Friday, May 25, 2018

Rigging Shake Down

The day after launch I got down before the rain rolled in. After about an hour I had Kraken's mast tuned in and everything rigged up.

As I rigged up the boat I was watching the radar. Once everything was ready I checked the radar again.  Looks like I have time for a quick shake down.

The new running rigging is color coded. I know there are lots of opinions on how this should be done. I decided to go with white and red for all the jib controls and sheets.  Blue and white line runs everything for the mainsail including the topping lift. I think this should help out as Myles learns more about sailing this summer. The spinnaker gear is all still pretty new but matching as well but I don't think will be teaching the kid about that yet.

I made it back to the dock in time to put everything away before the rain.  Love that radar app.

Before I left the marina office 10 minutes started raining. Hopefully Memorial Day Weekend will be nicer.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Launch After Lunch

It has been a few years since we've done a trailer launch but this year we decided with the how late it is into the season to go for it.  No need to wait on the marina's schedule to get in the water.  With all the rain and snow melt the water this year is super high. One would think this a good thing but it changes the slope of the ramp. Which means we had to back the car up a little more than normal. Things got a little damp inside the CRV this weekend.

Our process for launch goes as such. First, we step the mast. This begins with setting up at the ramp site. I try to pick a day where the ramp will not be super busy as set up takes some time. 

We begin by untangling all the stays and halyards, then getting the uppers and backstay clipped into place.  

Then set up the tow-up rope to pull the mast up.  I do this using an old line and the jib halyard.

I begin to move the mast back into position. Meanwhile keeping everything from catching, getting twisted up or snagging on the cleats.  Here I am untangling something from the cleats on the cabin top. 

The trick is to find the balance point on the mast.  It is not a heavy mast and once you find the point it is pretty easy to work with. 

Once you have worked it back far enough you clip the mast into the mast step and I walk it up. While BB pulls the tow-line. At 5'9" I can do it by myself but the tow-rope is nice extra insurance. I know some people use poles to push the mast up if I were shorter I probably would too. 

Once the mast is up I hook up the fore-stay, then go back and clip in the lower side stays. The mast is nowhere near tunned at this point but it is up. 

The next step is trailer prep. We start by extending the tongue of the trailer. If we didn't have an extending tongue I think the boat would still be on the trailer right now. This involves blocking the wheels of the trailer disconnecting the wires, safety cables, and trailer breaks quick clip. Then BB pulls the car forward slowly until the tongue is extended and the drop pins fall into place. 

Before we go any further I lower the stern bunk pads. This is an important step even with them lowered all the way we got hung up on them this year. 

Next, back the boat down the ramp.

See supermodel wife with a hoodie and the bowline. 

Then I release the winch clip and back up some more. Note still dry at this point. This is where the cameras went away. We really had to work this year to get her off the trailer. Good news is everything in my wallet got a good rinse and all the cash in it smells like lake water. After a little bit of work and backing down the ramp a bit further than I wanted we coaxed her off. The seat in the car though well that is going to take a while to dry out. 

The good news the motor fired right up and ran great. Myles and I took Kraken across the lake to our dock. BB arrived to pick us up at Tower Marine a few minutes later with dry clothes for me. She really is super. We are in our dock and ready to rig for the season!

Photo credits go to this guy.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Spring Prep

It has been a cold wet spring here and it is taking me a bit of time to get good weather windows for varnishing.  This year, with the boat next to my garage, I'm taking full advantage of the electricity and detail sander in my preparation phase. I've taken it back several layers and cleaned up some of the imperfections in the teak that have been gathering over time. 

Scuff Scuff

Tiller too.

Then the day comes when I could varnish. The trick is getting enough days in a row. The Epifanes takes 24 hours to dry before you can recoat. After 72 hours you have to scuff everything again so timing the weather is tricky. Last week the weatherman gave me a favorable window and it held. 

These were the easy ones to do in the garage. 

All set for the season. 

I also changed out the internal halyards and the sheet lines this spring.

I brought out my darning needles and spliced away.  The 3rd Splice came out the best. Clearly not perfect but I'm getting better. A few dozen more, and I'll be an expert. I also found  a nice brass snap shackle for the jib halyard in my toolbox.  I polished it up and think it will look nicer than my old stainless shackle.

Plan A: was to sew the new halyard to the old and pull it through the mast. It worked for the jib. It didn't work for the main. It jammed in the masthead and my stitching broke. I pulled it back out which was probably the first big mistake so I had to find a way to get the line back through the mast. 

Plan B: I pulled the mast head off and ran a wire through the mast. Then pulled the new line through top down.

Then I fed the new 7/16 inch line through the masthead neat and clean.

Once the masthead was reattached I installed the new windex.  

I spent some time fixing up the turnbuckles and cleaning up the standing rigging. Nothing left to do but launch now. 

Packing it up for winter

Sailing has been non-existent this September. With school back in session, I have time for very little else. The weekend weather has also b...