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Designer last won the day on February 20

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  • Birthday 01/01/1

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    Vandemere, NC
  1. Chick, I do not have any pictures yet. As you know when it comes to cosmetics Beth rules, all of the parts are out being coated. I never had ideal conditions for testing the centerboard extension yet. I did watch my leeway angle at every chance that I had and I am pretty sure that it is better.
  2. Don, I did use my smartphone GPS and I liked it. I planned it as a backup but I used it when the Garmin had too much glare to read from my helm position, I had it in my pocket and could hold it away from the glare. I used it at night for trip planning because it had better scrolling and measuring than the Garmin. I thought that I would have needed it for real one day when the Garmin gave me the dreaded crash and then the black screen. I shut it down or a while and it rebooted as though nothing had happened. One of the many jobs that was not completed before I left was mounting the compass and elected to mount it along the way. I never felt the need for it while underway as the GPS with its projected course line is way superior to the compass as it is calculated from your projected course over the ground with set and drift and recomputing continuously. I did use the compass while not under way checking on wind direction as fronts came over. Alex, I had to hold my nose to put on a 2 1/2 hp motor let alone 6. My problem was running late and facing winter fronts coming continuously. There was one day when I would not have said no to another hp but I just do not want the extra size. There was one time when the motor was handy. We were ripping down the Cape Fear River with a strong fair tide and following wind. I had to do a 90 degree turn to rejoin the ICW and it became quickly apparent that if I did not use the motor I might get swept past the channel. The motor was on the lee side so there was no issue of the prop ventilating but it was interesting to hear the motor change rpm's as the puffs came, accelerated the boat and unloading the prop and reloading as the puff went away. A couple of work boats around 40 - 50 feet came up the river, entered the channel behind me and it was interesting to see how much they crabbed as they turned across current. I have put this time to good use and have made a better GPS mount which will allow me to angle the unit to any helm position as well as downward to reduce glare. I also made shelves, washboard and cup holder, pencil and binocular rack and lots of other little details.
  3. Here is the link to the last boat that we did together. Rough Point FB page The crew was too bummed out to work for the rest of this week. I am sure that she will be finished okay. We will help in any way that we may be needed.
  4. We are still reeling over the news. We have collaborated on boat designs for close on 30 years, the red boat above is one that we did about a decade ago. In fact we had just recently started on a new 41 footer for a customer in Maryland and he was scheduled to come over last Tuesday for another design brain storming session. He was always thinking on ways to improve on the building methods and loved to push the 3d modeling as far as we could so that we could use the technology by machining out as much as possible in advance to make the build more efficient. After the three of us spent a few hours together we could always expect at least two phone calls on his way home as his fertile mind was racing after leaving the shop. We have always expected this to happen sooner as he was not healthy and his brother died from a heart attack when he was fairly young. The finality is the hardest part for me. The realization that I will never be able have him visit or call him again is tough.
  5. Dave, That is the idea, I have found that I do not even need the vane when going upwind. Last year in the EC I used a 1/2 oz. nylon vane that was too fragile. Optimistically I stowed the vane below to protect it hoping that the wind might turn fair. It never did turn and I sailed more than 100 miles with the helm lashed amidships. Down wind the rudder is pretty much on center also.
  6. Tom, I want the rudder fixed to aid directional stability. Before engaging the vane, I try to find the sweet spot for the rudder and lock it. I will then observe the course after the vane is engaged for a while and may rotate the vane at the clutch or move the tiller slightly. Usually I adjust the clutch because did not have the right load on the vane when clutched. It is a powerful little vane and will tolerate a fair amount of imbalance. All self steering systems hunt so the better everything is balanced the less it will hunt. Howard, Did you see Alan's video on Carlita? He shows the auxiliary rudder. Wind vanes are not for everyone. If you do not enjoy fiddling then they are not for you. Naturally they are worthless in waterways because the wind is too shifty. It did do a great job last week running down the Cape Fear River. The GPS showed a top speed of 8.75 knots and the speed was rarely under 6, at least 3 knots of that was current.
  7. Howard, Horizontal axis vanes and servo pendulum paddles are the most powerful self steering systems and are certainly required for large or heavy handed vessels. Carlita is a light well mannered boat and requires finesse rather than brute force. If you have not already seen the self steering video, check out the video and answer your own question. She is running almost straight downwind and surfing. After this video was taken she surfed to a little over 10 knots without misbehaving. The key is an ultra light vane and very low friction. The lead counter weight weighs just 6 oz. to balance the vane. This makes the vane very responsive and reduces friction and lowers the mass moment of inertia. The next important feature is differential feedback in the linkage. This means that when the vane kicks the servo tab over and the tab turns the auxiliary rudder, the angle of the tab is rapidly reduced. If you do not have this feature the boat will hunt badly down wind where there is no natural balance from the sails as you do when close hauled. The whole thing is a delicate balance between power and feedback.
  8. I have done the stretch from Miami to home twice and some stretches many times. Once I sailed about 95% of the stretch but there was no time pressure and we put down the anchor when we could not make progress. The second time I was the delivery skipper and every day cost money and we motored for 95%. It would be easier to sail from south to north. I have not done the Great Loop but with the locks involved and going upstream up the Hudson River etc. it would be pretty difficult to near impossible without a motor.
  9. Pete, Here are shots of my hatch and locking system. The first two show the drip groove in the top wash board. Third shows the drip groove under the hatch, sorry about the poor focus. Fourth shows the hasp and staple. Fifth shows the staple turned 90 degrees. Sixth, locked. Seventh shows the hatch wide open, the staple is far enough to the side that it is not in the way.
  10. Par is absolutely right. I have lived in this area and have observed the weather for a long time and have a great deal of respect for it. I was not prepared to go out into the Atlantic at this time of the year without a good forecast. The systems came thick and fast, when the weather was good it was from the south west, on the nose. Back in 2000 I sailed a 32’ sloop to Cuba in February and jumped out at Cape Fear and sailed straight to Ft. Lauderdale. The second night was squally and nasty but otherwise it was a good quick passage. I made good 205 miles in 7 ½ days including the weather hold on the last day. This put me behind schedule. I was tidying up the boat while waiting for the weather and noticed the missing connecting rod and swivel. I searched the boat for a couple of hours with no luck. Talking it over with Alan and Carla it was decided that it would be far more productive to come home and make a new part and use the rest of the time before driving down the Florida to finish some of the jobs that I did not finish. I also had time to observe my stowage needs and I will work on them. I had a grand adventure and Carlita did a great job. The little Suzuki was put to the test and worked hard. The last day I sailed back 20 miles to get to the launching ramp. I had ½ gallon of fuel left and wanted to sail as much as I could to make sure that I would have enough in case the conditions turned worse. A light wind came from the south east as I was rigging the boat, a quick check on Windy tv showed that the forecast had now changed. I had a fair current for a couple of miles, the wind died as I turned the corner and into a foul current. I motored out of the channel and put the anchor down to wait for the tide change. The wind slowly built to a nice sailing breeze and I set off into the last of the foul tide. The rest of the day turned into a perfect sail and I made my destination well before dark. Tony Day came and brought me home and we had very pleasant time telling stories. I spent a lot of time today going through every locker on the boat just in case I had a mental lapse and stowed the missing part and forgot about it. No such luck so I get the have the pleasure of making it again.
  11. Alex, I have just finished packing and am off to bed as it is a very early start in the morning. I can post some more picks when I get back. This will be my last post for a while. I am bringing the link forward for the spot tracking. It will be active when I start it tomorrow afternoon. Just click the link and you will see the position updated every 10 minutes. The position can be shown on a map.
  12. Drew, I can't wait to try it out either. I am hoping that it will lift my daily average in light air. If you follow the line that passes by #7 on the registration numbers down, you should be able to see part of the bow board poking out that I am experimenting with. I am hoping that it will reduce the lee helm when I am sailing close hauled. I have carried a spinnaker on Southern Skimmer with the wind forward of the beam which can induce a fair amount of lee helm if the wind is fresh. Once the wind goes further aft it is not problem. The board is not real big as I wanted to keep it within the forward locker. It is all experimental. I had an old Harken furling drum and Bainbridge once sold me some blue sail cloth cheap that the die had run and they could not sell it as premium quality.
  13. A lot of work has been done since I last posted but Carlita is about ready for the big trip. I am about 4 days behind my target departure date which is starting to run my daily average higher than I am comfortable with. Beth has volunteered to drive me down to Wrightsville beach NC Friday morning to help me catch up my lost time. The centerboard and trunk modification is finished, the keel re-faired and SS hollow back installed, bottom anti-fouled, cockpit painted and the varnish inside and out coated. One modifications I did was to build a roller furling jib which will be a lot easier to use than hoisting and dousing a spinnaker single handed. I also made a pair of 9' 9" take apart oars so that they can be stowed inside the cockpit coamings without hanging out of the back of the boat.
  14. Don, Yes there is a magnetic compass aboard. I would not like to be without a compass and it almost never breaks down. As far as I know, there are no other fees. There is a annual subscription fee if you want to keep the charts updated. Polaris is another nav app and it is free. The charts can be copied for free but they were fairly large files and I needed a lot of charts. If you were sailing a local area and only need a few charts at a time it would be a cheap way to go.
  15. Thanks tjsmith. I see that the lake level is almost 14' so there should not be any restrictions on the other locks. Rick, thanks for the offer, I will take your number with me. Thanks to everyone who has given me encouragement. The boat is now upright on the trailer and I think that I will be able to leave on schedule.