Welcome to my blog. Here you will find the journeys of Ti Gtu and information that I have researched and found useful for maintaining and servicing yachts and motorboats.

I post full information that I find on the Fay Marine information site, accessed through www.faymarine.com/ and I can be emailed at paul@faymarine.com.

At the bottom of the blogs is a 'subscribe' link. After subscribing your web browser will automatically check for any updates that have been posted.

Happy sailing,

Paul Fay

Saturday, 20 August 2016

Sister ship visit.

Falmouth saw the visit of Fayka which is the sister ship to Ti Gitu. Fayka has been built by Slawek in Poland and hasn't he made a great job of building her. Fayka is 40ft and a twin keeled version.

Slawek has photographed every stage of the building which he has published at http://www.ciunczyk.com/slawek/Fayka/

Currently Slawek and Fayka are completing a circuit of the UK having sailed from Gdansk out of the Baltic to Norway, then the Scottish islands, down the Irish Sea and then along the English Channel, through the Kiel Canal and home to Gdansk.

It was really great to see both Slawek and Fayka and hopefully we will meet up again soon.

Thursday, 11 August 2016

Leaving soon

Ti Gitu is still in Falmouth. We didn't want to stay so long and expected that after the knee operation we would be off sailing this summer. However fate played a hand as Mo was taken ill just as we were thinking of leaving so in the end it was good that we had booked in for the whole year.

Mo has made a really good recovery and although it will be a very short sailing season we will leave the marina at the end of August.

Not sure where we will go, perhaps the Isles of Scilly for a while before going to a winter berth more central along the South coast.

Falmouth Marina has treated us fantastically well. All the staff are really nice and very caring so we will be sad not to be here for next winter but Falmouth is a long way from everywhere. It takes me over seven hours by train to get to Gravesend to visit family.

The health service has been great. My knee op is a great success and Mo's treatment has worked out very well. I really don't know what the government is talking about when they claim that we don't have a seven day a week service. Mo ended up in two different hospitals over two weekends and the service was excellent. I'm with the doctors!!

Ti Gitu is doing well but will need the bilges painting this coming winter and eventually in the next few years will need the bottom blasting and re painting, but the paint has lasted for 14 years so far and that is onto bead blasted steel which isn't anywhere as good as grit blasted steel. The grit makes a much rougher surface for the epoxy paint to grip while the bead blasting is much smoother.

Lots of things to do but it stops life becoming boring!!

Monday, 19 October 2015

On Crutches

For many years my left knee has been slowly failing and at the beginning of this year the specialist at Trelissick in Truro told me that the remedy was a complete new knee.

After discussing things with him we agreed that we would go and cruise Brittany for the summer returning in time for an operation at the beginning of the winter.

I went for a 'pre operation check' in September and was cleared to have the operation in St Michaels hospital in Hayle. You need to be perfectly fit for an operation in one of these smaller hospitals, I presume because they don't have the emergency facilities of the larger hospitals. Anyway I was fit enough.

I suddenly had a call as there was an appointment for the 6th October. This was just a week away so I didn't have as much abstinence time as they had recommended!!!

Friends took Mo and I to the Hospital for 0700 and I was in having the op by 1030.

The surgeon and all the staff at St Michaels are wonderful.

No operation is something to be looked forward too but I found it to be an experience that far surpassed what I had expected in a good way.

I had very little pain and was out of bed the next morning walking with a 'Zimmer' frame and later crutches. By that night I could walk to the loo on my own and the next day was discharged being taken back to Ti Gitu by friends.

The nurses and physiotherapists said that as I had been doing strengthening exercises for the last two years that helped towards me recovering quickly.

So here we are in Falmouth and I am being looked after fantastically by Mo who takes Granddad for an airing along the pontoon on crutches a couple of times a day.

Hopefully all will continue to progress well and I will be back to normal in a few months. (Mo says not to threaten her!!!)

Wednesday, 30 September 2015


Ti Gitu actually left the Rade de Brest and we were anchored in the Anse de Bertheaume just outside Brest when we heard of a death in the family. As it was very unsure when the funeral would be and how long it would take for us to get back to the UK we decided to go into the Moulin Blanc marina which would allow Paul to fly back for the funeral.
We decided late in the afternoon that as it was getting a bit rolly in the anchorage to move back inside the Rade before going to the marina the next day.
On starting the engine the fan belt just screamed. I went to adjust it and found that the water pump was seized. On this engine both salt and fresh water pumps are bolted together and I have a spare fresh water pump but of course this problem turned out to be the salt water pump.
It was the large ball bearing that the whole thing runs on that had seized.
After taking it off I was able to remove the seal from the bearing and could see that a small amount of water had entered the bearing over a long period and caused the problem.
With much WD40 and an hour working the bearing and washing it out with petrol it freed and I packed it with grease.
It ran perfectly and would probably have lasted to get us back to the UK but as I was flying back I ordered a complete new pump which I collected while in the UK and fitted on my return.

The Moulin Blanc marina is much nicer and more sheltered than the other one. Also considerably cheaper!!

Ti Gitu ended up staying there for two weeks while I flew to the UK and on my return the weather blew a hoolie for the next week.
We cycled around Brest and visited the maritime museum and other sights before deciding that as the wind would be SW for two days before going Northerly for a long time we would leave Brest and sail directly to Falmouth. It looked as though the wind would be Northerly for about ten days and I had an appointment that I did not want to miss so with a promise of lightish winds we set sail.
All was fine for the first few hours but then the wind died leaving a rough sea and so we had to motor overnight arriving in Falmouth the next afternoon. Mo had been feeding the fish several times and I only just held onto dinner, it was that rough.

We anchored in the river for a few days before entering the marina which is where we are now.



Saturday, 29 August 2015

July and August

This has been a great time. The whole area of Finnisterre is incredibly pleasant. After our stay in Launay we went an stayed in the Chateau marina in Brest where we met friends for a mini junk rig rally. Didn't think much of the marina. It is very expensive and the only thing going for it is that it is close to the centre of Brest. There are no services, I couldn't even change a gas cylinder, I had to cycle to the Molin Blank marina which has everything.

From there we sailed round to Morgat for a few days and then down to Douarnenez where we first anchored outside and then passed through the loch into the marina upriver. We had a good time there and cycled round the area.

When we left we again went out to the anchorage for a night before heading back to Morgat. We had already seen one yacht foul it's anchor which should have warned us but we also managed to get fouled. we did manage to free it eventually but would buoy the anchor if going there again.

Back up to Morgat we found that the Atlantic swell was creping round the headland and making us roll so when friends called who were anchored off Camaret in one of my previous yachts we went round there and spent time with them. Only problem was that it was rolly there too so we both entered the Rade De Brest for the next night's sleep.

We decided that we wanted to see more of the area so again went up the Alune river to Port Launay. We had days out taking the train and buses to different places and cycled along the tow path for miles. We ended up staying for three weeks and also did a few jobs on Ti Gitu while there like painting the forward mast. YUK.

Into the first week of August we left Launay and anchored in the SW corner of the Rade De Brest. We went ashore and walked across the peninsula to Camaret then had a taxi bring us back. The whole day out cost less than two nights in Camaret marina which we could see was suffering from the large Atlantic swell. We would have been annoyed if we had paid to stay in the marina and still rolled.

It is now time to start heading North again as we have to be back in the UK for appointments in September and the weather is very unsettled and looks to stay that way so we will have to pick our times to sail.

Saturday, 8 August 2015

Alune river.

In the SE corner of the Rade De Brest is the L'Alune river which goes up to Chateaulin. The river is tidal for the first twelve miles and then four kilometres below Chateaulin it was canalised and as a canal goes all the way to Nantes. For the first few kilometres a yacht can enter with it's mast up and so we decided to go up the river.

We had virtually no charts of the river so just went on a rising tide sticking to the outside of all the bends which is where the deepest water normally is.

The trip up the river was uneventful. We never had less than two meters under the keel and when we arrived the lock was open so we went straight in.

We were a bit of a shock to the lock keeper as they expect boats to telephone ahead to warn them but he was very pleasant.

Mo asked about the cost of going through and they laughing told us that it is free. It appears that it is also free for us to be moored in Port Launay just above the lock. We will see when we come to leave!!

Port Launay is a really pleasant place to moor and you can go further up to the town but after that the mast would have to come down.

The town of Chateaulin is a short bike ride away and has good supermarkets. Before leaving we will take the dinghy up to the town and do a big shop at the supermarket.

Sunday, 21 June 2015

Rade de Brest

Ti Gitu entered the Rade and we headed SE Towards the anchorage at Tinduff. We were beginning to be disheartened by the number of moorings we could see in each of the anchorages around the area but when we actually arrived at Tinduff there was still plenty of room to anchor.
We spent a pleasant few days there and I discovered the pleasure of eating 'crepes'. Won't bother again as it would have cost a fortune to order enough for a decent meal!!
We could see a larger town at the top of a hill and not having a road map we foolishly decided to try and walk there. After an hour with no indication that we were going in the right direction we turned back. We will have to obtain road maps of where to go in the future.
I will normally look at Google maps for a route, but there is little internet available and as I didn't want to use up my UK mobile allocation we weren't connected for our first few weeks in France. Won't make that mistake again!!
Ti Gitu has been invited to a Junk rig rally in Brest in the middle of June so we will wait in the area to attend that.