Sailing

This is something we haven’t done in months and months. Recreational sailing. Not moving the boat. Just sailing around to see the sights.

Important lessons learned yesterday.

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First, the “genoa” cars (they’re really yankee sheet turning blocks, but most sailors will know them as genoa cars) are waaaay too far forward. Indeed, the big yellow Jim Buoy brand rescue float turns out to be in a right awkward spot: it prevents pulling the starboard car far enough aft to get good sail shape.

In the light airs (5-7 kt) the car had to be moved bumped up against the buoy to get the telltails to show good airflow on the yankee. Another foot or two would have been nice to be able to overtrim.

The buoy has to be moved. But it still has to be accessible. It’s important safety gear.

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Whisker Pole

We finally rigged our “spinnaker” pole to hold out the yankee for downwind running. We don’t have a symmetric spinnaker, but that’s what the pole was originally for. We’re using it as a whisker pole, even though it’s designed for a spinnaker.

[The difference? Length and weight. Spinnaker poles are longer and heavier.]

Our second lesson learned was that the pole isn’t half so heavy as it appears. It’s bulky and awkward, but once you put the topping lift on, it’s not too difficult to work with. 

We were able to pole out the yankee and further off the wind. We tried yankee+main and yankee+main+mizzen. The mizzen (when running) helps a lot. We didn’t try the wing-and-wing configuration of main and yankee. We we too excited to get the pole rigged in the first place.

The important part was not throwing the pole into the bay: a remarkably easy thing to do before you have the procedures all thought out carefully.

Now that we’re no longer terrified of the pole, wing-and-wing is up next as something to work on.

Go Pro Camera

I still can’t get the WiFi GoPro App to work on the iPhone. The WiFi server in the camera never seems to allow the phone to join its network. 

However. 

In spite of that, the footage we got yesterday was spectacular.

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I just need to get a slightly better set of mounts that will keep the Go Pro closer to level. RAM, for example, makes mounts that aren’t as robust as the GoPro mounts (GoPro has mounts suitable for winds in excess of 100 mph.) But the RAM mount has lots of balls and sockets allowing more flexible setups.

Algae Buildup

We really needed to get Scout out of the water so we could scrub the algae off her bottom. Besides getting the slime off Scout, sailing Red Ranger around stirs up the water on the paint, making sure that she stays as clean as possible.

We think this should be a weekly operation: drop the mooring and sail around Biscayne Bay for a while. Usually on a weekday to avoid the crowds on weekends.

© Steven Lott 2020