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Delayed Gratification


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#1 alx

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 05:27 AM

I got to taste it a little today.

Spent the day yesterday taking the old main off and installing the track on my mast, as well as other minor repairs. Spent the night aboard, and first thing next morning rigged the new main and hoisted it up.


And then it came time to consider. Sure, I didn't have my windex, or any instruments. No tiller pilot. No furler. Sure, the engine's temperamental, and I'd just spent half an hour painstakingly flaking the crisp new main. And sure, I've never sailed on my own before.

But I decided to just go for it. So I packed everything in the cabin inside, set up my new anchor, got the jib rigged and ready to go. Come 1pm I walked her out of the slip with a single line, pushed the bow into the fairway, and hopped aboard, taking her out into the bay for the first time since I bought her.

What Worked: lifelines, sail track, engine, charts on my tablet, anchor, docking skills

What Didn't Work: nature (no wind!), engine shutoff cable

There was a point at which I'd been running the engine with high throttle and the exhaust stopped spitting water out and just produced white smoke/steam. Backing off the throttle seemed to restore cooling to normal, though. I noticed and adjusted this before the temp alarm activated. And of course, the shutoff cable I installed had to fail. I actually anchored at one point, went below, and repaired it (took about 10 minutes).

I was out for about 3 hours. It took an hour or so to reach open water, as I was fighting the current and going easy on the engine. Even then, I only really motored around with the main up, looking for and failing to find any wind.

But man, did it feel good... After all the work, expense, and worry, having everything finally start to pay off... indescribable. Only problem is, now I have more motivation to go sailing than to finish other projects.

So that leads me to ask those of you who've done this: how did it feel when you finally crossed off enough of your TODO list to head out for the first time?

#2 floating dutchman

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 05:42 AM

What you went sailing without a windex, instruments, tiller pilot or furler! Ha Ha, you don't need that stuff for a day sail, it's nice but as you proved, you'll be fine.

Check where the water hose goes into the exhaust elbow, they tend to block up there and give the symptoms you have, it's an easy check.

Every time I go sailing the todo list is just enough done, Yea, I go sailing when I should be doing maintenance. Next time you go out count the number of other boat's out (all types fishing, freight etc) that will be the number of boats out with todo lists.

Keep it up, have fun!

#3 alx

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 05:51 AM

What you went sailing without a windex, instruments, tiller pilot or furler! Ha Ha, you don't need that stuff for a day sail, it's nice but as you proved, you'll be fine.

Check where the water hose goes into the exhaust elbow, they tend to block up there and give the symptoms you have, it's an easy check.

Every time I go sailing the todo list is just enough done, Yea, I go sailing when I should be doing maintenance. Next time you go out count the number of other boat's out (all types fishing, freight etc) that will be the number of boats out with todo lists.

Keep it up, have fun!


Oh, I knew I'd be fine. It was more about realizing a point where I *could* even venture out. Prior to this weekend, I didn't have a working anchor. I didn't even know if my engine could run well for that long. It took 2 people to hoist the sail. Hell, I didn't even know how to navigate from the marina out to the bay.

I'm not talking about sailing with a todo list so much as finishing enough todos that sailing is a possibility.

#4 Soņadora

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 06:03 AM

Crossing off the 'TO DO' list?

hah, that never ends. But it's a lot like trying to figure out how many licks it takes to get to the center of a tootsie pop.

Eventually you just gotta bite through it to get to the chewy bits.

I think most of us have been in your shoes. We put off our 'TO DO' list for over 10 years. Decided sailing was much more fun. One of the items on my TO DO list that comes to mind that I should have taken care of right away was to replace the lag wood screw that I was using to attach the boom to the gooseneck. Yep, we had that sucker in there for 5 years after losing the original pin. Replaced it just this past summer.

#5 Chris King

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 06:28 AM

The TODO list is never ending. At some point you just have to find a balance. I try and sail at least one day for every day I spend working on the boat. I don't mind the maintenance days. I kind of like hanging out at the marina, watching the world go by and chatting with the neighbors.

Today I was in Christmas shopping hell. I wish I could have been working on Puffin.

#6 Beau.Vrolyk

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 07:07 AM

Alx,

It's great you went out - CONGRATS! I was out yesterday but decided not to today when it looked really glassy. Glad the anchor worked. Where did you anchor? How deep?

BV

#7 Dale dug a hole

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 07:25 AM

Alx,

It's great you went out - CONGRATS! I was out yesterday but decided not to today when it looked really glassy. Glad the anchor worked. Where did you anchor? How deep?

BV


How deep? you think he had a depth sounder... :P

What type of marks have you put on the wrap/chain?

#8 Beau.Vrolyk

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 07:31 AM

Dale,

I'm pretty sure he knew how deep it was where he anchored. All he needs is a smart phone and a $9 ap. Easy, give it a try.

Beau

#9 bens

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 08:24 AM

hey beau,

what makes you think everyone can afford a smart phone? Not all can afford them or want them. just looked it up only 53% of cell phone users have smart phones in the USA. Really all you need and should have on a boat for coastal cruising is a chart, a hand bearing compass, dividers, parallel rules, tide chart and a pencil and a lead line. i wouldn't leave the dock without them, its a safety thing. Electronics and salt water don't mix. I guess if you could afford it you could always have 5 smart phones on board, if one goes out or runs out of batteries just chuck it overboard knowing you you always have an other one at the ready....

Ben

#10 Spoonie

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 11:17 AM

Love reading your posts Alx! There's a sense of innocent excitement partnered up with a bit of 'fugg it, let's give it a crack...' attitude that has me going 'hells yeah.... I'm off to the boat' every time.



#11 Ajax

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 11:52 AM

hey beau,

what makes you think everyone can afford a smart phone? Blah blah blah...
Ben


It's not an unreasonable assumption. The OP stated that he was testing his charts out on his tablet computer. I'm sure he knew what the depths were.

#12 4knotSB

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 12:02 PM

Reading Alx is kinda like what reading Ajax was like when he was young and innocent, before he went all high tech on us. <g>

#13 Alpha FB

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 12:19 PM


What you went sailing without a windex, instruments, tiller pilot or furler! Ha Ha, you don't need that stuff for a day sail, it's nice but as you proved, you'll be fine.

Check where the water hose goes into the exhaust elbow, they tend to block up there and give the symptoms you have, it's an easy check.

Every time I go sailing the todo list is just enough done, Yea, I go sailing when I should be doing maintenance. Next time you go out count the number of other boat's out (all types fishing, freight etc) that will be the number of boats out with todo lists.

Keep it up, have fun!


...

I'm not talking about sailing with a todo list so much as finishing enough todos that sailing is a possibility.


My to do list seems to be ever expanding, and finding time to deal with it often plays havoc with the seasons, so finding the days to actually go out on the water often gives me the same satisfaction that you describe.

It's a great thing, just being able to venture out on the water and enjoy whatever life and mother nature have dealt you with...

Sometimes I think it must be incredibly boring to have a 'turn key' boat, where you can just show up and go out on the water whenever you want... Each time I'm on the water, I see it as a precious reward for all the hard won cash and effort that I've put into my dear old boat...

#14 boomer

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 12:29 PM

So that leads me to ask those of you who've done this: how did it feel when you finally crossed off enough of your TODO list to head out for the first time?


With every new/old boat we've had it always felt different and good.

What felt the best was when two of the kids got new/old boats, fixed them up and invited me for that first time out.

#15 Tom Ray

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 12:47 PM

There was a point at which I'd been running the engine with high throttle and the exhaust stopped spitting water out and just produced white smoke/steam. Backing off the throttle seemed to restore cooling to normal...


That's not normal.

Check where the water hose goes into the exhaust elbow, they tend to block up there and give the symptoms you have, it's an easy check.


Yep, that is almost certainly the culprit. If the engine is "fresh water cooled" it could also be the heat exchanger. There is some chance the problem is a partially destroyed impeller that still has enough vanes to cool at low speeds.

I'd check the elbow first, just because it's most likely, but if you have not at least looked at and felt the impeller (check for small cracks at vane bases) you should probably do it at the dock. You will certainly be doing it somewhere, and it's nice if you have already done it at the dock.

#16 Steam Flyer

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 03:30 PM

I got to taste it a little today.

... ...

So that leads me to ask those of you who've done this: how did it feel when you finally crossed off enough of your TODO list to head out for the first time?


It's one of the best feelings they is IMHO
Glad you got a sample; it only gets better from here!

FB- Doug

#17 Alpha FB

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 03:34 PM

...

Glad you got a sample; it only gets better from here!

FB- Doug


well, the sailing does, not so sure about the to do list :P

#18 bens

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 04:23 PM


hey beau,

what makes you think everyone can afford a smart phone? Blah blah blah...
Ben


It's not an unreasonable assumption. The OP stated that he was testing his charts out on his tablet computer. I'm sure he knew what the depths were.


True. It reminds me of a thought I had when cruising the south pacific we were anchored in neiafu (sp) a crowded anchorage in tonga close to 200 boats. " if roller furling head sails nor gps existed 75% of the boat would not be here". I'm ok to the use of techno gadgets, I own a few myself. But I think one must not be completely relient on these. There have been to many recent accident in recent years of this happening.

#19 alx

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 04:24 PM

Alx,

It's great you went out - CONGRATS! I was out yesterday but decided not to today when it looked really glassy. Glad the anchor worked. Where did you anchor? How deep?

BV


Just south of the jetty, east of the mouth of the channel leaving Point Richmond, there's a general anchorage. It's pretty shallow (4-5 feet) and it was pretty much low tide, so I was a little uncomfortable taking my boat that far in. I stayed a short distance west, in slightly deeper waters. My chart showed 6 feet where I dropped anchor, which is roughly what I felt - I'd payed out a little over half of the 15ft chain rode when I felt the anchor catch. It caught pretty quickly.

I do have a smartphone, but I find the screen a little too small for charting. I have a tablet that I took with me which proved much more useful. I studied the chart to know my way out of the harbor, but it was nice to have the real-time positioning for peace of mind.

As for the engine, yeah, I suspect both the exhaust mixing elbow and the impeller. The performance of the cooling system actually seemed to improve as I ran it, which leads me to believe the pressure was helping to unclog the elbow.

I completely agree with Alpha - having a turnkey boat would be far less rewarding.

Picture attached of the new main flying at the dock. :)

Attached Files



#20 Mung Breath

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 05:20 PM

Congrat's on reaching that milestone! It's an indelible memory and exhilaration to cast for the first time. The 'to do' list will always be there. Actually using the boat makes the list shorter. Pre-occupation with it at the expense of sailing is a sure fire way to grow old! Enjoy!

And kudo's for learning your boat.

#21 Beau.Vrolyk

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 05:49 PM

Alx,

I know the spot well. There have been times when some of us have done a "strategic anchoring" in that area when the wind was light and the tide going the wrong way.

WHL already covered running the rode up under the deck so you can anchor quickly. Another trick a few racers use is setting up a REALLY short chain/rode combination for the SF Bay's shallow bits. Some of the equipment requirements require you to carry two anchors anyway, so it doesn't cost more "weight" to set one up with a ridiculously short chain and rode. That way it's light and really easy to deploy. Because some races, like the Three Bridge Fiasco, can have multiple "strategic anchoring" events in one race this can come in handy.

Mine version of this has a small Fortress, 6' of small chain and 30' of line; I made it from THIS, but it's easy to build it out of stuff you can get at the Sausalito West Marine or Encinal YC swap meets. There are almost always a handful of small anchors for sale that are a lot less expensive than a Fortress. This rig works just fine anchoring anywhere in the east bay on those mud flats and through most of the Delta. The rode used to be longer but it would get tangled occasionally and made it a lot less portable. This rig can hold my boat in quite a chop/breeze, surprising really, not trustworthy for overnight but perfect for lunches or emergencies. Small enough to live in a bag hanging from the stern pulpit.

The mainsail looks good! Pinapple Sails is run by really good folks who will REALLY stand behind what they build.

BV




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