Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Hagg lake still shots from another boat.

Dave Graybeal had his camera and got the first ever shots of her on the water with the sail up. Obviously light wind conditions, so not a lot of excitement.  Nice just the same to finally see her from afar with the sail up.

Next time the winds are that light I'm shaking out that reef for all 120ft2.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Hagg Lake with the Coots and ghosting conditions. Honda 2.3hp testing.

Last Sunday I made it out for the third trip.  I went alone for the first time now that I had a dependable motor, bolted in permanent ballast, 3 major reefs available, lazyjacks to simplify sail handling and re-rigged parrels that work better and are easier to operate.

I joined the Oregon Coots for their Hagg lake Messabout.  Hagg lake apparently is known for having pretty decent wind a lot of the time.  Not Sunday, it was basically ghosting conditions.  Of course.

This was probably where I should have started testing the boat in the first place, especially considering the reefing situation early on.  The gorge did put me on the fast track to rig improvement and control I gotta tell ya.

An overcast but pleasant day, and a 100% stress free sail where I really got to run around the boat and check things out.  I even remembered the decent camera and had the time to use it.

A few videos for you enjoyment.  What really pleased me was that I had the first reef tied in on arrival, and just left it in because what a perfect day to see how much sail I needed up in really light conditions.  Full sail is 120ft2, down already from the 138ft2 on the drawing that even Jim thinks is too big.  The first reef takes it down to @ 95ft2, which is close to the full sail she probably really ought to have.

I pretty much kept up with a weekender that had full main and jib up.  There was also what I believe is a March Grumpecht 12' Glider rowing catamaran the Jim Pettycrew has mounted a sprit boom leg O mutton and a jib, and I pretty much kept up with those guys even dragging the Honda prop.

Around here at least, I think a well shaped 100-110ft2 would be all anyone would ever really need on this boat.

When the wind took a major lull, I did around a 5 minute video of running the new 2.3hp Honda on slow until I got out of the no wake zone, then zipped her up near full throttle for a bit and then turned back into my own wake.  That little motor MOVES this boat.  My 2hp 2-stroke evinrude is lighter, smaller and can tilt out of the water way easier.  The centrifugal clutch and nice steady idle in neutral is so much nicer than the direct drive.  And I don't have to mix gas.

It was a great day, learned a little more about the boat.  I've got to get some more weight forward.  If I sit where tiller and mainsheet are comfortable, she trims bow up.  On a multi day trip I can probably load enough water and heavy gear forward to balance the boat.  For light daysailing solo, I might end up having to helm from a bit forward, which is why I ran a steer loop around the boat.  Works well, but best with two hands on the rope.  Need to come up with a way to belay the main sheet farther forward.  Aft I can wrap a loop or two around the tiller as I hold it.

I'll have this camera every time out now.  I'll definitely put up stuff in varying wind strengths.

My boat made me happy again.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Rigging details at this point.

Hoisting the sail with the various reefing points showed me a need for a more positive parrel to hold the yard to the mast near the hoist point.  The deeper the reef the more the yard wandered back.  I've been coming out of the dumbsheave, through a clock at the yard lash point the forward around the mast and tying it off at the fore end of the yard.  works great at full sail and not bad at the first reef.  next two reefs it's not cutting it.  Just go back and look at the photos showing the reefs.

I looked at all of the suggested options for the balanced lug, and wasn't thrilled with any of them.  Ring idea seemed like one more thing to juggle or fall overboard.  Parrel beads and snap hook with stopper knot wasn't really 100% removable from the yard and needs a fixed chock.

I went with a yard hauling parrel just like on a chinese junk.  I'm gonna be making a junk sail for the boat at some point anyway.  The bitter end just falls down along the mast and I cleat it off on top of the Halyard at the mast base.  The thing works great.

This is my yard lashing.  Just a ring on a multiple pass loop  extra knots on the side showing were just to use up slack and also help keep the ring centered over the narrow edge,

Next step is to tie off the halyard.  I use a Bowline.

Then I take the yard parrel and pass it through the center of the ring first and out forward and around the mast, returning on the yard side.  I tie it off to the ring with another bowline.

Next on the change list was the Goat style bleater I had.  It's nice to be able to adjust the fore/aft position with this, but having it cleated off on the back side of the boom from the slot was a pain in the ass.  I figured why not bring the cleat over to the mast side and pass around the mast to keep it from getting squeezed/chafed.  Has the side benefit of holding it tighter to the mast than a standard bleater setup.

 Simple loop around the mast.  Can be raised or lowered.

 Here's a shot of the sail hoisted and the yard sucked up nicely with the new parrel.  Don't need a lot of tension on it.  When the sail is on the "Bad Tack" it's up against the mast and not hurting the shape at all.  I really wonder why more Lugs aren't rigged this way.

The side benefit of all this is even without the block, friction raising and lowering the sail is MUCH reduced.  Just shoots out of those new lazyjacks and right back into them.

  I've been asked about my downhaul.  Here it is.  I have a loop at one end that won't go through the eye of the downhaul cleat on the mast.  i pass the other end through the eye from stern to bow then pull the loop tight against the cleat.  End goes up and through the lashed on/moveable block,  then down and through the loop.  I put a trucker's hitch just below the block and come back up and through that, the down and cleat off.  Gives me a 3:1 and no problem getting tension.  Just need to make sure and get that trucker's hitch high enough to not run out of travel before you get enough tension.

And here's the yard hoisted after a fury quick and dirty job of tying in the last reef.  That hoist point was over a foot behind the mast with the old parrel setup.

I'm looking forward to getting out on Hagg lake this weekend with the Coots and running with all of this on the water.  The two previous trips to Rooster Rock in the gorge were way too exciting.  It's close to my house though.  Probably not my smartest decision ever to start the sail trials there, but on the flip side i showed up the rig's weaknesses pretty much Immediately.  Also pretty much proved my mast won't break under reasonably excessive strain.

She's getting there.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016


I've been furling sail and launching sail from the port cabin top.  It's actually fairly convenient, but on rougher days there's nothing to prevent the sail and occasionally the boom from trying to take a swim.  I've also got to gather the sail as it comes down by hand, which is in short supply when handling a halyard and wrangling the yard.  I also intend to make a junk rig for this boat after I have the balanced lug all figured out.  The junk REQUIRES the lazy jacks to function as it should.

It was pretty quick and simple.  I put a pad eye on the rear of the mast above the dumb sheave for the halyard.  I tied rings on to each end of a 10ft piece of 3/16 paracord, and did a cow hitch loop in the middle of it at the pad eye.  2 more pad eyes on each side of the boom, another pair of lines with spring clips attached using Albright knots that can slip but have a fair amount of friction.  That way I can slide the knots and raise the whole bundle higher when it's furled to get it out of my way.

It's really simplified both raising and dropping sail single handed.  the bundle tidies up fairly nicely with just a few ties after it's furled.  The lazyjacks just happened to come out a nice length where I can clip the hooks together and store them on the mast belayed around the halyard cleat.

The other thing I've done to simplify single handed raising and lowering is put in a Paradox style steering loop in the cabin.  4 fairleads in the corners and a simple chunk of rope tied to the tiller end, works well.  I'll have to get some pictures of that up as well.