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About BobJ

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  1. BobJ

    Save Amerkkka March

    I'm telling!
  2. BobJ

    Pilot calibration secrets (B&G H5000)

    How far did you get in trying to calibrate it? For example, in steer-to-wind mode, the default is to steer to AWA upwind and TWA downwind. If you don't have TWA at least roughly calibrated, I assume it won't perform well downwind. I have the same plan as you: Find an expert and go sail until it works reasonably well. But I'm starting to think autopilot calibration experts can only be found in France.
  3. BobJ

    There's plenty of doublehanded racing available in and around San Francisco Bay. New this year is a four-race doublehanded series, with its own awards: SSS Corinthian Race on Saturday, February 27th SSS Round-the-Rocks on Saturday, March 27th YRA Doublehanded North South Regatta on Sunday, May 23rd YRA Doublehanded Bay Expedition Race on Saturday, August 21st And in most years the "SHS" division is the largest division in OYRA, a 9-race ocean series.
  4. BobJ

    Is anything happening with this or was it just a data-collecting exercise?
  5. BobJ

    Predict Wind, iPad and Zeus2 - Moving routes

    PredictWind just told me the same thing. They said B&G has been promising to get this resolved but never gets around to it.
  6. BobJ

    Tiller pilots - what are you using ?

    To further illustrate this, my B&G primary AP and Simrad backup are both set to "Auto" in wind mode. That setting steers to AWA upwind and automatically switches to TWA off the wind. BTW, using this setting requires that the AP's computation of TWS and TWA is at least in the ballpark. This is especially important if you're using asymmetric spinnakers, since if you sail too deep they collapse behind the main. As Ryley describes, as the boat begins to surf off the wind and speeds up, AWA moves forward. If the AP was in Apparent mode (vs. True) it would have the boat bear away, at some point causing the ass'y to collapse. In heavy conditions with a conventional symmetric kite, it could even steer you into a round-down. But as Black Jack suggests above, you can do plenty of solo racing with a simpler, cheaper pilot. It's when you have a higher-performance boat (and/or less directionally-stable) and you want to race in heavier conditions that you need to consider higher-end options.
  7. BobJ

    Tiller pilots - what are you using ?

    This ^^^ It wasn't apparent (no pun intended) in my earlier posts but that's what I did on the J/92 = Ray system with Pelagic drive. You get all the inputs via SeaTalk, both TW and AW, the benefits of Autolearn, etc. That said, the later Ray computers have been dumbed down to the point where the old S1G and X-5 (w/early software) drove the boat better than the current EV-100/200. Meanwhile Pelagic keeps improving their software so it may be time to try their system (not just the drive) on lighter boats - it always appeared to work okay on heavier, more directionally-stable boats. I have a bigger boat now with B&G stuff, belowdecks hydraulic drive etc. so I'm only using my old Pelagic drive as a backup.
  8. Are you looking for a way to control that large main when lowering it? I swore I'd never do it but I'm using lazy jacks on my 38'er. I mostly singlehand but I only use them for containing the main when I drop it. The rest of the time they're pulled forward and hooked down near the gooseneck. The main is on battcars and drops easily, then I usually don't even tie it down until I'm back in the slip. No extra slots in the main cover since I keep the lazy jacks pulled forward. The only problem is hoisting the fully-battened main with the lazy jacks deployed - it's easy to get the battens caught in them if you're not pointed directly upwind. But I rarely do that. The lazy jacks are uncovered dyneema and weigh practically nothing. You'd have to know where to look to spot them while I'm sailing.
  9. BobJ

    Tiller pilots - what are you using ?

    Did Bruce have an autopilot on that boat? I have a lot of respect for his experience/choices. I considered buying his Frers Swan 36 as he began to reduce his fleet. The Shadow is just across from me at RYC.
  10. BobJ

    Tiller pilots - what are you using ?

    Oh, the ST2000 survived that race physically - and to answer your question, I'd bought it new and used diver's grease in the appropriate spots. I added it to my pile of inadequate gear and sold it several years later. It was good for steering the boat while hoisting sails and for light upwind work. But in bigger waves and especially after I rounded SE Farallon and started back, it couldn't keep up with the conditions. Not even close. That was on a J/33 - a comparable boat in size and weight to the OP's. Yes, our needs are different. I wanted an autopilot that would allow me to sleep in the tradewinds with the A2 flying. And it did. The S1G got my J/92 to Hawaii in 2006 and the X-5 got me there in 2008. The Raymarine cockpit drives were the weak component - I went through 5-6 of them over that time. Meanwhile the first Pelagic cockpit ram still works (it was one of Brian's prototypes). I still use it on the Alerion with a Simrad AP24 as a tiller-mounted backup, to the H5000 primary AP.
  11. BobJ

    Tiller pilots - what are you using ?

    The last ST2000 I used (which was three boats back) didn't survive a race around the Farallones, and it was a moderate year. If you plan to do SSS races or cruise offshore, you need to install a solid autopilot. There's no compromising with this.
  12. BobJ

    Tiller pilots - what are you using ?

    Agreed. The predecessor X-5 computer was the best of the lot, until the last software upgrade which screwed it up. The one before that (S1G) was also better than the current EV-100. The S1G had the gyro circuit but required rudder reference input - awkward with a cockpit drive. A Pelagic cockpit drive was a stellar replacement for the Raymarine cockpit drives. You'll need to change the plug but otherwise they are a drop-in replacement for the POS Raymarine units.
  13. BobJ

    Random PicThread

    Much of California's Franchise Tax Board is still running on COBOL. I'm serious.
  14. BobJ

    J/34c Anchor Roller?

    Those forward holes are for a long retaining pin, to discourage the anchor rode from jumping out of the anchor roller. I use a long fast pin in mine.
  15. BobJ

    Show your boat sailing thread

    I haven't posted one in a while. This was our first midwinter race a few days ago. Light breeze so I set a whisker pole instead of trying to keep the kite up in the air. Photo from the R/C markset boat.