CALL OF THE OCEAN
Call of the Ocean – The Finish of the journey around the World
The Polish sailor, Szymon Kuczyński, has just finished his solo around-the-world journey without making any stops to ports, on the smallest yacht in the history of sailing – Maxus 22 (6.36m/20ft 10.4in) built in the Polish Northman boatyard. He circled the globe around the three capes in 270 days, 10 hours, and 29 minutes.
The sailor left Plymouth on the 19th of August 2017 to go around the world in a non-stop journey around the three capes. In October his yacht Atlantic Puffin sailed into the Southern Ocean where he remained for 128 days. These were the coldest days of the journey, it was often snowing with temperatures below 5°C (41°F).
In time, the extremely difficult ocean sailing started to affect the state of the equipment, which started breaking down – the anemometer has been damaged, along with the main solar panel and the electrical autopilot. However, when planning the journey, Szymon thought of every possible scenario, and so he was prepared to solve any equipment-related problem by himself. There were tools and materials for repairs on board, spare solar panels, a tripled autopilot system (electric, hydraulic, and a self-steering device), and many more. Above that he could communicate with land via an inReach tracker, telephone, and a satellite modem. Thanks to that the yacht’s position could have been followed at all times and Szymon has been able to send information from on board.
On the 29th of October 2017 the sailor passed the Cape of Good Hope, and on the 5th of December 2017 the Australian Cape Leeuwin. In the beginning of the year 2018, the Atlantic Puffin entered the Drake Passage more than one month ahead of schedule. He was being chased by a big depression. When talking about the weather he had on the 4th of February, while passing Cape Horn, he said: “In the last three days I encountered two gale force winds. The one at Cape Horn was a force 9 with 6-7 meter swell. The last weeks were tough, with strong and even gale winds, very cold – 2-5°C (36-41°F) inside the cabin. It was raining and snowing.” After the good news of the “Sailing Everest” disappearing behind his back, Szymon informed about a problem, that could have jeopardize the entire expedition. As a result of another “knock down” (which is a sudden strong listing of the boat) the mast has been seriously weakened. It was therefore a priority to get away from the inhospitable environment of the Drake Passage as fast as possible, while taking care not to break the mast. After hearing the news, the shore team along with the rigging specialists from the Northman shipyard immediately prepared a multistage proposition of how to secure the mast. In order to stiffen the column Szymon implemented additional support in the form of dyneema fiber stays and in the place of the failure he fitted an element that would make further deformation impossible.
The Maxus 22 happily left the danger zone, however the need of unburdening the mast resulted in the reduction of the amount of sails the yacht could carry to forward sails only, and when using only the inner staysail and storm jib the speed decreased significantly.
The weather conditions in the next three weeks of the journey allowed for the proper and strong securing of the damage i.e. the mast has been strengthened with an additional laminate overlay. After that the sailor could return to using all of the sails he had. Thanks to that the Atlantic Puffin quite swiftly passed the doldrums and returned to the northern hemisphere in April 2018.
The last part of the journey has been a big challenge for Szymon. After a few months he had returned to warmer waters, where the speed of the sail has constantly been slowed down by floating colonies of seaweed and the fouling of the bottom of the boat. Despite the previous problem with the mast, the sailor had a chance to beat the record set by Alessandro di Benedetto, who in 2010 circumnavigated the world on a 6.5m (21ft 3.9in) yacht in 268 days. Therefore Szymon has focused his attention on that additional objective and planned on reaching the finish line in Plymouth as fast as possible. In order to seize every opportunity for improving his time he frequently changed sails and steered manually instead of setting the yacht to steer itself.
The yacht crossed the finish line in Plymouth on the 15th of May 2018 at 07:29 UTC. On the finish line Szymon has been greeted by his family, friends, fans, and representatives of the Northman shipyard. In the last miles of the journey Szymon summed it up: “I feel great, when I think of meeting all the familiar faces and the great food, which I hope is waiting for me on land – it makes my already great humour even better. I have completed my plan from beginning to finish, despite the mistakes I made. This journey, as well as the previous one has proven to me that problems on board are usually a consequence of small mistakes and neglect. Thankfully I did manage to cope with them. I was good fun and a fantastic adventure! I want some more!”
– Time: 270 days, 10 hours, 29 minutes.
– Miles travelled: 29 044
– Average speed: 4,5 kt
– Maximum speed: 14,9 kt
– Books read: 143
Press relase 17.05.2018
CALL OF THE OCEAN
WORLD RECORD in a solo non-stop sailing around the globe (the smallest yacht)!
VERIFING AND PUSHING BOUNDARIES of man’s potential as well as testing the equipment in extreme conditions (the journey in the most remote places in the world – far from any possible lifesaving support, sailing through the most hazardous and stormy oceanic regions, the danger of coming across icebergs).
Simon left Playmouth in the southern England on 12th August 2017. At the beginning the wind was weak but after twenty four hours it has reached 7B straight head wind. After close the loop around the world with passing the Cape of Good Hope in southern Africa, Cape Leeuwin in south-western Australia and Cape Horn in southern America.
THE YACHT: MAXUS 22
Maxus 22 „Atlantic Puffin”
- The smallest Polish yacht, on which a lone sailor circumnavigated the world („Maxus Solo Around” 2014/2016)
- The smallest yacht in history, on which a lone sailor sailed around the world in a non-stop cruise (Call of the Ocean” 2017/2018)
Modifications introduced in order to adjust the yacht to lone, oceanic sailing:
- watertight displacement chambers
- stern emergency exit
- a possibility of tightly closing the inside of the yacht
– designed for one person: side berths tilted, one-stove travel oven, no toilet
– no water installation
– electrical installation adjusted for one person
Overall width: 6.36 m
Hull width: 2.48 m
Sail surface to wind: 23 m²
Sail surface with wind: 40 m²
Draft: 1,32 m
Total weight: 1350 kg
Total ballast: 500 kg
ACTION #GoSzymon Aim: To show the world-wide support for the sailor who is going to break a record. Szymon has already covered over 80% of the round-the-world cruise. The solo non-stop voyage has been over 217 days now, during which the sailor, on a small boat without an engine, did not stop in any port. The weakened mast was additionally strengthened what enabled to used the mainsail again (reefed). Szymon hopes to reach equatorial region in March and cut the equator for the second time in this voyage: www.facebook.com/StoczniaJachtowaNorthman/
Call of the Ocean – crossing the equator for the second time
Szymon Kuczyński while sailing around the World for the second time on the yacht Atlantic Puffin has again crossed the equator and returned to the northern hemisphere. He has been sailing on the small Maxus 22 of the Northman shipyard for 230 days now and having completed 85% of the journey, he is well on his way to the finishing line. Since February, the yacht has been sailing with reduced sail area because of the mast being weakened by a dent that occurred during a sudden listing near Cape Horn. Despite implementing additional tension to the mast, Szymon tried not to overload it – using mainly forward sails and a reefed main. By the end of February, he left the Southern Ocean and sailed near the coasts of South America where he had calmer seas and could do the necessary repairs. He corrected the spreaders, the navigational light, and the AIS antenna on top. Furthermore, the tropical temperatures allowed him to laminate an overlay which he riveted to the weakened section of the mast.
Sailing near the continent unfortunately caused him to cover less ground. For three weeks Szymon complained about light, changing winds and foul tide, which made him slow down even more. The middle of March was the worst time of the whole journey – in one week the Atlantic Puffin had made only 320nm. The slow progress negatively affected the sailor’s morale. In order to use every occasion to improve his speed, Szymon changed the sails 7-8 times per day, which had proved to be even more difficult because of the additional tension stays applied to the mast and the lowering of the boom. Moreover Szymon particularly dislikes high temperatures. The Maxus 22 has a hermetic cabin with one big companionway. The only other entry point is an emergency hatch placed on the waterline, so it cannot be opened while sailing. This means there was no way to make air circulate inside and the temperatures got really high. Fortunately these difficult weeks eventually came to an end. From the 22nd of March the Maxus 22 is sailing with the trade wind at a speed of over 4 knots. The distance he covers gets better every day.
The yacht steers itself – it can easily be adjusted to do so in every course. The hydraulic autopilot is not being used as it requires a lot of power. Power is a problem at the moment because the large solar panel hasn’t been working for a few months now, electricity is provided by two backup smaller panels. The other electrical autopilot ceased to work after a few months of sailing. There is a self-steering device on board in case it would have been needed, so far however there has been no need for it. As Szymon wrote in his summary of the 32nd week: “This gives a ray of hope to better the time of Alessandro di Benedetto. In 2010 he circumnavigated the Globe in a modified Mini 650 in 268 days. He broke his mast at Cape Horn and finished with it damaged. Until now our stories have been very similar. I’ve given myself a finishing deadline at the breakwater of Plymouth on 14 May 2000 UTC. This will be exactly 268 days of my cruise. Until then the race is on!”
Call of the Ocean is an around-the-world cruise by Szymon Kuczyński in the yacht Maxus 22, 6,36m long (20ft 10,4in). The sailor departed on the 19 of August 2017 from Plymouth with the intent of a non-stop circumnavigation. At this moment he has already passed the three capes and is left with around 4000nm to the finish line. The yacht was built and adapted for the cruise in the Northman shipyard. Call of the Ocean is Szymon’s second circumnavigation. In 2016 he finished the Maxus Solo Around, using the same yacht, going through the Panama Canal, and being able to enter ports.
Press release 06.04.2018