Friday, September 29, 2017

Another beautiful custom Tideline 235 Cat on it's way to a very happy customer in Florida!

Another awesome Tideline 235 Cat custom built and on it's way to St. Augustine Florida to one HAPPY customer! Order yours today

Check out the Flag blue, twin 200hp four stroke white engines, white Line-X on the metal-work.
For those that want even bigger, the new Tideline 36 Offshore is being built now! Max rating twin 350 HP. It does not get any better!

Come demo ride the 235 at the upcoming Annapolis Boat Show Oct 12-15

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Jim Baugh Outdoors TV to produce "What's New" marine film highlghting Tideline Boats and other manufacturers at the Annapolis Power Boat Show Oct 12-15, 2017

Come take a ride on a Tideline 235 Cat!
Reserve your spot today!

Here is your chance to test ride the ultimate offshore \ inshore boat the new Tideline 235 Catamaran! at the Annapolis Power Boat Show coming up next month. (Oct 12-15)

To schedule your ride contact Tideline Boats at 252-230-8566 or vist Jim Baugh Outdoors will be at the show filming the Tideline 235 as well as what's the latest in the marine industry. If your looking for an extremely comfee ride in the 23 to 26 foot class, there is none better than the Tideline 235, hands down the best boat available today in its class. Also the new 36 ocean is being built now!

Reserve your demo ride today!

Cheers! JB

A look back 10 years ago at our 2007 Annapolis Boat Show Feature

Monday, September 25, 2017

Riding the storm out –IRMA, and the Leap of Faith

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Riding the storm out –IRMA, and the Leap of Faith

What do you do when a 600 mile wide category 5 hurricane, the strongest and biggest ever recorded in human history is heading right for you? Concern for your personal safety and home is paramount. However when the home you live in is a boat, things can be a bit more complicated.
Enter captain and author Ed Robinson and his lovely wife Kim who happen to live on their boat “Leap of Faith” on the Gulf side of south Florida. The boat was named after Eds first book “leap of Faith, quit your job and live on a boat” and that is exactly what Ed and Kim Robinson did.

Ed continues to write about his journeys through the islands and eventually the Robinsons landed on the Gulf Coast. The only problem with this paradise is that the predicted path of the worst hurricane imaginable was heading right to their front door, or should I say hatch.

Viewing the massive destruction that Irma had created left me with an empty bottomless feeling in my stomach because I felt for sure that Ed and Kims floating home the Leap of Faith would not survive this natural disaster. Even Ed thought for sure their retirement home would be totally destroyed. Certainly believing that their boat would survive this storm would take a personal leap of faith.

Maybe the name of the boat helped, but the “Leap” did survive with a rather small damage report. In my opinion it was a flat out miracle. Certainly thousands of other vessels were not so blessed. Tragic, and we are still sending out prayers to those that have lost loved ones, homes, business and property.

After the storm had passed and Ed and Kim were able to reconnect with the Leap of Faith I dropped Ed a note and ask if he would be kind enough to tell us about his experience. What I really wanted to know was just what did they do to secure the boat so well.

Here is their story.
JB: Ed why don’t you first tell us a little about the Leap of Faith. What kind of trawler is she and what did you do to the boat before setting off on your voyage of a lifetime.

ER: Miss Leap is a 1980 Oceania 36. We made her our own seven years ago and work continuously to maintain and upgrade her as we can. We’ve got a big battery bank with 500 watts of solar for our electricity needs. We added additional water storage. We learned to anchor like pros.
Leap of Faith Circa when Ed bought it.

JB: Now Irma was a big storm from the outset. At what point in time did you decided that it was time to take action and come up with a plan for your boat and personal safety.

ER: As you know, Irma was expected to be an East Coast event. We watched for days as the track slowly shifted west. We had our plan, but the boat needed preparation. We stripped the canvas, biminis, and enclosure a few days prior to leaving. We emptied the fridge and shut it down. We removed enough personal belongings to survive if she didn’t make it through. Then, I think two day before landfall, the weather-guessers forecasted a direct hit for most of the west coast of Florida. Our area was expected to get a 10 – 15 foot storm surge, with 140 mile per hour winds. There was a mandatory evacuation. We make the call early that morning.

JB: What were the different options in regards to where the boat would ride out the storm.

ER: We were urged to leave the marina so that wasn’t really an option. We had to choose between tying up in some mangroves, or anchoring out to allow a full swing radius. We also had no desire to ride out the storm aboard the boat, so our spot had to be close enough to dinghy to land, or in our case, back to the marina where our car was. Good spots fill up quickly, so we looked for a place we hoped would be empty of other boats. You may be secure, but your neighbors may not be. We sounded it with a handheld depth finder many days prior. We ended up being the only boat to anchor in that particular cove, (whose location I won’t divulge).
Anchored ready for Irma
JB: Once you chose a good spot to anchor, what type of anchor set up did you use and did you fully expect that all of the water would leave your anchor spot? I mean it is pretty spooky to think that you’re in an anchorage with 8 feet depth, but all that water will soon vanish and your boat will be sitting on the bottom. How do you prepare for that?

ER: A while back, we decided to purchase new ground tackle specifically for a hurricane. We bought a 73 pound Rocna as a storm anchor, and 200 feet of new galvanized, 3/8 inch chain. The Rocna comes with a hole designed for adding another chain rode in order to attach a second anchor. I described it here:

I decided to add two additional anchors in a triangle formation. I used two 30 foot sections of chain. One for our daily anchor, a 44 pound Bruce. On the other I installed a 45 pound CQR. We deployed each to either side of the bow, backed away slowly until the chains came tight, then dropped the Rocna.

JB: What are some of the things you did to secure the interior?

ER: I closed the seacock that allows raw water to cool the engine. I plugged the exhaust with a foam cone stopper. Shut off all electrical systems (the bilge pumps are wired directly to the batteries.) The appliances have been secured from tipping long ago. Tightly fastened cabinets, and of course, battened down the hatches.

JB: Were there any mechanical things you did on the Leap to prepare for the storm, install extra pumps, batteries, etc?

ER: By chance, our batteries were barely a week old when the storm was approaching. We’d just replaced them. I made sure they were strapped down tight so they didn’t tip over. I removed the solar panels so they wouldn’t act as a kite.

JB: Once you had everything done on the boat to prepare her to ride Irma out while anchored, can you tell us what were your thoughts as you left the boat?

ER: It was a sad moment. We were being told that the storm was going to be catastrophic in our area. We couldn’t bring ourselves to admit that she might be destroyed. There really is little defense against a CAT 4 or CAT 5 hurricane.

JB: Now that the boat was out of sight, but not out of mind, what was your plan for you and Kim?

ER: First, we rented a condo at the marina. It was given a mandatory evacuation order. We bugged out at the last minute and drove north. We couldn’t find a hotel room anywhere. We ended up in Charleston, South Carolina and endured flooding and power outages.

Ed and Kim escaped Florida only to end up in a hotel in Charleston SC, where flooding soon started and power outages were already happening.
JB: After Irma had passed, when and how did you discover that the Leap of Faith had survived the storm?

ER: Friends managed to sneak through someone’s yard on the waterfront and lay eyes on her. They sent us a picture. Sweet relief! Another friend used NOAA satellite imagery to locate the boat. Cool technology.
First sight of Leap after Irma
JB: When you first saw Leap and it was floating with a slight list did you assume it was sea water?

ER: Automatically assumed it was water. She looked sad laying over like that. I found a small quantity of water that couldn’t make it to the bilge pump because of her list. It took me a while to figure out what had happened. The fuel had emptied from the starboard side to the port side. One tank was chock full, the other was bone dry.

JB: What damages were there?

ER: Later we discovered our rudder has been tweaked out of alignment. There is a lower support that appears to be bent slightly. We’ll have to haul out to address that.

JB: So upon inspection, did all the anchors hold?

ER: I am confident that the anchors held fast. The boat was exactly where we left her.

JB: What about rain water and the interior, how wet was it and did all the windows make it?

ER: The interior got wet but not drenched. We assume that it started to rain while she was laying on her side. We planned for almost everything, but not for the water to disappear.

JB: I understand you had transmission problems, do you think that was related to the storm or just age?

ER: We discovered the problem as we attempted to back out of the slip to go to our anchorage. Not storm related, and a poor time for it to happen. She was telling us not to leave the dock. It’s since been removed and age is the culprit.

JB: Once you got Miss Leap back to the dock, what were the things you may have done different after this experience.

ER: I would have closed off the fuel lines to the diesel tanks for one. We’ll also think long and hard before leaving if we remain in this marina for long. It fared quite well with only minor damage. In hindsight, we’d have been better off staying put, but that’s not what the authorities were telling us. Tying up in the mangroves, if we could find a good spot, may prevent the boat from laying over if/when the water disappears. The lines would hold her up.

JB: Captain Ed can you give our readers some advice as to how to prepare their boat in case of a hurricane?

ER: You cannot overdue preparation. Strip all canvas, sails, etc. Anything that might fly around or catch wind must come off. This includes Eisenglass or Strataglass enclosures. If at the dock, triple tie and protect every line from chafe. If at anchor, find a sheltered spot and go extreme with anchors, chain and/or lines. I’m not an expert, as this was our first rodeo in Florida. Here’s some thought’s from another experienced cruiser:

JB: Living through this experience has it altered your desire to live on a boat and how is Mrs. Kim doing?
ER: Not yet! But we wouldn’t want to go through the ordeal too many more times. We were both a bit overwhelmed with all the work that faced us putting things back together, but Kim has been awesome throughout. I can’t praise her enough for keeping it together and helping in so many ways.

JB: What surprised you the most living through this experience?

ER: The water going away. No one was prepared for that. Also the random destruction elsewhere. In Boot Key Harbor in Marathon for example, most boats were destroyed, but some were untouched.
Water gone!
I guess the people above never read the children's book the Five Chinese Brothers
JB: I am sure you saw a lot of things as a result of this catastrophic storm, what sticks out in your mind the most.

ER: People will kill you for a tank of gas during a mass evacuation! People will pull together to help their fellow man in times of disaster.

JB: Anything else you would like to add?

ER: We were lucky. Just a short way to our south, in Marco Island, Goodland, and Naples, the damage was severe. Our little slice of paradise was spared the worst. Parts of the Keys are simply demolished. The storm moved more inland once it made landfall near Marco and quickly lost some strength. If not for that, we’d be looking at a different outcome.

JB: Ed a big thanks for taking time to fill us in on your story and very glad the Leap of Faith survived this ordeal.
Godspeed Captain.
ER: Thanks Jim!

Ed Robinson Book Info: Many of Captain Ed Robinsons books (over 10) are available either on Kindle or paperback on Amazon including his break out book Leap of Faith, quit your job and live on a boat.

*Photo Credit for all Hurricane pics Ed,  Kim Robinson
 and Stephen Bowman