I feel like it’s my birthday, I’ve had a package turn up with my new Crewsaver Ergofit Lifejacket, Ocean Safety PLB1 and a Standard Horizon HX870E Handheld DSC VHF.

I thought I would write a “first look” review on each and share it with you. I’ll start off with the lifejacket and I’ll review the other two over the next couple of weeks.

When it comes to safety, I don’t think you can skimp, I ride motorcycles and I wouldn’t ride in a £50 helmet, why would I want to wear a £50 lifejacket? I understand a £50 lifejacket is better then none and many people may not be able to afford a higher spec one. I also understand why people don’t want to wear a lifejacket, the philosophy of not falling overboard in the first place, the usual saying “wearing a lifejacket just increases the chances of your body being found”, but whilst there’s a chance, even a slim one I think we have take them and even create them.

I don’t want to be bobbing about in the pitch black sea, waves and spray breaking over me wishing I bought a better lifejacket instead of those Musto/other expensive waterproofs I don’t really need.

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I’ve followed the Jester for a few years now, ever since I looked at a little Corribee 21 for my first “big boat”. I read up on MingMing, Roger Taylor’s junk rig Corribee that has sailed across oceans and up to the Artic circle, this lead me to other sailors and boats and eventually the Jester Challenge. There’s three different challenges for solo sailors in boats between 20-30ft, originally the longest to Newport RI, USA, a shorter one to the Azores and finally one for people like myself to Baltimore South Ireland.

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toast

The boat is about 100 miles away from where we live, to be honest it takes about the same amount of time in any direction to get to the sea, but the drive to Newport is a good one for me. It makes sense that I go down the night before to work on the boat, I get the evening without distractions and I have as much of the next day to finish off what I’ve started, so I decided the end of November would be the first time sleeping on the boat.

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sundance-yellow-albin-ballad

I’ve owned Sundance for six weeks now, and I’m itching to go sailing. Unfortunatly I can’t as she had been taken out of the water for winter the week before I viewed her, which is the sensible thing. I’m not ready to sail her, I need to get to know Sundance, learn her little niggles, I need to learn the water we’ll be spending so much time together and listen to the advice and stories from the experienced soles of the sailing club.

 

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Saxon Wharf

A year goes by in a flash, it seems like a lifetime but also like yesterday. This weekend, a year ago made me feel so content, a weekend for me, with my friends and my choice, it sounds so self centred doesn’t it. This weekend a year ago was my stag do, I like to think I’m not much of a look at me sort of guy but maybe writing this blog means I am, I don’t know.

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