Saturday, August 29, 2009

Stepped the mast yesterday

I just couldn't stand waiting any longer for my new Roller Furling. I asked around GYC, and Tom said that he had a hank-on 110 jib from his Hunter 30 that should work for me. So, my buddies Paul and Doug and Ken helped raise the mast with my new headstay. The job went pretty well with nothing broken or lost.

Having a tall mast with 2-pair of spreaders is a challenge because the center of gravity lift point is between the spreaders. There are a couple ways of rigging the gin pole, and we chose the one where the strap is held in place by a line tied off near the base of the mast to keep it from sliding up. Doug convinced me to also tie a line around the upper spreader so that the strap couldn't slide down. Anyway, it took an extension ladder to remove the strap from the mast once it was stepped and secure.

I motored back to Shumway to finish putting everything back together when it started to rain. I finished for the day and went home to take a couple Tylenol to help with the aching muscles.

Today it looks like rain all morning with some clearing in the afternoon. I hope so. Then I can finish getting the boat back to normal and see if the jib fits my headstay.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Hurry up and wait

That used to be the motto of the US Air Force, "Hurry Up and Wait". I think the world still revolves around those words.

The repair to my boat has been going well; to a point. I had a new headstay built by the rigger at Shumway Marine. He fit the task in between a vacation and personal time off, and came up with one that looks great, and over $100 less then the Buffalo quote.

Getting in a new roller furling is another story. I thought it would be shipped within a week from Florida, but when I called yesterday to inquire, I was told that parts were on back-order. I hate those words. It seems that they always tell you what you want to hear, not what the truth really is. Anyway, they were very kind to me and offered to sell me the top of the line furling unit rather then the one I ordered, for only $120 more. The new one however, has a lifetime warranty, is heavy duty, and normally sells for $2550. My price: $1000. How could I say no?

Now that I am expecting my new furling unit sometime next week, I find that the winch used to raise my mast at the club is down for repair.

YIKES! I may not have a chance to sail the rest of the season. Of course, I am a Capricorn, and I must worry about those things... it's in my genes.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Sailing & Repairing

The summer has been flying by (all two days of it). You all know what I mean, with the coldest July in Rochester recorded weather history. Probably the wettest too!

Anyway, to make a long story short, Ruth, Ernie (the dog), and I went on our annual 2 week cruise in July. We combined a Genesee Yacht Club cruise with a visit to the annual Lake Ontario Hunter Sailing Association Rendezvous in Port Credit, Ontario.

We found out that if you wanted to avoid the rain, you had to leave early and arrive early afternoon. Doing that, we managed to stay fairly dry while exposed to the elements out on the lake. Saturday at the rendezvous was a wet afternoon. The scheduled race was canceled, so Ruth and I decided to do some shopping in Toronto.

We had instructions on how to take the GO Train, then the Subway, and even a Trolley Car to get to where Ruth wanted to visit. The rain started when we arrived in Toronto, and continued for the rest of the afternoon. I had brought our large umbrella, so we kept fairly dry, walking between stores that sell buttons and bows and what-not. Going back to the marina, we decided to take a taxi after the GO Train to keep from getting soaked.

It was a FUN adventure, even though it had nothing to do with boating.

There were new places we sailed to. One was the Whitby Marina. On the way there, we had to motor/sail because lack of wind. We heard a "clank", then a horrible sound like like a chain or something dragging across the hull. We decided that the sound was indeed coming from somewhere "outside" the boat, so we had it hauled the next morning. We found that the zinc clamped to the propeller shaft had loosened, and slipped against the prop strut, causing the terrible noise. No damage done, thank goodness, and we were off again after replacing the zinc.

Towards the end of our trip, sailing into Oak Orchard, I discovered that the jib was hard to pull in. Further investigated looked to be a problem with the headstay, inside the roller furling. (For those not familiar with these terms; Headstay is the 1/4 inch wire rope that is attached to the bow of the boat to the top part of the mast. This keeps the mast up, like a "guy wire" on an antenna mast. The roller furling is a device that rolls the sail in and out like a window shade).

We motored back to Rochester, not wanting to put any strain on the mast. Besides, there wasn't much wind to start with anyway. Last Thursday, the GYC guys and I took the mast down, and discovered that 9 strands of wire had broken at the connection point. This left precious little to actually hold the mast up. WE WERE VERY LUCKY that the mast didn't fall down on us during the trip.

So, I am having a new headstay built, and purchased a new roller furling. Let's see... If I add all that with the haul-out at Whitby, the total is over $1400 for repairs this trip. YIKES!

Now all I need to do is finish the roller furling installation and get that mast back up so that we can take another wonderful trip to Canada.