Champlain Sailor

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223 F'n Saint

About Champlain Sailor

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    Anarchist

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  • Location
    Shelburne, Vermont
  • Interests
    Sailing in all forms (racing, cruising, iceboating), biking, & skiing.

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  1. Champlain Sailor

    craigslist , scam or not?

    Almost certainly a scam. If you want to prove it, ask the seller for the name and address of the shipping company. Let her know the great news that your cousin lives just over an hour from Milford and is willing to drive over to inspect the boat for you in the next day or so. I'd bet that you never hear from her again. Or if you do, the boat 'can not be inspected' due to COVID or that it's in a 'bonded warehouse' or some other nonsense.
  2. Champlain Sailor

    Steve and Dave Clarks Unidentified Foiling Object

    Great Video, Kelly! You have me regretting putting my UFO away for the season.... I don't know much about go pros or making videos, but clearly your camera has some sort of motorized gimbal on it that lets it spin around to look backwards at you driving, or forwards where the boat is going. How does the camera 'know' which way to point? Does it simply follow some pre-programmed schedule? Its a great looking video! Doug
  3. Champlain Sailor

    best new foiler for beginner?

    So has anyone sailed a Skeeta in the US yet? I'm eager to hear what the sailors think, particularly those that have experience rigging and sailing the Waszp, UFO, and/or Moth.
  4. Champlain Sailor

    Steve and Dave Clarks Unidentified Foiling Object

    Kelly, I interpreted your question as why shouldn't you position the main foil in the aft 2 positions. It should definately be mechanically possible. I've tried it several times, as you suggest, in lighter air to try to get earlier liftoff. In my experience, it simply creates more drag, and the boat goes slower, so you are actually farther from takeoff. I've measured the boatspeed with my speedpuck in 6-8 knots of breeze and I seem to lose about a knot of boatspeed pulling the mainfoil back to one notch behind the middle position. I'm 180 pounds, perhaps this technique would work with a lighter skipper. Or, you may be able to tune your sail for more power than i got from mine. But I have not found any scenario where the aft two settings work for me. By the way, 'hitting a manatee' definately the coolest way to break a UFO part. Hopefully the manatee wasn't injured.
  5. Champlain Sailor

    Steve and Dave Clarks Unidentified Foiling Object

    Kelly has certainly upped the UFO game when it comes to video editing. The clips of early aviators, the music (did he compose and perform the score himself :-)) Well done! The answers to many of his questions can be found on the first 27 pages of this thread (that's only 2700 posts to read). If he posts on here in person, I'm sure we'll offer specific advice. Bad news, however. While I agree that the truth is out there, many of us have been looking for it for the better part of three years and are finding out that in only reveals itself in parts, very slowly. But this sailor has the right attitude, and will certainly begin to untangle the deep dark mysteries of the foil very quickly.
  6. Champlain Sailor

    Steve and Dave Clarks Unidentified Foiling Object

    I'm happy to report that I finally made it back out onto the UFO this past weekend. I had a six week absence due to a sprained knee from a mountain biking accident, then two weeks went by while I was out of town. I was beginning to worry I wouldn't get any more foiling in this year! I finally got to test my revised setup for outhaul adjustment and wand height adjustment. I set up the outhaul as Martin and Dave suggested, A mini 6:1 pulley system anchored to the old outhaul cleat, with the control line lead along the boom, spreader, and mast, coming down to the port cunningham pulley and cleat. This works very well. I can't adjust it while actually foiling, but I can when I come in for a tack, which is fine for now. Much better than the old setup. My previous wand height adjustment had a bungee pulling the wand up and line pulling it down. I now have a continuous loop, and rely on friction in the wand holder to keep the wand at a set height. This works OK, but there is still room for a lot of improvement. I had the loop going through an eye that was shock corded to the back of the boat. When the gantry wend down, that whole line assembly went too slack. I need to make this quick release so that when the gantry goes up, this system simply gets unhooked. There was not quite enough friction in the wand holder, so the wand slid down a bit, but a quick tug on the uphaul brought the wand back where I wanted it. If I had some tension in the up/down loop, I think that would create enough friction to keep the wand in place when it is not being moved. It doesn't seem to take much. Sadly, its getting colder up here. Air and water temps in the 50s. I sailed with a drysuit, and even then was sailing conservatively so I didn't go for a swim. The UFO is a boat that really doesn't want to be sailed conservatively (does ANY foiling boat?). So I wasn't getting the most out of it. But, considering the fact that I had been out of the boat for 2 months, it didn't feel too bad. Several long foils reaching and broad reaching. Hopefully I'll get a few more sessions in before the boat is pulled into the basement for the winter. Doug
  7. Champlain Sailor

    Hi, new member. Shopping for a small boat.

    Take the $800. Assuming you use the boat frequently, you'll accumulate plenty more dents and dings over the years. That's the beauty of the rotomolded hull, it can take a beating. So this was just the first of many dings. Kids boats are meant to be sailed, and will accumulate a 'patina' over the years.
  8. Champlain Sailor

    Sailing tips for rusty sailor getting Topaz Taz?

    In 2004, 2005, and 2006 we took our family vacation at Sunsail's Club Colonna on Antigua. Sadly, it is no longer in operation. They had a full fleet of RS and Topaz sailboats. The first photo is of my son Jack and I in 2004, when he was almost 4 years old. He enjoyed going out int the Taz with me. By the 3rd year we were there, i was able to begin to let him sail on his own in the Taz. I stood in the shallows as Martin described above, holding the boat's hull while he 'practiced' steering and pulling in the sail. Once he understood the mechanics, I tied a long line to the boat and let him sail away on his own. This was in a protected basin and I could 'reel him in' if need be. He learned the basics amazingly quickly. The resort had a kids camp for half the day so the adults could sail or windsurf while the kids were entertained in a group. It was awesome! And the camp really helped socialize the kids to watersports (see the last photo of 5-6 little kids on a Taz).
  9. Champlain Sailor

    Worst/scariest moment in a dinghy?

    I think we have winner for scariest dinghy experience!
  10. Champlain Sailor

    Steve and Dave Clarks Unidentified Foiling Object

    Great video Dave! I'm guessing the kids reaction was exactly what the father was hoping for. He is clearly raising those kids right.
  11. Champlain Sailor

    Worst/scariest moment in a dinghy?

    Scariest overall for me was back in my junior sailing days in Annapolis in the 80s. We were in a mid-afternoon weekly race with 20 or so 420s in the mouth of the Severn River. A thunderstorm came on really fast over the South Shore of the river and the winds went from 10 knots to 30+ in minutes. We capsized in a gust and decided to simply hang on the centerboard until the squall blew over. Lots of lightning around, none particularly close to us thank goodness. We watched several boats trying to sail in, including one that nose dived into a deep wave trough and did a perfect pitchpole, spinning the skipper and crew off in graceful arcs. No one was hurt and no boats were lost. At the time, I don't even remember being particularly scared, but once back in the boat and sailing in, the possibilities began to occur to me. We were very lucky. More recently, I was skippering our old One Design 14 with my son crewing. Great afternoon, we had the spinnaker set and were both on the traps. All of the sudden the tension on the mainsheet went light and I looked in the boat to see that it had broken and I was now holding a loose line. Crap. The main eased, we both touched the water and without a sheet to keep me in I was stripped off the side of the boat. At least I remembered to let go of the tiller so I didn't break it. But the boat was moving fast, and with the spinnnaker and jib full, the boat wasn't capsizing to windward quickly. With the tiller beyond his grasp, my son realized that there was no good outcome after this turn of events, so he eased the spin sheet to let the boat slowly capsize to weather. Likely the best option given the situation. But there were a few high speed seconds where I really didn't know how it was going to end.
  12. Champlain Sailor

    Hi, new member. Shopping for a small boat.

    If you are buying new, I'd suggest staying with the Taz. Great little boat for your son. You'll be able to mess around on it a bit too, but its not going to be particularly comfortable for you. Much more modern design than the Opti. If you could get an Opti really cheap locally, I'd say go for it. But if you are biting the bullet and buying new, the Taz will be more fun for your son.
  13. Champlain Sailor

    Converting broken Laser to Rowing Dinghy?

    As others have stated, the boat will have minimal directional stability. Growing up in the 80s, a friend converted an old worn out laser into an outboard skiff. I think he hung a 7.5 or 9.9 motor on it. It got up and planed fine, but wouldn't turn for a damn. The wide hull kept it from leaning into the turn, there was no chine for bite, and it would just skid sideways. Pretty funny, and amusing for a few days, but in the end he put his motor back on his aluminum jon boat and the old laser went away. For rowing, I'm sure it would work, but would likely not be particularly fast, compared with a narrow rowing shell.
  14. Champlain Sailor

    Hi, new member. Shopping for a small boat.

    Lakedude: I agree with you, the Walker Bay does look boring...but your son won't care. Find any small sailing dinghy that you can afford and he can be the captain of, and he will love it. If you feel he is safe (so you are calm) he will feel safe and free to learn and explore. Maybe look for an old Optimist Pram, I know in some parts of the country folks are giving them away when they are no longer competitive and need a few hours of TLC. You can slide it down the ramp sideways. Wait to go find and 'exciting' boat with him when he's a little older.
  15. Champlain Sailor

    Steve and Dave Clarks Unidentified Foiling Object

    I find mine picks up some water when sailing as well. The windier the conditions, the more it picks up. Its never become problematic, I just have to remember to drain it at the end of longer sessions. I have been unable to located the leak (but have not tried really hard, to be honest). The most important thing is to re-install the drain plugs before the next sail. The UFO does not foil well without those installed. I speak to this from empirical evidence, not theoretical conjecturing.