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Verge 06-16-2019 04:46 PM

First Sail
Past experience: White Sail 2 and some sailing with friends, both a decade ago. I've also spent a lot of time at sea in other capacities.
Knowledge: Mostly books and youtube.

So, I got out for my first sail a couple days ago in an albacore I've spent quite a while re-building. The rebuild included a lot of fiberglass and paint, new rigging, building a centerboard and a few other parts, and re-using or replacing hardware based on research and availability.

We launched and sailed out of the harbour under jib alone, then hoisted the mainsail when we were out in the bay. Sheltered waters. We gybed, tacked, and generally sailed around trying to figure out what works and what doesn't.

Some issues I had and the solutions I've thought of follows. I'd appreciate any feedback on this.

1) Raising sails out of harbour: I think this was a mistake. I chose to sail out under jib alone because I couldn't figure a good way to get both sails up without being blown into the docks in the time it took, and couldn't keep the bow into the wind with only the jib. My solution is to simple have my crew hold the painter in shallow water while I raise both sails (so we face into the wind) and then both hop on and sail out. I've seen instructions saying to rig while the boat is on a trolly with the bow into the wind, but I'm launching from a vehicled trailer that can only go down the ramp with the bow facing one way. Raising the mainsail out in open water led to a lot of flapping and frustration while we blew about a mile downwind - my only issue with this solution is that I can't think of many ways to rig and sail away if I'm by myself.

2) The rudder came up when we're going fast: The force of the water seems to push the rudder up. My solution is to put a pin through the rudder cheeks when the rudder is down and pull it out when it's time to retract the rudder. Also, tie the pin off so I don't lose it. If I tighten the rudder bolt further I won't be able to pull it up.

3) My outhaul: I basically don't have one, relying instead on tying the clew off at the end of the boom. I'm going to rig a block and a cleat for a simple outhaul.

4) Tiller extension broke: I made the tiller extension in a hurry from materials I had on hand, and it snapped where it went into the universal joint just before we made landfall. I'm either going to buy a proper extension with universal joint, or replace it with something more durable. I've heard a gold-club shaft works well.

5) Scuppers: I used one-way valve scuppers with a ping-pong ball that's supposed to float up and block water from entering the boat. They didn't work - the balls just bubbled around as the water came in. Sitting forward kept them out of the sea entirely, but I need to replace these with something that works. There are two three-inch holes at the stern to accommodate these and allow water to exit in the event of a capsize. Any recommendations? I was tempted to simply seal these up and bail in the event of a capsize, but I think I may regret that decision when my boat is full of water.

These are the problems I noticed with the boat. The rest of the issues were with me, such as tripping over the toe-strap while moving side-to-side, or forgetting to put the centerboard back down after I raised the mainsail. There are a few other things I haven't included, such as installing a downhaul and a boom vang, but the only problem with those (like the outhaul) is that they simply aren't there at all.

Any comments welcome :)

chef2sail 06-16-2019 05:42 PM

Re: First Sail
Good for you getting out

I would not per mantle tie down the rudder with a can get it out fast enough

paulinnanaimo 06-16-2019 08:19 PM

Re: First Sail
Your description is a little hard to follow. The holes in the transom should have flaps covering them so that water doesn't come in; they are held closed with a length of shock cord and the cord is released when bailing is necessary. I am not familiar with the ping pong ball scuppers you mention, the type I know are wedges that are pushed open to bail and locked up to seal. I would advise you to get both the transom and floor scuppers working; you can empty a flooded boat amazingly quick without having to hand bail.

Verge 06-16-2019 08:39 PM

Re: First Sail
Sorry for the descriptive issues - they're called radbuds, and a google image search will show you what I'm trying to describe. I elected to go for these instead of trying to fabricate flaps and have more lines running under my feet, but they're obvious fails.

With the little shock-cord door (I assume you mean bungee cord?), the ocean goes out of the boat without coming in?

paulinnanaimo 06-16-2019 10:39 PM

Re: First Sail
I couldn't find anything about radbuds but what you need are floor mounted self bailers. The bungee holding the transom flaps does not get in your way; it's down low and fastens to the floor near the transom.
This is how it works. You have dumped the boat and it's full of water. Once the boat is upright you set the sails to get it moving, obviously progress is very slow. The boat only needs to be crawling, open the transom flaps and the water begins to flow out. As the boat lightens it speeds up and the process quickens. Once the water level is below the transom flaps you open the floor bailers and the remainder of the water is sucked out. As long as the boat is moving it all works very nicely.
The transom flaps are not really water tight but they are not below the water level when you are sailing; they are more for keeping out following waves and shoreline waves when the boat is beached.
If you don't want the expense and work of installing the floor bailers, you could just go with the transom holes and then a bucket...but it's a bit Mickey Mouse.

Verge 06-16-2019 11:16 PM

Re: First Sail
Thanks, Paul! I have an idea for the transom flaps, and the Mickey Mouse bucket will probably be just fine for the time being... I'll go with the classic cut-down bleach bottle, I believe. I'll research floor bailers for next season, however.

overbored 06-16-2019 11:35 PM

Re: First Sail
2 Attachment(s)
Transom doors if you have the round holes you can use tennis balls cut in half with a bungy or make a flapper door. if you have these you don't need a self bailer as these work better. you should be sailing that boat with the transom out of the water.

SeanM26 06-17-2019 12:01 AM

Re: First Sail

Verge 06-17-2019 08:48 AM

Re: First Sail
Thanks, Sean. I did mean rabud.

Overbored, I also like this half tennis ball idea, thanks! I'll see what I can get rigged up. The photos were also helpful.

paulinnanaimo 06-17-2019 10:05 AM

Re: First Sail
Be sure that your classic bleach bottle is secured with a lanyard, it isn't of much use at the bottom of the lake.

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