Monday, October 27, 2014

Autumn Still Life

This time of year most people post pictures of leaves, October blue skies, barnyard scenes and so on.  I'm not most people.  My autumn still life is thus:  a bottle of La Vieille Freme.  A red table wine from the slopes of Mount Ventoux: a final backwards glance at a summer well spent.  Days of warmth.  Days spent racing my boats, lazing on the beach, peddling bikes, barbecuing.  To the extreme right we have the future.  A fine bottle of Linie Norwegian Aquavit, the harbinger of Jul which will be here in ten weeks.  Here's to a groaning board with herring and Jasson's temptation!  Linie is aged in sherry casks and is sent on a voyage, crossing the equator (the line or "linie") twice.  This particular batch went to sea on the 12th of January, 2012 and returned home on the 14th of May the same year.  The Dogfish Head Punkin' Ale and the the little nip of Fireball cinnamon whiskey speak to the sudden chill in the October air.  My kind of trick or treat!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

2014 Annapolis Sail Boat Show Collage

We rolled the dice and luckily picked the sunny day (Sunday) for this year's trip to the boat show.  The preceding Saturday was cold and wet as a big storm front rolled past.  Columbus Day (Monday) also had it's share of "unsettled" weather.  What follows is a collection of photos of some of what we saw at this year's show.  Join us as we take a stroll.

We arrived at the boat show a couple hours before opening.  We did this so we could grab a parking spot just over the Spa Creek bridge at Eastport Elementary school.  We planned to meet up with friends at the Boat Yard Bar & Grill for supper and the last shuttle bus back to the Navy/Marine Corps Stadium leaves the show area at an inconvenient 5pm.  We started off at Sofi's Crepes.  That definitely took the curse out of the early start to the day.

A quick glance at the chart to refresh my memory as to the location of the Hendrick's gin barge (near the east end of the show by dock E2).  I noticed that this year there was also a rum and wine tasting tent at the west end of Ego Alley.  Important stuff.  Prudent sailors and charts go way back.

We frittered away some time looking at the contents of this expensive clock shop.  All the downtown shops were open early in the hope of separating boat show attendees from their money.

Here's a little wall hanging for Isle of Wight Len. 

They had 3D charts, clocks, tea trays, etc. from all locations imaginable.

Finally the gates opened.  We immediately bumped into fellow Classic Mothist Ed Salva.  Ed and I were quite taken by this demonstration of swaging.  This tool could be yours for a small sum...

Constant readers know by now that I never set foot on any of the big tubs that draw most of the show goers.  I stick to the small craft like this Zim 15.

Hull weight 180 lbs.  I never buy boats that weigh more than I do.  Who needs another hernia?  Time to move along.

This RS Aero is more like it.

The spars have nicely graduated scales etched on for the outhaul and Cunningham.  No need for messy stickers.

Unlike the Laser, the Aero has a luft bolt rope groove and and a proper halyard.

It's hard to see in this pix, but another nice touch is that the bitter ends of all the double handed sail shape controls are led through the shear and kept tidy by shock cord underneath the lip of the deck.  No dragging lines, no tangles.  A great solution to an annoying problem.

Hull weight 66 lbs!  That's what I'm talking about!

Ah, yes, the Hendrick's gin barge.  Our very next stop.  I ought to look into this guy's job.

Oh.  Sadly the position appears to require talent (besides that related to drinking gin).

Gin wasn't enough for diaristwoman.  She needed a "painkiller" from the Pusser's Rum stand as well.  This tided her over until we got to the Fleet Reserve Club for our annual roast beast sandwiches (rare with lots of raw onions and horseradish piled high, washed down with a big beer).

Of course we visited the tasting tent at the other end of the show.  I'm not a big fan of flavored rums but the New Zealand Sauvignon blanc on offer made up for it.

As always, the mooring field was heaving with interesting boats like this little gaff rigger.

Many mahogany trees died in order for Tempus Fugit to be built.

A bit over my budget at $5.5m.

Just one of these turnbuckles probably weighs more than a Moth Boat.

Once again the Comet Class Association had a boat on display.  I wandered over to chew the fat with the guy standing next to the boat.

As this photo demonstrates, Comets are still actively raced in Bermuda.

I asked him how much the class had to pay in order to have a display at the show.  He said $1500 dollars.  That's a lot of money for a small class.  I asked him because I've always wondered if it would make sense for the CMBA to have a boat or two on display.  He said lots of people came over to chat and reminisce.  I left wondering to myself how many of those "tire kickers" actually translated into more boats on regatta starting lines.  As the CMBA secretary/treasurer that's my ultimate calculus.  Something to think about.

As the day worn on I spotted this Morris sloop.  She has nice lines.  Reminds me of a Swedish Folkboat.

However, this little cat boat from Massachusetts is what I think of as a "big boat".

If I ever retire it might be tempting to have a boat like this for day sails on the bay.

This is who built that little cat.

At the other extreme we have this "devise" from the folks at MX.  Not a whole lot of buoyancy in that pointy bow.

Stern view.  The guys manning the display claim they've never seen one nose dive.  I remain unconvinced.

Diaristwoman found some countrymen to talk with.  Here she's attempting (unsuccessfully) to ignore the candy dish full of Swedish liquorice and hallon (raspberry) gummies.

It was soon time to cross the Spa Creek bridge for a bit of tucker.

A day that ends with a bit of Ahi tuna at the Boatyard is a good one.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Further updates from Martin Scott

Last week, just after seeing the latest pix of John Z's Mistral, I rec'd an update from Martin

"I still have some fairing of the  keel band, but I have done 4 coats of International Schooner varnish, thinned 50-50 on the hull outside. The mast supports are all sound. I sailed with semi unstayed rigs with my Solo - however the waves and surf knock all the energy out - I prefer to sail with about 250 lbs of rig tension. So I am going to deck step the mast. I am working on a sail plan which is between your traditional plan, 15ft luff 9 ft foot. and (the IMCA) fully battened sail." Martin indicated that his sail will have a 16ft luff with an 8ft foot three battens the top full length). "My local Sailmaker who makes Transat Yacht sails has an apprentice and we are all working together with the computer design."

"I have laminated the carlins for the cockpit edge and have found a nice shape which should work well. I have make a removable thwart for light airs."

"Full  side tanks rolled to the floor allows the boat to float too high and blow away in our big seas. This is why I have have chosen to do tanks beside the plate box and I will be making a false floor just aft of the CB box for about 9ins and three ins deep. I also enclose a picture which illustrates the final gunwale configuration. The deck goes on followed by 3mm of sycamore then a mahogany finish. This will give a nice drop to either side of the side deck. I hope this is on interest to you as from next week things will slow up!
Kind regards to you all, Martin"
And now for Martin's pix:
Evolution is looking very smart.  As he indicated in his email, Martin continues to fair the keel line of his hull.

This pix shows the hardwood blocks which will be mounting points for various bits of hardware installed once the decks are on.  The clamps seen in the photo hold the deck carlins in place until the glue dries.

A close up of the gunwale.

I'll be very interested to see the details of the removable thwart Martin mentioned.  With very narrow waterlines, Mistrals are rather tedious to sail in light air so a thwart to comfortably sit on would be an advantage, especially if it could easily be removed and stowed if the breeze piped up.  Compare Martin's internal structure with that in John Z's Mistral.

John's boat will have a keel stepped, semi-free standing mast while Martin has opted to go with the more conventional deck stepped mast, supported by standing rigging.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Earwigoagin posts the latest from John Z. and it's boat show week.

I don't know how much overlap there is between the readers of my blog and that of fellow blogger Tweeszerman, but those who don't read the Earwigoagin blogspot may want to wander over there and check out the latest pix of John Z's Mistral build:

Well done Tweezerman!  Perhaps we'll trip across each other at the boat show this weekend.  Look for me on the Hendrick's gin barge...

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