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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi
I am brand new to sailing. I just purchased a 15 challenger sailboat probable from the 1980s. I am trying to learn what I brought! I have a basic question. There are 2 small holes in the bottom of the back transom near the bottom. I guess they are drain holes. The prior owner gave me two wooden small rods which he stated can go in the holes; however, he claimed that I did not necessarily need to plug these holes when sailing. Commons sense would seem that I need to plug these holds-although the prior owner claims otherwise. The wooden dowl rods don't seem like they would be the best things to plug these holes. They fit but I am not sure how tight. My questions are: 1) do I need to necessarily plug these holes-not sure what the prior owner was talking about and 2) the holes are not threaded (just drilled holes) can I find better drain plugs and what type?
Finally does anyone else have this sailboat?
thanks for any help.)
J
 

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I am unfamiliar with your particular boat, but I'd suspect what you are describing are the scuppers.. These are typically "always open" style holes, that are "above the waterline" on these small boats. The reason is, these centerboard boats have no self-righting ballast, and can quickly capsize.. The thinking is that the boat must be crew-rightable, so the cockpit has to self-bail.

Now that being said, the boat ALSO likely has a drain plug. This is for once you get it home.. you raise the dolly on the trailer, and pop the plug to remove any water that got into the cuddy. I can't tell from the pictures, is it a enclosed cuddy or open?

CHALLENGER 15 (FORD) sailboat specifications and details on sailboatdata.com
That is very similar to my first all-out day-sailor my Capri 14.2, which was a fun little boat.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Thanks for you input. It looks similar to your capri and your posted link is the boat that I was told I was sold. If I understand the term cuddy - it looks like an open cuddy. I took another look at the holes and from the inside they look like holes; however, on the outside, they look like they have black screwed fittings which from the pictures I googled look like the fittings (receiver) for a drain plug. Both of these-there are two- are near the bottom back of the transom. Any idea on how can I tell if they are drain holes or scuppers? Did your Capri have two of these?

Another question, the prior owner said I need to get a line (not sure how to rig this) to hold up the boom when the sail was not yet raised. Do I tied this to the top of the mast? Do I take this line off when I raise the sail? Sorry but I am very new to this.
J
 

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What you're describing is called a 'topping lift'.. some are indeed run to the masthead, but others just use a strop that is attached to a backstay.. which you likely don't have ;). You probably have to rig something to the top of the mast (in Snool's pic you can pretty clearly see a line leading from the end of the boom up to the top of the mast.. that's it)

Alternatively you could use a crutch that sits on the bottom of the hull and comes up to boom height, but then you've got to deal with that when you don't need it. The topping lift is probably the way to go.

OTOH on such a small boat you can just let the boom lie into the hull until you're ready to hoist the sail.. in all but the lightest airs you won't need the lift in that case...
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Fastar:
Thanks. I see what you are saying. Should this topping lift be wire or can I get away with just some type of rope/line? Any thoughts on my two holes mentioned above on the lower transom? Scuppers vs. drain holes. Again just bought this sailboat and want to learn about all the parts.
J
 

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Any light line - preferably non-stretchy - would do.. dyneema would work well. I don't think you'd need to go with wire nowadays.

It could well be that the transom holes are drains that may work well esp when the boat's moving forward.. if you're going slow or stopped you'd probably want to make sure to sit forward enough to keep them above the waterline.. once you get a few more posts join Photobucket.com so you can post some pictures. That would help quite a bit.
 
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