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eXite - Exite 19/11 - Autopilot problems and a gibe

We have had a problem where the autopilot, when using wind wane, sometimes “set a new wind angle” for itself. Always around 20 degrees more to windward than our usual angle. But we thought it was sorted out as it hasn’t happened for about 2000 miles.
When I went to rest at 15.00 it happened for the third time since leaving Mindelo. Though this time it didn’t work after a reset as it usually does.
This time the drive unit to the autopilot also stopped working, so we were actually looking in to where the closest marinas are (Fogo at 200 miles or South America at 1100 miles….).

After searching through the whole boat and disconnecting/connecting various sources we found a faulty nmea2000 connector that we replaced. It has probably been hit by the 10kg of rice that was packed away close to it. Knew it was a bad idea to buy food for months…
After a lot of searching through the whole boat and disconnecting/connecting various sources, we found a faulty nmea2000 connector, so we replaced it with a new. Also found that the drive unit’s fuse was gone - replaced it as well. Probably happened when we put load on it when looking for the other issue.

At around 16.30 it looked like the autopilot was working once again (let’s hope it’s for the rest of the trip now…) and we celebrated it with a gibe to the west and towards Caribbean. Looking at the position reports we are in last place when looking at distance to finish. We knew it was going to happen as we wanted to avoid the worst of the waves, which we now probably will do. So it’s time to shake the reefs and get back to the rest of the fleet. Can’t let all the Norwegian boats beat us…

With the current wind we have our course set somewhere between French Guyana and Grenada, but the wind will move more to the east when we get more west so we will gradually get more towards the north west in a few days.

Now time for some showers before it gets dark.


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