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post #51 of 173 Old 09-17-2019
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Re: Sailing as a senior

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Sounds great but a rarity.......
It is. No doubt my doc has chosen a lifestyle he prefers too. I bet he's not maximizing his earnings, rather he gets to spend more time raising his kids. That's not a choice confined to docs, most folks won't make the choice he made. Some will.

In my previous home town, I was ingrained in a "medical group". It was a conglomeration of every version of general and specialist doc there is. The docs were attracted to the group for the business infrastructure that most docs seriously struggle with and for the equity in the whole practice, not just their own. This group had the reputation of only allowing the best to be in the "group" so it was desired by the docs and sought after by the community. Still, it was a machine. Huge waiting rooms, churn them over. Lots of prescribed surgery. Prior to find my current doc, I thought it was the best choice. I know better now.

Many, many years ago, I recall a local doc tried to create a new business model. For $2k per year, you could become a client in a closed practice of some number I don't recall. He would not take insurance, but he would provide one thorough preventative visit per year and be available for all routine diagnosis and treatment, along with consulting for any disease you may contract and provide counsel on your specialist treatment. No additional charges. If you needed a specialist, he'd refer you and, of course, you'd likely need insurance for that. The idea was that he thought he could make an honest living and focus on the general health of his patients, he'd be more of a health partner rather than try to run the factory or deal with the insurance companies various reimbursement rates. It sounded like a great idea to me, although, obviously only for the relatively wealthy. It didn't work. My doc is the closest I've found, but he works within the existing model. I do have co-pay and deductibles, which I gladly pay for the extra attention and followups.

BTW, my doc left one of those "groups" to start his own practice in his mid-late 30s.


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post #52 of 173 Old 09-17-2019
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Re: Sailing as a senior

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We have traditional lazy jacks on our 35 footer (244 sq ft main) and they work reasonable well. That is, well enough that I haven't had a strong urge to replace them with another system after 23 years.

While the sail doesn't flake itself like a Dutchman system would, it is adequate under reasonable sailing conditions. What has made life easier is installing single line reefing with halyard and reefing lines led to the cockpit. (We did that 12 years ago after the admiral got uncomfortable handling the boat while I went forward to put in a double reef while beating into a 29 kt breeze. That was our first accommodation to our advancing years as sailors.) If conditions are snotty, you likely would have reefed the sail. In that case, the reefing lines are stretching the sail and helping to semi-flake the sail before it is lowered.

Since there is a lot of drag on the lines with this system, it helps to have blocks for the single line reefing on the sail--ours are the yellow Karver blocks shown in the first thumbnail in which a single reef has been executed. The second thumbnail shows the deck arrangement for the single line reefing (2 reefs) plus the main halyard. With the dodger (not shown) installed, it is necessary to use a short winch handle, which became a pain, so we bought a Winchrite electric "cordless winch handle" to use in our old age.

The other secret weapon in our arsenal is a substantial below deck autopilot that can handle the boat when the wind pipes up and you are single-handed or your crew has limited capability. The first thumbnail was taken while underway to Block Island with my then 8 and 12 yr old grandsons as my only crew, after I had set a single reef as a hedge against the winds picking up.
We are set up exactly like Seascape. Itís so easy to reef this way.

Most sailors on SN are like this. No assisted electric winches, . Its a great setup for short handed sailors or with unexperienced crew. Reefing early takes the quirkiness of sailing in progressively heavier winds and the weather helm being over canvassed causes. I see many sailors just jumping wind with relaxed main sheets as the wind progresses. The sails look Un trimmed , because they are , in order to ease their weather-helm.

We see this often. My wife who has become very astute in comparing our sails set and sailing angle compares our set up with others and constantly asks comparative questions.

Reefing is one of the most important learned techniques for newer sailors to learn. It can make the difference from having a rebellious or frightened crew watching the helmsman struggle with control or a stable easy ride. Itís amazing to see so many different set ups to handle wind 15-25 knots.

Some reef..... some open up their main angle .... some forgo the main completely and jib sail...... and some motor and just give up if they must go upwind.

While I am a strong proponent of ASA courses, I donít believe they teach enough sail theory. I obtained mine by sailing with other sailors who were willing to explain their approaches. It sometimes has to go with a persons way of learning. Many believe by passing courses and reading lots of technical manuals thatís whatís helps them. Others take a more show me experienciential approach.

Reefing I believed best learned by doing. Each boat and sail combo handle it differently, but if you donít try it, you donít learn it.

To reef it needs to be as easy as possible for people to do it.
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post #53 of 173 Old 09-17-2019
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Re: Sailing as a senior

Ease of reefing is one of the advances in sailing technology since I began sailing in the 70s that makes handling larger boats possible by a senior husband-and-wife team. First is a roller furling genny of course. Second is a good slab reefing system on the main. My current boat came with two reefs and a two-line system on each with lines brought back to cockpit. Works well. One feature of the Dutchman system that gets overlooked (though SanderO has mentioned it) is that the when reefing, the system flakes and holds the sail on the boom as you lower the main for reefing. No need for those ties in the middle unless you will be reefed for a very long time.
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post #54 of 173 Old 09-17-2019
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Re: Sailing as a senior

Never used the ties. Was taught early on the ties produces significant wear on the sail even under a cover. On prior boats when sail ties were necessary never pulled them tight. Ideally you want your folds to be radii not sharp edges and no crinkles in the sail. Itís when sails are sharply bent that fibers break and coatings crack. Thatís why some race boats just take their sails off or leave them hanging even if it means they hang under the boom. Obviously not practical on cruising boats or bigger boats. One of the pluses for in mast or in boom is no folds and less sun exposure.

Another advantage of the Dutchman is the sail is controlled and not flopping around while raising or reefing. This means much less noise (that scares the bride) and the sail doesnít need to be completely perfectly unloaded throughout the process. Of course the vang is completely off and the main sheet loose but as you rock and roll in a seaway itís quite helpful because the boom wanders around. Mostly do stuff myself so thereís no one at the helm. We ease the topping lift once done so the Dutchman lines put no stress nor chafe the sail.
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post #55 of 173 Old 09-17-2019 Thread Starter
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Re: Sailing as a senior

Reefing of course get's the boat a better sail plan for the stronger winds. It should be noted that MOST of the issues for sailing in heavy weather ARE the waves not the winds. Even reefed your boat will be thrown around by the wave action. And the wave period if regular and not confused... will be more comfortable with a matching waterline length.

More than high wind speeds... it's the wave height shape, direction that makes for comfort and control issues. Of course having a slight weather helm is desirable. People get sea sick from wave action not wind speed. Sure they are related. But it's the sea and reefing can do nothing about that.
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post #56 of 173 Old 09-17-2019
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Re: Sailing as a senior

I have the knee thing. Ripped my meniscus 2 years ago doing construction work ( on my own house) and it turned into arthritis and general destruction. Still walking on it. No running or jumping. Or squatting. There is a synthetic replacement in clinical trials, if I can make it long enough for the approval.


You guys are not in cognitive decline. I have some old family members and the sharp older ones are almost 100% and the declined ones are in a vague la la land. Its a pretty marked difference.

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Re: Sailing as a senior

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When I say row I mean row. Have a sliding seat cf Whitehall rowboat....
Yes, I took it that way. Good on you!

I have a friend that gave away a Torquedo because he preferred rowing. He is good at it.

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Re: Sailing as a senior

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... You guys are not in cognitive decline. I have some old family members and the sharp older ones are almost 100% and the declined ones are in a vague la la land. Its a pretty marked difference.
Even for those off us with no pathology, this is a big deal. I thought sailing and writing were keeping me sharp. Then I took on a large engineering consulting project and learned just how much I had slid both in speed and project organization. Within a few months I was up to speed, but there is no substitute for constantly challenging the mind. Of course, there is the stress. But the difference is it's not a career job that I have to sweat loosing. It's "good" stress, like exercise.
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Re: Sailing as a senior

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My doc is the only person in his office. He has a part time non-medical receptionist, but no nurse, no PA, not other docs. Just him. He doesn't draw blood, you stop by the lab a few days before the exam and my doc has the results when you arrive. Our local hospital has a portal that engages every professional in town. He has access to every report from every other doc I may see, along the way. He has his tablet with him in the exam room to take notes and look up my past records. He prefers non-emergency communication through the messaging system inside this secure portal, rather than leaving phone messages. You can also make your own appointment this way.

He's very engaged in modern medicine and the local physician networks. He's currently the President of some local group of docs, so he is a great resource for competent specialist referrals. In my past, I could tell I was just being sent to a buddy.

It's really a great new model. He may sound like a 20 yr old, but I'd say he's early 40s.
Found an insurance plan and Primary Doctor similar to what you describe. Got a letter from the doctor's office two weeks ago stating he was going to join a nearby University Medical group. So visits will not covered by my insurance plan with just a co-pay after September. So I either find a new doctor in my plan or pay out of pocket and stay with him until I get on Medicare (which he does take). Just when you think you've got things setup nicely something pulls the rug from under you.

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post #60 of 173 Old 09-17-2019
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Re: Sailing as a senior

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I've been avoiding doctors since I got to the age where they feel obligated to find something wrong to fix. Their first question is always "What medications do you take ?" when you answer none they give you the fish eye.
Then I tell them about some weird pain I have. And he looks me in the eye and says ďSo howís your pee, have a good stream?Ē

They are like an old pound lizard, they have a set and they stick to it. Donít throw them off with something weird.

Once the topic came up and my Dr. said that, at that time, for the last 6 weeks 90% of his patients where there for the flu. So I can see that they get caught in a routine.

But itís kinda neat when the intern says ďGee, I want to have your body when Iím that age.Ē Also kinda creepy too because I donít think Iím in really great shape. You wonder what their standard expectation is.
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