Meet the Mods
Welcome Everyone to Sailnet!!!!
We are the moderators of the site (well, I am in the middle... my kids keep me in line!!!). I thought this might be a good introduction to get to know us. I am CruisingDad, the best looking of the moderators and the best sailor (HEHEHE). I got into "large" boat (fixed keel) sailing around 1995 or so. I have primarily owned Catalina's - including a Catalina 250, 320, 380, and 400 (the one I own now), though I have sailed many others. I lived aboard with my family (wife, 2 dogs and a 1 yo at that time) in SW FLorida and we cruised around a bit on our 380 and pretty much saw about every square inch of water there and land that could be seen there!
(A PIC OF OUR 380 before a Trip to the Tortugas)
Since then we bought a new boat (Catalina 400) and have spent the last few years getting her ready to go off and do it again!
I also talked my parents into buying a boat and going with us this time. My parents bought a Tayana Vancouver 42. We pretty much go everywhere together and are getting each others boats down quite well!
They keep it only a few slips down from me in Lake Texoma right beside where they lay up the hulls for Valiant Yachts. Our timetables have been pushed back a bit due to the economy and some personal matters, but we hope to be able to get back out ther before long and do it again.
My personal interests are primarily cruising with kids and "coastal" sailing in this hemisphere. That would include all of the islands and many parts of South America. My two dream areas that I want to go to are the Galapagos Islands and St. Lucia. I refuse to go to either place unless via my own boat... so I have been to neither. Still does not hurt to dream! I currently have a 8 yo boy and a 5 yo boy. They have basically grown up on sailboats and can identify more fish than most Marine Biologists (especially if they taste good or not). I am often teased on this board as I am a big proponent of grilling and hence carry two BBQ grills depending on what I am going to cook and where!!!
We (the mods) strive to create a unique flavor at Sailnet. We do not want it to be dry and purely sailing. Hence, there is an Off Topic and War/Religous/Politics forum. We as mods rarely go to the latter, so enter at your own risk. We also encourage a free and open dialogue elsewhere on the forum that is at most PG and more preferably G rated. I want most of the forums outside of these areas to be something that I would not cringe to show my wife and children. That does not mean we do not allow humor and joking around... we do. But, we try to balance it on good humor and friendliness. There are many heated debates. Why? Ask any four sailors their opinion and they will give you five answers. As long as the opinions do not cross to personal or become too slanderous, we generally allow them to stand. We encourage friendly debates here - but they must be done in a friendly fashion. You can guess that it is often difficult to manage/moderate this type of a forum... but we feel that is what gives Sailnet a different flavor from the other sites on the internet and we feel that is what contributes to our very large success.
We encourage participation from new and experienced sailors alike. Ask your questions!!!! That is what we are for. Help out when you can... that is also what we are for. Have fun and enjoy the site.
I am always happy to help in any way I can. I am passionate about sailing and cruising... especially with kids. We (my family and I) are no experts on anything, but we have managed to make do like most American families I guess. Again, welcome to Sailnet. We are glad you are here.
- CD (Brian)
I "re-introduced" myself a month or two ago, but CD had the idea for all the mods to post intros in a dedicated thread. He threatened us with embarrassing photos if we didn't comply, so here it is again, more or less:
I have been a member of SailNet for a LONG stretch -- since 1999. Back then -- in the days of dial-up -- it was laborious to participate in all the forums, so I mostly focussed my attention in the Pacific Seacraft forum.
When I finally got a broadband connection (late adopter:o ), the "Introduce Yourself" thread didn't exist so I just jumped right in to the forums. So I thought I'd post a belated introduction.
For those who don't know me, I'm a Chesapeake based mono-hull sailor, and I've been a moderator here at SailNet since last year. My first sailing experiences were with windsurfers back in the late '70s. But I really got the sailing bug in college when I had the opportunity to crew aboard a Rival 38 in the Med, visiting places like Corsica, Sardinia, Cote D'Azure, Balearic Islands, mainland and Peloponese Greece, Aegean Dodecanes and Cyclades, Ionian coast of Turkey, etc.
I've done some limited off-shore passages (longest was about 6 days, Brewer 44), and have raced quite a bit on the Chesapeake in the early-mid-90s. We campaigned my brother's New York 36 pretty successfully, and later another brother's Melges 24 (somewhat less successfully, including some "roadtrips" to do the Figawi). I've been to Key West Race Week as crew on a friend's J30 -- which was fun! -- and helped another friend campaign his Pearson 30 and later an Evelyn 32 on the Chesapeake as well.
Many of my family members have owned sailboats. Besides the NY36 and Melges24 mentioned above, we have or have had an Albacore, O'Day 22, Catalina 22, Tartan 27, Beneteau First 285. I've spent a fair bit of time aboard all those boats.
When my wife and I started a family, the racing bug sort of left me. We got our first cruising boat -- a Pacific Seacraft Dana 24 -- when two of our three kids were still in diapers. Now we sail a Pacific Seacraft Crealock 31, which seemed big when we got it but has somehow shrunk as the kids have grown. Besides the mothership, we have a Dyer Midget sailing dinghy and an 11.5' sailing pram that my kids and I built ourselves a few years ago.
Don't run me off, but I also admit to liking certain kinds of powerboats. :)
In my family, I am known for investing in expensive sunglasses, tools, radios, etc, and then dropping them overboard.:o It is an annual ritual.
Here's our homemade dinghy beached at a favorite swimhole:
Here' are a few of our shantyboat under sail:
Tied alongside at one of our favorite destinations, the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum:
And, so you can put a face to the name, here are a few photos of me, including one with my dad.
I hope to see you on the water. - JRP
Brian, You had to start this didn't you...So, who the heck am I?
Well, I am an architect (buildings) with my own practice in Annapolis, Maryland. I have a masters degree in Architectural Structures which is an architectural degree that is more heavily engineering biased than the average garden variety architectural degree.
I have some informal training as a yacht designer and have designed and built a few boats, and worked for naval architects and yacht designers at different times in my life, BUT I do not consider myself a professional yacht designer. I have also worked in boat yards and as a consultant to boatyard owners, designing repairs and alterations to yachts. My mother had two companies that built and imported boats from Taiwan, which gave me a lot of insights into the boat building industry.
I first started sailing in 1961 and more or less have sailed ever since. I enjoy most types of sailing. I currently sail on the Chesapeake Bay but have sailed on much of the U.S. Atlantic coast. In a given year, I typically will daysail, race (both my own boat and other people’s boats), and cruise (both my own boat and other people’s boats) and can be out on the water as many as 100 days a year. I do a lot of single-handing. While I have cruised offshore, I strongly prefer coastal cruising. While I have raced dinghies and very high performance boats, I prefer racing 22 to 40 foot keelboats. I have owned wooden boats and enjoy sailing on traditional watercraft. These days I prefer to own modern performance cruisers.
In a general sense, I have a preferences for boats that perform well, and that offer excellent sailing capabilities (performance, ease of handling, comfort, and seaworthiness) across a wide range of conditions. I pick a boat based on how she sails with all the rest being negotiable. I really am not a fan of ‘heavy weight offshore boats’. (Duh!)
I currently own a Farr 38 (Farr 11.6) which I daysail, race and cruise single-hand. The Farr 11.6's are hard to classify boats and not exactly your normal off-the-rack cruising boat or racing boat. They were built as fast offshore cruisers but have had a very successful racing record. They also have a remarkable record as short-handed offshore cruisers. My boat was single-handed into the States from Cape Town, South Africa.
I have owned over a dozen boats with family members owning over a dozen more. I race on a variety of boats over the course of the year and sometimes help out with deliveries, or help a new owner ‘sort out’ a boat that is new to them. I also like sailing up to boats from astern and observing their sailing abilities, meaning relative speed, stability and motion. All of that combined gives me a relative sense of how boats are built and how they sail.
Many of my friends are yacht designers, sailmakers, and marine surveyors who also give me an inside track when I am researching a topic.
And since I posted this in April 2009, I have gotten married to my lovely wife Barbara, who makes me smile, makes me laugh, and makes me think, but not ncessarily all at the same time.
That is who I am. Now how I ended up as a moderator on SailNet is another story but for another day......
I confess I always feel like something of an imposter when I'm lined up alongside the others but here you go.
I was born, 1952, and raised in Sydney, Australia. My mother was English, my father Australian of Irish American stock. Yep...the Rodent is part American. Great great great Grandfather was a sailor from Boston Mass, probably a whaler, who washed up in Sydney early in the 19th century. My earliest ancestor in Australia was an Irish convict who was transported to NSW in the late 18th century.
Two views of a Rodent. Stetsons don't take kindly to a moist environment.
Lived most of my life in the harbourside suburbs of Drummoyne and Balmain and spent large chunks of my early years on or about the water, but not sailing. To be honest I was more interested in exploring the waterways of Port Jackson, Broken Bay and Port Hacking than I was in the choice of propulsion system. My family was a long way from wealthy and I well remember the unbridled joy when we would occasionally hire a launch from the boatshed at Bobbin Head and spend the day pottering around Cowan Creek and its tributaries. I was always in awe of the big old Halverson timber cruisers that plied those waterways and to be honest, sail did not enter into my mind until many years later. Largely, as a youngster I messed about in an old launch my family had bought and rowing around in our dinghy. School holidays were often spent on camping trips by canoe. Now that is a fine way to while away the holidays.
In my mid twenties I discovered sail. First on an old skiff that I bought for next to nothing and on which I muddled about Sydney Harbour, seemingly spending as much time capsized as upright. Later I replaced that with a hulk of a 22' timber sloop that was still a work in progress when I sold her and bought a 28' Northerner sloop. The Northerner was an Australian production sloop of the 60s, modelled on the Herreschoff 28. She was a good boat but a financial calamity saw me unable to afford her upkeep and she went to a new home. Sadly she lay neglected for some time before I sold her but this is her today.
A sister to the very first Womboat.
I was without a boat for many years after that, but about five years back we bought the current Womboat, Silver Raven. She's a 34' Van de Stadt sloop, multi chine steel. The Wombette and I spend as much time as we can on her cruising about Sydney Harbour and locales north and south of Sydney and we derive as much pleasure from a quiet weekend spent at anchor as we do sailing. Our preference for a sail is to head offshore away from the madding crowd, sailing off towards the horizon with no destination in mind.
Perhaps some day we'll simply not turn around and come home. Well at least that's the plan.
I've not done a lot of offshore stuff. Crewed across the top of Australia some years back but that's about as far offshore as I've been. I must admit I do love being out of sight of land for days on end but I never experienced any really bad weather , just a few tropical squalls, so I've only really seen the good.
In the Marina bar in Cascais with Alex's buddy.
Workwise, we own and operate a small architectural lighting business working predominantly with Architects and Interior Designers but are planning on retirement from day to day work sometime this year. Mind you I said that last year so it might be wise to watch this space.
When that day comes the plan is to cruise the coast of Australia with Tasmania and the North West Kimberly coast the areas we most want to explore. We have no serious thoughts of major ocean passages with New Guinea and the Solomon Islands being as far afield as we intend voyaging at this stage.
On the other hand we both have long had a serious love affair going with Spain (and more recently Portugal) and have it in our minds to sail the Iberian coast and associated islands. The PNW is also on our list though I suspect that if we do get to Europe or America we will buy something when we get there rather than do a circumnavigation. Then again, who knows. Nothing is set in stone.
Sister ship to the Womboat under sail cos I don't have any of the old girl herself. Raven is the masthead version.
Womboat at sea.
Off Sydney Heads
The Rodent's Retreat.
A Bat out of Water
And in her element.
Hello everyone. My name is Ron and I’ve been posting under the name “Faster” since 2005. Now it seems I’ve been foolish enough to accept an invitation to join the moderating team here on Sailnet…. Actually I’m looking forward to taking a different role here – I think this forum provides a great service to the sailing community, in particular those just coming into the world of sailboats and sailing. I like the generally respectful attitude and helpfulness (and the fun-poking and camaraderie) that is part of the flavour of Sailnet. By the way I’m Canadian so get used to seeing some more words spelled properly from now on! I'm also almost pathologically camera shy so pictures are a bit hard to come by. But here's one from the spring, with our new favourite crew, our now-nearly two year old granddaughter.
Here I'm getting soaked by a tropical squall off Diamond Rock, Martinique
I grew up in a very remote, small company town on the BC coast (currently nearly a ghost town) and so lived on the water from a young age. While speedboats were the ticket as a teenager, I was introduced to sailing as a youngster in the 60s in a limited way but even so the seed took root.
It was nearly 20 years, though, before we took that first step and purchased our first sailboat in 1981, a Shark 24 after having moved to Squamish, BC., not far from Vancouver and Whistler. Within a year our son made his imminent arrival known, and we quickly moved to another rare-to-BC boat, the C&C designed Viking 28. She was a sweet boat and we held on to her for 10 years. In that time we also got into a partnership arrangement on a Martin 242, a locally designed day racer – a fun boat that was capable of planing at speeds of up to 12-14 knots. In 1992 together with our partners we moved up to a Choate 40, a partially ‘cruisified’ IOR two tonner. This was a great sailing platform and we kept that boat for 12 years before a career change and relocation forced us to dissolve the partnership. Thanks to many upgrades and improvements, we were able to sell that boat for very close to what we’d paid 12 years earlier.
Viking 28 "Ragtime"
Choate 40 "Phantom"
Today my wife Eleanor and I have a boat called FastForward, a boat built in Brazil by a company (now defunct) called Fast Yachts. It’s a rework of the Nicholson 345. A smallish 34 footer by todays standards, it has a remarkably comfortable interior and with her ¾ rig is easily handled by the two of us.
Fast 345 "FastForward"
I’m an instructor at BCIT, a major technical college here in BC, teaching a course in process control and industrial automation after having spent nearly 27 years in BC’s now-ailing pulp and paper industry. Eleanor is a long-time preschool instructor.
Over the years we’ve raced a fair bit, esp. on our Mtn 242 with some success locally, but now essentially just cruise and occasionally race on OPBs. We get between 65 and 85 days on the water each year, generally spending 50-70 nights on board. My schedule allows us to take a full 6-7 week cruise each summer. We live in one of the best areas of the world for that lifestyle.
Riding a Westerly in Juan de Fuca Strait
In 1986 I helped on my first major delivery, Victoria to Eureka California on a trip that proved less than perfect. Since then we’ve been fortunate enough to have cruised the Caribbean chain from St Maarten to Grenada with friends who winter there, and last year spent a week with other friends on Mexicos’ Gold coast, near Manzinillo. We plan another trip south this winter while Vancouver is obsessing on the Olympics.
We're looking for more of this!
Our son grew up sailing, and from age 11 raced with us on the Martin 242, and at 24 bought his first boat, a Ranger 29, weeks after getting married to a girl he met while racing locally. They presented us with the joy of our lives, our granddaughter, a couple of years later and have recently sold the Ranger and moved up into a Catalina 36. I guess our upbringing did him good. While we had been proud of having had him out on the boat at 18 days of age, they bested us by having our granddaughter out at 1 week old, for a local race in December!
If you’re still reading this, you maybe need to get a life:D ;) ….. Anyhow go easy on me, at least for a while, OK?
Meet the Mods
I suppose since I’m still a moderator after almost eight months, the others decided to keep me around so I should post something about myself. I see the other moderators have loads of pictures and that will take me another year to get around to doing as I prefer taking the pictures not being in the pictures. I’ll see what I can do. Sooner or later.
Let me clear up a few things first: 1) My initials are D and R. I am not a doctor and 2) I am a female. Really. Sorry to those who spent time in the chat with me thinking they were talking to a man.
I started boating around 1999-ish. I was already kayaking (touring) and at some point I made up my mind to learn how to operate larger boats. No lightning hit, no AH HA moment flashed, I just drifted into the thought. I didn’t know whether it would be power boats or sailboats. A guy I knew took me offshore on his powerboat so I could see what that was like. Meh. It was fun, but my world wasn’t rocked. I wasn’t as interested in the boat as I was the ocean around me. When we returned to his dock he spent a good bit of time adjusting his dock lines to account for the tide. Now THAT intrigued me.
My next step was to take a United States Power and Sail Squadron (USPSS) boating course. I loved all nine weeks of it. The instructors were engaging and helpful. There was a group of USPSS members sitting in the back of the auditorium and they were introduced as the sailors. The instructor’s tone implied that they inhabited a culture all their own. I wanted to be them.
Near that time I also thought about joining the reserves. I was interested in either the Navy or the U.S. Coast Guard. Unfortunately, I discovered that I was too old. That’s when I discovered the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary. The Auxiliary is the volunteer part of Team Coast Guard. Cool. I had a history of volunteering: ten years with American Red Cross Disaster Services, ten years with a land SAR team (I started their swift water rescue unit), various other organizations. The Auxiliary seemed like a natural fit so I joined. Since 2000 I’ve been an Auxiliary boating safety instructor, member training instructor, and coxswain.
When I started kayaking, took scuba lessons, water and ice rescue training and then sailing lessons my parents wondered what motivated me. But I started swimming before I could walk so the water is what I love.
Today I volunteer with other boating organizations such as the Seven Seas Cruising Association (SSCA) where I assist with their monthly bulletin as well as the Rock Hall, MD Cruising Station and through one of the sail clubs we belong to, I am a delegate to the Chesapeake Bay Yacht Clubs Association (CBYCA).
My first sailboat was a 1972 Venture 2-22 with a barely working Tohatsu outboard. I found the boat for sale on the front lawn of an RV dealership near my home. I asked an experienced Auxiliary member to look at it and see if it would at least float. He crawled in and around it, gave the thumbs up, I wrote the check, and I hauled it home. I had never towed anything in my life so thank goodness I live in the country.
I bought how to books which was the start of my sailing library. My father helped with the woodworking as he was a carpenter and had a garage full of tools, oils, varnishes, and wood scraps. I spent many a summer evening after work and weekends listening to jazz while I scrubbed, scraped, removed, painted, fiberglassed, and generally gutted the boat from the inside out. Big materials fail: while the mahogany rudder my father copied from the original looked awesome, it’s HEAVY. But, my father made it for me and I don’t regret it. Besides, the boat had not yet left my driveway so I wasn’t at the point where “performance” was part of my sailing vocabulary.
Then I got to the electrical system. I bought a book, of course. A week into reading it and wondering if I’d turn the boat into a ball of fire on the water, I was introduced to John, a former electrician’s mate in the Coast Guard. Instead of courting me with flowers and fancy restaurants he offered to re-wire the boat. KEEPER!
Six months after my parents, John, and I towed the boat to Rock Hall, MD to its new home in a slip, my father died of lung cancer. Before he was diagnosed I asked him if he was going to sail with me. His response was that while he had fun working on the boat, he was not setting foot on a boat where he had to depend on wind to get him back to the dock. He had dragged home his own derelict boat to work on, a powerboat. My father had also joined the Auxiliary so we had some fun times and I have great memories.
John and I sailed the Venture for two seasons before deciding that we were tired of stooping in the cabin and wanted a boat with more comfort and range. We gave the Venture away to a couple that took one of my sailing classes and who I knew had the skills to keep it up. He is a carpenter, she is an accountant. All bases covered. We’ve since become friends.
There are a few things that I always tell my students during the first class:
Always carry a notebook. Sailors always have information they like to share. Sometimes good, sometimes bad, but write it down so you don’t forget and can investigate further later. Besides, you’ll kick yourself for not writing down that potential nugget when you had the chance.
Never think you’ve learned everything there is to know about sailing and sailboats. There is always more. It’s kind of like getting to the end of the Internet: It won’t happen unless you’ve closed your mind off to new information. I’ve learned from novices asking questions, from an old sailor with experience to spare, from books, from people in this forum.
Now John and I are several years into owning a 1980 Catalina 30 and I have started our Next Boat research. We love Halcyon and it is perfect for Chesapeake Bay and coastal sailing. We sail frequently with friends and family. My now 77-year old mother has become the perfect boat ballast, er, guest: she doesn’t get nervous sailing in heavy weather (pops her head out of the cabin every so often to make sure neither of us has fallen overboard), sleeps better on the boat than at home, and is willing to go anywhere. During her first sail when she claimed her cockpit seat, she quickly hosed my idea that she’d be our galley wench when on board but, oh well.
John and I did our first charter last year and fell in love with the British Virgin Islands. We have made a goal to return as often as possible. We also have offshore plans (Caribbean and the eastern coast of South America) for the Next Boat.
I work in the software business and John does industrial calibrations and electrical work. Our jobs keep the boat floating and good food and beverages in the galley but unfortunately our vacation time doesn’t allow for a lot of weeks away. We live in southeastern Pennsylvania with a two-hour drive to the boat.
Being a SailNet moderator has been fun but not without its challenges. Just like real life. There are many different personalities in this forum who don’t always get along but for the most part try to respect each other. Almost like real life. My forum mantra is: Attack the idea, not the person. My sailing mantra is: Be safe, have fun, make friends.
Darn. I left no room for pictures.
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