Update #5 - 28th October 1999

How time flies. Here it is nearly November with October 2000 rushing at me like a steam train.

The new Lewmar winches are securely bolted in place and looking real good alongside the teak trims kindly installed by "Pommie John".

The new mast is finally in and looking absolutely fantastic complete with new boom. Whalespars are world class mast makers and I cannot sing their praises loudly enough. John Denton and the team "went the extra mile" with my rig and I am so pleased with the result. On the Saturday that it was finally in place I just had to go for a sail in a beautiful gentle South East breeze with Lorraine and the kids and we ended up at the bottom end of the Lake where we stayed for the night. I hope to post a few shots of the new mast and gear in our gallery section shortly.

The 2 Furlex furlers are on, as are the collection of Lewmar clutches around the base of the mast. The whole mast/deck area is now far more organised and practical.

My Public Speaking is still keeping me busy with my most recent presentation being last Monday evening for the Newcastle Kiwanis Club who donated $500 to the Children's Hospital Kid's Club and we managed to extract another $150 from those who signed the sail. Next Monday night it's the turn of Bennetts Green Rotary Club.

Identifying and sourcing the correct equipment for a project like this is a time consuming matter and then you have to work out how to pay for it all. I am pleased (and a little self-conscious) to let you know that my good friends Alana & Bob Snape have taken it upon themselves to put together a fund raiser to help me out.

Currently I need to purchase an electronic self steering system at cost of approximately $4,700 (after some assistance from the supplier). A night has been organised at Lake Macquarie Yacht Club on Saturday 13th November at 7.30 pm to try and raise the dollars to buy the unit for me. Alana has always been a great supporter and is doing a great job in putting the night together and she can be contacted at rsnape@ozemail.com.au for bookings or more info.

I am very proud and extremely grateful to welcome Aluminium Specialities as a $500 sponsor for a day. To Craig and his team a big thank you!

I am also extremely pleased to welcome Solarex as a 100% sponsor of my 3x 64 watt solar panels and voltage regulator. Solarex have a wonderful product that I put to good use in our non-stop around Australia trip in 1994. I urge you to remember their name and check out their web site at www.solarex.com.au

After much deliberation I have chosen to use a Monitor self-steering vane (mechanical self-steering device attached to the back of the boat) as manufactured by Scanmar International in California USA. Scanmar have been very generous in providing substantial assistance to me and I am looking forward to using their gear and recommend their site to you at www.selfsteer.com

Battery power is very important and tonight I have selected a wind generator to complement my overall electrical system. The "cheques in the mail" and I look forward to its arrival so that Heinz Brill can dovetail it into the design of the solar panel frame.

Congratulations to Jesse Martin on the finish (next Sunday) of his solo circumnavigation. At 18yrs (and a bit) Jesse becomes only the fourth Australian to achieve this goal and it should be noted that he has been at sea continuously since the 6th December1998 (nearly 11 months!) .

Once again I thank you for your interest in our project. Take care.

Tony Mowbray