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Freedom isn't free
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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
Just spent the last 3 hours folded up under the cockpit installing a new breaker panel. Going from 5 position to 8 position DC panel. The panel was so screwed up I pulled out probably 10 lbs of extra wiring. There was an "optional" aux power in the cockpit for somethign unknown (maybe tiller pilot?)... also the VHF was wired directly to the battery. Finally each power source and ground was run all the way to the battery... I counted 5 leads to both...

I installed 2 heavy duty source wires to a positive and negative bus, then extended that to the panel. I managed to get everything working again after pulling out literally feet upon feet of extra wire. I obviously went to the larger panel because I wanted to add some stuff, which I have yet to do (including converting the cockpit power to Tiller pilot hookup and also putting the VHF on the panel).

I've not sourced the grounds for the LED lighting of the panel yet, but its next on the list. I'll take a picture of the final product as well as the plethora of panel, wires, screws and stuff I pulled out and dumped into the bilge as I lay twisted sideways wiring things up. This wasn't a fun job, but once its done it'll make me sleep better knowing it'll all be cleaned up. I'll probably add a bilge pump too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
Ok, well I only have pictures of a few of the mid-step workings on my electrical panel.
This is the pile of stuff I ripped out and off of the electrical panel...

This is how wedged I was working on the boat... I'm 6'1" tall and 220lbs, and I have to say getting into this spot was hard, but once there, I actually had nearly enough room to sit up!

To give you an idea... I was behind the bulkheads in this picture :)

This was before I started to tidy up the wiring, you'll note I upgraded the wiring from the battery (that sits just below in this picture, less than 18 inches away), to the 2 separate bus bars. There is a heavy inline fuse from the battery to the bus bar as well. Picture is at a weird angle because I was already pretty contorted to sit in there, so it was all that much harder to take the picture.

All my inline connections were soldered... I used solderless connectors (and I struggled with that decision as I hate them) ultimately for connections to the bus bars, I tried to solder AND crimp them but it wasn't working well with my 35 watt soldering iron.

This is a lake boat, and only has light DC use, so honestly this may be a lot more breaker panel than I need, but I'm hoping it'll give me room for a few other electronics toys going forward.
Here is the panel before I slapped the cover on... You can see the size of the old panel versus the new one here. This is an 8 rocker panel, the old one was 5... The new stuff I added to the panel will be, a stereo, the VHF (which was hard wired in before), a tiller pilot and a bilge bump. What was already on circuits was, Mast head light (anchor), steaming light, running lights, cabin lights, and Speed/Depth.
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
I also removed the mast from laying on the pulpits, and lowered it down to the garage floor... to work on it... The prior owner kept the mast spreaderless, and the shrouds indoors (great for neatness, but not real practical for a boat that needs everything ready for launch)... I decided I'd upgrade some of the running rigging as the standing rigging is only about 6 years old (and I have receipts to prove it). In this picture you'll see a black and a blue set of halyards replaced... they are spinnaker topping lift and spare genoa... I used sta-set X for those as they are less often used for me (I have hank on jib/genoa, so we won't likely be doing peels).


I got to practice some fancy eye-splicing (yep I still had to watch the New England Ropes youtube video to do it, yes I'm a Newb)... but they turned out well, and if you look hard you'll see the prior owner didn't spend any time learning crazy skills like eye splices... he believed heartily in the bowline saves all :) No worries, those halyards are going too.


I also did some work on my bearings... Funny thing is the trailer has a brake actuator, and brake lines and it all seems to work... prior owner said "brakes might need work." After tearing off the hub, I'd love to ask if he's ever sold a car without a motor, and said "motor needs work." Geesh... Well I guess long term I'll be adding disc brakes :) Good thing I drive a 3500 dually diesel, and stopping is a NON issue.


So this is a picture of the drivers side (port?) wheel hub... it tore apart and other than being dirty, and needing to be repacked, it wasn't bad. The passenger side (starboard?) was a disaster, the bearings were flopping around in their retainer, the retainer was worn uneven and water must have invaded the hub, as everything was rust colored. The rear seal was bent to heck and it looked like the inner bearing was also starting to go. So I replaced it all, new races, bearings, seals... Looks pretty good now.

I put it all back together packed the bearings up nicely with new grease... and then filled the bearing buddies (or whatever these knock-off types are called)... darned wheels look almost new now.

All cleaned up:


An essential part of the sailboat upgrade process that every sailboat should have (for crew)...

They must be placed at various locations throughout the boat, or as a boat owner, you aren't doing your best to provide for your hard working crew.


It should be noted that I'm very much impressed with these Ronstan drink holders... this one has been on my Deere for almost 4 years now. It should be noted that is not the original beverage the holder came with :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
I have way more things to post pictures of, but I've been focused on getting them done, rather than taking pictures. I've been bad about that, I'll attempt to post finished pictures of each of those projects...
Examples of things I've done...
installed a remote speaker (for the VHF)
installed a new VHF antenna
Installed a AM/FM/Bluetooth dial-sized radio into the coach roof (so the crew can change stations, tracks, etc)... Its a Jensen too and has an app for your phone to allow you to control what is playing, change channels, mute, power off, etc (like a remote).
installed speakers to cover up holes in the bulkhead.. and remounted and mounted some things using starboard.

I've also installed a new floor to the boat (the Wavelength 24 has a raised wood floor, that is about 30"x60", that is held in place just by the edges). This floor was left behind when I purchased the boat (and was something someone manufactured anyway). So I actually made my own out of 3/4" finish grade plywood... I stained and varnished one side... then painted the other side white... depending on what route I go with the interior of the boat. About 1/3 of the teak has been painted over white in the boat, and I've been debating on painting the rest of it white.

Lets see I also moved the VHF higher up, to make it easier to see. I may replace this unit with a Standard Horizon DSC one (with GPS)... I loved my old one, and it also allowed me to have a RAM mic. That may be overkill for this boat, I dunno. It sure was handy though.

I painted my mast carrier stuff too... in hopes of helping them last a few years.

Finally my tiller pilot install.
 

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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
Getting closer... Cleaned the boat up for travel... then discovered I got spreaders on the wrong sides (ugh)... So boat no ready...
But she's getting cleaner. Prior owner kept the boat under a tree, and apparently didn't cover it. Bird poop and sap all over the deck. Here I thought it was just dirt... ugh.

So I waxed the hull, but I have more work to do on the deck to get a layer of wax on. Either way... things are coming together.

I also put oil in the new 3.5hp Merc 4 stroke... poured oil in it fired it up and ran it for about 15 minutes in a bucket (various throttle speeds as recommended). Runs good.




Oh a shot of the installs of speakers and stereo. Yep, I know what you are thinking, but the holes were already there. This was before I cleaned the cockpit up... Yep, she'll stand out on the water for sure.
 

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Discussion Starter · #28 ·
Branch used for mast raising...

Why our launch ramp is such a challenge... You see that branch is about halfway down that ramp :) If you manage to get the mast up, you must weave through the remaining branches a bit.

She floats (thankfully).

In her slip.

After the boom was on, kicker, mainsheet, vang, and all lines run aft.

On my way home, I stopped at our local gas station and what did I see? Someone is getting a brandy new Beneteau Oceanis 38!!! anyone here?
 

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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
On launch day I also setup and poured Spartite into the deck around the mast... to make the opening water tight. I made a bit of a mess on deck with it.. but I think it worked well.

Checked below and we had about an inch of rain overnight... maybe 4 ounces of water in the bilge, and I think that dripped in from the knotmeter through hull (it was wet when I left 2 days ago, and had maybe 1 ounce of water in there). Mast we dry below. So I'll say I'm happy with the spartite. Water was definitely pooled on top of the spartite, so it could have leaked but didn't.
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
I should note that I followed the instructions, and plugged the hole from below, and built a clay dam above... then used petroleum jelly around the opening as a mold release. I have yet to pull the plug from below, but it didn't leak at all below... I will say though, don't used gorilla tape like I did, use painters masking tape, it'll work better. It dribbled out from under the gorilla tape a little. The spartite hardened in about 24 hours, at about 50 degrees.
 

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Discussion Starter · #31 · (Edited)
The Moo, sails!

I have a VERY rough tune going on the boat right now... but the stick is straight, and I think rake is at or near where it should be, so that's a start.
Can't tell from this dock picture, but this is a BRAND NEW, never used Sobstad Mainsail. It was purchased in 2007, and was never used by the prior owner.


I have to admit this boat is pretty finished out of the gate (which is what I was hoping for). Some minor annoyances right now are nothing really to worry about. The motor when tilted back, just barely clears the water... when the boat squats to move, or hits hull speed (or any kind of chop) the prop hits water (a bad thing for a race boat). I really am not a hard core serious racer, but that is such a glaring problem I want to address it. I think the problem stems from it being a fixed motor mount, and the angle is actually not vertical (it is angled down and towards the bow, its weird). I am debating on screwing on a 1/2" or 3/4" trim piece of starboard to the motor mount to kick the motor out further and make it more vertical. Also to protect the motor I was thinking of adding the same to above the spot where the clamps attach. Not sure any of this is a great idea though. I'm figuring either getting a different motor mount, or finding a way to make this mount vertical is really the best solution.

You can see the motor mount problem here... I can fix the motor's apparent angle with a pin, but the max tilt is unaffected by it. Only good solution is to get the motor mount so that its more vertical.. then it should tilt out clear of the water. I only need about another 2" at the prop. I'll try to get tilted pictures (resting) so I can demonstrate.


Ok so there is that.. Also I am spoiled (I've solo sailed a lot on my Capri 25, and my S2 7.9)... For each of those boats I bought a forespar mainsail pre-feeder. Those things are the bees knees (Sorry I don't usually use that expression but the one I normally use isn't appropriate for a family audience) for a boat that has a boltrope (no slugs). I actually tore up my brand new mainsail some on my S2 because I jammed the boltrope on hoist (wrestling with a mainsail, solo, in any kind of wind while the tiller pilot tries to steer you head to wind can get dicey if the winds shift). So I really want to get another prefeeder for the mainsail...

So far I don't hate the windward sheeting car. I installed one (for a time) both on my Capri 25, and on my S2 7.9 I (I got the car for free), and frankly I hated it in light air (the car never seems to lock in light air). Winds were awful light last night (probably 5-7mph) and I never seemed to have that problem. I don't have the luxury of falling back on a regular traveler car, so I guess I'll need to get used to it. The winward sheeting car on this boat has 5/16" line (probably sta-set x), and it feels to big to me. It's nice line, but seems like overkill.

Also I have what appears to be 3/8" genoa sheets (again looks like sta set x). While the line is really nice, I think 3/8" is overkill. The prior owner also had some super light fuzzy stuff that it also looks like he used for genoa sheets. I suppose I'm a purist, but I really prefer something super light, and the smallest diameter you can handle without a lot of fuss... I think I'll be buying some 5/16" MLX, I got spoiled with it for genoa sheets on the S2, and NO WAY does the WL24 have more sail to deal with than the S2 had.

One thing I absolutely must add to this boat is some paracord for the bow. The weave added from the lifelines to the toe rail keeps everything onboard when you drop the genoa. When you solo sail as much as I do, this is a god send.

I have hank on head-sails, and really have no use for a second genoa halyard. I'm thinking of removing one of them, and freeing up a set of blocks for room to run the downhaul (or downf&*!er as they call it). I am out of cleats/turning blocks on the coach roof, and its time to start consolidating.
Like the foredeck on my S2:


Last annoyance for me was there was no tack cringle on the mainsail. There is a nice place to pin one, between some handy reef hooks, but it appears that the mainsail is held "down" by a cunningham, and a single sail slug into the luff groove. I mean I get it, you max hoist to the band, then cunny for luff tension... but on a boat this size, it seems like it'd be way easier to just set luff tension with halyard, but I guess the design was a throwback to dacron sails.

Pictures of the boat sailing are of the brand new mainsail, and also brand new 94% jib (brand new circa 2007, but have been sitting in cool dry UV protected storage since 2007). I actually have a "brand new" 140% and 155% in bags. I'm looking forward to pulling them out and seeing how they all look.

Anyone have any suggestions on how to store the spin pole? My last 2 boats I stored the pole on deck and always hated it. I thought about attaching to the lifeline, but that seems annoying as well. To me it'd be a real timesaver if I could leave the pole attached to the spin ring, and flip it up vertical right on the mast. I could leave the downhaul and topping lift attached then (maybe). Is this a stupid idea?

Finally boat was dry as a bone after 3 solid days of rain (this is a huge for me, every boat I've owned leaked in weird places)... exception was that the forward hatch leaked. I may have not been closed tight enough.. I tightened of course... but thankfully I had a recessed cover rubermaid container directly below it, and it caught all the run-off. I also had concerns of a leaking transducer, which appears to have been a false alarm (thankfully).

I noted that the depth sounder doesn't always read... this is a real annoyance for me. I think my next winter's project will be to replace existing instrumentation with "speed/depth/wind." I hate doing it, because its a PITA, but I like my instrumentation. I also want a decent wireless wind setup for next year.
 

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Farr 11.6 (Farr 38)
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Regarding the spin pole, my Laser 28 had a neat set-up that allows the spinnaker pole to store on the boom all set up to launch. The rig was simple consisting of two short lengths of 4"dia. Heavy duty PVC pipe, one on each side of the boom. They were held in place by heavy nylon strapping. (Think seat belt or harness straps) A sail slug was stitched to the strap where it passes over the boom, and rides in the foot boltrope track. The straps pass over PVC pipes were stitched through the straps and a couple row of small holes in the PVC.

There was a life vest type clip under the boom that locked the rig to the boom and Velcro that held the tails of the adjustment end of the strapping out of the way after the straps were adjusted.

This resided near mid boom which was at mid-level. The fwd end of the pole was held against the boom with a loop of shockcord. In use the pole was fully rigged before on the boom. Since the boom is to leeward, the pole launches from either side of the boom properly to windward. The drop worked the same way but in reverse.

I usually took the launcher off the boom when I put the boat to bed, and stowed it and the pole below.

Jeff
 

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Discussion Starter · #33 ·
Jeff that sounds like a good setup.... I don't suppose you have a picture? I might be able to fabricate such a design.
 

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Farr 11.6 (Farr 38)
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Discussion Starter · #36 · (Edited)
Ok, she carves a really nice groove in the water.


Disaster struck, this was our first race, and we started 20+ minutes late! Why? Well as I was backing out, my outboard popped off my motor mount (this is the second time it has done that). This time was totally my fault, I was attempting to block the bottom of the motor out more so that it'd clear the water more while tilted (as my motor mount is fixed). Luckily I had a tether to the motor (cheap 1/8" line). Unluckily I wasn't as fast as the first time it jumped off (when I was able to catch it before to went under). This time it was totally under water!

So, not only was the motor running but it popped off the bracket, and the boat was going in reverse, so the prop smacked the stern of the boat as the motor shut it self off by sucking water into the carb!

It was a total nightmare, except of course, the motor was still hanging by a thread (literally).

Ok in the next few minutes myself, and my crew (my 14yo daughter, and my regular crew Chris) kept us from slamming into the shore and we worked together to get the boat into the adjacent boat slips directly behind my own boat slip. Since I had managed to pull the outboard out of the water, and slap it back onto the motor mount, we scrambled to get a boat pole (in this case we used the spin pole) to keep the boat from reaching the shore. Our lake is scary deep and twice deep at the shoreline in our marina (thank God). Its more likely you'll catch your mast on tree branches than it is you will run aground. And thus was the case for us. Could not have been 10 feet from the shoreline, but we were in 6 feet of water... boat draws 5.5!

What did we do to recover well enough to even MAKE the race?

well, we secured the boat into an adjoining boat slip... then pulled the spark plug. The stroked out the remaining water (and there was lots)... Meanwhile my crew went about drying out the spark plug (trying to find a lighter or matches to dry it with heat).

I tried to drain out the carb (I shut off the fuel supply to the carb, but of course the carb was filled with water). I checked the fuel tank and luckily the tank was VERY full with fuel, so I could see that no water got into the tank, the air vent was ever so slightly open and given that the outboard was only under for about 5 seconds, I suppose very little water got in there.

Once everything was dry we still could not start the motor.

I wound up taking the fuel supply line off the bowl of the carb, and draining the carb...

Did another round of drying the cylinder out, and heating/drying the sparkplug...

Still nothing. I was thinking the motor was doomed (mind you this is a brand new Mercury 3.5 hp outboard).

Then my crew Chris pulled a spray lubricant similar to WD-40 out of his gear bag. It was just the ticket. We sprayed down the spark plug, and a small amount in the chamber... then the plug wire (to displace the water), then a very small amount into the air intake on the carb (which was also very likely wet).

With that we managed to get a single bobble of a turn over. Obviously it was ignited lube. Turned the fuel supply on.

We tried again and nothing.... so we added a slight more to the intake...

VAROOM! fired right up... We let it run at high-idle for probably 15 minutes or so just waiting for bad-fuel to get us... and it didn't. So OFF we went, with a hail to Race committee to not wait for us but that we'd be out in a few. The response was "Roger that, we'll race until the cows come home."

I lashed several wraps of line around the clamps of the outboard, and down and around the motor mount... JUST to make sure my little outboard doesn't swim freely again, and off we motored for about 30 more minutes straight to the start line.

We got to just below the start... headed upwind, raised the mainsail... killed the outboard, and as we were crossing the start (some 20+ minutes late), we hoisted the jib. Winds were up and whitecaps were all over the lake at the time. We technically broke the no motors during the race or start sequence, but given our ridiculously late start I doubt anyone really cared. Race committee got pictures of us as we started and gave us blessing to do what we did, so it was all OK.

The picture above is great, because it was taken by a well sailed Catalina 25, which we had just passed, and were shortly also passing an Oday 26, working our way up to a Catalina 22. Yep we were dead last on corrected time, but as we finished Race Committee took our picture, and commented that we showed a "nice recovery."

All I can say is... MOO!
 

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Nice picture. That is a huge amount of twist in the mainsail. Given the heel angle, you might experiment with less twist (more mainsheet, outhaul, and halyard tension) and dropping the traveler so the whole sail is working. My guess is the lower sail is over trimmed while only the top of the sail is working. I will say that there are conditions and boats which really need a lot of twist, but I would experiment with less twist to see if your boat speed improves.

Jeff
 

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Discussion Starter · #38 · (Edited)
Yeah bad example as we just rounded the leeward mark, we just got sheeted in (ready to vang), and I dumped the mainsheet a bit to flatten the boat, as a puff was on us as we rounded (evidence is that's is more heel than she likes... that's probably 25 degrees, and 20 is faster).

This boat has a tiny traveler too (prior owner shortened it from 5 feet to 4 feet, it still works but is smaller than I am used to), it makes vang on a necessity as we get +5s to +10s sometimes, especially when average wind speeds at the surface are 13 knots or better.

I was also having issues with the traveler... it wasn't dropping down. Must have gotten some crud in it, out came the spray lube, and viola back in business. Most of this we'd have had sorted if we had even had a minute to sail prior to starting.

But yeah, we are overpowered, and overtwisted. I wanna see the finish picture as we straightened ourselves out pretty well by then :) I calculated what RC told me was my offset start time He gave me what he noted was 22:30, and I still would have only finished mid fleet. So LOTS of room for improvement all the way around.

Oh I should note that is my #3 jib... less than I was hoping for on my first race. Prior owner installed more outboard tracks for the #3, but put a car on it that is just a fairlead. Last night I threw two ratchet blocks on the cars, and get a better lead angle out of jib... so even the jib was way twisted off (hard to see behind that ridiculously twisted main).

PS: sailing gloves - didn't have any... I have the rope burns to prove it. Its like I've never done this stuff before.
 

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Sorry, I should have known that you knew better.

BTW, did your Capri 25 go to Annapolis? There is suddenly a nicely restored red Capri tied up at a dock I can see from my living room windows.

Jeff
 

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Discussion Starter · #40 ·
Jeff... know better yes... DO better NO! We aim high and achieve much lower these days. I had already written off the race, and honestly we were out just f-ing around. I probably should have used it for crew training, but at that point we were just celebrating the fact that I didn't literally flush $1600 down the lakewater :) Since there was no way we were correcting to anything other than dead last, my focus was on the beverage in the beverage holders, not on crawling my way up the fleet only to wind up dead last. Bad attitude I know.

Geesh I hope its not my old boat. It went to a really nice IT Manager in Arkansas (worked for Walmart). The guy was new, like REALLY new. The Capri 25 might have been a bit much for him though. I warned him profusely that it wasn't really a "starter" boat, but he insisted that his summers sailing a Hobie cat prepared him for the experience. I did see a red Capri for sale down there a while back.

Anyway, my old boat's name is "Anticipation," also I had characteristically marked yellow and black EPsails. Boat also had blue sail covers that were quite new.
 
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