Alex W

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117 F'n Saint

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About Alex W

  • Rank
    Super Anarchist

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  • Location
    Seattle, WA
  • Interests
    sailboats, bikes, metalworking, diy

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  1. Alex W

    need music stereo

    Fusion works well, I had the RA-250 or something like that on my old boat. Also consider good Bluetooth outdoor speakers, it’s a lot less wiring hassle and weight. I ripped a stereo, 4 speakers and a lot of wire off of our Express and instead we use a UE Megaboom when we want tunes.
  2. Alex W

    Best Electronics upgrade options

    If you do Raymarine I would strongly recommend itc5 and two i70s instead. The i70s display is a lot more flexible. The itc5 can probably use the depth transducer that is already in your boat.
  3. Alex W

    HDPE (RudderCraft) rudder without bottom paint

    I had the standard one. The blue water one is a lot more expensive than a fiberglass rudder, I'm not sure what the market is. How does the stainless steel tab work on the CNC'd one piece HDPE rudder?
  4. Alex W

    HDPE (RudderCraft) rudder without bottom paint

    Yup. I was naive when I bought my rudder in 2012 and did it to save $150 over a proper fiberglass one (in 2012 that was about the price difference between this rudder and the one from Foss). One big difference is that my boat (Catalina 25) had a transom hung rudder and his has a rudder stock. The rudder stock would probably stiffen up the leading edge of the HDPE blade significantly if it goes all the way through the blade. I do wonder how they lock the HDPE onto the rudder stock. For my boat back then they sold the rudder in two forms, there was a heavier duty "blue water" model that is significantly thicker. That might be the only way to get some stiffness back, but it's a lot heavier. I just checked pricing and for my old boat the HDPE "blue water" rudder is about $400 more than a fiberglass rudder, so I'm not sure why anyone would buy it.
  5. Alex W

    HDPE (RudderCraft) rudder without bottom paint

    I had one of these on a Catalina 25 (my first boat, this was 2012). I never felt like it performed very well and it definitely flexes under load. It fluttered a lot in an annoying way when the boat was pointing high in moderate winds. It also stalled easily from the short chord. I wish I had spent $100 more on the Foss rudder. I did paint it. It’s been repainted many times since (I see the boat in local Duck Dodge races) and adhesion doesn’t seem to be an issue.
  6. Alex W

    R2AK 2020

    I'm guessing it'll be a chain (bike chain or industrial) running down through the tube and around a roughly small cog (10t in 1/2" bike pitch) at the prop shaft. It could be bevel gears though. Please let us know what you find out! I base this on the size of the housing at the top, it looks big enough to enclose a good sized bike chainring and some jockey pulleys to re-direct the chain straight down. It's a nice looking setup. In R2AK news I'm very excited by the Sail Like a Girl team this year. I know all crew members announced so far and have sailed with most of them. It's a great mix of sailors with a lot of experience (this has been true for them every year, but even more so this year). They'll be a team to watch.
  7. Alex W

    Racing Crew Management Software

    Here is a copy of my spreadsheet that is sanitized to remove real crew names: A couple of features: Regular crew each gets their own column. I hide columns if someone stops coming out on a regular basis because this spreadsheet also acts as my race log. If a guest comes along you can put a yes+1 or yes+2 in the column for their host to keep an accurate count On the crew page rows 52 and 53 have "email regulars" and "email all" that preformats a concatenated list of email addresses. The regulars are ones with an X in the regular crew column. For distance races we temporarily make new tabs where we can work out carpooling, ground crew, food contributions, etc. This spreadsheet works great for me. It isn't as complex as real management software, but it has the advantage of being free, easy to use, and it works well from my phone or PC. I like being able to reach out to my regular crew first and then text or email people in one-off fashion if I need to find a few more people to help out. We also have a Facebook group. I opened it up and we use that to share photos and stories, but not for reaching out to crew. A number of my regular crew members don't use Facebook anymore anyway. alex
  8. Alex W

    Another approach to casual racing

    I missed the pursuit aspect of your race. I love pursuit race format, but think it works best with handicaps so that everyone is trying to finish at the same time. That is more commonly used for shorthanded racing in Seattle (by Sloop Tavern Yacht Club) to keep the start line from being too crowded while short handed. Duck Dodge does change course. The website is showing a flyer from one of the first races back in 1974. It's mostly the same, but they've evolved over time. The course is shown on the committee boat and often runs two laps for 1st and 2nd start and one lap for 3rd start since the venue is in shifty light air and the 3rd start boats can struggle in that. I think of Duck Dodge as racing with training wheels and/or a boat parade with a party depending on the boat. When you do it you quickly learn which boats are out there for some sport and which ones are just there for the after party. It's a great way to learn basic rules of the road (they don't use RRS) and to compare yourself against similar boats without doing anything too seriously. I even raced for a while with a friend who intentionally started 2 minutes back to avoid chaos at the start line (3rd start in Duck Dodge can be complete chaos) and we just kept track of how many boats we passed.
  9. Alex W

    Another approach to casual racing

    This is similar to the Duck Dodge format in Seattle. They have 4 starts: slow, half-fast, fast and dinghy. They do try to get people to move up who constantly win. There are no official PHRF mappings but it’s roughly split at 100 and 180. Every race ends with a big raft up and on water party. It’s a great intro to racing.
  10. Alex W

    Updating US Navigation Lights: LED, 2 Mile

    I also have been impressed with MarineBeam. Their anchor/tricolor is nice and only uses one pair of wires. You toggle the switch to change modes. Their steaming/deck light is a lot more durable than the Forespar that it replaced.
  11. Alex W

    Washington state marine surveyors

    I was very impressed with Steve Berg who surveyed my Express 37. He did a really thorough job, much better than others that I’ve worked with. He is in Anacortes, which isn’t that far away using the PT-Coupeville ferry.
  12. Alex W

    Garmin Watch users - new Sailing Datafield

    I need to push the latest code to my github. I’ll loop back when that is done and you can copy the tick.
  13. Alex W

    3D Printing Anarchy

    Did you do an internet search on the topic? I see thousands of results and a lot of instructional videos if you search for "lost wax casting 3d printing". Here is one hit: Note that the jewelry results that they show would require a very small nozzle size (0.2mm or finer) and small layer height. This will make the printer extremely slow and painfully slow for any real size part (like a small horn cleat). I mostly make functional not pretty parts and use a 0.6mm nozzle and thicker layer height to make the prints go a lot faster, but that doesn't make very good looking output. As for carbon fiber in epoxy soup -- You can already buy filament which has short carbon fibers in nylon soup. It adds a little strength over regular nylon, but doesn't give you the strength of a carbon fiber layup since all of the threads are going in random directions and aren't very long. I do have a couple of low load 3d printed parts on my boat that were done using nylon filament. The black color all faded away after a few months, but the now clear parts are still holding up a year later. They are just simple mounts for cam cleats on stanchions that hold our lazy kite lines, so not much load.
  14. Alex W

    Garmin Watch users - new Sailing Datafield

    That looks nice. Please compile for Forerunner x45 devices too, they have the same screen resolution and button layout so it’s usually trivial to do. On my own Garmin app I finally added a small tick mark around the edge of the screen that shows visual bearing to next waypoint. Sometimes it’s faster for me to think “turn hard to port” than go -100 degrees. That looks like it would be easy to add to your data field too.
  15. Alex W

    Yanmar 2GM20F - Transmission ratio?

    It's on the plate on the transmission, top center facing aft. Easy to find in image searches, which is how I found this picture: