Monday, September 13, 2010

Last chapter of old boats of the club, the keelboats

The final installment of the "Old Boats of the Club" series.


San Juan 21
This boat and the Penguin are the only two classes of boats that the club had gotten rid of before I joined. I don't remember anyone telling me anything about this boat. Pretty much the only thing I know about the San Juan 21 is that it has a swing keel.

More information here.

Bristol Caravel 22

The blue boat in the middle is the Caravel,
the boat on the left is Excalibur.

This is known as a sturdy cruiser with a lot of interior room. While not a stellar sailor, it wasn't bad. One thing that made it worse was when a know-it-all student who was keelboat fleet captain decided that the 110% lapper, which was the biggest sail that came with the boat, was too small and decided the boat needed a 150% genoa. A sail was purchased and a track installed. Now we had some horsepower. The problem now was that this was always the last boat to Blake Island if it was upwind.

Years later I, I mean the know-it-all, did some math. I had finally noticed that at best with the genoa the boat tacked through 120 degrees. When sailing with the lapper which sheeted in between the uppers and lowers to a block on a post at an inboard position the boat could tack through 90 degrees. This means if I changed jibs from the genoa to the lapper I could point 30 degrees higher, but would lose some speed. I would have to lose more than 30% of my speed or about a knot if I were doing hull speed under genoa to make it to my destination later with the lapper. Since sailing that much slower under the lapper would be a rare circumstance the lapper would have been the sail of choice for most any upwind work. By the time I had figured this out the club had bought a used replacement lapper that no longer sheeted to the post, but instead had to be sheeted outboard to the genoa track, so it didn't point very well either.

Caravel with its original lapper.

More information can be found here.

Islander Excalibur 26

This felt like a fast boat, and it handled well. My first cruising adventure was as crew to rescue the boat from Skyline Marina in Flounder Bay near Anacortes. Keelboat users will trade off in the Islands to save having to take the boat back to the club. Apparently one user left the boat at the marina and the next person didn't show up. The first person made no arrangements with the marina. A week later the marina called us and asked us about a boat that had been left in the marina with no payment.

I was taught a lesson on this boat. I was sailing along rail almost in the water and the boat had almost no weather helm. I commented to the more experienced sailor how well balanced the boat was with no helm. He looked at me funny and said look at the tiller. I then noticed that I had the tiller in my lap, at least 20 degrees from straight. That's when I learned that a well balanced spade rudder makes it so you don't have to pull hard on the tiller even when there is massive weather helm causing you to drag the rudder through the water like a big brake.

More information about these boats here.

Columbia 26

The Columbia 26 was not a well liked boat. Maybe it was the nearly flush deck that made it look funny, maybe it was that some felt that it was a poor sailor.

See the information here.

Cal 25

A donation that needed a fair amount of work. Deception, a Catalina 27 was donated before it was put in service and the Cal 25 was subsequently sold.

Neptune 24

People complained about the transom being weak. I discovered that the transom wasn't attached to the deck anymore, so when you pressed on it you could move it in to create a gap at the hull deck join. The importance of a bridle on the spinnaker pole was demonstrated when the foreguy connected to an eyestrap in the middle of the pole caused the pole to snap. The shock to the mast caused the tang for the lower shroud/spreader base made of pot metal to fail, now that there was no lower the mast bent...

Information here.

Stone boat

I forget why we took a donation of a 20 foot ferrocement hull with a wood deck. If you see any mention of stone boat fleet captain in old club documents, you now know what it refers to.