I’ve been following the Polar Ocean Challenge in morbid fascination. They’re attempting to circumnavigate the Arctic to prove global warming is melting all the ice. They’ve made it about 20% of the way and have iced-in at least twice (and currently are). They’ve also faced… other challenges of intelligence and competence.
They set out in a leaking boat with inoperable bilge pumps. Their stove didn’t work. Their generator didn’t work. Their electrical system didn’t work. They got their food stolen while iced-in at Murmansk.
But this “crew log” entry…
The welders gas bottle produces a huge jet of flame from the hob. So now making a cup of tea is one of the most exciting things to do on the boat.
Now for some reason or other this bottle was not fitted with a regulator for a gas cooker, but for a welding torch. This means that the gas is supplied at a greater speed, I think, than would be normal, so when we turn the stove on we get a huge explosive jet of flame from the hob before it all calms down again. So now making a cup of tea is one of the most exciting things to do on the boat.
I should probably post a comment on their blog that a cylinder with welding fittings is likely full of acetylene, not propane. Propane burns around 1,995°C. Acetylene burns around 3,300°C.
I should tell them. But this too good to miss. If that’s acetylene, they’re going to melt down their stove, and likely blow up the boat, putting them out of their misery. To think they’ve been complaining that the Arctic is cold. (Apparently they really believed that global warming garbage.)
We just may get a boom today. Cross your fingers.