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  1. 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 )
  2. 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?
  3. Hi everyone, this is my first post--I've been lurking here getting lots of good info as I build and finally have a few questions myself! By now the boat is 3D and wired together. The hull, bulkheads, and transom all seem to fit well, and the boat has no twist in it that I can discern. Measurements from the peak of the bow to the corners of the transom are 109" +/- an 1/8", and sighting down the centerline, the tips of the nesting bulkheads "disappear" below the transom at the same time. I've made a number of spanish windlasses to pull the sides together between the forward and mid bulkhead, to pull out the 1/2" gap between the bottom and the bottom of the nesting bulkheads, to pull the forward bulkhead forward onto its lines, and lastly to try to flatten the bottom seam between bulkheads slightly to close a gap in the bottom panels. The question is how much of a gap along the keel seam is acceptable? It goes from no gap at the transom and widens to about 1mm around the nesting bulkheads, and up to a maximum of about 3mm halfway between the forward and mid bulkheads. I think the epoxy fillets will cover it just fine, but I just want to make sure it's not a symptom of a larger problem. Also, the plans don't really give dimensions to make a breasthook or quarter knees--do I just make these to fit the shape of the hull as it stands now? The instructions say the breasthook (included with the kit I suppose) is important to ensure the bow takes the correct shape--so what gives? The sheer lines look nice. Lastly, I centered the kerf gap of the nesting bulkhead on the "center frame" lines running down the sides--is that correct? Thanks! Additional photos Looking aft: chine bow and gap forward bulkhead
  4. Hello everyone, I last posted on here a few years ago. It's taken me sometime to convince my wife to give up the living room to an N11. My Spindrift N11 project is called South Queensferry Electron - in recognition of Donald Crowhurst's Teignmouth Electron - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donald_Crowhurst Following the usual 'messing-about' convention, here is my progress right up to when I found the courage to saw her in half - earlier today! Nidaplast is very flexible and I epoxied and peel plied each piece of the hull before assembly. Bulkheads are carbon fibre and Nidaplast, three layups of biaxial cloth. A diamond cutting wheel on a Dremmel made short work of trimming excess from the bulkheads and transom. The hull still needs finishing, as do the bulwarks. Knees still to fit as well, that's the next job. So I realise that 6mm ply would have been the best route to go down. However, prior to this build I had not worked with West Systems or carbon fibre before. The SQE is a 'learning by doing' project in preparation for the retirement boat. I will update with more photos as work progresses. I live in Scotland, the weather is getting colder and less conducive to epoxy use and, of course, I have to give the living room up for Christmas. Progress might be slow! However, with the hull complete I can cut out the rest of the Nidaplast components and get the sailing rig ready. Happy boat building to you all! Jim
  5. For want of a decent local plywood supplier I will be building in 5mm nidacore honeycomb sandwich, carbon outside, vectran and glass inside. If I can get my hands on some affordable basalt fabric I am sure I will find a few panels for it to feature. It is certainly not going to be as enjoyable as building in wood but at least I will get to learn a few new skills along the way. A lighter boat is almost a guarantee, but that all depends on how many laminates will give me the impact toughness I require. I do have a partial sheet of nice 6mm ply and will cut the transom, mast partners and a few other small parts from that. The nidacore sheets are 7ft x 4ft, which, as fortune would have it, is just long enough to cut the main hull panels from 3 sheets, one being halved and butt-joined to the full sheets just like the plans for plywood.
  6. As my first post on this forum I may as well start a build thread. I should start out by saying I have little to no experience with boats, but I love building things and my wife says we don’t need any more bookshelves or lawn furniture. I have read many of the build threads on this site and have appreciated being able to get a more in-depth understanding of the process. I also watched Alan's set of videos. So one day I called and talked to Alan, and ordered the kit. The next thing you know I have a large stack of wood parts, several bottles of epoxy, and rolls of fiberglass tape. Onward, Mike
  7. As we gear up for the build of the Spindrift 10N, we are pouring over the plans and realized the hull is not covered in fiberglass. The new dink will primarily serve as teneder to our larger 36 foot cutter. Beaches here in Alaska are noriously jagged and poky. Think barnacles on sharp rocks. To wit we are seriously conseidering covering the boat from keel to just just above chine with kevlar cloth. I realize this will add some weight, but being new to epoxy and glass, I have a few questions. How do I estimate how much more weight the additon of 4 oz cloth will add to the boat? What kind of weave should be used? If you have worked with Kevlar, do you have any tips? Thanks! Michael
  8. Progess! So the breasthook is in, gunwales are on and the quarter knees are secure. I have tacked togeter the panels between the wires! On to the next step of filet and tape. So last night I was laying everything out to fillet and tape the aft starboard chine, and doing some basic prep of the tack "welds"--pulling the wires and knocking down a few big bumps left over--to make the next step easier, and it occured to me, things would go much better if I could pull all the wires, prep all the seams and fillet, then tape the boat in one fell swoop. The question is, given that I have a small fillet of epoxy between every wire, can I take out all the wires and prep all the seams, or should I leave the wires in as I work on one seam at a time? I have visions of the boat poping apart as I remove the wires--oh the crazy visions that come from having never done this before. As always, thanks for the help and advice.
  9. Went to check twist and square, there is shy 1/16th difference in the centerline to outer edge of the hull, and the similar shy 1/16th from transom corner to bow. Is this shy 1/16th small enough to call it good or should try to work it out? What other dimenions should i measure to check the squareness and for twist? Thanks, Michael
  10. Spindrift 10n Hull 993 is 3D and 99% wired! I made the breast hook and quarter knees from the template--to make them fit will require a fair amount of coaxing...Is this normal? See the photos. Any and all input much appreciated. Michael
  11. For the spindrift 10n on the keel/gunwales sheet, dated 2-22-04 GB says: "Tapering 1/8" keeps the gunwales looking heavy in the ends. Can someone clarify what this means? Thanks
  12. Spindrift 10n, Hull 933 started going 3D today. And I have a few questions I hope some of the more able of you can answer. Frist off, 933 is a kit from B&B, the foreward bluk head is in and fits great, the nesting bulkhead and transome will go in tomorrow. Question 1: The keel and chines are wired and because if the keyed chine, they line up great, but at the bow, the lower section of the hull--below the chine--is a bit proud (1-2 layers of the ply are a sticking out of the seam. See the photo below. The problem is only with the first 2 keys of the chine, You can see the proud part under the frist wire tie. If these need to be pulled in, any suggetions? Or should the just be removed when I flip the boat over and round and tape all the ouside edges? Question 2: The mated, nesting blukheads. Should they be wired in? Screwed in? Glued in? Question 3: After the transom and nesting bulkhead are in ? Fillet and tape, then gunnels or gunnels then fillet and tape? Thanks in advance for your help.\ Michael
  13. Just starting a Spindrift 10N. This will become the new tender on our 36 foot cruising boat, we are very excited. In pouring over the plans, pictures this forum and the greater internet, one question has come up. Has anyone built the rudder with a removable tiller? Storage is at a premium in our boat and it would be great to be able to break down the tiller from the rudder. Surely someone with more ability than me has encountered and perhaps solved this problem. Thanks in advance for any thoughts, ideas or resources. Michael Sharp 59'30N 151'40W
  14. Now that I am home and the summer stifling heat is gone, I am back to work on my kit Spindrift 11 N dinghy. I have made an adjustable cradle for it, leveled the hull, and am starting to fit the seats. At this stage I would like some technical advice. Graham’s instructions refer to the CD for this stage, and while the directions for fitting seats in a standard boat are clear and well illustrated, there is not much on the very different seats for the nesting dinghy. I plan to adapt the procedures shown, but would like to check with experienced builders to see if I am on the right track. I am assuming the best sequence to be: - Fit and install notched cleats (3/4” stock) to the transom. - Fit and install the front bulkheads (1/4” ply). - Fit and install the stringers. - Fit and install the side panels (with holes for hatches.) - Fit (but do not mount) the seat tops. - Epoxy the interior of the seat chambers and the underside of the seat tops. - Install the seat tops. Does anyone have an alternative sequence or method that worked well for them? Does anyone have suggestions about techniques that may make any step more efficient or foolproof? In the CD, it appeared that the cleats and stringers were epoxied to the hull. I have a preference for using fasteners with glues. Would there be a problem with using small countersunk screws from the outside of the hull and transom? I am painting the hull, so covering the screw heads with filler is not a problem. Thank you in advance for your help. Barry Foy
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