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Everything posted by Ajax

  1. I admit that anecdotal evidence is the worst kind, but it's all I had to go on.
  2. I tell you, it seems like anyone I know who has a saildrive is plagued with problems, especially Volvos. I hate to sound like a Luddite, but there are some technologies that I refuse to embrace. I'll also concede to a certain amount of blind luck in my successes. My friend, who lives down south in the Chesapeake chose his T-33 over mine, because it has a nearly new, Beta diesel with only 100 hours on it. Guess what? The PO who handled the re-power himself, filled the transmission with HD-30W motor oil instead of RTFM and filling it with ATF. Soooooooooo, after a little over 100 hours the transmission packed up and my friend had to replace it. Pricey. Another SA lurker who followed my T-33 rehab thread also lives down that way. I met him recently, during that Small Craft Festival. His Universal M30 had no power and compression problems. He put a lot of work into getting it going (freeing stuck rings, rebuild injectors, cylinder head job) but he's probably good for a long, long while now. I haven't had any of these problems but I've also been good about getting ahead of problems and correcting deferred maintenance. That, plus a little luck is how I've managed to avoid any catastrophes.
  3. I simply don't buy into the belief that you *must* have bow candy to survive in the Youtube world. There's a guy in Indiana who's been making videos for 10 years about early life in America (17/1800's). Cooking, clothing, shelter, reenactments, etc. He has a thriving web shop and business. The comments section of his videos are overflowing with positive comments and praise. The guy is a little nerdy and obviously deeply loves what he is doing, and loves drawing people into early American history. No tits, and very, very rarely ever a female in any of his videos. That guy has the "secret sauce" to Youtube success and frankly, I feel that Dylan is also very, very close to it. He has that soothing, Attenborough narrator's voice, his videography and production skills are top quality, he takes us to places beyond the same, damned Caribbean locations with the swimming pigs. His videos are a travelogue, not a soap opera. Two totally different demographics. If Dylan gets that small, pilothouse sailboat, imagine the videos he'll produce.
  4. I don't either. It's not rocket science to find an old boat with good bones to serve as a solid foundation and you don't need to be Jeff Bozos to be able to afford to whip such a boat into shape for cruising. You can find boats that don't need a total gutting. i'm on my 3rd boat but let's just say that I've successfully done it twice- I found a very nice Pearson 30 that I paid $4,000 for. I owned it for oh... 4 years. It came with an Atomic 4 that was totally reliable for the entire time. I replaced the standing rigging myself and put a new mainsail on it, and some used jibs from Bacon Sails. I sailed it solo, 450 miles around the Delmarva peninsula. I would have definitely sailed that boat to New England or the Caribbean or the Florida keys. Now I'm on my Tartan 33. I paid $4500. I put a new, tri-radial genoa on it and I've put a bunch of nickels and dimes into it to the tune of a few thousand dollars but not all of that was even necessary, just "wants." Again, this boat came with a rock solid, Universal M30 diesel. I intend to sail from Annapolis to Block Island, etc. next summer. I'd take it to the Caribbean tomorrow. I "fettle" more than Dylan would prefer but we do sail a lot. We're not hostages to the toolbox or broken equipment. I think a lot of these vloggers end up in these situations because they: a. Are actually fettlers at heart, not sailors b. Get too emotionally attached to a particular shit boat and lack the patience to walk away and wait for a better specimen c. Ignore good advice and don't do enough research to be able to identify the "old boat with good bones" (Hotrod, etc) d. Some combination of b & c And of course, there's always the possibility that these people use mechanical failures for dramatic effect in their vlogs and and that the failures aren't nearly as trip-ending or life threatening as they'd have you believe. For example, I saw a Sailing Nervous video where they leveraged their thumbnail and intro to lead you to believe that they narrowly averted sinking their boat. The reality was that the exhaust hose popped off their muffler so the exhaust water was being pumped into the bilge and the bilge pump was easily keeping up with the output of the water pump. Big F'ing Deal. My sailing vlog would be terminally boring- Get up, brush my teeth, cook breakfast. Read books, lounge on deck. Occasionally replace filters, do oil and impeller changes. Randomly lubricate various moving parts. Go sailing. Anchor. Dinner. Bed. Repeat.
  5. I clicked on that and instantly regretted it, damn you. What a trainwreck.
  6. Ajax

    Mold in the wood?

    We've had epic rains this year and the humidity has been so fierce that I think it rains inside my cabin sometimes. I've noticed that the interior wood has been getting what looks like specks of white on it, which I think is mold or mildew. (I'm used to black specs on white fiberglass surfaces, so I was slow to identify the problem.) The wood is oiled but unvarnished. What can I use to clean this stuff out of the wood that won't stain or discolor it? The wood is teak and/or mahogany.
  7. Ajax

    Sailing one-liners

    On my boat a few years ago- Crew: Whoooowee, we're winning! What next? Me: I don't know, I've never been in front before. (And it didn't last long)
  8. Do you define proximity as miles? Hundreds of miles? Thousands of miles? I've never met a single person who carries firearms on their boat. Not while growing up as a kid around powerboaters and not while sailing these last 10 years. I know people talk about it, but it seems to be exceedingly rare in reality.
  9. Ajax

    Catalina 30 :)

    I hate to say this, but it's not so much that the furniture was poorly designed, it's that these boats are between 30 and 40 years old and people have become much fatter in that period of time. Live like it's 1979 (Ditch your consumer electronics, take up smoking) and the furniture suddenly fits.
  10. No doubt some people watch this and think that this is a poor man's solution to yachting and that it is totally inadequate. I watch it and think "This is one of the wealthiest people in the world."
  11. Ajax

    Favourite Boat pic?

    LOL...that's a cute, hilarious picture. Worthy of a caption contest.
  12. Ajax

    Favourite Boat pic?

    I will never, ever want or need to leave a port so badly as to be willing to put my boat through that.
  13. Ajax

    The Zombie Fleet

    Depends on the (cough) job.
  14. Ajax

    Brain Trust Calls The Cops on Whale

    They're from New Jersey, what do you expect?
  15. Ajax

    Wooden boats thread

    Oh my...
  16. Ajax

    Brain Trust Calls The Cops on Whale

    <facepalm> Also in the category of "powerboaters suddenly confronted by nature:"
  17. Fun(?) story- Some years ago, I entered my boat in the local Governor's Cup. About 3/4 of the way through, we were set upon by a storm. Chafed through the jib halyard, made a mess of things but we got sorted and resumed our course, but I digress... We needed to round Point Lookout which is known for attracting boat groundings like moths to a flame. It was pitch black, raining sideways and we'd been pounding upwind all night and we were fairly sick of it and we were hoping to round the point and get off the wind a bit. My bride (then fiancee) was crewing with me and was also a park ranger at Point Lookout State Park. She'd seen her fair share of groundings and bad accidents at the point while working there. I *really* wanted to make that rounding and get out of the bay so I was making a rather tight (but safe) rounding of the light, watching it blast out what looked like solid bars of white light thanks to the reflecting rain. My spouse was down below in the cabin, watching the navigation iPad and hollering up at me not to get too damned close to the light. "Local knowledge! Local knowledge!" she yelled up at me. That was a shitty, shitty race for a variety of reasons. I knew that if she agreed to marry me after that, that it was meant to be. I like that our arguments are about sailing and navigation rather than the checkbook or whether or not to have meatloaf for dinner.
  18. Jiminy Christmas, that's a beautiful place to keep a boat.
  19. Summer is more or less over and autumn usually presents some of the best sailing on the Chesapeake. ...if the sun comes out. According to my solar output graphs, we've had 11 straight days of rain and heavily overcast conditions, but I digress. Better breezes fill in, temperatures moderate and humidity levels fall. Recreational powerboat traffic usually drops off quite a bit but the watermen are still at work. The osprey have left on their fall migration but the heron, ducks and geese still provide plenty of entertainment. Bald eagles as well. Most of us don't have heating stoves onboard so we burrow deeply into sleeping bags or wool blankets at night and we really welcome that hot cup of coffee in the morning to shake off the chill. There are still plenty of races and sailing events to attend- the Baltimore Harbor Cup, the Wooden Boat Festival at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum and the Annapolis Sailboat Show. Every fall, I join a group of friends for a weekend of gentle pillaging. No oilskins or cutlasses. The sharpest thing we own, is a set of darts for playing cricket at one of the local bars. The group ranges from 10-15 guys and we encourage as many boats to sail as possible. The wives stay home, they have no desire to join this mess. Sailing among the changing trees is a joy. The anchorages become quiet and uncrowded. Eventually, the cold drives us off the water. Usually around late December. I can't wait to get started.
  20. Ajax

    Michael -- Tropical WX, Gulf Coast

    This thing is a slow moving, nuclear bomb.
  21. Did the owner suffer some kind of medical emergency or what?
  22. Ajax

    Fall Cruising on the Chesapeake

    I should also mention that Webb says "I don't cook, I boil water." He almost exclusively eats freeze-dried meal packs which are typically high in sodium and other things that encourage kidney stones if you're on a liquid-deprived diet. Whatever, I'm not criticizing the guy. He's been doing it for 50 years and nary a stone has passed. I'm just amazed, that's all. Food is an interesting topic in relation to sailing- For some people, food is a morale builder, something to look forward to, and sometimes a distraction from social isolation or other stresses of long, solo sailing. Christian Williams enjoys his pasta and his libations, for example. For other people, food is nothing more than fuel, a time consuming annoyance to prepare and consume. Evans Starzinger told me that he's a "grazer" rather than a meal preparer so he consumed lots of protein bars, snacks and instant foods similar to Webb, throughout his wakeful periods. Evans was minimalist but not to the same extreme as Webb. Hawk had no refrigeration or water maker but did have ample storage space for a wider variety of food and ample tankage for water so he and his wife didn't deprive themselves. I fall somewhere in the middle (which is often the case). While actively sailing, food has some morale building value to me and I enjoy a decent pre-prepared, home cooked meal that only requires heating, if I can manage it. While at anchor, I do enjoy getting clever in the galley and making tasty meals. However, I can survive on MRE's, nuts and CLIF bars or Spaghetti-O's without getting grumpy when the situation calls for it. Water is my drink of choice and I like plenty of it. That could be a hindrance if I'm not careful.
  23. Ajax

    Fall Cruising on the Chesapeake

    That's "Commodore" Ajax to you, pal.