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Don Silsbe

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Posts posted by Don Silsbe

  1. I have an Optima battery that I use on my Bay River Skiff, when I use my trolling motor.  But it is WAY too heavy for a Spindrift.  I also have a small motorcycle battery that I can use for small electronics and charging my phone.  That is what I’d suggest for a depth sounder on a Spindrift.

  2. @Hirilonde— One of the things I appreciate about Graham is is concern for cost.  Those Ronstan RF-58’s now cost $75 apiece.  The Clamcleats are only $11.  I started with a pair of Clamcleats for the main, but didn’t like the restricted angle required to cleat the sheet.  You had to line things up just right to get it in.  I don’t know of anyone who uses them for the mainsheets.

  3. @Murray— Local Honey is a multi-purpose craft.  I love sailing, but I also love fishing.  I widened the hatches from standard, so I could store fishing rods into either compartment.  She is a Bay River Skiff, the predecessor to the Core Sound series, and the first of Graham’s cat ketches.  (I love this boat!)  Here are some photos for you.


    Fishing Mode:


    Rowing Mode:



    Sailing Mode:



    This is how my First Mate likes to sail:



    And my favorite sailing posture, at least when my First Mate is lying so far forward.  Note the revised sheeting arrangement:


  4. Most of us do not use bottom paint, since we trailer our boats.  Bottom paint is only necessary if they remain in the water for a length of time.  I’d use Easypoxy on the whole boat.  I hope everybody else following this thread either concurs or disagrees with me for Samantha’s benefit.

    As far as waterline goes, jack up one end or the other to make the boat’s waterline (per the plans) parallel with the floor.

  5. Why has nobody answered you?  I’ve sailed an Amanda once, and bottom flex was not noticeable.  I suggest saving the floorboard thing for later, if you feel its necessary at all.  Core Sound 15’s and 17’s have 1/4” plywood bottoms, and do not flex.  I think you’re gonna be fine without them.  But nicely oiled cedar slats really set off a boat…

  6. @Murray— I started with the mizzen sheet running up the sprit, but changed it back to the recommended way.  E81C2C23-BEDC-457F-A416-538007BB2B8F.thumb.jpeg.48f25a668f489f067e4ea5f3fbf2ae3b.jpeg
    After talking with cat ketch owners (and designers), I learned that the power is in the main, and the mizzen is secondary.  constant tweaking of the mizzen is not necessary.  I focus on trimming the main, and then adjusting the mizzen mainly for balance.  Again— this is not a Laser.  She will be fast, but not as touchy to tweaking as your Laser.

    Have you sailed one of B&B’s cat ketches yet?  A few moments at the helm will help you understand a lot.  Where do you live?  Who can you snag a ride with?

  7. There is a world of difference in how and what you do on a Lapwing, compared to a Laser.  Your Lapwing will be used for pleasure sails, perhaps with friends and family.  Having access to all those wonderful floatation/storage areas will allow you to take and store PFD’s, snacks, water, sunscreen, rain gear, etc.  I have a Bay River Skiff with two hatches.  I wish I had installed two more.  Once they’re in, they are a non-issue.  You’ve done such a fine job on a time consuming build.  Don’t rush to the finish line.  Take the time to fit her out well.

    • Like 2
  8. There was one big area of changes that I have failed to mention.  The reason was partly because I wanted to make sure it worked, before I broadcast it to our little world.  These were the issues that we had with the rigging.

    1.  One of PadrePoint’s complaints was all the “spaghetti” that was on Avocet.  Yes, there are a lot of control lines on a

    mark 3.  I thought I could improve that a bit.

    2. Because of the builder’s clever way of reefing the leech of the sail, the reef lines either needed to be threaded on each time, or left attached, and the sails rolled on the sprits.  The latter was how I received the boat.  I thought this was awkward.  And besides, I didn’t have a vehicle big enough to stow the furled sails on long sprits out of the weather.  (Plus, I think sails should reside in sail bags.)

    3. The clew of the sails attached to the sprits with snaps, which kept shaking out.


    This is what I did.  

    First, the reefing needed to be detachable from the sprits, but hold up to heavy use.

    59E52461-78C9-439A-97DD-836D96C501BF.thumb.jpeg.a0330a29b7f69468beb5b9940f23e316.jpegI lashed an eye-strap to the leech block.



    It goes in end-for-end, and “locks” in place. Sometimes, they lock in so well, I need to apply force to get them out.  (I like that.)



    The end product looks like this.  You might also notice that I have replaced a soft shackle for the snap at the clew.  These hold very well.  The length is 6”.  The only problem is that they are a loose part, and can be misplaced.  I made extras.  If you zoom in on the sprit hardware for reef #1, you’ll see that the bitter end is attached through the eye strap with a stopper knot.  The block is attached with a 4” long soft shackle.


    At the forward end of the sprit, I added two-sided velcro ties, to tidy up the excess cordage.  This is especially useful, if Ted decides not to rig one or both of the reefs for a daysail.  Lately, we added recleaters to the clam cleats.  They kept cleating when you raised the sails.



    This is the mizzen, rigged properly.  (Not like the above photos.  Oops!)



    I made some sail bags, too.

    • Like 1
  9. The thing I failed to mention is that the paint I’ve been using is Devoe’s Devthane 379.  B&B turned me onto using this product.  It is an industrial two-part polyurethane paint.  It is not priced like marine paints.  It costs $80/gallon instead of $105/quart like Interlux Perfection does.  There are supply issues right now, however.  Good luck choosing! 

  10. I have a cheap ($200) Humminbird fish finder and a removable transom mount for the transducer.  I also have a rechargeable motorcycle battery.  I’ve been meaning to try them out on Avocet, but always forget.  Maybe this post will be my incentive to try it out.  

  11. I did something similar to my Two Paw 8.  I did not alter the aft half, because I am a lazy sailor— I lay in the bottom of my boat when I sail.  I am pleased with the results.

    First, I did a capsize test, beachside, with the original floatation scheme.  She took on a lot of water.A5D4541C-40DE-4C42-AD9C-FE565AAB5317.thumb.jpeg.e0505254681a8dc40d19ad6babcb8f5f.jpeg7876D21B-17F1-4DF8-853D-DFC7E4C59B53.thumb.jpeg.89052ff5d42eed40b406a9b4f72f6c6b.jpeg



    Then, I added some temporary floatation tanks to the forward section.  (I wanted to test their effectiveness, before making the tear-up.). Much less water intrusion!CBE2805E-0CC5-49BF-9A03-F72B96D0EED3.thumb.jpeg.52bde1a5f6c7d5904188352dc3c327a3.jpeg8687C83E-75ED-4800-A92A-03B4F062A06D.thumb.jpeg.3ca90d48af5d82aa363bd5897e4157b8.jpeg


    Then, I made my permanent changes, opening up the less-effective foredeck for open storage.ED968155-EEB2-4B8C-974C-1A729289B399.thumb.jpeg.5c8e2b5786fcbb76c68d2436f150afea.jpeg42A4DB0F-1F79-4258-B721-D67FFC6CBD15.thumb.jpeg.b5ab9ec1759dda11c1d286744697069d.jpeg

  12. My friends have covered this topic very well, but I feel compelled to add my two cents.

    I used to love Britesides, but it has fallen from favor in my eyes, mainly it does not wear as well as two-part (two-pack in the UK) paints.  One part (pack) paints are easy to apply, and are less toxic than solvent based two-part polys.  And they are available.  If you want a lower gloss product, go with Jamestown Distributers’ Wet Edge.  Know, however, that one part polyurethane is simply an Alkyd enamel that has been fortified with polyurethane.  (Am I wrong?)

    Also know that Kirby paints are a simple Alkyd enamel.  Rustoleum’s Marine Topside paint is their standard product (a top quality Alkyd enamel) minus the rust inhibitor.  Kirby’s cost over twice what Rustoleum Marine costs.

    My preference is the nasty-smelly solvent based 2-part poly.  But I paint outdoors.  This product wears like iron!  I get standing water in my rower, from time to time, and have not seen any peeling.  It’s all I use now, unless I’m touching up a friend’s boat.

    I really want to retry using System 3’s LPU.

    My recommendation?  

    1. Use a topside paint on a trailerable boat.

    2. Use a 2-part product, if you can get it.  Consider System 3’s waterborne product.

    3. Use a fortified Alkyd enamel, such as Britesides, Easypoxy, or Wet Edge, if necessary.

    Here’s an interesting video comparing one-part paints:  


  13. I disagree, regarding not having the hatches in a daysailor.  I keep everything on the boat, so when I want to sail, I don’t have to load anything.  I just go.

    In my daysailor’s hatches I keep dock lines, my sheets, a jacket, a hat, water, snacks, my PFD, rain parka, VHF, horn, registration, batteries, tiller extension (when stored), sunscreen, etc.  Where are you gonna put all that stuff?

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