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Aleksandr Pasechnik

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Everything posted by Aleksandr Pasechnik

  1. Can confirm that attaching to the reefing grommets works great! Now if I could only reef some more…
  2. As for why I want to have less sail power: In short: because the alternative feels like more “adventure” than I’d like to have on the hudson river in the cooler seasons (or any season, really).
  3. Is there a way to put in a second reef in the spindrift sail? I guess not really since it would interfere with the zipper? How would one go about designing a “storm sail” or “super low power” sail for the Spindrift? Has somebody already done so? Went out in rather stiff and gusty conditions yesterday, mostly just a close haul upwind, and then a tack, and a beam reach back to the dock. It was fun, and scary, and made me wish I had less sail power. The boat even capsized after I tied up at the dock (after I got out. Got to practice my bailing at least. I somewhat “necessarily” sail in waters where the cost of mistakes is rather high (The alternative would be an hour or two trip to some other water, which means “almost never going sailing” in my case.) The river is pretty quick, changeable, and there isn’t really a shallow beach area to practice and mess about. I’d love to be able to go out in various conditions, and I don’t particularly worry about the fastest or most efficient sailing, just that I can get out and be reasonably confident that I won’t end up spending half my time swimming. Maybe the answer is “I should embrace the wet learning experience “ or “I should have built a bigger (heavier?) boat”, but here we are. The former is unpalatable and the latter is unrealistic at this time. =]
  4. Went through the MIT sailing course and a bunch of videos on Youtube. The thing I still can’t find a good reference for is depowering when heading downwind. In other points, I can generally loose the mainsheet if things get too squarely but when heading downwind there’s only so much one can do, no? Am I not “by the lee” enough? Is there a limit to how far forward I can send the sail? Should I instead be thinking about turning up to the wind a bit? Or some non-mainsheet adjustments? I’ve had a few times when heading downwind felt like barely controlled chaos, between the waves and the wind, and it really wasn’t pleasant.
  5. Yup, confirmed that the zipper line works. Unzips the sail and lets it come down nicely. The reefing lines don’t work quite so well for lashing the sail, but I had read a suggestion in one of the posts here to use bungee and that worked great. I’m probably going to run the loop of unzipping line down to the plate at the base of the mast and back to the block with the other lines. A simple ring should be enough to redirect the line, since the tension is minimal. All that is also helped by having a topping lift (to keep the boom up over my head while rowing with the sail lowered and lashed), but that I have found can be static. If I really need to raise the end of the boom a bit, I can wrap the topping lift line around the end of the boom a couple of times. Might experiment with some lazy jacks, too, though maybe that would be too much? =]
  6. So the single line reefing on the Spindrift is nice and all, but in general I don’t go out long enough for the wind to change dramatically enough to need a sail area change. The tides tend to limit single-trip times on the Hudson (staying within a tidal current speed that I could row against at need). So if I wanted to go out already reefed in a stiffer breeze, do I just attach the outhaul to the reefeing clew and the tack to the gooseneck attachment? Or is there something special about the reefing line and I should still set that up even if it’s permanently pulled tight?
  7. Can confirm that at about 8 knots of wind, the hoisted boom and sail act as a rather uncomfortable parachute. So that idea is out. I did reuse the little D-ring I was using to experiment with the topping lift into a sleeve zipper helper of sorts. Basically a loop of line that ties to the zipper puller and goes up to the mast head. I just ran it down to the front of the boat, but I'd probably put it through some redirects to end up somewhere near the daggerboard case. Made it much simpler to drop the sail (though I can't use the bottom sail attachment snap, and I will probably want to have some kind of additional stopper at the head of the sail to prevent it going off completely). With the sail unzipped, it lowers quite nicely. I'll have to see how it behaves down on the water. I think between the sail unzipping and coming down and a topping lift keeping the boom from causing too much trouble, I should be able to tidily lash the sail to the boom and row. Maybe. Will experiment and report back.
  8. Haha, I think I would need a sea anchor or a veeeery long line to anchor in the dredged Hudson River =D
  9. Oh that’s interesting! I hadn’t considered taking the boom down. I have never been able to get the zipper unzipped in any kind of seamanlike way, even at the dock, so I might need to see about adding a zipper pull line of some kind if I go that route. The waters around here are 6 to 8 to 60 feet with no beaches in sight, so stepping out isn’t really an option =]
  10. I’ll try brailing next time I get to the boat house. Might try incorporating it into the lift somehow. I may need to do something a little more flexible or compact on the gooseneck attachment though.
  11. Do you suspect that it will be too much fabric aloft in a stiffer breeze and knock me down? With only a single reef available to me, I don’t really go out in more than 10 knots or so, at least for now.
  12. Ok, got to try it on the water yesterday. It was a pretty calm day (though that still means waves a-plenty), but a useful test nevertheless, I hope. The sail definitely doesn't look pretty, but it's a pretty quick "I don't want to sail anymore!" transition. I'm able to row pretty effectively with the sail up there, and the tension between the mainsheet and the "topping lift" keeps the boom tidy enough aft. Loose the boom vang, drop the halyard, raise the topping lift (before the boom hits you on the head), loosen the outhaul if you remember, draw in and sit on the mainsheet, and row! Easy enough. I'll set up a more permanent topping lift and probably either run it to the boom vang cleat (which I can't use when the topping lift is doing its thing, anyway), or throw a little hook or cleat on the side of the cleat set and add a few loops to the topping lift for "convenient" positions. Any red flags? I wonder if it's possible to get the boom completely vertical. I suspect the gooseneck won't be happy about it as it is now, but perhaps I might be able to adjust it a bit. As it is now, I was able to ghost along on a bit of a breeze when everything was pointed in the right direction. I'll want to check for sure next time there's more wind. IMG_9271.mov
  13. Is the goal to roll the entire sail onto the mast? Or to get a few folds of sail around the mast in some non-seamanlike-manner. Because the latter might more doable? Maybe?
  14. Maybe something that rotates the upper mast parts of a aluminum tube mast? Above the boom gooseneck?
  15. Unfortunately the Messabout this year falls on a day that I recently got some much anticipated concert tickets for. Also, I would imagine I'd have to rent a U-Haul to get Elsewhere down there =D . But I'll take a look at some of these videos you linked and suggested. The Spindrift is close enough to the Laser for the techniques to apply? I really like having Elsewhere down at Pier 40 because it's a short bike ride away. Moving her up to City Island would unfortunately result in almost 2 hours of busses and trains to see her!
  16. Changing the sail is a bit more than I'm able to do right now. Would probably require at least having a car to get to a sailmaker =D . So for now, I've prototyped the attached on land. The bright yellow line runs up to the top of the mast and back down. I'll find a place to tie it off once I try it out on the water. The hope is that with the sail so high up, it won't be catching too much wind. Might need to loosen the outhaul. I might also add an additional line that runs across the sail from the sail number to the tack to take the bunched up sail in and keep it even more out of trouble. All that is well and good, but I'm going to need to try it out on the water before I start adding stuff to the boat. I'll put it up, see how she rows with the sail up there. The idea here is to have a way to get it up and out of my way when I need to switch to rowing in a pinch. From what I've seen so far, it seems like the tension of the topping lift and the main working against each other keeps the boom from moving around too much. Will report back once I've tried. Maybe I'll get a chance to dip in the water ahead of this hurricane coming our way...
  17. I've had a few situations now where I'm in unsteady waters and want to be able to switch my Spindrift 11N to rowing. I've added a topping lift (a simple single line from the top of the mast to the end of the boom) so that the boom doesn't drop into the boat when a release the halyard, but that's proving to be annoying still, since the lift is hard to adjust when there's a breeze and the boom is bouncing around. So now I'm thinking about adding a block to the top of the mast and running the topping lift down and cleating it off with the other control lines. Part of the goal here is to be able to quickly get the sail out of the way and out of trouble when I need to be rowing. So my theory is that if I add the lift, and then, when necessary, pull the boom way up above my head (30˚ or 45˚ up, perhaps?) then the sail is free to flop and flap about (maybe with some mainsheet tension to keep it towards the back of the boat) but I'd be able to row out of trouble. Is that wrong? Am I liable to end up with a sort of parachute way up in the air knocking my boat around? Last time I tried to bring the sail down while on the water, the zipper for the sleeve got stuck and then I was bouncing around, and then there was a pier wall, and that was a good 20 minutes of keeping Elsewhere off the wall and upright, pulling myself along to a dock. I'm wondering if a pullable toping lift in conjunction with some kind of line on the sleeve zipper pull would make it easier to get the sail down and out of the way in an emergency. I guess if I'm switching to oars for emergency purposes, I don't really care about getting the sail back up after I'm done rowing to a dock of some kind. So I guess the question is: how do folks disable, significantly depower, or douse the sleeved Spindrift sail on the water? Do I have to switch to a lashed or rail configuration for the sail? Would raising the sail clew without the ability to mess too much with the other sail controls (with the exception of maybe loosening the halyard and whatever the reefing line can do) make a very tippy boat? I guess I could also reach the outhaul and the attachment of the reefing line, usually. If I were to replace the bowline knots on their attachments to the boom with some kind of quicker-release knots or pins or something, I could let the whole sail fly free. Maybe add some way of bunching it up to the mast?
  18. tl;dr: Looking for learning resources for non-competitive dinghy sailing. Hiya folks! So I’ve pretty much finished my Spindrift 11N. Her name is Elsewhere and she is red and white and wonderful. I’m sailing on the Hudson River off Lower Manhattan (Pier 40 is home). The Hudson is fun! Salty, a little icky, and a lot ferry. We play chicken, me and the ferries and the party boats and the giant barges. Never a dull moment. I learned to sail and practiced on a 22-foot-ish bermuda rigged sloop on a quiet little “river” (more of a long lake, really). Elsewhere is much more skittish and “active”. And less forgiving of errors. Like getting the mainsheet caught on a life vest attachment during a tack. That got me in the water right quick, and the fire fighters dropping by to see what the fuss was about. I’m learning all about the nuances of downwind sailing on a boat without shrouds and how crucial line management and tidiness is. So the question: are there books or other learning resources for the “beginner” cat rigged dinghy sailor? Not particularly interested in racing, but looking to hone the craft of safe and confident sailing. (My heart rate is apparently consistently two to three times higher on the boat than on land =D )
  19. Oh, interesting, Starboard! Did you completely replace the seats that were there with these, or do your additional pieces fit over the stock design? Do you have any diagrams or closer photos? Would love to see if I could snag some ideas =D
  20. Do you mean extending the trimmed seats at the back so that when the boat is assembled, they become full-length benches? I can imagine how one might set up a shelf and supports to do that, though my seach-fu fails me in looking for examples in the forum. I guess there isn’t much room to do something like that in the bow section?
  21. thanks! that does help, actually =] I need a nesting boat that I can store in my small New York City apartment! Are there internal seating area diagrams or dimensions for the 11-N that I could look at to sketch something out on some large sheets of paper on the floor and try for size? Maybe I can make a mockup with some masking tape marks or similar!
  22. Hiya! Looking to build a Spindrift S11-N and wondering if anybody has one anywhere new New York or New Jersey that I could take a look at? I'm wondering about the size and would love to see how cramped it would be for me (and maybe a friendly passenger) while sailing. I'm a rather tall fellow =] . Thanks all!
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