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 been un-welcoming to sailing. It has either been raining or the waves have been huge. Lake Michigan is experiencing record-setting high water levels. When the waves on the big lake pick up they are crashing over the piers. I'm not interested in being picked up and set down on the jetty by a passing wave. Woodstock is now on her trailer and it is time to start packing stuff up and winterizing.  

This means packing all the sails and cushions off.

We are dropping the mast this year so I can change out the forestay. In the spring we are planning to install a roller furler and the forestay currently on the boat is set up for racing and won't work.

Tidying up

My homemade wood motor stand gave up the ghost last spring so I had to get a bit creative. I found I could hook my motor to my ladder for winterizing. 

First off I remove the spark plugs and squirt in a little oil.  Turn the motor over a few times to lube up the pistons well then put the plugs back in for winter.

Then I drain and refill the lower unit gear lube.  This Spring when I commission the motor I'm going to drop the lower unit and change out the water pump impeller.  It's been working well but as a precaution, it is time to replace it.  I will also put in new spark plugs. 

Next up I pulled out all the foresails and folded them up nicely for wintering over in the garage.  I'm considering converting or building a roller furling sail over the winter if time allows. 

Next, I took a look at my mainsails. I have 2 one is a Mirage 24 main. The other I picked up on eBay is a full battened main from an S2 7.6. The dimension on the S2 sail is slightly smaller than the Mirage sail but it is in excellent condition and when I was designing the bimini I was thinking I might need a bit more clearance at the boom.  Turns out I didn't but this is a nice addition to the Mirage's sail inventory none the less. I suspect the sail would be fairly equivalent to a Mirage's standard rig mine is the tall rig so I just have more sail up all the time. 

With all the software stowed for the winter, I headed back down and threw the winter cover on Snow will be here soon.


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