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Don Silsbe

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Posts posted by Don Silsbe

  1. Well,  I’m into that part of the build where you spend hours and hours on the details, with little to show for the effort.  But we all know how important these little features are.


    The c/b trunk is glued together, pivot bushings done, and side rails attached.   Brodie laid down his first fillet today.  He did a fine job!IMG_1516.thumb.jpeg.5f49e0f8dfe8e9ff9abd142a83eccaa1.jpegIMG_1518.thumb.jpeg.f931f7b2d04315b81ad7307f01921ea7.jpeg


    For things to work out properly, I needed to raise the height of the cockpit floor by 3/4”.IMG_1517.thumb.jpeg.6bbcb3e4d03cba3d3b54994ceac320fa.jpeg


    Other small parts have been shaped, and are getting their three coats of epoxy.  IMG_1515.thumb.jpeg.7c65e4d13aedf0cb73bf4a80a88c21ad.jpeg

    There are many other details to take care of before the decks are glued on.  Brodie and I are chipping away at them.

  2. I’m clipping right along on the trimaran.  The bottom is on, and I‘m working on the c/b trunk, to drop it in place.  I’m setting it up to take the slick B&B Starboard pivot cap with o-ring.IMG_1471.thumb.jpeg.15bb47ef8391b1c0f11b4139cd901240.jpegIMG_1469.thumb.jpeg.72a71921b8a33dcb4989f9bfc41144f8.jpeg


    We’ve also been discussing storage options, cubby bin sizes, and such.  I made some foam core mockups.  We had an excellent video conference.  Ended up changing things a bit as a result.  It was cool.  Have I told you that the centerboard trunk is 47” long???




  3. I used to take my rudder off, and lay it in the cockpit of the boat.  That was until I discovered the scratches in the sole of the cockpit.  Now, I leave it and the motor (locked) on the transom.


    I set up my Bay River Skiff to be quick and easy setup.  The sails are furled to the mast, so there’s no fussing with bending on sails to a track.  (They’re attached with velcro.)IMG_9331.thumb.jpeg.20968aa4558017b6d766dd3ece851ea2.jpegThe sacrifice is that it limits reefing to moving the mizzen to a central position, as in the photo below.  IMG_2869.thumb.jpeg.ffae7d769365ee54d285b2dbbee79a21.jpegThis is very effective, but nearly impossible to do in the water.  (I have done it, though.). I should add that 95% of my sailing has been daysailing in the Appalachian foothills.  Conditions here are fairly constant.  If the wind starts piping up, I just go home.  That is about to change, however.


    My “new” CS17 comes with sail slides and will be set up for reefing like I did on PadrePoint’s boat.  This means hanking on sails, using sail ties, etc., just like the old days.  When I plan to go camp cruising, I will use the reefing sprits, and leave the daysailing sprits at home.

  4. @Captain Tim— No, I mean these:


    I prefer using these and lashing line to the traditional eye straps and stainless screws and nuts, in most cases.  All that stainless is expensive.  When it is used as much as most of us use it on sprits, for example, it encourages the chipping of paint.  It also hurts more, if it whacks you in the head.


    I like Ronstan’s Shocks, but you’d need the 3/8” size, due to the size of the reefing lines.  IMG_1433.thumb.png.2fa75e86136f82a1ba300313cc5a2eb5.pngThose cost for these is more than a 20mm ball bearing block!  I do use the 5mm size on the spritsail rig on my nesting pram, for the mainsheet.  IMG_4384.thumb.jpeg.e4de02e9e25aa7fef1c6e919e91ddc34.jpegThey work as well as a standard block for that purpose.  Look, Ma, no stainless steel on my spars!

  5. @PadrePoint— Slip a straw into the joint, when you make the knot.  It will give you a tunnel for passing the end through to the other side.  Pull them tight with a pair of pliers.  Then, put a drop of crazy glue (not the gel) into the knot.  I didn’t do that.


    While you’re at it, measure the length of the eye strap for me.  I’m going to need to buy some for my Core Sound.

  6. @Captain Tim-  Yes, I start by making two full circles around the eye strap and through the block.  Then, I tie a knot at both ends.  Just make sure the one on the eye strap is tight enough that the eye strap doesn’t fall out.  The line I like to use for this is tje stuff that comes packaged with the Ronstan Orbit 20 blocks.  I believe it is FSE Robline’s Dinghy Control Line in the 1.7mm size.  It has a Dyneema core.  https://www.fisheriessupply.com/fse-robline-dinghy-control/dc-2blu

  7. @Captain Tim— Hah!  Calling me out on my knots!  Good for you!  You made me get out my Ashley’s.  He calls it a Scaffold Knot.



    Animated Knots calls it a Poacher’s Knot.


    I use it in many places, especially to fasten up my lashing blocks (which I love).  I see people using bowlines a lot for this, but they are ugly (in this application).  Sure, you can untie them easily, but the bitter end comes off at a right angle, which is U.G.L.Y.  My Scaffold/Poachers Knot is a solid knot, which I’ve used for years.  Sure, it is nasty to untie (I cut it off), but I don’t use it for those applications.  I’ll use a bowline for that.


    Then, there’s the Halyard Hitch.  

    • Confused 1
  8. @Bryan Rolfe— There are several brands to choose from, but first let me tell you a story.

    When I built my Bay River Skiff 15 back in 2016, I used Epifanes 2-part poly for tje exterior, because I knew that it would take a lot of abuse getting on and off the trailer.  The interior was painted with Britesides for economics and because it is easy to work with.  Since then, I have repainted the interior, and have started to do that again for a third time.  The exterior is still the original paint job!  I have touched up the exterior in small places, but I’m here to say that it wears like iron.


    You have three choices for “two pack” paint in the USA (aside from Awlgrip).  Epifanes, Alexseal, and Devoe Devthane 379.


    You can buy Awlgrip and Epifanes from Jamestown Distributors.


    Alexseal is very interesting to me, because they have this magic additive you can buy.  Here’s a video about it:  

    It is available from Fisheriessupply.com.  I have not used it.


    What I do use is Devoe 379.  It is not a “marine paint”, it is an industrial two-part polyurethane.  It was recommended to me by Alan at B&B.  It is just as hard, & pretty darned glossy.  The advantage is that i stead of costing $100/quart, it costs $100/Gallon!  My third coat on my skiff is going to be the Devoe.  It is available through Norkan in the Detroit suburbs.  That’s the only place I’ve found it.  They do ship.  Devoe, by the way, is a subsidiary of AzkoNobil, as is Interlux.  Their website is: https://www.norkan.com/index.php. If it says they’re out of stock, call them, and talk to George Spiteri.  Sometimes they can mix up what you want.  Yes, they do ship.  B&B recommends using the T0031 thinner by Awlgrip.  They believe it levels out better than the Devoe product.  Finally, with all these products, keep an eye on the thickness of your paint.  It should go on thin, and in several coats.  As you use the thinned product, the thinner will evaporate off.  You might need to add more thinner halfway through a batch.

  9. You made the right choice.  Nesting boats see a lot of abrasion between the hull halves and in general use.  Britesides is simply too soft for this application, in my humble opinion.  Just allow the hull a full week (or more) to get hard before using her.

  10. The reefing lines are a big hassle, especially the ones on the sprits.  I’m renovating an old CS17 this spring/summer.   Since most of my sailing is daysailing, I’m gonna have two pairs of sprits.  One will have the reefing lines on it, and the other will be plain for “normal” daysailing use.  The reefing sprits will have detachable fittings, similar to what I did on PadrePoint’s Core Sound 17 mark 3, Avocet.  Yes, he has two Core Sounds!


    When not in use, the reef lines (the ones for the leech of the sail) are bundled on the sprits, and not attached to the sail at all.IMG_8093.thumb.jpeg.231fc717e916a58617dc8b502e46d6d4.jpeg


    Instead of passing the line through the reefing grommet, it takes a turn around a small block.  Richard Johnson first did this.  Richard was the owner of Avocet before Ted Johanson (PadrePoint).IMG_9087.thumb.jpeg.ab2d6984c0bdcfe93c33ecc8f3874039.jpeg


    By lashing the block to an eye strap, it can be attached or unattached from the sail easily.  IMG_9086.thumb.jpeg.01d6755edf84b3b707a2142b260b7346.jpegIMG_9088.thumb.jpeg.40039e081f7c071754a4d1793a470bf9.jpeg

    If it is a mild day, you can choose to hook up one, two, or no reefs as you decide.  For a cruise, you would connect both, of course.IMG_8621.thumb.jpeg.d7e6c33976eab23b0493dcb34acd6fd6.jpeg

  11. You’re doing an awesome job!  My experience is that you will never eliminate all the surface imperfections until after the first coat of primer.  When everything is painted a uniform flat color, you’ll see a whole new family of imperfections.  Your Total Fair will come to the rescue, though.

  12. All the hulls on this boat have two stems—  an inner and an outer.  The inner is used for assembly purposes, to properly define the hull shape.  The outer stem is a sort of cap, that allows for some shaping.  They have two tapers.  Today, I accepted the challenge for the vaka.  I was very proud of my work.  During the high-fiving process a moment of clarity occurred.  I had forgotten to allow for the thickness of the hull’s sides!  So, I get to do it all over again, but making it 1/2” wider. IMG_1347.thumb.jpeg.74fea9c196e549b516aa6ddb04672f70.jpegIMG_1349.thumb.jpeg.9ac53d0a3daf3612f0ede6a6ac10d4ee.jpeg

    Also, for this build, I’m using a few of Russell Brown’s techniques.  One of them is to use flat-bottomed paper cups for mixing epoxy.  My bride is very cooperative in helping me obtain these.  (Her’s is the smaller of the two.)


  13. I just picked up an older Core Sound 17 (mark 1).   Two things I’ve noticed that I want to call your attention to.  


    The boat’s sails were in great shape, but had an antiquated reefing system.  They came with loops in the leech at the reef lines.  To reef, you had to disconnect the sprit from the regular loop in the clew, and move it to the loop for the reef you wanted.  Not easy to do in conditions that call for reefing.  This boat will require updating to the modern system.  It is an easy fix, but there is time and money involved.



    This boat was built before B&B came up with their nifty sail track design.  The slides on my boat stick when raising and lowering.  I may change to the new system.  Not sure.


    The “bones” of my boat are sound, as are the sails and trailer.  I did need to replace the trailer tires, since the date code on them indicated they were 15 years old.

    Good luck in finding a boat!

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