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  #71  
Old 09-21-2013
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Re: Our New Boat

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Originally Posted by Maine Sail View Post
Mel,

Talk to Gerry about one of their custom hard top dodgers. I know they build them for the C-42 & C-470. They are really sweet..
I did and the cost right now for us is not there. We have to save up for later modifications. That one is near the top of the list.
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  #72  
Old 10-12-2013
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Re: Our New Boat

Update for those interested. We just spent a week on the boat for the intial shakedown cruise. First, Lets talk sailing. It is a fast boat. She likes 9.2 knots. I have custom sails from Mack Sails in Florida, not Catalina OEM sails. This hull is easliy driven by both wind and motor. This is a big surprise for me. I moved most of my stuff from my last boat so she is not "Factory light"!. Winds at 10 knots I can get 7.5 knots and winds over 15 knots she becomes a race horse. She point well to 30 degrees. Motoring, at 80% power the speed jumps to 8.7 - 9.0 knots. For one that has been cruising at 5.5-6 knots my whole sailing life this is a whole new ballgame.
Second big surprise was ease of sailing handling. I move up from a 36' boat to this 44' boat so both the genoa and mainsail square foot differential is huge. I can easliy trim the boat without the use of the electric winches. However, electric winches are sooo nice. I see a spoiled sailor in my future.
Third little surprise. Anchoring. Big anchor, 55 lbs Ronca, 200' of big chain (3/8), huge snubber from Mantus. Not sure boat is set up right on the rollers. I think I need a bigger roller since the OEM is 5/16th chain. I found out I cannot manhandle this set-up.
Docking this big boat. Pucker factor - infinite!. I have no experience docking a boat in big current. The current rips here in GA at 2-3 knots. So for now, my life revolves around slack tide. Bowthruster is of no use in this type of current. I have a lot to learn here. One big surprise is the docking with twin helms. My throttle is on the starboard side. Docking on the port side is hard to judge where things are due to the size of this boat. It is almost like docking a catamarn. Just time and practice to get the eyes calibrated. We spent one whole day just practicing docking. Need a lifetime I think. This boat requires a whole new set of skills in this area.
Electronics- We got the new Raymarine hybrid touch screen and I-70 set up. It is a lot different than my old C-90 and ST-60's. In some ways I like my old ST-60's better. The new chartplotter has more features but at times can be hard to find the information I was used too. I have AIS too, and it has beed a blessing here in Bruniswick to communicate with the big ships that transit the channel. The new HD radar is amazing.
Disappointments. Heads. Too small for this size boat. Engine noise - Loud. Electrical - alternator charging with the 1,2 both switch. I have 3 battery banks. In order to charge the batteries I have to move this switch, I will change this out first thing and put in an echo charger. Air Conditioning pump - Open ampeture in a wet bilge.
Liveaboard factor. 10 all the way. Other than the small heads, this is a wonderful boat downstairs. Tons of storage space. I love the 3rd cabin (flex room) for storage. I can carry some serious stuff in here when we cut the docklines next year.
Let talk sailing. Did I tell you all it is a fast boat!
jrd22, DRFerron, fryewe and 5 others like this.
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Last edited by Melrna; 10-12-2013 at 06:35 AM.
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  #73  
Old 10-12-2013
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Re: Our New Boat

Nice to know you're having a good time.
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  #74  
Old 12-11-2013
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Re: Our New Boat

Would you say the boat likes to sail upright, way over on the rail, or ...? Glad to hear about the performance of it sailing and handling of the sails. We are also moving from a 36 to this. Can't wait until the ice is off Lake Michigan and we take possession of ours. That is currently scheduled for the weekend of April 28. Such is the life of a northern sailor.
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  #75  
Old 12-12-2013
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Re: Our New Boat

Welshwind - She likes to sail around 10-15 degrees heel. She is the happiest at this heel angle.
We did some heavy weather sailing over Thanksgiving, for those that didn't see the Youtube video over at BFS thread here is a short video of that going downwind:
The first part of the video is sideways. It corrects it self after the first minute. Still learning how to shoot video.
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  #76  
Old 12-12-2013
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Re: Our New Boat

Nice sailing. You are going almost dead downwind. Do you prefer on your boat on that position the main over the Genoa?

Regards

Paulo
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  #77  
Old 12-14-2013
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Re: Our New Boat

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Originally Posted by PCP View Post
Nice sailing. You are going almost dead downwind. Do you prefer on your boat on that position the main over the Genoa?

Regards

Paulo
I would have preferred the Genoa over the main in this situation. Going DDW would require for the most part a poled out Genoa and I don't have the pole set up just yet. The dealer is taking his sweet time getting the track on the mast..
The danger in just running the main out of course is an accidental gybe and broach. It takes some skill not to let this happen. First, the main has to be trimmed so as the bow falls off the wave it points into the wind (trim the main into the wind; tighten it up and traveller midship). Second, boom preventer attached ( you will see the red sheet lead aft in the video). Third a good helms person able to recognize and steer the boat properly.
We were over canvas for this sail. I should have put a reef in the mainsail. Having said that, we didn't for some good and bad reasons. First, I had two crew members real seasick. Jenn and I were both not feeling all the great ourselves. Turning the boat into the wind and waves to reef should have been done but I felt that would have been more of a problem than just running the way we did considering our situation. This later proved to be a good decision because when we did roll the main in, the furling line broke. I needed all hands on deck to roll the main in at the mast. (wind was blowing a steady 25 knots).
Right after I shot this video we lost the main steering. This is a story in itself. Remember this is a new boat. The following seas put a great deal pressure on the big spade rudder this boat has. Jenn and I both took turns steering this boat every 20 mins. We did not put the autopilot on due to my concerns on a accidental gybe ( we tried it out in the beginning and did OK but not to my satisfaction, more on this later). The chain around the sprocket on the starboard side jumped off. We had a warning about 10 mins before this happened when we both heard a loud bang coming from the steering. This was the chain slipping on the chain sprocket. We didn't know it at the time. I thought we hid something. When Jenn called out to me she couldn't steer, I put the autopilot on and headed up into the wind 20 degrees to be out of the DDW situation. (The below deck autopilot is independent of the wheel steering in most sailboats). The boat steered fine with the autopilot so I knew right away that I had a cable problem. Seen this before a few times racing. I quickly got out the tool box and opened up the top of the steering pedestal to find the chain off the sprocket. I got the chain back on. Now I had to adjust the cable in a heaving deck under the starboard transom locker. With Jenn holding me by my pants (there are pictures of this I will not share) I had to hang upside down to tighten the cables. Once that was done we were back in business san bruised, tired and mad as heck).
So lessons learned:
1. NOAA and all the other wx sites I use were wrong on sea state and wind forecast. They all called for 3.5' seas, wind 10-15 knots. When I got out into the ocean we had 5' seas, 3 secs spacing and wind 15-20 knots, one hour later seas 5-9' wind 20 knots gusting to 28. I should have ducked back into the ICW at this point (a 30 min into the wind and sea state for the St Simons inlet vs 90 min run to the next inlet. You make the call).
2. Sea sickness- I lost 2 crew members after one hour. One got real sick and the other on the verge. Jenn and I both were a little under the weather. We all tried the one ear plug in the non-dominate ear. It worked for 3 of us.
3. My bad for not reefing the main earlier when I had all 4 crew members in the beginning.
4. Boat handling in rough seas. I wanted to see how this boat could handle the seas. She did great except for the mechanical problems. There were so many lessons learned here, in too many ways it was a great learning experience close to shore vs out in the middle of nowhere. Best to find out now before we cut the docklines this summer. One reason I did what I did.
5. I also wanted to see push this crew to see where we were. Some would say "my bad", but others would say need to know now on a very short cruise like this before bigger adventures are planned. I have been sailing with this crew on/off now for some 7 years. That night at sundowners we went over the lessons learned. It was a full bottle of rum night (23 year old).
6. Steering cable. When this happened I was very upset and still am. I know that after time the steering cable will stretch. But not after only 4 sails. I am blaming Catalina and the dealer for NOT adjusting the steering cables properly during commissioning. This put the crew and boat in danger. Remember. the Salty Dog rally, two Catalina's (38'&42') lost steering too. Not sure yet if this is a design defect out of Edson/Catalina or not properly maintain cable tension. I am voting for the later. So for the rest of you, if there is any slop in the wheel get your cables adjusted. You shouldn't be able to move the wheel right or left without the rudder moving.
a. What we did right. Autopilot on. If works it is a cable problem, If it doesn't it is a real bad problem; autopilot steering arm locked up, broken rudder post/rudder.
b. The new Raymarine IP-70 autopilot with EVO is a wonderful thing except in one area. The "response" to course corrections. In the new system I have only 3 settings; leisure, cruise and performance. In the old ST-60, it was numbered 1-9. When running downwind, we need a bigger response time so we don't accidentally gybe. I need to further my education on this on what does performance mean compared to the old system.
I made some good and bad decisions here. I hope everyone can learn from this experience.
Melissa
BTW the crew is still going to sail with me after this experience.
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  #78  
Old 12-14-2013
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Re: Our New Boat

Pleasure meeting you and your crew in Fernandina. Nice boat!
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  #79  
Old 12-14-2013
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Re: Our New Boat

Quote:
Originally Posted by Melrna View Post
...Right after I shot this video we lost the main steering. This is a story in itself...
6. Steering cable. When this happened I was very upset and still am. I know that after time the steering cable will stretch. But not after only 4 sails. I am blaming Catalina and the dealer for NOT adjusting the steering cables properly during commissioning. This put the crew and boat in danger. Remember. the Salty Dog rally, two Catalina's (38'&42') lost steering too. Not sure yet if this is a design defect out of Edson/Catalina or not properly maintain cable tension. I am voting for the later. So for the rest of you, if there is any slop in the wheel get your cables adjusted. You shouldn't be able to move the wheel right or left without the rudder moving...
I hope everyone can learn from this experience...
In the interest of helping others learn, I'll share my similar experience. My boat is much smaller, and the steering system is a smaller, simpler, lighter weight pull-pull cable system. So it's not exactly relevant to your design, but there may be some similar issues.

A couple years ago my chain jumped a sprocket in a relatively mild (15 kt) blow. The cable tension seemed fine, so I did some research. It turns out that my pull-pull system relies on an aluminum bracket to provide compression on the cable sheaths that must completely counteract the tension of the cables themselves. In a good blow, that aluminum bracket is known to flex a little bit, which can lower cable tension and cause the chain to jump. Tightening the cable tension does not fully fix this problem - the best fix is to stiffen the aluminum bracket. The problem was easily solved with an appropriately sized 1x3:


This past May I got caught in heavy following seas in the middle of the Delaware Bay. Not as bad as you had, but relative to my boat's size they were pretty big. (FWIW, I chose to run on jib alone to avoid an accidental gybe.) I had to use both hands to pull the wheel hard port after every swell/breaker, otherwise I would have broached. Every time I pulled that wheel, I said to myself, "I'm sure glad I reinforced my steering bracket." Otherwise, I am sure I would have lost my steering. Instead, the steering held up, without a single jumped sprocket.

Moral of the story: Increasing cable tension may not be the right answer for jumping sprockets. Check your steering design and see if there is flexing of the support components that could be solved by reinforcement.
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Last edited by TakeFive; 12-14-2013 at 03:59 PM.
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  #80  
Old 12-14-2013
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Re: Our New Boat

Quote:
Originally Posted by Melrna View Post
I would have preferred the Genoa over the main in this situation. Going DDW would require for the most part a poled out Genoa and I don't have the pole set up just yet. ...
...My bad for not reefing the main earlier when I had all 4 crew members in the beginning.
...
Melrna I know that not all the boats are the same but maybe its of some use I share a bad experience that happened to me regarding a similar situation (well, not really) some years back while sailing from Africa to Portugal, out of the Gibraltar Strait:

The forecast was F7 but it was downwind sailing and I was pretty familiar with my boat, a Bavaria 36 so I went out of Ceuta bound to Portugal.

I was sailing with two reefs on the main and a shortened Genoa with about 30k wind going fast and well. Everybody was having a good time.

Then the wind increased again and I put the third reef on the main and reduced the front sail further... and some time later the unexpected happened and the wind increase again to about 40K and I made a mistake: 40K was already more than what was forecasted so I thought that it would not go stronger and I maintained the main and took out the genoa...... some time later the wind increased a lot, I don't know 50K or more and I was not able to maintain the main, even on the third reef. Too much lateral pressure and the boat keep turning to the wind on the gusts making me lose control from time to time.

The sea was very agitated and even with the help of the crew and the engine it took three attempts to turn the boat to the wind. Turning a boat to the wind in very strong wind without a head sail and with a main on can be a big problem, specially if the engine is not very powerful

Regards

Paulo
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Last edited by PCP; 12-14-2013 at 11:14 PM.
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