up and sort out the halyards.

Rigger goes up and sort out the halyards.

Chris likes pushing buttons.

Chris likes pushing buttons.

Going for Dynema would have saved weight and do not stretch more than wire.  But as we have in-mast furling and furling head stay we decided to stay with wire. For some reason I think the wire is stronger when it comes to shafe and UV.  In best case we take down the sails once/year.

The old halyards are 13 years old and would probably last another 2-3 years. Not a bad track record.

Do not change something that is working is always a good idea.

Another problem changing from wire to Dynema is that pulleys at the masthead probably have to be changed to prevent shafe on the Dynema.

Tomorrow there are some fine tuning before we can put the sails on.


If you have a hydraulic cylinder on your backstay, it might be a good idea to protect the seal on top of the cylinder from sun exposure.  Vickie told me once it was not uncommon that the lip seal on the cylinder had to be replaced due to UV damages.

I made a simple UV-sunshield for our cylinder, using a screw cap from a Coca-Cola bottle.  There has to be 1-2  mm play between the screw cap and the cylinder shaft.  If not, it will not stay down and protect the seal.

I did cut the cork on one side just to make it possible to slide it on to the shaft.  It is easy, and cost nothing!

Navtec cylinder

Navtec cylinder with screw cork on top

If you have hydraulic hoses to the furlers of the main sail or the genoa, it is a also a good idea to protect the hoses for UV-radiation.