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Thread: Nice to get out sailing - first sail of the new season

  1. #1

    Default Nice to get out sailing - first sail of the new season

    My Solway Dory Shearwater with new 5m rig all ready to go



    Sailing out to Hurst Castle, at Keyhaven. It was built in 1544 by Henry VIII and Charles I was imprisoned there.



    So good to be out on the water after a long hard winter.

    Brian

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    Default Sailing

    Quote Originally Posted by keyhavenpotterer View Post
    My Solway Dory Shearwater with new 5m rig all ready to go



    Sailing out to Hurst Castle, at Keyhaven. It was built in 1544 by Henry VIII and Charles I was imprisoned there.



    So good to be out on the water after a long hard winter.

    Brian
    Some nice wood and paintwork there Brian - nice job.
    owain

  3. #3

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    Owain, sorry all due to Solway Dory. She is GRP and the woodwork, all beautifully executed in Ash by them. Puting her onto to water today after months under cover, reminded me just how well built she is.

    Also, my cover and gear bagged worked great. Boat was bone dry when I took the cover off.

    Brian

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    Good stuff, Brian! I'm just doing a few little fettles on mine ready for the new season - hope to be getting out a week on Sunday if not before. Your weather looks better than what we've had up here all day - murky rain and not much wind.

  5. #5

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    Here's my nice new 4:1 kicker using a Camcleats CL253 and a 16mm Harken aero block. http://www.clamcleat.com/cleats/clea....asp?theid2=72

    New 7mm Rooster mainsheet and a nice 40mm carbo ratchet block to make holding on in stronger winds a bit easier.





    Weather was misty earlier, and very nice and sunny this afternoon.

    Brian
    Last edited by keyhavenpotterer; 20th-March-2011 at 05:18 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by keyhavenpotterer View Post
    ... and a nice 40mm carbo ratchet block to make holding on in stronger winds a bit easier.

    Brian

    That sounds interesting, do tell more,as after a days sailing my fingers/hand ache from holding the sheet.
    Does the ratchet hold the sheet in place?

  7. #7

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    Yes, you can just see the inside of the sheeve and how it has "faces" which grip the mainsheet. They do really help. In the middle of the block you may be able to make out a small switch which turns the ratchet on and off, so in very light winds the line can be completely free to run.

    Here's a bit more from Harken who make superb blocks

    http://www.harken.com/blocks/qandaratcheblocks.php

    Brian

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    So will it delay letting go the sheet to de-power the sail? ( I sail a curlew with no outriggers)

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    A ratchet block makes holding the sheet a lot easier, especially for a large rig like Brian's. We used to put multiple blocks on the main sheets to get a 3to1 purchase, but you need a very long sheet to allow it to go out square when running. The ratchet is equally as effective with only a single block which means you can have a much shorter sheet. It also allows you to ease the sheet in a gust more effectively as you dont have to let out as much sheet. I would love to be able to put them on all our rigs, but they are quite expensive, so we only put them on as an upgrade.Nice to see you out sailing again, Brian.

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    Yes - ratchet blocks are definitely the way to go. The ones with a switch are best in my view as the pressure sensitive ones are not calibrated for the right load - for me anyway.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by unk tantor View Post
    So will it delay letting go the sheet to de-power the sail? ( I sail a curlew with no outriggers)
    No delay, just makes it easier to hold on and easier to pull back in.

    The only possible delay is in very light winds when you would have the ratchet switch off anyway.

    It's a win/win.

    Brian

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by windorpaddle View Post
    Yes - ratchet blocks are definitely the way to go. The ones with a switch are best in my view as the pressure sensitive ones are not calibrated for the right load - for me anyway.
    I have been lucky enough to use Harken's auto-ratchet blocks. Their 57mm carbo auto-ratchet block is my favourite block in the whole world for dinghy sailing. They come with a small allen key which you use to adjust the switch on/ switch off point.

    Brian

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    I'm definitely going to get one, seems like the 40mm size would be best suited for the main-sheet? they aren't cheap though! 45+!!!

  14. #14

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    Harken blocks are superb, but not cheap. I always aspired to Harken but could never afford them. Then I worked for them, lucky man, and fitted out my Scow and the transformation was so great I just realised how much pleasure they give me every time I use them. The MD of Harken used to tease me about having the most "blinged" Scow ever. Mind you it did have carbon spars as well.

    How about this neat Allen 40mm auto ratchet at 27.99 from an eBay seller with 100% satisfaction on 9000 sales.

    http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Allen-40mm-Ezi...2#ht_500wt_922

    I am wondering if your Curlew is the green one, sold on eBay, that used to be Dave's from Solway Dory? You outbid me! My first sailing canoe was a cream lug yawl Curlew. Super boat, I loved it and only swapped because of the rough Solent and wanting a decked version.

    Brian

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    Default Ratchet Blocks...

    Quote Originally Posted by unk tantor View Post
    That sounds interesting, do tell more,as after a days sailing my fingers/hand ache from holding the sheet.
    Does the ratchet hold the sheet in place?
    Guys - as an ex dinghy ( Laser ) sailer, don't restrict yourselves to one make of Block, there are numerous ratchet blocks on the market.
    Looking at the photo, the ideal position for the block would be on the main strut across the canoe in the centre - this means when you have the boom way out, or a sudden gust of wind hits you, you don't have to lean across and reach for the block, also it is earier pulling a main sheet UP rather than DOWN.
    Some ratchet blocks come with cleats, but you should never cleat the sheet in windy conditions - if a sudden gust hits, or you need to take avaoiding action you can just let go!
    If you do use cleats, it is a simple matter to hook your foot under the sheet to lift it out of the cleats if/when it all starts going horribly wrong...
    Have a look at this block to see what I mean - DO NOT rush out and buy this!!!

    http://www.tridentuk.com/sailing/pro...6101LASER.html

    This is a top of the range dinghy block for a performance single-hander, and the price will reflect this.
    You can see how the block has a rubber mount to enable it to 'stand up' so it always 'presents' the sheet to you, but you can do this with tape or similar -check this clip on You Tube - about 53 seconds in..

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sgGqCRZDmuQ

    another advantage is that any excess sheet will be on the floor of the canoe - NOT AROUND YOUR NECK in a sudden involuntary gybe or tack...
    Also worth checking is the ratchet system in the block - some have a facility to turn the ratchet off - not only for light airs, but the noise will drive you mad !!!
    Also make sure you tape up any pins, rings etc - not only to stop you losing them, but getting a toe or finger impaled on them hurts!

    Owain.

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    Looking at the photo, the ideal position for the block would be on the main strut across the canoe in the centre - this means when you have the boom way out, or a sudden gust of wind hits you, you don't have to lean across and reach for the block, also it is earier pulling a main sheet UP rather than DOWN.
    Some ratchet blocks come with cleats, but you should never cleat the sheet in windy conditions - if a sudden gust hits, or you need to take avaoiding action you can just let go!
    I agree - my ratchet block is on the centre thwart. Also re cleats - I don't use one for those reasons - if I need to make it off for convenience, especially in light winds, I just tie it off with a half hitch on the bight.

  17. #17

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    Owain, are you telling me I don't know how best to rig my boat!

    Take care there, you have not sailed her, you might not have worked for Harken, and may have not sailed for 35 years in many classes of boats.

    Using the mainsheet directly from the boom gives much greater sensitivity and feel, something that's important in narrow waterline canoes.

    Here's how I rig a sailing dinghy mainsheet - a much heavier boat with a much larger sail,



    Centre mainsheet, auto ratchet, standup block, extra block on a bridle. Great solution for a dinghy, not the best for a sailing canoe. Note the thwart on the dinghy is in the middle of the boat, so the mainsheet is in the middle of the boom. If you placed a mainsheet block on the crossbeam of the canoe, note that the crossbeam is right behind the mast, far too far forward for the mainsheet to be able to sheet in the boom if it were placed so far forward. Just no purchase to pull in the boom, only downwards.

    Brian
    Last edited by keyhavenpotterer; 21st-March-2011 at 01:16 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by keyhavenpotterer View Post
    Owain, are you telling me I don't know how best to rig my boat!
    I've no opinion on what Owain meant to say to you, Brian. But it is very helpful for novices like myself to read what both you and he have to say about rigging a boat in general terms, so I'm grateful to both of you for saying it publicly--even if you both happen to disagree. I can learn a lot from listening to opinions of those who know more than me, and I like the way you generously illustrate what you're saying with photos. A great help! Thanks, both.
    Ian

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    [QUOTE=keyhavenpotterer;325073]Owain, are you telling me I don't know how best to rig my boat!

    Absolutely not Brian - it was meant as helpful advice, it probably didn't come across that way, in which case I apologise!
    As we ( sailors ) all know, all boats have differing sail ratios, profiles, hull to sail ratios etc etc...and there are umpteen ways of rigging them - mast postion affects the c of g, turning pivot point and so on, I simply quoted tha Laser as an example - being'one design' they are all rigged the same.
    Having looked at sailing canoe pics on here it is eveident they are as individual as their owners - what works for one might not work for another?
    If you can get your canoe/s to a chandlers or dinghy store they will be only too glad to give free help and advice, after all - they want your repeat custom, not your complaint the following week when your syatem didn't work as well as you'd hoped!
    Sailing? started in Cadets, Mirrors, Albacores, GP14's, and moved to keel boats, culminating in a round Britain race in 1996 in which I was fortunate enough to sail for England against the Welsh, Scots, Irish and French - Sunfast 36', came back to Lasers and Windsurfers, and finally full circle joined Durham Kayak Club approx 3 yrs ago - and here we are! Best thing we ever did as a family, even getting the wife into a canadian - AND tresspassing on Saturday.....Hee Hee!!
    Ferry Meadows and the River Wye beckon later this year.

    ps - never been in a sailing canoe Brian.....nudge nudge wink wink!!!!

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by owain harris View Post
    never been in a sailing canoe Brian.....nudge nudge wink wink!!!!
    You would absolutely love it. They are so responsive, a real pleasure to sail. Sort of less is more.

    Too far away to try mine but the OCSG have a number of meetings in the Lakes, which is just a hop across country for you.

    They would make you very welcome.

    Brian

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    Default Canoe Sailing

    Thanks Brian,
    wolfing down a chip butty before heading off to teach kayaking in the pool - can't get the canadians round the dog leg door....!
    Owain.

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    Quote Originally Posted by keyhavenpotterer View Post

    I am wondering if your Curlew is the green one, sold on eBay, that used to be Dave's from Solway Dory? You outbid me! My first sailing canoe was a cream lug yawl Curlew. Super boat, I loved it and only swapped because of the rough Solent and wanting a decked version.

    Brian
    That's the one! I keep it down in Devon and sail on the Dart and Salcombe estuaries, its a great boat.
    One thing I've noticed about sailing an open boat in rough water, when sailing my Grumman, the more water I've shipped the more stable it became, which surprised me at first, but a quarter of a ton of water will act as ballast I suppose.

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    the more water I've shipped the more stable it became
    Hmmm - that's not my experience, nor received wisdom for most. It's called 'free surface' I believe and was not good for the Herald of Free Enterprise's stability...

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    Quote Originally Posted by windorpaddle View Post
    Hmmm - that's not my experience, nor received wisdom for most. It's called 'free surface' I believe and was not good for the Herald of Free Enterprise's stability...
    Yep, but the proportions of an open canoe compared to a ferry like the HoFE probably mean that the 'sloshing' effect is lessened somewhat, and shipped water in an open canoe is at the lowest point of the vessel.

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    Any canoe is surely going to become less "twitchy" with water onboard: the responsiveness diminishes... with a sort of delayed reaction to everything that happens as the water starts sluicing from one bilge to the other, or from one stem to the other.

    In my experience, the problem with having the water sluicing around is that once something starts going wrong... the lack of responsiveness means it's a hard to rectify the situation - once that vast weight of water gets moving, it wants to keep moving!

    Even 1" of water in the bottom of our Jensen 18 amounts to a HUGE volume: my experience with 2" or more on board led to lots of playing with airbag configurations to contain the volume somewhat - and to a 5 litre bailer!

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    Quote Originally Posted by GregandGinaS View Post
    Any canoe is surely going to become less "twitchy" with water onboard: the responsiveness diminishes... with a sort of delayed reaction to everything that happens as the water starts sluicing from one bilge to the other, or from one stem to the other.

    In my experience, the problem with having the water sluicing around is that once something starts going wrong... the lack of responsiveness means it's a hard to rectify the situation - once that vast weight of water gets moving, it wants to keep moving!
    My sentiments entirely!!

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    With side buoyancy a bit of water in the canoe isnt as catastrophic for stability as without, but it results in less freeboard which means that you take on more water, which results in even less freeboard etc etc. Water is best kept out of the canoe. I always carry a bailer and a sponge and try to keep water in the canoe to a minimum. The extra weight of the water will slow you down and it does not really help with stability.

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