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Discussion Starter #1
I am currently talking to a Cal 21 owner about making space in his driveway. He has a 71 Cal 21 for sale. After the customary phone calls I am getting ready to make a trip to check out what he has. I have owned 14, 16 and 18 foot Hobie Cats and have crewed on a number of mono hulls when I was younger. I worked for Jack Helms in the late 70s and early 80s at Helms Yachts in Irmo South Carolina. I have read all I can find about the Cal 21 so that when I go look I will have an idea of what to look for. My question is does anyone have any pictures of how the boat was laid out when new. This boat has had the complete Interior stripped. I can get an idea of what to rebuild from the factory pictures I have found but I could use more. Interior pictures, deck layouts, where and how the chain plates attached and anything else you may think would be of interest. Thank you in advance for your help.
 

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Sailaway21 will probably reply to this thread... since he has a Cal 21 IIRC. Go to the song thread and post until you have ten posts, then PM him. :) Also, highly recommend you read the POST in my signature to get the most out of Sailnet.

Welcome to the asylum.
 

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yep, the dog is right.
but if you ask me, its a pretty basic boat on the interior.
I think there is a cushion in the v area and a cushion on the two quarter berths, I don't even remember seeing any bulkheads down there. I know there is a porta potty somewhere because I heard guy using it yesterday.

What I do know is that she is a fun trailer sailer.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
The factory Pictures show the V berth with a sink on one side and a spot for a Porta Potty on the other side. I believe there is no inner liner on the deck half. Is the inside of the deck painted? What was the sole made out of? Was the sole Plywood and then painted or was it covered in vinyl? Did the side stays attach to a bulkhead? If so where were the bulkheads placed and how were they attached? Thanks Again...
 

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You should find most of what you need here: Cal 21 Sailboat

No sink standard. Porta-potty standard. Chain plates attach to cutaway bulkhead, really a wooden frame, which ties into a floor. There ain't no stinkin' liners! What sole? There's a couple of wooden footings to either side of the keel trunk that are probably long gone and of dubious value to begin with. Deck is plywood cored, hull is solid glass. Interior is painted for what's not mahogany trim.

Check the keel trunk, especially at the pivot for signs of wear and leakage. Also check the cockpit sole to keel well joint for separation. Crawl through the boat with a flashlight..you'll be able to get to and evaluate every serious and unserious thing you need to see.

You can re-do the interior on one of these in very little time, they're really quite basic. I've even got a post in a thread around here where you can add a hatch aft, where you need one.

It's a fun boat...I'd have a hard time parting with mine...and it's easy to tow, rig, and sail. They sail well also.
 
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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you very much for the replies. The walk thru is great. This time of year i will not need to bring a bug bomb. There is snow on the ground this evening. Is the interior open from stem to stern? Do the chain plates attach to the pieces i can see with the holes in them? How was the deck laid out? Is there much concern about rot where the deck and hull are attached? I guess that enough questions for now. Thanks Again
Mark
 

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Chain plates penetrate the deck outboard and bolt to the frame below decks. You can see the bolts and their backing plates below decks.

I've a slight leak between my deck and hull on both sides about three feet aft of the chain plates. It only manifests itself around 30 degrees of heel. One of these days I'll mange to find a reason to pry the rub strip off and address the problem, no doubt resulting in my getting my boat in around Labor Day once again! (You may think I'm kidding but, unfortunately...)

You can crawl all the way from the bow to the stern although your trip to the stern will be over the quarter berths on your belly-bring a good flashlight.

You may see a bit of roving showing through on the gel coat from the outside of the hull, if the light is just right...don't worry about it, it's normal...they came that way.

You'll probably see some cracking of gel coat around the chain plate penetrations on deck. Check for sponginess in the deck in that area and examine the wooden frame beneath for evidence of water damage. If you don't see it there, it's not there as it's got nowhere else to hide.

The keel winch should look like a boat trailer winch on a board that will span the cockpit seats. There should also be a wood keel stopper or keeper about five feet long with a hinged portion one foot long. If it's missing, don't worry they're easy to make. Check the hook at the aft end of the keel where it goes into the lead keel. These are easy enough to repair also with some epoxy. The hook will be in 400lbs of lead and the keel is of a swept back design when lowered. You probably won't be able to see much of the actual fin that the keel bulb attaches to...it's fiberglas over steel and easy enough to repair if you get the boat up on stands.

There should be a strut that fits over the pintles on the stern for carrying the mast when trailering. Some came with a bow pulpit, some did not. some came with jib winches on the gunwales aft, some did not.

If you're a do it yourselfer, there really isn't much you cannot do to this boat in the way of repairs or upgrades. It only weighs 1100lbs so there's even a variety of ways you can get her up off the trailer for hull and keel work.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thank you for the reply. I am looking for a boat to take on some of the inland lakes and some weekend cruises out of Bridgman Michigan up on Lake Michigan. Is the Cal 21 a good choice for these waters?
Thanks
Mark
 

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Thank you for the reply. I am looking for a boat to take on some of the inland lakes and some weekend cruises out of Bridgman Michigan up on Lake Michigan. Is the Cal 21 a good choice for these waters?
Thanks
Mark
Mark,
as you know, the big lake can get down right nasty. She has been known to take out 600 footers, just ask the crew of the Carl Bradley. Having said that, with the right weather window and close monitoring of the weather, sure, the Cal 21 would be a fun boat to do some weekending on. Just remember that down below you is very spartan. About all you can do is crawl into a berth for a good nights sleep. Cooking, washing, bathing, etc will all have to be done in the cockpit camping style on a coleman or similar type stove.
Also, with a LWL of around 15 feet, your hull speed is about 5.5knots. Your legs are not going to be 120 miles but you will probably want to keep those around 35 miles or so. Thats simply my opinion.
Having spent some time on board one, she is a fun boat. Does she carry all the comforts of home? No. Does that matter to some people like my wife? Yes. Would I go for a weekend cruise with Guy and leave the girls home? yes.
Its something you will have to judge for yourself. Only you can determine what your needs are in a weekend cruise.
 
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BTW, Bridgeman is beautiful Country. We love the Warren Dunes Beach; got married there right on the Dunes. We drive right by your place everyweekend during boating season. Will you keep her in a slip at St. Joes? New Buffalo? Or do you plan on launching and keeping her on the trailer? Come up to Holland sometime and check out Lake Macatawa. Nice inland lake for a small sailor with a direct channel to the big lake.
Not that I am putting the cart before th horse.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks for the reply. I do agree that Bridgeman is beautiful. We live about an hour from Waco in Indiana. Before Waco got there cabins we would take the Hobie Cats there for the summer. Camp in the campgrounds and drive back and forth to work. I believe i will keep her on a trailer. I live abut an hour north of Wawasee so that would be another good choice. My wife has never sailed so i believe we are going to have to go slow. I am getting kind of excited about the possibilities. But now I am putting the cart before the horse!
 

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The biggest drawback to the boat is a lack of headroom below decks. There's plenty enough space itself but you must crawl around. A Compac of similar size offers much more below decks usable room but does not sail nearly as well in my opinion. If you don't mind camping out, so to speak, the boat is suitable for many different types of sailing adventures.

As far as lake Michigan goes, I see no problem with venturing out there any more than any other boat does. You'll of course want to show more attention to conditions and the forecast than some larger boats might but you won't encounter much you cannot handle otherwise. If you want to see more of the lake than just your area, you'll find that this is where a boat like a Cal 21 will shine. On a larger boat, if you want to cruise the North Channel or sail on Traverse Bay you'd need to schedule days or a week to sail there. With a trailer-sailer like this you can be traveling 70 mph up the highway and launching your boat right in the area you want to see.

Check that boat out and, if it looks good to you, we'll make arrangements for you to see mine or I can look at it with you. Send me a PM.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Very Cool. I do thank you guys for the advice. I have a 16 hobie in the back yard that still needs a new tramp. This boat came up and it really peaked my interest. I have been looking for a Helms since i moved back up here but i have not run across one. The Cal is much more mobile and from whats been said probibly a little quicker. I love when the wind picks up and the rigging starts to sing.
Thanks Again Guys!!
 

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Don't forget, that Sway is completely and certifiably insane... he's a Republican after all. So as long as you take anything he says with that in mind, you should be fine. :) :p :laugher
 
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