We wanted to write and say thank you to you again, for standing by and helping us work through, troubleshoot/identify and successfully resolve our refrigeration problems. Our Cold Blue is back to running efficiently. Walt found a very small amount of oil near a fitting just outside of the compressor, he backed off and then tightened and added some 134a until there were no bubbles. We then turned it on high for 24 hours and backed off until the compressor clicked off. At a 72 hour ‘check up’ Walt found another mere trace of oil at the same location and tightened it just a bit more, all in all, it took a total of approximately 1/4 more of a turn when tightening. It has been several days now and there are no bubbles still and no sign of a leak. In addition the compressor is cycling on/off a couple of times a day. We are very pleased with the successful resolve and just want to say again that we love our Cold Blue. We came down river (Rio Dulce, Guatemala) yesterday and are setting just inside the mouth of the river. We checked out of the country today and are awaiting a weather window and high tide, so that we may cross the bar with our 6′ draft and get underway for Cartegena, Columbia. If the weather is good and no problems…forbid!…. we will probably continue as far as Provodencia or possibly all of the way to Cartegena (a little over 1000 nautical miles). In our weather report upload this morning we received info from the ‘Tropical Weather Forecaster for the NW Caribbean’ and there is a large unsettled low pressure system hanging literally ‘over’ us, expected to move over water within the next 24 hours and has potential to form the first Atlantic Tropical Storm this season. Needless to say, we will hang tight to see what this does/does not do before we set sail, in hopes that it will break up and we will have some favorable winds and seas to carry us safely below 12 degrees! Then we will both feel a sense of relief. We plan to haul our boat in Cartegena and do a bottom job and possibly some other work, we have a lot of friends that are down that way that have been very happy with the yard work and the prices (e.g. our friends aboard S/V Gambit II are having an entire new cabin sole put in for a total of $1,000 USD!). Following a week or less in the yard – when Soltara is back in the water, we plan to begin sailing about the San Blas islands until December when we will begin to stage ourselves and begin 2007 with a Southward canal transit. Refrigeration is certainly a luxury we know that we can live without while cruising, as we lived without onboard Soltara for 5 years while we did a full refurbishment (Soltara is a 1977 Tayana 37, a very ‘salty’ sea boat – all wood spars, teak trip, teak decks and full teak interior -something many sailors attest, but we love her dearly especially after completing her refurbishment), but we hope that our Cold Blue will stay healthy while we continue our cruising through the South Pacific. The refrigeration/freezer cavity configuration worked out awesome, adding the vacumm insulation panels definitely helped overall and the reconfiguration of space allows us to house 5 baskets plus 4 ice cube trays, a small bag of ice and a quart of ice cream :), the refrigerator section holds 3 large baskets with 3 smaller that slide around on top, as well as 3 x 1/2 gallon jugs of juice (12 beer cans under the juice 🙂 and quart of milk and quart of wine! The Cold Blue is truly a lean clean running machine!

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