Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Steering Arrangement for short handed

If you do not use an autopilot, or if it fails on you, this is a great way to steer from the companionway (and if you have a small dodger, it is a dryer place...or from the bow.

Just a system of lines connected to the tiller. Designed and built by Jason, Elise's regular and favorite rigger!

Lines are connected to the tiller.

Repeater across the companionway so the boat can be steered from there - as well as from below.

Repeater around the bow to steer the boat from the bow (or to block the tiller from moving around) - might attach a separate line from each side that could be grabbed by hand and carried over the mast during gybes.

Series of turning block to redirect the lines.

Photos all courtesy of Serge.

Boat Work

Photos courtesy of Serge

Pumpkin assessing the quality of the work. Look on his face doesn't bode well.

Rinsing spinnaker 'Frog'

Replacing hanks

Epoxy for holes...

Rinsing the race #3 jib

Nathan delivered Elise after his single-handed race. 

We couldn't hoist Elise on Sunday. There was a car parked in front of her trailer...So she stayed at the dock.

pine needles everywhere..

Cleaning job after sand storm

Beautiful beautiful girl.

Amazing shot!!!

Removing unused hardware

Great Pumpkin - Marishana's View.

Photos courtesy of Serge

What a beautiful shot

Nathan and Dr John


Snacktician at work

Stupid waves slowing us down.

After Alcatraz

Emerging from Alcatraz

Oops, hitting a wall of water.

Great Pumpkin photos - boat decorations and costumes

No wonder why we were zigzagging a bit

Dressing up the boat on the way to the start line

We downsized Nathan...


Witch samourai


Check out the straw

One of our monsters

This black cat actually meows!

Hanging on for dear life...or death I guess.

Harboring the NZ flag...

Harry Potter's boat

Over the Hill glasses.

Great Pumpkin Sunday Writeup

On the Sunday, we were down to a crew of three and since it was the Great Pumpkin we decided to favor fun over optimization of results. So we switched positions to move from heaven to hell.

Mark drove, Mike did foredeck and pit, Nat did trim 1, trim 2 and tactics.

This resulted in Elise being the only Express 27 going clockwise, a fairly interesting wake upwind and some cool zigzag when sailing near boats and an hour glass on the hoist. Our gybes were perfect though. We did zero of them.

Winds from 10 to 28 knots. (yay says Nat!)

We still beat a few Expresses, including Wile E Coyote and some of the rest of the fleet but definitely not the best result ever in a Great Pumpkin race.

Write up from Mike:
"Second day I would say went even more smoothly than the first.  On the bow it was quite fun and wet with the higher winds.  While everything was much MUCH easier with a spinnaker pole sleeve I did find myself able to get the topping lift and down haul wrapped around two lines. (still not sure how) but I noticed them before any hoist and in the end all that happened was we were a little slower to get our spinnaker up when coming down Raccoon Straits.

Other notable items from the day:
-The look on Nat's face when Mark said, "this is the first time I've ever driven a race start"....priceless
-Watching Mike try to set up the foredeck (while driving down wind toward the start) while wearing a black cape
-Watching Nat and Mark stare at each other while we watch the entire E27 fleet go the opposite direction as us off the start
-Listening to Nat tell Mark to stop flogging the main as Mark is driving upwind towards Alcatraz in ~25 knots with only myself and Nat on the rail (we may have been a little overpowered). Shortly there after Nat and Mark switch driving....shortly thereafter again Mark is now telling Nat to stop flogging the main (though in Nat's defense I do think it was blowing closer to 28 knots when she was driving).

All in all, it was a great day with lots of excitement, lots of fun, and lots of water everywhere."

Add-ons from Nat:
Other notable items from the day:
- Lloyd asking where Nathan was at the StFYC dock and Mike, Mark and Nat pointing at the dangling mess of plastic bones rigged up on the pullpit in response
- Mimosas before the start and us waving a bottle of champagne at the other boats cheering them on
- The look at Mark's face when sailing into the entire fleet on port tack and in opposite direction after Alcatraz and asking tactician advice which really came back as 'just don't hit any of them'
- Nat trying to look for that leeward boat that Mark keeps talking about b/c of collision worries only to find out it was the boat about 6 boat lengths away that we would have to gybe into if we wanted to hit
- Finishing boat for boat ahead of an old America's Cup boat rating -101 (they passed us after the finish, but that's because we reefed and they didn't)

And in all fairness, the driving switch for only about 15 min or so was not because of bad driving but because we reasoned that Mark's butt on the rail was probably heavier than Nat's butt on the rail and it wasn't worth taking a reef for a 10 min leg given that the reefing line wasn't run... (we did take a reef for the way back to the Club)

Great Pumpkin Saturday

Photos courtesy of Nathan

Training Mike on the bow - usually light air, last race a bit heavier. All a bit rusty.

First race: super light air and a shock to Nat's system...needed some time to adjust + one bad tactical call...really bad result! Mike had a complicated job as the pole sleeve wasn't on the boat (a surprise for all of us) but he tackled the situation with grace. Perhaps just a nice save at a windward mark with a last inute pinching to make it around the mark.

Second race: very good. Great start. Fast upwind, fast downwind and great tactical and layline calls.

Third race: we fouled a boat at the start (we tacked out of its way, however, it wasn't clear to the other boat so they came down trying to avoid us) which caused us to hit the pin so we had to do two circles back there - took half the first upwind to find the groove. Then fast again but too much time lost. We managed to pick up 4 boats from a DFL position immediately after the start though which isn't so bad...