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Thread: The paddle sailing thread.

  1. #1
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    Default The paddle sailing thread.

    I was out the other day and optimistically rigged my sail from the word go even though the wind was very light (it picked up nicely later but that's another story). What little breeze there was came in short spells and I was able to get some good assistance with my paddling during those spells. I was attempting to keep up with my Dad in his inflatable dinghy with 5hp outboard so any help was appreciated and I was able to get up good speed when there was enough wind to fill my sail.
    A couple of observations though: I've mentioned before that I'm not sure that it's worth using a leeboard in such light winds, I seemed to be able to maintain a course upwind without making much if any leeway just with the propulsion from the paddle and sail. I felt that the leeboard only served to add drag and slow me down in such light wind conditions. Anybody care to comment? Agree or disagree?
    The second thing was that the boom was really annoying when the wind lulled, constantly swinging about and banging my head. I can paddle far more efficiently on the right than the left so tended to stick with that side even when the boom was on the wrong side. I do try to practice paddling on my weak side as well anyway (it's a good skill to develop and it gives you a bit of a rest too) but as I was trying to keep pace with my dad I didn't really try much on this occasion.
    Dave and Steamerpoint will say I told you so but a cleat would be really handy for cleating off the mainsheet. I use a ratcheting block to assist while sailing but I'm thinking about adding a cam cleat just for paddle sailing (I still think it'd be a liability when sailing in stronger winds).
    It's well worth rigging the sail in light conditions. I think Solway Dory or Dave S compared it to having a bow paddler helping and I'd agree with this, you can really feel the difference if there's any wind at all.

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    Yes - a leeboard is not really necessary in light winds!

    I do use a sheet guide and cleat though for propper sail setting...

    You could use a sail with the boom at the top, a lug sail, I think??

    I use an Endless River set up and it's got my SnakeRiver 12 up on the plane, in force 3-4 winds on a broad reach!! Great fun!

    I do find all forms of sailing inherently frustrating though, even in the best conditions!

    Something keeps me coming back every once in a while to sailing, maybe when I'm feeling guilty about something.........Guilt seeks punishment

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    Quote Originally Posted by wavecloud View Post
    l
    You could use a sail with the boom at the top, a lug sail, I think??

    I do find all forms of sailing inherently frustrating though, even in the best conditions!

    Something keeps me coming back every once in a while to sailing, maybe when I'm feeling guilty about something.........Guilt seeks punishment
    Ahh a lug sail eh? Like this maybe

    Dunno about frustrating, I love it and find it really satisfying. My Solway Dory Expedition Rig has been a revelation and performs like a dream.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jurassic View Post
    Ahh a lug sail eh? Like this maybe

    Dunno about frustrating, I love it and find it really satisfying. My Solway Dory Expedition Rig has been a revelation and performs like a dream.

    Are you feeling VERY VERY guilty

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    Quote Originally Posted by wavecloud View Post
    Are you feeling VERY VERY guilty
    Hahaha, well I'm always up to no good so I'm in a constant state of guilt, that must be why I like sailing so much!

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    To my mind, paddle sailing's still in its infancy: it's been done for many years.... but where the canoe sailers have gone on to push the boundaries, developing equipment and techniques and in many ways a quite distinct sport in its own right... the success has been so great that paddle sailing seems to have been left behind!

    I've started a parallel thread on Learning from the sea kayakers... as I see some promise in that as starting point... but here's the open canoe take:

    1. Going downwind is easy and fun with a paddle... but trying to sail in anything less than VERY strong winds is frankly, pretty tiresome... and it renders paddling redundant as paddling just replaces the propulsion from the wind without adding much!
    2. Paddle sailing close-hauled in light-moderate winds is hugely productive, as paddling increases the "apparent wind", meaning the sail works better and better as you put more in with the paddle.
    3. The key to a good paddle sailing experience is enough wind to keep the sail filled: if it's flapping around, you're better off dropping the mast and doing without!
    On a practical front, cleating off is essential (tried all sorts of alternatives, but you want both hands free)... and unless you want to start paddling very vigorously, leeboards start getting useful at force 3+ as without them, the weather helm from a big sail area starts getting quite significant!

    e.g.



    Also... be prepared to attach the kicking strap to the side of the sailing thwart (or some such position) to keep the boom over to one side when you're not quite sure you want to drop the rig
    Last edited by GregandGinaS; 20th-June-2011 at 01:39 PM.

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    That's a lovely looking boat, Chris. Why does my sail seem so much more creased than yours? I really do try and treat it well, rolling it around the boom, but it still emerges crumpled. Do you iron it?

    Paddle sailing really seemed to work well when we went to Rutland water in very light winds. On Hickling broad it perhaps wasn't necessary, but I tried anyway. I agree with you, though, that the flapping boom is a perishing annoyance.

    It seems to me that this is one of the things the Kuvia kayaksailor has going for it from a paddler's perspective (it fits on narrow canoes as well as kayaks). It is brilliant to be able to paddle with a double or single blade without the boom getting in the way or hitting one's head. Another is its rather clever 'pop-up' capability, which allows it to be easily stowed when it is unwanted/getting in the way. And the third is its small sail area, which ought to make it easier to handle for novices.

    But that third one is probably also one of its weaknesses. It may be a rather tame ride. Certainly in the videos I've seen online they never seem to be achieving great speeds.

    http://www.kayaksailor.com/video_pla...eo_player.html

    I think Dave's comment when I asked for thoughts on the sail online this was that, apart from the small sail area, the top twists off spilling wind. Kuvia and several users I've come across online tout this as a benefit, as it helps stop gusts tipping one in the drink. Again, this may be a difference in perspective between a skilled sailor like Dave and a 'paddler' who also wants to use the wind to help cover ground. (I see this is also something Douglas Wilcox mentions in reference to the Flat Earth sail on the blog Greg links to in his other thread.)

    Last weekend I went for a paddle across the Blackwater estuary to Osea island in my Klepper folding kayak. On the return I had a quartering sea, the wind and waves coming from 45degrees behind me, and my kayak kept trying to turn itself head into the wind--which was annoying . I should have loved to be able to pop up a small sail to help keep me travelling the right direction--but I'd never have felt confident wrestling a mast up and hoisting my SD expedition sail out in the middle of the estuary in that sort of moderately strong wind and waves, especially in a narrow kayak. (Except perhaps with outriggers, but then I wouldn't have gone out paddling my kayak with outriggers.)

    I'm just thinking aloud really; but I'd love to see one of these over here in the UK to try it out by way of comparison with the SD expedition sails. (Thought: I wonder if any of the folding kayak importers could be persuaded to get one in on a trial basis. Hmmm. )

    All the best,
    Ian
    PS I see Greg got in just before me and is also thinking about kayaks and sails and what we might learn. Off to read his other thread ...
    Last edited by idc; 20th-June-2011 at 01:49 PM. Reason: two posts submitted just before mine

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    Dave and Steamerpoint will say I told you so but a cleat would be really handy for cleating off the mainsheet. I use a ratcheting block to assist while sailing but I'm thinking about adding a cam cleat just for paddle sailing (I still think it'd be a liability when sailing in stronger winds).
    I could not have made this short video of me paddle steering without a cam cleat!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KtzGM0e5axg

    That said, locking the sheet off on the cam cleat during stronger winds was not wise during Hickling Broad manoeuvres as this happens when you can't release the sheet in time!



    That said I discovered that lowering the sail while standing on the muddy bottom of the lake is much easier that trying to balance the canoe while stepping over the yoke and through the sheet and leeboard lanyard.



    I agree with Greg that paddle steering in strong winds is not ideal, but in lighter winds, it is much better than with a rudder as long as there is enough wind to fill the sail and stop the boom flapping about.

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    It is good to see that paddle sailing is starting to get the interest that it deserves. You are right that the leeboard is not absolutely necessary when paddle sailing upwind in a light breeze, but i like to have it in use as soon as i think there will be a benefit. If i am paddle sailing upwind in a light breeze i kneel in the down wind bilge and heel the canoe over. This makes the sail swing out and stay out on the downwind side and shouldn't swing about. If the boom is a bit near your head then i would kneel down low and sit on my feet. As the wind gets stronger i would then switch to paddling on the upwind side and use the leeboard . If you set the board quite far forward it will give the canoe weather helm which will tend to make the canoe turn into the wind. Paddling on the upwind side will tend to turn the canoe away from the wind (if you don't do a J-stroke) These two turning forces will cancel each other out and you can happily go in a straight line. If you move the board back a bit you can reduce the effort put into paddling and still keep going straight.
    If i dont have a cleat to lock off the sheet and free up both hands, you can put a loose knot in the sheet right next to the sheet block on the boom. If you tie the knot with a loop pulled in the sheet it is quick to release by pulling on the end of the sheet. You can adjust the sheeting angle by sliding the block on its prussic loop forward or back on the boom

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steamerpoint View Post
    I agree with Greg that paddle steering in strong winds is not ideal
    That's not actually what I said (which was about weathercocking and leeboards)... but the other thread (Learning from the sea kayakers...) is perhaps the place for discussing how some of us might push the boundaries of paddle sailing - which in turn strikes me as rather more than mere paddle steering!

    This thread is going to be more productive if we focus on conventional paddle-sailing, as practiced and proven: mostly as an "expedition" skill and minimalist sailing option that might include paddling (rather than just steering) in lighter winds... and perhaps recourse to paddle steering when the winds pick up.

    Ps. I'd also suggest that whether one cleats off in stronger winds is going be rather dependent on whether your background is in paddling or in sailing: as a paddler I want both hands on the paddle and the sheet cleated off - but that's not what I'd recommend for someone with a limited paddling background and an extensive sailing background!

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    I have only limited paddling skills and much more sailing skills, but if i am using the paddle to steer and control the canoe when sailing i want both hands free to get the most control from the paddle so i will always use the cleat. If i am using a rudder to steer then i only need one hand to do that so i always hold the sheet in my other hand

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    Quote Originally Posted by GregandGinaS View Post
    That's not actually what I said (which was about weathercocking and leeboards)... but the other thread (Learning from the sea kayakers...) is perhaps the place for discussing how some of us might push the boundaries of paddle sailing - which in turn strikes me as rather more than mere paddle steering!

    This thread is going to be more productive if we focus on conventional paddle-sailing, as practiced and proven: mostly as an "expedition" skill and minimalist sailing option that might include paddling (rather than just steering) in lighter winds... and perhaps recourse to paddle steering when the winds pick up.

    Ps. I'd also suggest that whether one cleats off in stronger winds is going be rather dependent on whether your background is in paddling or in sailing: as a paddler I want both hands on the paddle and the sheet cleated off - but that's not what I'd recommend for someone with a limited paddling background and an extensive sailing background!
    Greg, I am not sure it really matters what your background is when a strong gust hits the sail and you are cleated off. If you have no hands on the sheet, your risk of capsizing is pretty high!

    Dave once said something very useful:
    Several points to answer. Firstly your flashfire is too small and narrow to hold up the 35sq ft Expedition rig in 20-40mph winds. The idea behind this rig is that you turn the paddling boat into a sailing boat when the conditions are right. That is force 2 to steady 4. When its outside this range the rig stows away and you are back with a paddling canoe.

    When you are paddling a canoe without a sail, 6 or 7 mph would, I imagine be considered going quite fast, yet this is only force 2 wind speeds. It might then suggest that over these speeds there is little that could be gained from using a paddle for thrust and therefore the only thing that remains is it's use for steering or drag.

    I accept that in calm winds, paddle strokes in addition to using the sail is very advantageous. You clearly pulled away from most of us at Rutland Water, including Bermudan's and a few Ketch's!

    I would love to see if advanced "Paddle stroke steering" can be taken to new heights and be made to work in strong winds over the performance of a canoe with a rudder, but the sceptic in me feels that paddle stroke steering is limited to lighter winds. I am sure with your paddling background, if anyone can make it work, you are the man to make it happen.

    Is it possible that we use the terms "Paddle Steering" to suggest using a paddle to simply steer the canoe by altering the shape of it through the water & "Paddle Stroke Steering" to define the steering of a canoe using paddle strokes thus providing thrust as well as steering, as this will help to clarify which type of steering we are discussing. As a novice paddler it would help me understand what is being considered. I would consider paddle stroke steering to be possibly a more advanced form of steering. It is certainly something I would struggle to achieve on any kind of level at the moment.

    Perhaps another term which would combine both types is also required, but I guess, unless one is using two paddles at the same time, we can probably dispense with the idea for now.

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    I have used Paddle Stroke Steering very effectively in force 4 winds and only started to struggle when it was blowing force 5. In force 5 though if i had a rudder i would be sitting on the gunwale and hanging out, and as yet i haven't mastered doing this whilst using a paddle (and probably never will)

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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveS View Post
    I have used Paddle Stroke Steering very effectively in force 4 winds and only started to struggle when it was blowing force 5. In force 5 though if i had a rudder i would be sitting on the gunwale and hanging out, and as yet i haven't mastered doing this whilst using a paddle (and probably never will)
    Yes Dave, but did you find that you were still able to sail faster or better using paddle stroke steering than if you just used a rudder or paddle steering? If not, then you are effectively using loads of energy without any obvious advantage.
    Last edited by Steamerpoint; 20th-June-2011 at 09:53 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveS View Post
    I have used Paddle Stroke Steering very effectively in force 4 winds and only started to struggle when it was blowing force 5.
    As I recall, that was with an un-reefed 35 square foot Expedition Rig, and you managed to stay upright: pushing the boundaries despite your preference for a more conventional rig and fixed rudder - and I'm still wondering what you'd manage with a reefed / smaller expedition sail!

    That said, I would expect most newcomers to to be trying paddle-sailing in no more than a force 2-3 and perhaps using the paddle for steering alone in a force 3-4... on which note we should probably draw attention to the rather helpful guidance notes on your website!

    See http://www.solwaydory.co.uk/products...pedition-rig-/

    What's difficult for me, here, is balancing the key point that paddle sailing in light winds is astonishingly straightforward with the other key point that ANY sort of sailing involves a learning curve (as does any kind of paddling, let alone poling and snubbing or lining and tracking): there's a skillset involved in ANY way of mastering a canoe... and this thread perhaps needs to draw out the scope that exists for any paddler to add this skillset to his/her repertoire.

    I commend the above link and the videos that are referenced on that page as a starting point for anyone new to the game!

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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveS View Post
    It is good to see that paddle sailing is starting to get the interest that it deserves. You are right that the leeboard is not absolutely necessary when paddle sailing upwind in a light breeze, but i like to have it in use as soon as i think there will be a benefit. If i am paddle sailing upwind in a light breeze i kneel in the down wind bilge and heel the canoe over. This makes the sail swing out and stay out on the downwind side and shouldn't swing about. If the boom is a bit near your head then i would kneel down low and sit on my feet. As the wind gets stronger i would then switch to paddling on the upwind side and use the leeboard . If you set the board quite far forward it will give the canoe weather helm which will tend to make the canoe turn into the wind. Paddling on the upwind side will tend to turn the canoe away from the wind (if you don't do a J-stroke) These two turning forces will cancel each other out and you can happily go in a straight line. If you move the board back a bit you can reduce the effort put into paddling and still keep going straight.
    I like that advice, Dave, about heeling the canoe downwind. I'll try it next time I'm out in light winds. (Hoping to paddle on Wednesday, but I don't think the winds look suitable for this technique--rather gusty, and I'll be out with my brother & sister-in-law on river or canal.)

    All the best,
    Ian

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steamerpoint View Post
    Yes Dave, but did you find that you were still able to sail faster or better using paddle stroke steering than if you just used a rudder or paddle steering? If not, then you are effectively using loads of energy without any obvious advantage.
    I believe that paddle stroke steering is effective even sailing upwind at 5 knots in a force 4.
    I have tried this sailing alongside sailing canoes with 44sqft and 54sq ft bermudans and using this technique i managed to keep up with them. If i just used the paddle as a rudder i would fall behind. Using paddle strokes when sailing at 5 knots is not hard work. It is, like Greg says,having a strong bow paddler powering you along. The sail does 90% of the work but your 10% adds to the speed which makes the apparent wind greater which makes the sail work harder to provide more drive.

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    When paddle steering I can't hold the sheet, but cleating off leaves me exposed to gusts and swimming. I'm currently treating the sheet in the same way I treat a tow rope and kneeling on it. This has the advantage of a quick release if required, and by adjusting how and where I position the sheet under my knee a controlled force release in gusting conditions. Care needs to be taken to ensure that the tail is then positioned away from you to avoid entanglement. My current rig is smaller than those being discussed here so I'm not sure if the technique would work with one of the expedition rigs.

    Tyro
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveS View Post
    Using paddle strokes when sailing at 5 knots is not hard work. It is, like Greg says,having a strong bow paddler powering you along. The sail does 90% of the work but your 10% adds to the speed which makes the apparent wind greater which makes the sail work harder to provide more drive.
    We've tried paddling gently and paddling more vigorously, and of course, either can be made to work: the trick is balancing the weathercocking of the canoe against the paddle strokes to maintain a steady course.... but the approach will work with the canoe only weathercocking slightly and just a light paddle-stroke at a low cadence... and it will work with the canoe weathercocking more significantly (easily arranged) and with stronger paddle strokes at a higher cadence.

    As we've discussed before, the point at which paddle sailing fails is when the paddling is so effective that you can no-longer set the sails properly: only an issue when there's minimal wind.

    On a minor point, my comparison with having an effective bow paddler is slightly misleading in that the contribution from the sail is sustained consistently, even during the recovery phase of the paddler's stroke - what the sail effectively does is extend the glide from each paddle stroke, so a "recreational" tandem that might otherwise feel slow and unresponsive starts zipping along more like a fast cruiser!

    Quote Originally Posted by Tyro View Post
    When paddle steering I can't hold the sheet, but cleating off leaves me exposed to gusts and swimming. I'm currently treating the sheet in the same way I treat a tow rope and kneeling on it. This has the advantage of a quick release if required
    The trick is to set the canoe up with significant weather helm: as the gust hits the sail... you get overpowered... and just find yourself turned into the wind (whether you like it or not)... at which point you don't have the same force on the sail, so you can relax!

    This is all helped by what happens as the gust first hits: the canoe heels... which means you simultanously depower the rig AND depower the leeboard... but normally in a way that gives you increased weather helm - meaning that even if your canoe was only weathercocking slightly prior to the gust, you're likely to end up turning into the wind before you get anywhere near to capsizing!

    The big advantage of being cleated off is that all of this is fairly predictable and with the paddle in your hand, you're ideally situated to deal with what you can see coming (perhaps reaching out further, perhaps controlling the turn into the wind, perhaps bracing as the rig de-powers): with the sheet under your knee or otherwise releasing, the only thing you can predict is a de-powering of the rig that's so sudden and dramatic that you're likely to fall in to windward!

    At Rutland I was paddle-sailing Dave's tandem with a 35 square foot expedition rig in the bows and a 25 square foot expedition rig in the stern. Both were cleated off. Sure, the wind was light... but when we did get a bit of a gust the whole set-up behaved just as above - in a predictable manner. I'd say that's the key to relaxed sailing: ease of releasing the main is far lower on my priority list!

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    Quote Originally Posted by GregandGinaS View Post
    with the sheet under your knee or otherwise releasing, the only thing you can predict is a de-powering of the rig that's so sudden and dramatic that you're likely to fall in to windward!
    I can fall in either way depending on exactly how I was positioned at the time of release. Of all the skills associated with canoeing and sailing falling in is the one I seem to have perfected.

    Tyro.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tyro View Post
    I can fall in either way depending on exactly how I was positioned at the time of release. Of all the skills associated with canoeing and sailing falling in is the one I seem to have perfected.
    Perfection suggests grace and style: I'm not sure I can always manage that when going in.

    I can do a horizonal exit though...



    One day I'll do a better job of staying in the boat when attempting the manouvre I was trying there!

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    Quote Originally Posted by GregandGinaS View Post


    A contender for the 2011 photo competiton there I think. Perhaps perfection was the wrong word to chose. "Reliably perform" may a more suitable choice.

    Tyro
    "Oh, Eeyore, you are wet!" said Piglet, feeling him.Eeyore shook himself, and asked somebody to explain to Piglet what happened when you had been inside a river for quite a long time.

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    Lol.

    Caption. "What does this brake lever do?"

    I'd like to know how you managed that exit? It's almost as if the canoe did an emergency stop and you continued through the air. Full marks to the camera man or woman.

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    Excellent picture Greg, the old one handed gunwale push up, a very difficult move to perfect.
    On a more serious note I think there is a bit of a schism developing here between the more trad boat paddlers/sailors and those such as Greg who are keen to push the boundaries of what is possible in a light, narrow, modern solo (or tandem possibly). I feel that I fall into the first category at the moment. I use paddle sailing when the wind is light as a means of supplementing my paddling power. I was really interested to see Greg's hanging draw steering technique at Hickling and can see that this would offer more than just a steering effect. I imagine that it would supplement the effect of the leeboard and also provide stability and balance to the canoe as well as pointing the boat in the desired direction. I'm certainly not averse to trying new things though and will experiment a bit more next time the opportunity arises (although I'll probably be at a bit of a disadvantage in my "courting canoe" and not having thigh straps. ) I think there's also a bit of confusion about the difference between paddle sailing and paddle steering (although there is common ground between the two). I started this thread mainly to discuss paddle sailing, i.e. supplementing sailpower with paddle power strokes not just steering strokes. I suppose it's all just one big grey area really though...........

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jurassic View Post
    On a more serious note I think there is a bit of a schism developing here between the more trad boat paddlers/sailors and those such as Greg who are keen to push the boundaries of what is possible in a light, narrow, modern solo (or tandem possibly).
    I don't think there really is Chris. Lets face it anyone that steps over the traditional line of fitting a dirty great sail to a narrow paddling boat has got to be relatively free thinking and willing to try new things.

    I guess that my personal frustration is with my paddleing skills especially as I am already struggling with the limited stability of a narrow sailing boat, without the added complexities of trying to master something like using a paddle instead of a rudder!

    Even more so when it appears to be a non-starter for anyone NOT coming from a paddling background. That said, I have already learned loads this year and am willing to experiment with different ideas and concepts.

    It's like someone telling me that the world is round when clearly it is flat!

    You do not see the sailors of the World Cup Regatta hanging out paddling as well? I guess because there would appear to be limits to what can be achieved, but I don't think anyone is disputing that.

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    We're just in from paddle sailing on the Deben. Paddled up the river (with the wind but against the tide) in a nice breeze... then put up the rig and tied off the mainsheet to paddle back. This was in the Jensen, but with just dad, dog and daughter aboard - so not loaded enough to do anything other than skate across the surface!

    Of course, with the tide having raced out, the Deben was so shallow we couldn't use a leeboard at all: at times, we even grounded the hull - and on the stretch where we were sailing directly into the wind (in a fairly narrow channel) I wasn't sheeted in hard, and without the leeboard down, we were having lots of fun, and shifted well through the water... but were not actually going any faster down the Deben than the boats being paddled!

    Further down the Deben I sheeted in more and found a few stretches where we could stay on one tack a bit longer: we started moving a fair bit faster than the paddled canoes... though obviously still not on such a direct course. We arrived back at the launch-point having averaged much the same pace as the paddlers - a nice way to end the longest day of the year.


    Without the sail I'd have been wanting my bow paddler to be bending her back: with the sail... we just had a fun ride - nothing extreme, just a little bit of playing that saved us a bit of a slog - great

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    Quote Originally Posted by GregandGinaS View Post
    Without the sail I'd have been wanting my bow paddler to be bending her back: with the sail... we just had a fun ride - nothing extreme, just a little bit of playing that saved us a bit of a slog - great
    I think that's what's so good about paddle sailing (in light winds anyway). You can't beat that sensation of getting a bit of a free ride.
    I too was out as close to midsummer as work would permit. I sneaked out on Monday afternoon in perfect paddling conditions (no wind, glassy water and that rarest of commodities in Scotland this summer, sunshine!) I paddled out around the islands for a while then settled in my favourite camp spot on wallaby island for the night (sharing my dinner with a cheeky wallaby as usual ). Yesterday there was a nice steady bottom end easterly F3 blowing so I had a really nice sail before heading back. The last section was in the lee of Inchtavvanach island so I paddle sailed downwind back to my van. It was interesting that at one point I thought the wind had died completely as the sail wouldn't fill but a glance at the burgee indicated that it had swung a bit so I gybed and lo and behold the sail filled and I could instantly feel the difference. There wasn't enough wind for the boom to swing across on it's own and yet as soon as I forced the gybe it filled nicely on the other side.





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    Lovely pics Chris.

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    It must be terrible having to go out on Loch Lomond every time you go paddle/sailing.
    Jealous?what me?
    Nice pictures again but where are the wallabies?

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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveS View Post
    It must be terrible having to go out on [Coniston / Windermere] every time you go paddle/sailing.

    Jealous?what me?
    Dave, you are in no position to complain!!!

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    And here's me on my fenland ditches thinking you have it good, Greg!

    I

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    Quote Originally Posted by idc View Post
    And here's me on my fenland ditches thinking you have it good, Greg! I
    LOL. Paddling's where I've got the experience... but mountaineering is where the heart lies: I'm reconciled to life here... but there's a part of me that wll forever crave Snowdonia, Cumbria, or the more rugged stretches of the west coast of Scotland (at least out of midge season)!

    Much as I've loved paddling on Wastwater, Coniston and Windermere... I'd rather have been clambering up the crags that were so near and yet so far - but all in good time, as my belay partner currently finds paddling a tad easier than holding dad on the end of a rope, and as pup is likely to be even less impressed with being hauled up a crag than with being swamped in a canoe....

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    Cool, new cygnets as well , tranquil place on a Monday evening, hate to think what it would be like at the weekend How were the midges Chris?

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    I was surprised how few midgies there were Stephen, I was able to sit out and cook my dinner on the Yukon with only the occasional attack! They were worse the next morning but I had my secret weapon to protect me, my version of the patented Perthshire Wood Canvas midge tarp.

    It was nice and quiet, I had some company from a guy in a yacht who anchored in the bay and came ashore for a chat and an evening stroll but he was very pleasant and just escaping for a night like me.

    Dave, I waited up for the wallabies to invade my camp but they tend to appear around dusk and it stayed light for ages. Eventually I went to bed as I was tired but I left some fruit and left over pasta from my dinner out for them, lo and behold as soon as I got settled they showed up but I couldn't be bothered getting out of my hammock to photograph them. Needless to say they seemed to enjoy their treats! They'll clean up anything you leave out, I took these photos earlier this year when this chap cleaned up fajita sauce from my pan and wooden spoon!


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    Chris
    Midge tarp is a cracker, can you cook inside? I didn't in the end go for a sail last weekend, so I'm determined to go this one, text me if you can get SWMBO's permission I'll hopefully get my new waterproof camera delivered tomorrow, so maybe try that out as well.

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    Yes you can cook inside on gas (obviously not on the Yukon ).
    I'm reasonably confident I can get away at the weekend, I seem to have done well on the pressie front and it's a nice birthday dinner tomorrow evening . I haven't broached the subject yet but I'd hope to be be able to sneak off on Saturday morning. Do you have anything in mind?

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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveS View Post
    As the wind gets stronger i would then switch to paddling on the upwind side and use the leeboard . If you set the board quite far forward it will give the canoe weather helm which will tend to make the canoe turn into the wind. Paddling on the upwind side will tend to turn the canoe away from the wind (if you don't do a J-stroke) These two turning forces will cancel each other out and you can happily go in a straight line. If you move the board back a bit you can reduce the effort put into paddling and still keep going straight.
    I was aware of this technique but yesterday had the opportunity to experiment a bit myself. Previously while using the clip on leeboard I always had it in front of the centre yoke which gave me weatherhelm. Yesterday I angled the pivoting leeboard backwards which gave me some leehelm and allowed me to paddle on the leeward side with almost no steering input in my paddle stroke (I just lifted the rudder out of the water while paddling). It worked fantastically well as all my energy went into propelling the canoe forwards and none went into steering (as would be the case with a J stroke). Paddling on the leeward side feels more natural to me and has a slight advantage in that your weight is on the right side to swing the boom out of your way but obviously Dave's tip is to do the technique the other way round. Either way it's an excellent tip Dave thanks.

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    My take on it would be in light winds set the leeboard so you can paddle on the downwind side and let the boom hang out that way. In firmer breezes set it so you can paddle on the windward side and therefore put a bit of weight out that side and use the wind well that side, too.

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    As Keith says, it is ok to paddle on the downwind side and i certainly do this in light winds as the canoe heels away from the wind and the sail will hang in a nice curve and catch what wind that there is. As the wind gets stronger you will need to move over to the upwind side to counter the force from the sail.

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    Yes what you both say makes perfect sense now I think about it. The conditions that I was experimenting in were quite light (when the wind picked up at all I was happy just to sail unassisted) so I can see the wisdom in changing sides when the breeze picks up.

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    I've been giving a lot of thought to how I'm going to develop (or redevelop) my canoe over the next few months. I'm hopefully going to be in the fortunate position of having a dedicated sailing canoe soon so my thoughts have turned to what direction to take my Nova Craft Pal in. First thought was to leave it set up as it is at the moment so that I could lend it to friends/family to use as a sailing canoe but as time goes on I'm erring towards returning it to being a basic set up with no rudder and using either my clip on leeboard or more likely cutting my leeboard thwart in half and getting one of the new SD Expedition leeboards. One thing I've been considering if I go down this route is mounting the leeboard on the left hand side of the canoe (instead of the right where it is currently). Given that I'm thinking of returning the boat to being a paddling based craft (and being right handed) I reckon that getting the leeboard out the way of my natural paddle stroke on the left would be an advantage (and after all I already sail the canoe backwards so why not have the leeboard on the wrong side as well?).

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    There is no wrong side for a leeboard, just that most people have copied other people who first used it on that side. I have made hundreds of boards that only fit on the right side. The new Expedition leeboard that we have started making is aimed at the paddle sailor who may have a favoured side for paddle strokes, so it made sense to make the board fit either side to leave the favoured side free.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveS View Post
    The new Expedition leeboard that we have started making is aimed at the paddle sailor who may have a favoured side for paddle strokes, so it made sense to make the board fit either side to leave the favoured side free.
    Ah, so it's a universal design then? That does sound logical. I'll have a chat with you about this the next time I see you (hopefully at Resipole).

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    I went for a sail on Loch Lomond with Tom C (Mr JulieJules) yesterday and it was really interesting to see his technique. Tom sails a Nova Craft Bob Special with a 35 sq ft Expedition Rig and clip on leeboard, he steers with his paddle. I started out with a very similar set up (my boat is a NC Pal which is very similar to the Bob Special but a foot longer) but I always sailed my canoe "dinghy style" holding the mainsheet in one hand and steering with my paddle in a stern rudder position on the leeward side of the canoe. This seemed natural for me as my whole mindset was to approach canoe sailing from a dinghy sailors perspective not from a paddlers perspective (despite the fact that I was a bit of a paddler). Tom sails with his mainsheet cleated off in a clam cleat mounted under a thwart all the time leaving both hands free to make paddle strokes (mainly sweep strokes on the windward side to overcome the canoes weatherhelm). This has several advantages over the "dinghy style" technique that I used to use. It adds to the propulsion of the canoe rather than putting the brakes on like a stern rudder does, it positions Tom to the windward side of the boat which allows him to balance out the heeling action of the canoe more effectively (even in a F5 squall Tom's boat was almost flat) and the sweep strokes themselves provide support almost like a constant bracing action. None of this will be news to Greg who has championed this style of paddle sailing but for some reason it really hit me yesterday while watching Tom that this is almost like a separate discipline. The key is to be able to cleat off the mainsheet (something that I was always wary of doing) to allow two hands on the paddle. The downside over a fixed leeboard and rudder set up like I was using yesterday is that the ability to constantly trim the sail using the sheet is lost and combined with a tendency to zig zag a little it didn't seem to be as efficient upwind despite the extra thrust of the paddle strokes but the difference wasn't huge. Tom was also working a lot harder than I was which may be a good or bad point depending on your outlook.
    As I contemplate returning my Pal to a basic paddle sailing set up (which is what the Expedition Rig was conceived for originally), I'm really drawn to the idea of having a go at this style of sailing. I always baulked at the thought of screwing a clam cleat to the under side of my lovely sculpted NC carrying yoke but since it now has two M10 holes drilled through it (for mounting my leeboard thwart) that's no longer an issue and I think that mentally I'm now ready to cleat off the mainsheet (the idea of which always scared me before).
    Greg, if you read this I reckon you'd have a lot to discuss and compare notes with Tom if you ever meet up at an OCSG meet.

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    I think that the method of cleating the sheet off and steering with paddle strokes is a much more efficient way of paddle sailing than ujst ruddering with the paddle. It is also more rewarding in lighter winds as you can feel the sailing and paddling really combining together.
    In strong winds it does need a lot of effort and with the sail cleated off it needs constant awareness of gusts, and perhaps i would then change to holding the sheet and ruddering with the paddle.
    Also it will be worth reefing early so that a sudden gust doesnt catch you unaware.

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    How about this for an invention to aid cleated off paddle sailing: What if the main sheet (or part of it) was made of strong bungee cord? The idea being that if there was a strong gust the sheet could stretch, allowing the sail to give a little and vent some wind, rather than tip you over. The bungee cord would need to be thick enough under normal conditions for it to behave like rope. You could have different strength lengths to use in different conditions.

    Should i get myself down the patents office or is this going the same way as my brilliant chocolate teapot idea?
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    That might work, but unless it was all bungee, the knot between the sheet and the bungee would get caught in the pulley block. If a short tail of bungee was fastened to the canoe and the sheet fastened to that it might work.

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    Feel free to develop and market it Dave. If its a massive success I'll assemble a crack team of lawyers to take you to the cleaners (after deleting this post of course). If its a total flop I'll just delete both my posts and claim it was your stupid idea all along! Gotta love that "edit post" feature...
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    I havent had time to build it yet, but Im still thinking that I want a steering/propulsion tail thing that I can control with my feet, so I have both hands free for paddling/sailing....

    Do you fold your feet back under your seats, or could you control a sliding mainsheet control by foot...do you sit out on the sides? That would make it impossible to foot steer or control lines..

    Someone said about having the anchor rope on an endless rope through two pulleys to get it back from the bow...

    Some knots on one running on the floor so you could push it and hold it, and a mobile cleat to set the sheet in.

    ....a bit like steering the car with your knee....not that Ive ever tried it lol

    Sorry thats a mess, but Ive gotta go...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jurassic View Post
    Tom sails with his mainsheet cleated off in a clam cleat mounted under a thwart all the time leaving both hands free to make paddle strokes (mainly sweep strokes on the windward side to overcome the canoes weatherhelm). This has several advantages over the "dinghy style" technique that I used to use. It adds to the propulsion of the canoe rather than putting the brakes on like a stern rudder does, it positions Tom to the windward side of the boat which allows him to balance out the heeling action of the canoe more effectively (even in a F5 squall Tom's boat was almost flat) and the sweep strokes themselves provide support almost like a constant bracing action. None of this will be news to Greg who has championed this style of paddle sailing but for some reason it really hit me yesterday while watching Tom that this is almost like a separate discipline. The key is to be able to cleat off the mainsheet (something that I was always wary of doing) to allow two hands on the paddle.
    Nicely put, Chris... though see the post I've put on the other thread for some further thoughts on "bracing".

    In my experience, the upwind sailing is spectacularly efficient because (a) you improve the "apparent wind" (strength and direction) and (b) getting too tight to the wind doesn't really matter, as your forward paddling strokes ensure you don't stall! On Coniston last October, I was having no problem keeping up with Dave and Steve (both using big Bermudans) whilst paddle-sailing with my 25 square foot rig (and in lighter winds, I've found I have to hold back).

    Get that cam cleat sorted and give it a go

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    Fredster, the bad news is that the edit post feature disappears after a couple of hours of posting so your posts are stuck unless you can get a mod to delete them! What about making the bridle out of bungee, would that work?
    Dave, I agree about it being hard work in stronger winds, during the F5 spell Tom was sweeping like a madman as the weatherhelm became almost too strong to overcome. As you say early reefing would be the way to go in stronger winds.
    Greg, Tom was going faster than me but he wasn't as far upwind which canceled out his speed advantage to some extent.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jurassic View Post
    during the F5 spell Tom was sweeping like a madman as the weatherhelm became almost too strong to overcome [...] Tom was going faster than me but he wasn't as far upwind which canceled out his speed advantage to some extent.
    With a SMALL amount of weather helm (from having the leeboard in the right place)... progress can be through power strokes rather than sweeps... with the sweeps reserved for bearing away. It's a delicate balancing act, as you certainly don't want too little weather helm... but it pays to get that right.

    Once it is right... you can definitely go closer to the wind AND faster than someone who's not paddle sailing. Just takes practice

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    Quote Originally Posted by GregandGinaS View Post
    With a SMALL amount of weather helm (from having the leeboard in the right place)... progress can be through power strokes rather than sweeps... with the sweeps reserved for bearing away. It's a delicate balancing act, as you certainly don't want too little weather helm... but it pays to get that right.

    Once it is right... you can definitely go closer to the wind AND faster than someone who's not paddle sailing. Just takes practice
    Yeah I can see how that would be the case, I think Tom's still experimenting in this respect.

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    Today we have just made our first new Bermudan Expedition rig and will be advertising it shortly. I am hoping that this sail will make paddle sailing with the sheet cleated off even better, The Bermudan is more efficient at going upwind and is infinitely reefable. If paddle sailing starts to become difficult as the wind builds, it will be easy and quick to take a turn around the mast to adjust the sail area to optimum size. Like the Expedition lugsail, the rig can be dismantled and rolled up to a package 7ft long, although it will take a little longer. But we feel the extra efficiency will make up for this and will be a useful rig for the paddler.
    The rig is a little over 30sq ft but can be reefed , one turn of the mast at a time, down to a workable small area of around 6sq ft.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveS View Post
    Today we have just made our first new Bermudan Expedition rig and will be advertising it shortly. I am hoping that this sail will make paddle sailing with the sheet cleated off even better, The Bermudan is more efficient at going upwind and is infinitely reefable. If paddle sailing starts to become difficult as the wind builds, it will be easy and quick to take a turn around the mast to adjust the sail area to optimum size. Like the Expedition lugsail, the rig can be dismantled and rolled up to a package 7ft long, although it will take a little longer. But we feel the extra efficiency will make up for this and will be a useful rig for the paddler.
    The rig is a little over 30sq ft but can be reefed , one turn of the mast at a time, down to a workable small area of around 6sq ft.
    This sounds really interesting Dave. I am guessing that the mast must be sectional to package down to 7-feet, yet still give 30-square feet of sail. Using a 7-foot mast like the Expedition 35, I could only get a maximum triangular sail area of 11-square feet with the storm sail.

    Really looking forward to hearing more about this rig in the weeks ahead.

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    Hi idc
    I see you have a folding klepper, i have a folding Tyne double circa 1964. Do you know what paint i can put on it to keep it waterproof, whilst still keeping it flexible. I think the original is still there, but only in places. Anytime now i will be taking on a Granta folder 1963, with full sailing rig, original outriggers and all. Looks really nice in photos, but looks to be suffering the same canvas wear as the Tyne. I only tried the Tyne the other day, and found it to seep rather than leak. I also own a Tyne canadian hot moulded canoe, which they imported from Sweden in 1964, and found the canvas one much more stable, and comfortable. By the way i have also been offered a Klepper from around 1970, it to is a double, so by the end of the summer i should have quite a collection. I believe it is an aerius 2, but am not really sure, have not even seen photos yet, as it is tucked away. Perhaps you would email me a photo or two of yours, so i can see what its like. My email is anthony.nichols@sky.com. Would be interested in any information re sailing a canvas canoe, as would really like to give it a try. Regards Tony

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steamerpoint View Post
    This sounds really interesting Dave. I am guessing that the mast must be sectional to package down to 7-feet, yet still give 30-square feet of sail. Using a 7-foot mast like the Expedition 35, I could only get a maximum triangular sail area of 11-square feet with the storm sail.

    Really looking forward to hearing more about this rig in the weeks ahead.
    It is a 2 piece mast so it is something like 12ft 6inches when it is together. The boom is 6ft. I will try and put a photo on tomorrow. I will try and bring one down to Rutland for you to have a go with if you are interested in trying it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by woodisgood View Post
    Hi idc
    I see you have a folding klepper, i have a folding Tyne double circa 1964. Do you know what paint i can put on it to keep it waterproof, whilst still keeping it flexible.
    <snip>
    Perhaps you would email me a photo or two of yours, so i can see what its like.
    <snip>
    Would be interested in any information re sailing a canvas canoe, as would really like to give it a try. Regards Tony
    Hi Tony,
    Good to hear from you. I posted some pictures on the 'PBK canvas canoes thread', where you first asked me for pictures. But I was a little late so you may not have seen them. Look here:
    http://www.songofthepaddle.co.uk/for...562#post385562
    I also mentioned possible resources for new skins here:
    http://www.songofthepaddle.co.uk/for...096#post375096
    I patched mine with hypalon strips. It wasn't particularly cheap and required using a fairly toxic rubber glue. I have read somewhere of people painting liquid hypalon on skin on frame boats, but I imagine it would be equally toxic. Personally I would probably buy a new skin before I did that. Though Tom Yost's website is worth perusing if you would consider reskinning in PVC: http://www.yostwerks.com. I could imagine myself trying that if I can't afford a Wayland skin when mine finally wears out.

    As to sailing these boats, I tried my Solway Dory sail on the Wayland in very light winds and to my embarrassment capsized it when a slight gust occurred. My conclusion was that 35 sq ft of sail was too much for a single kayak where it is hard to lean out to balance the forces. It can be a bit of a handful for my 30" wide open canoe when the breeze picks up, but I haven't capsized it yet. I believe the doubles are a fair bit wider and the original Klepper sails are quite a large area. If you peruse the forums at foldingkayaks.org you'll see most Americans seem to sail their kayaks with outriggers these days (it is an American forum, I don't know if the Germans might do without). Personally I think I would like a smaller sail for mine, without outriggers; the ones from Kuvia Kayaksailor or Flat Earth (Mick who makes the latter is on these forums occasionally) look good at about 14 or 16 sq feet. That said, I wouldn't mind trying one of Solway Dory's small 25' expedition sails or one of these new Bermudans with a few turns of reefing in. Really I'd like to compare all three before buying, but I don't know how I'll manage that!

    Perhaps we should have a folding sailing canoe/kayak meet on the Medway at some point?

    I hope we haven't taken the paddling thread too off-topic. Why not pm me if you have more questions.
    Ian

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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveS View Post
    It is a 2 piece mast so it is something like 12ft 6inches when it is together. The boom is 6ft. I will try and put a photo on tomorrow. I will try and bring one down to Rutland for you to have a go with if you are interested in trying it.
    Hi Dave, It would be good to see one of these new rigs. I might have opted for the mini Burmudan had they been around when I bought my expedition 35, but now that I have the 35, my next rig would probably be a Bermudan 44 with some modern looking outriggers.

    I love the way the Burmudan rigs reef down effortlessly over the way the Expedition rig reefs. I think SD have captured the latest mood of advanced paddle sailing perfectly and I am sure the the mini Bermudan will sell well. I feel that there would still be a market for the Expedition rigs though. They seem to offer a cost effective route into canoe sailing, but it's also nice to have the option of a mini Burmudan.

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