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Quietening crockery, glasses, tins, jars and bottled provisions for long passages

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What is the issue?
A vessel afloat is in constant motion, especially so during passage making and never more so than during Tradewind sailing. With the wind astern, running before the trades, yachts tend to roll over about every six seconds. That's 10 rolls a minute, 600 times an hour, 14,400 times a day, for two to three weeks or more depending upon the passage. During each of these rolls, stored items below decks tend to jostle about, rattle and slap noisily.

Why address this?
Tins jostling about and/or glassware chinking rhythmically to the motion of the vessel can be acutely wearisome and make it difficult for the crew to rest. Worse, and as often as not, the unruly items can be tins stowed directly under the setee bunks and directly beneath where the ship's crew are trying to sleep. Enduring that whilst often feeling some motion sickness can become maddening. It also does no favours to the crockery and glassware. In time this back and forth movement also causes opaque wear patches to appear in the vessels glasses & crockery. All of this is, to the largest part, unnecessary and easily preventable with a little forethought.

How to address this?
All that is required is a little attention to literally, put a sock in, or more appropriately over it, before departing and the racket kicks off in earnest.

First off, pay particular attention when stowing provisions of tins, glass jars and bottles for passages.

  • • Leave no spaces for tins to come loose and roll about, even a tin rocking back and forth a few centimetres under a bunk can be highly annoying whilst trying to rest above.

  • • Where possible insert towels between the layers of tins to stop the metal/glass to metal/glass slapping.

  • • Have several clothes, towels or clothes, close to hand to replace items consumed on route so as to fill the gaps and retain the packing density.

Before departing on a passage, quieten the galley and cupboards in the saloon area. You will not want to be attending to this whilst acquiring sea legs nor enduring the noise.

  • • Place all glasses, cups and bottles in old socks to dampen them and prevent them from grinding against each other.

  • • Insert foam sponges in lockers to hold everything firmly in place.

  • • Fill any space in galley shelves between plates and cups and wedge everything tightly into place - if you do not have special inserts for your crockery which are highly recommended.

  • • Lay cloths between all galley plates to stop them shuddering upon breasting waves.

Just a little due diligence, routine and forethought can pay dividends when it comes to creating a hospitable environment for crew to get some rest during passage.

With thanks to:
Michael Harpur, Yacht Obsession.
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