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Steve W

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Posts posted by Steve W

  1. Since I made the last post, I went to the MASCF and then I trailered Skeena to Amos's place near the start of the Dismal Swamp Canal. We went in tandem to the Messabout and it was so much fun I'm hoping to repeat it this year with maybe a modification of the route. I had promised a few people I'd write up the 2023 experience, but I've had some things going on at work that have taken all my time. I will get to it. 


    I have moved into a house with really no place for a workshop while my wife and I are working with an architect to design another house that will be built over the next year suitable to our retirement. I feel like I have another boat in me.  


    But this means my ability to modify Skeena has been limited. This morning, while it was snowing, I attached cleats to the cabin top like I saw on Amos's Larissa. I also added a table below which is really going to be a nice addition. I'm getting close to retirement, but for now there are times when it will be necessary to work and laptops aren't that great in your lap. The table top uses this mechanism: 




    I need to build a tabletop at a friends who has a shop, but I installed the mechanism and made a thick carboard temporary top and I think this is going to be a nice addition for day I'm stuck below. The neat part is it can be easily removed and stowed. 


    One other thing I'm doing is adding a bigger outboard with reverse. The 2.5 Suzuki I have has plenty of power, but reverse would be so nice. Unfortunately my custom motor mount which works perfect with my 2.5 doesn't work with the Suzuki 6 I purchased. FTR, the 4 was the same weight/size so I went bigger. I'll be adding an extension to the current mount. If anyone with a setup like this posts a picture for R & D purposes, I'd be much obliged. 


    Take Care, 




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  2. Not many things would be different if I built Skeena again. I like the offset anchor mount that others have done and may change mine at some point. The gear shelves now in the kits are awesome and I'm adding some. But most everything else has already been through an iteration. I love that these boats can be changed at any time. 

    • Like 1
  3. Here's another idea. During the build I was looking on the inside of the anchor locker and noticed the cover didn't seat on the inside. The arrow below is the lip that the cover seals on. I measured and realized I had enough room to make a disk/screen and pop it in there without affecting the sealing. It's a snug fit that can just be pushed out from the locker side for any reason. I leave it right there when I put the cover on. 



    Oyster is right. The Messabout is costing me money! I already ordered some cleats that Amos had on Larissa. I also realized a table in the cabin would be a nice add so I'm working on a plan for that. My bug screen for the forward cabin hatch needs improvement. Some of the trailers had walking planks, the list goes on. 

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  4. I saw a video from offcenterharbor.com that showed how to grab fallen bristles easily by poking the fallen bristle with the bristle end of your brush. It's like 100% that it picks it out where it can be removed with gloved hand or wiped on something. Hard to explain, but a good technique. When I epoxy the next time I'll record this trick. 

  5. Amos, It's funny that you mention that pump system. On the Thursday we sailed to B & B as you were heading up the river I was wondering why I felt like I was standing still. I turns out I'd not properly dogged my Andersson bailer (I only have one) down the day before and it had leaked all day/night and the tank was filled to the waterline. A quick flip of the valve and electrical switch and it was empty pretty quick.


    I'll make a quick video this weekend to show how my son Teddy and I set it up.   

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  6. Sunday was the last day of the MASCF and I'm still at the CBMM. I launched Skeena for the first time last Monday night on the Erie canal near my home back in NY. My wife put some doubt in my head about not testing the boat before I towed it almost seven hours. I knew she would float, so this was just a formality, but here she is next to my Boston Whaler not sinking. 



    I took her to St Michaels and the first two days we didn't have much wind, but I could tell the boats balance was much improved. Saturday the race was pretty fresh. 15 mph winds with strong gusts. When I get a better internet connection I'll post some video, but it was pretty exciting.


    I can say the boat handling is significantly improved by this mod. I got a great start in the race and only had the log canoe and a couple of other boat in front of me at the first mark. Unfortunately I got confused where the second mark is and by the time I figured it out I lost some ground. But Skeena was amazing and had just the right amount of weather helm. There were numerous capsizes around me and I never felt remotely unsafe even though we had no reefs in the boat. Here's what she looks like below:



    Yesterday I overnighted in Leeds creek across the Myles river from St Michaels. I double reefed to test the helm and with the board down it rounds perfectly up into the wind. 



    Love this boat!

  7. Update: I am going to the MASCF next week and staying until Monday the 9th. There are Lots of options for the rest of the week, but at some point, Amos are going to leave from his location near the north end of the Dismal swamp canal and sail our CS20.3's to the Messabout.


    We both looked at Graham's Delmarva trip for time and we think 4-5 day should do it. I'm praying for the weather to cooperate.  I'm giddy. 

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  8. Looking good and bringing back memories. I did my tape like yours. I did slide my tape just a bit to reinforce the bolt holes, FWIW.  I think that first pic is at the stern. I knife can clean that joint up quickly. You aren't getting any strength out of that gap. After you add your fill coats you can fair it if you are going to paint it. "Don't let perfection be the enemy of good". In the end, after you've used her, none of this will matter as long as she's solid. 


    Take Care, 


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  9. You all might notice I changed the title from Sailing to Traveling & Sailing. Here's the deal:


    This past summer my wife and I moved about 14 miles from a place out in the country with a fabulous basement shop I built two B & B boats in, to an older house on the Erie Canal in Pittsford, NY, that has no shop. It's a  great location and the good news is that over the next couple of years we will be building a new house and a shop next door to headquarter the next build. (Graham/Alan: ever get requests for a canal boat design?) 


    I made the centerboard mod to Skeena before I knew I was moving and pressed to get it done before I moved, knowing I wouldn't have a shop. Unfortunately, moving from a house we lived 25 years in and raised three kids in, all while running my own business was way harder than I thought. This week I will finally finish the last of the finish work and if the weather cooperated I'll do a first test sail and then I'll continue to test it by sailing as much as I can.


    I love sailing with a destination and the idea of sailing from St. Michaels south to B & B is very intriguing, but October and the MASCF is approaching fast and the days are getting much shorter. When I made this original thread I assumed I'd be further along with testing.


    I talked to a family member this weekend who is a meteorologist and he expects unsettled weather right into late November, due to the unusually warm water temperatures in the Caribbean.  So I'm modified my itinerary. I've decided to stay totally flexible and work my way down from St Michaels, with a few destination sails that start and end at a launch ramp on my way down. 


    This will allow me to be a bit more cautious and react to the weather. It will also end up in me having a car on the last day of the Messabout at B&B. This will allow me to hustle home as that following week I have to travel to Houston and there is a wedding that next weekend in Buffalo.  


    I'm open to suggestions for good two or three day trips and parking ramps on the way down. And I'm happy to have anyone join me for any of these. I'll post my Garmin link here so folks will know where I am. I'm taking a 2.5 week vacation with nothing to worry about but Skeena and myself. Pinch me.


    The goal is to be in Messabout waters early. When I finished Skeena in 2019 I had no idea all of the things that would get in the way of making it to a messabout. I'm looking forward to having Alan/Graham out for sail and seeing al those others who make it.   

  10. Thank you. Lot's of great advice.

    • No autopilot and probably not going to have one in time.
    • I haven't tested Skeena's new c-board configuration, but I should have many sails in by then. 
    • Amos, where are you and joining me for any part of the trip would be encouraged. That goes for anyone else. 
    • I gave little weight to Alan's "Shoot I'd do it." advise.  He circumnavigated Florida on a sailing tricycle. I'm not that crazy hardy. 🤪

    I'll watch the weather and make decisions based on that. Unless things look amazing, I will probably re-launch at Janes Island State Park as I've already sailed much of the waters from St Michaels to there. 

    • Like 1
  11. FWIW.....


    As one of the few, if only people who turtled a Mark III, I know the feeling of not wanting to share. I considered myself a pretty accomplished sailor, with a lot of experience in much worse condition than "that day". I owned a Sea Pearl for 13 years and sailed it in much crazier conditions and took pride in never capsizing it. I've raced Thistles and had many speedy boats over the years.


    So it took me awhile to fess up that I'd turtled Skeena. Lost some gear. Had to be towed by some clueless law enforcement jamokes. It took me awhile to realize in telling the story it helped me think through the event to make better choices going forward. And sharing with others hopefully helps them.


    I'm 100% sure if that day happened again it would be a different outcome.  And time fixed my ego. 

  12. I got this idea to sail from the Mid-Atlantic small Craft Festival to the B & B Messabout this October. The MASCF ends on the 8th so I'd likely leave that afternoon. The Messabout starts on the 20th, giving me only 12 days to make this trip. It's about 365 NM so I'd have to average 30 miles per day and that is if every day is good, which I'm sure it won't be. I see Graham averaged 19 on his Delmarva peninsula trip and he's surely a better sailor than me, but he had some weather days. I don't want to make this trip grueling, but I love sailing with a destination.


    I do have some options. I could have a friend haul me down after the festival south to Crisfield or even Cape Charles to shorten the trip. And I also have the luxury of having a few retired friends who would find me with my car/tow rig if I come up short and bring me to the festival.


    I did get a new Suzuki 6 hp motor as I've been feeling the 2.5 was a bit underpowered at times and holding for bridges with no reverse and lots of other boats has been an adventure. I haven't had a chance to test it, but that might come next weekend. 


    I'd like everyone's thoughts on this idea. 

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