Liv(ely) Preparations – what we did with the boat!


In the article Liv(e) a little we got acquainted with the Edholm family who have just started the journey of a lifetime – which you can follow on Arcona’s Instagram and Facebook – they’ll update us regularly about their adventure onboard Arcona 400 Liv!

But, before you dock out for this type of trip, there are some preparations to be made… Jonas shares what they did to Liv before they left and what gear they brought along.

Sail wardrobe

If you are going to sail for a year you need sails! The choices of sails were based on the fact that the family will cover a lot of distance during the year and can run in to all kinds of weather, and that they have limited space on board because the boat is also the home to 5 people.

Sails onboard:

  • Main with 3 reefs (UK)
  • Genoa (UK)
  • Jib (UK)
  • Cutter/storm jib (Gran)
  • Asymmetric Spinnaker (UK)
  • Possibly an S2 for the journey across the Atlantic (Gran)

We have an almost brand new set of carbon race sails that we left at home because it is way too fragile for this type of sailing. Generally, we went for durability over performance.

The main and genoa are from UK Sailmakers in a slightly sturdier cloth, S-glass tapedrive. We reinforced them further with extra reinforcements, UV-protection and extra taffeta.

The jib made with Hydranet (some call it the bulletproof jib) is also from UK and will probably outlive us all.

To deal with heavy weather we added a third reef on the main (rather than a trysail), and mounted a removable cutter stay to be able to use a cutter/storm jib in Dacron. To remove the main and replace it with a trysail when it gets really dicey is too much hassle and we wanted to avoid having to mount an extra track to the mast. We felt adding a third reef would be a simpler solution.

For downwind sailing we have two alternatives when there are only two adults onboard: asymmetric kite or genoa poled out. We might bring a symmetrical spinnaker for the journey across the Atlantic that we will use during the daytime (no kite when you are alone at night).

We also did some things to the boat before setting off…

We did heaps of things to the boat, but these are probably the most significant ones:

  • Modified the anchor locker to fit 2 x 5kg LPG bottles, the anchor windlass, 60m of chain and a 20 kg spade anchor, and reinforced the bulkhead and mounted chainplate for the cutter stay.
  • Replaced all the electrical wiring and installed 320Ah of Lithium batteries
  • Installed an arch with 780W of solar panels and integrated dinghy davits
  • Installed a Watermaker

The list is pretty much endless, with everything from removing and reattaching the keel to changing all the lights to LED and updated the navigational system.

The hardest thing to do was the arch – it was mentally painful to add an arch to a boat that is pretty, and sporty. But thanks to it we have an abundance of electricity and can run everything from the watermaker, the water heater, the kids’ computers for schoolwork and gaming, the kettle etc. without having to worry about not having enough juice. We were also able to discard the idea of a wind vane and will only have an autopilot (we have a complete spare autopilot onboard). Thanks to our solar panels and the arch we count on not having to use shore power at all during the trip.

Are you inspired?

We’ll regularly be following the Edholms journey onboard Liv on the seven seas (or, perhaps not all seven, but who knows?) on Arcona’s Facebook and Instagram – don’t forget to follow us there, and please follow @LivSailing on Facebook and Instagram too.