Airborne is sold! It took one showing and I found the right buyer. Warren from Orange decided that Airborne is the boat for him. He put down $500 cash the day he saw her and all I had to do was fix the stuffing box.
Replacing the shaft packing: I wrapped the shaft from the outside with some PVC tape to keep water from coming in the bilge and trying to sink the boat while changing out the stuffing box packing. It was a pretty easy job since I had the right tool to pull out the old packing. I couldn’t have gotten that far if Eric from Coconutz didn’t have a pipe wrench and a come along to help. It took about a half hour to remove the old packing, cut the new packing, and adjust the drip rate to 0 drops with the engine off. With the engine running in gear the drip rate is 2-4 per minute.
The next Wednesday, Warren returned to San Diego for sea trials. We took the boat out and sailed around the south bay for about an hour. Airborne handled perfectly and he got a feel for the boat. That night he paid the rest of the asking price and spent the night aboard learning more about his new boat.
Over the next few days he bought and installed a new autopilot for the boat. Having an autopilot will make the trip to Long Beach far easier. One night he had Natalie and I over for grilled shrimp and chicken on mesquite charcoal. Saturday we did a test sail with the autopilot and later that night Natalie came aboard for a goodbye sail.
When we returned to the dock at the end of our sail the port jib sheet fell in the water and got fouled around the propellor. I jumped off and tied the boat off quickly and before I knew it, Warren was in the water and had the sheet unwrapped from the propellor! The engine started easily and still works well in forward and reverse.
We’re happy to see Airborne go to a good owner who will keep her sailing well! Fair winds and following seas old friend.