sugarbird

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About sugarbird

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    Caribbean
  • Interests
    Some of this and some of that

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  1. sugarbird

    The worst ideas on old boats:

    Perhaps it doesn't qualify for one of the "worst" ideas, but I find the overuse of dark wood below on many older boats makes the cabin dark and suffocating. Truth be told, the Euro/airport lounge interiors you see on a lot of new boats (rarely with any sea berths or handholds) don't do much for me either. The old mainsail boom roller furling systems weren't so hot. Gasoline inboards are just fine, until they're not... and then it can get real bad, real quick.
  2. sugarbird

    Are C-MAP Depths Current?

    FWIW, allowable “air draft” under bridges crossing the canals & rivers is also dynamic. I can’t remember the height, but there’s one span near Stuart that’s a little lower than the others on the east side of O. Locking through the first time is interesting too!
  3. sugarbird

    Are C-MAP Depths Current?

    Been awhile since I used C-MAP, but I really doubt it. Lake O levels (and consequently depths) are constantly changing due to rain, lack of it, and release of water into the canals - that's why the Corp puts that info up on the web. In order to have up-to-date data to offline apps: 1. The electronic chart developer would have to update files daily, 2. Provide an updating function for users to access, and 3. Users would have to download updates. I could be wrong, but I don't see that as likely on a daily basis. Sure it could be designed to automatically "push" updates when connected to the internet, but chart companies like charging for updates.
  4. sugarbird

    Cockpit Storm Cover

    +1. Hells bells, most folks I know admit to too often failing to reef before it becomes a bit of a struggle ("Geez, we're really making some knots - I think we're good as long as it doesn't pick up much more"). Of course nothing is stopping you from doing it if it makes sense to you.
  5. sugarbird

    New sailing cargo vessel

    For the record, there's a LOT of ocean cargo moved in bluff bowed vessels. Landing craft of various sizes have been great work horses since WW2, and a massive amount of freight is carried on ocean going barges. As far as sailing ships, quite blunt bows were the norm way back when. If you find yourself in Stockholm with a few hours to burn sometime, check out the Vasa, which sank in the harbor on its maiden voyage in 1628. It's generally conceded to not be much fun banging into head seas of any size with a bluff bow.
  6. sugarbird

    New sailing cargo vessel

    I think I pretty well "get" the attraction of wind powered shipping, and accept that in some niche markets it actually can work/prove workable and economical, especially for boutique cargo. Wind assisted vessels even more so. For sure it's "not a new idea," and several efforts to move freight by sail have been put forth over the last 30 years, but have proved short lived. I won't belabor the point beyond this post, but my experience has been that commercial ocean shipping is a complex, difficult, capital intensive, and hyper competitive industry. It looks like the main thrust these days is actually towards automated/unmanned vessels, which sort of scares the hell out of me actually. I do wish all these folks well, and hope they can make a buck with their venture. As far as Coffee on Square Rigger's from Haiti to France, I'm sure you're right, but the prevailing winds and currents support a clockwise rotation (see prevailing Atlantic Currents from Cornell's "World Cruising Routes.")
  7. sugarbird

    New sailing cargo vessel

    Disclosure: I've been sailing since 1962, and have had a longstanding love affair with it. My Uncle was a for real Sea Captain on tankers sailing between the US and Middle East. I've worked in shipline management and consulting for 34 years. IMHO this is a lovely, fanciful idea, best suited for investors who need a loss to offset gains elsewhere, and/or folks with more money than brains. Modern logistics and supply chain management work against this concept, I'd be surprised if you couldn't move most of their targeted cargo point to point by air in a couple of days transit for similar money. If you absolutely, positively, have to move your freight in the "greenest" way on earth possible, God love ya, go for it - but understand upfront that the ocean freight business is as cutthroat as any on this planet. Lastly, the route they've sketched out is the exact OPPOSITE (counter clockwise) of the way the old triangle trade worked (clockwise)... looks like they may be beating to weather a bit.
  8. sugarbird

    Things I didn't know

    So the thread is entitled "Things I Didn't Know." Geez, that could fill a book...some would probably be a variant, "Things I knew, but forgot." Always take a messenger line with you when headed up to the masthead. Smiling, attractive young women can turn into cranky fishwives, often when you least expect it. Boat builders rarely think about (or give a shit) the fact that at some point it time stuff will break or wear out, and need fixing or replacement, which in too many cases is damn near impossible. Depthfinders tell you how deep the water is here, not up ahead there. Getting old sucks, but it's better than NOT getting old.
  9. sugarbird

    GPS week counter roll over - check older gear

    FYI, I just put fresh AA batteries in my vintage 2002 Garmin GPS 76 handheld and booted it up, after it had sat unused without batteries for the best part of a year. Took awhile to acquire satellites, but eventually the correct date and lat/long came up, along with correct heading and SOG.
  10. sugarbird

    Time to talk hawse pipes

    I thought ours was fine until we wound up beating to weather for a full day in some fairly sporty wx down here, which resulted in a good deal of water coming on deck. Discovered a LOT had washed back in through the hawse pipe, into the chain locker and eventually the bilge. I took some 1 1/2" closed cell foam from an old cockpit cushion, and cut a piece the same shape but larger than the hole, that with a little finagling I could squeeze into the hole. That did the trick - I thought about also taping up the gap in between the pipe and the cover if need be, but didn't need to. The foam is reusable, and there's no tape gook left to clean up.
  11. sugarbird

    Seller Responsibility & Legal Issues

    So let me see if I have this straight. I am selling my boat, which while perhaps imperfect, is in what I consider "good" condition. An interested party (you) goes over the boat, and gives me a list of his observations (I imagine what you consider flaws or shortcomings). The interested party also provides me a list of what HIS mechanic thinks needs to be done to the boat's mechanicals. My thoughts: A. I may well feel you don't know what the hell you're talking about, I've owned the boat for "X" years, and think I know it inside out. B. I don't know your mechanic from Adam, and have no idea if he has any knowledge or experience on my boat and engine. C. Providing a list of things that need to be done to consummate the sale is normal and expected (and a very typical part of the sales process, used to negotiate a lower selling price/or have things brought up to buyer's spec.). But if you don't provide an offer on the boat, your lists may be of some interest to me, but why in the world would I be under some obligation to disclose any of what YOU and YOUR MECHANIC think needs cured to another prospective buyer? Fantasyland IMHO.
  12. sugarbird

    BUC Valu

    I think of BUC and NADA as sort of "aids to navigation" in the sale/purchase process - good for reference, but not necessarily accurate, and certainly don't depend on them 100%. Soldboats has been a bit more helpful, because what they sell for can be waaay different than what's asked, or valued. If you know a broker he can run one. Of course this only references brokered boats. My experience has been that many/most non-brokered boats are older, funkier, lower priced. Another thing to consider is how badly you want the damn thing - if you've caught "the fever" it may be worth more to you thank the next guy. IMHO if you're gonna keep it for 5+ years paying a couple points more for purchase probably won't matter much in the grand scheme of things - dockage, haulouts, maintenance, repairs and upgrades can pretty quickly increase the amount "invested" in your enjoyment.
  13. sugarbird

    French West Indies to US East Coast

    As others have mentioned, not a good idea generally. Of course it "can" be done, and the amount of risk would be influenced by the size, design, construction and condition of the boat, as well as the number, age, experience and health of crew. But not many folks I know would choose to do that if there was any way around it. WTH would you do with the boat once you get it to NY anyway? Haul her out for the winter I'm guessing. In Spring, when good/great conditions are much, much more likely, that run is often a fantastic and enjoyable experience. In December? Not so much...
  14. sugarbird

    Stuart, FL Boat Yards

    Indiantown Boatyard and marina is pretty decent, and affordable, although a bit of a hike from the ocean
  15. sugarbird

    confidence, experience and risk

    Seems pretty ‘normal’ to me. When you start doing something (like sailing) you don’t know what you don’t know, and you often wind up doing stupid shit. With a little luck you survive, with a few cuts and bruises, and new knowledge and skills. But you usually have to work through several cycles as you progress and gain expertise - and stuff like short/single-handing in bad wx is tough. I think knowing yourself and your boat are paramount, and hopefully your situational awareness has grown and improved. Having great strength and reaction time is good, being able to avoid needing them is better!