Thursday, June 28, 2012

Mid Week Sailing

Had two days of weekday sailing this week.  On Tuesday, I took out a group from  I have a meet up group called Too Much Fun Sailing Club.  Do a search on the web and it is easy to find if you would like to join.  We had a group of 5 for a sail to Clipper Cove for lunch.  Took Kona over to the beach for a romp in the sand.  Then it was off to Raccoon Straits for a look around.  Getting late so we headed home.  Next day it was a sail to the Giants game with another group of 5 including John, Andy, Ginny, and Chris.  We had some great wind to get us there on time.  The Giants were playing the LA Dodgers and we wanted a sweep along with three consecutive shut outs.  The Giants went on to win 3-0 and we were very happy.  Another nice and fast sail home just before sunset.  Good times on the Addiction!!

Friday, June 22, 2012

The Green Room

Almost like returning to the womb.  Only this is a womb with a view!

Broke the tang that connects the forestay to the boat while out sailing.  Getting her repaired and should be back sailing in a day or so.  Our 30 year old boat is starting to show her age.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Another Day in the Salt Mines

5 Peices of Gear You Should Take on a Cruise

Found this tidbit over at Sail World:

1. The New Generation anchor:
We bought a Spade, but there are many other brands on the market – the Manson Superior, the Rocna, the Ultra to name just a few. From the moment we saw the light and changed over, we slept at anchor confidently and peacefully. Not once in all the years since our purchase of that Spade have we ever dragged.
All the weight in the New Generation anchor is concentrated in the point and the clever shape means that the harder it blows the deeper the anchor penetrates. Deep weed is no problem either, because that lethal point keeps heading down and down until it strikes something solid to cling to.
Even though we employed all the other tricks to make sure we anchored securely - heavy gear, good scope (never less than 5:1), snubber, anchor alarm and anchor buddy – the Spade made so much difference it felt as though we were anchored to a two-tonne concrete block.

2. The Code 0 sail:
We thought that a multiple purpose sail (MPS) would be just perfect for downwind sailing, to complement our twin-winged yankee and staysail. We were wrong. Most long-range cruisers are, like us, sailing short-handed, which means that, in order to keep the crew fresh to deal with any emergency at all times, each crew sails single handed, allowing the other to sleep.
Moreover the longer you cruise the less important it seems to sail fast - maybe for avoiding an impending storm, or getting in before dark. An MPS may give you a knot or two extra in speed, but it took two of us to put it up and down – and, particularly when used as a spinnaker, demands attentiveness most of the time.
On the other hand a Code 0 is a spinnaker-weight sail on a light furler hoisted on the spinnaker halyard. It can be unfurled in light winds and furled again quickly when conditions threaten – without involving the other crew.

3. The DIY watermaker:
We left home with a watermaker. It took up a huge amount of storage space on the yacht, had cost the previous owner a lot of money, but had only a modest output of water. With all the other expensive gear we were putting on the boat, spending around another $10,000 on a better watermaker was something we thought we could do without.
It was months later when we discovered, courtesy of a roving sailor, that we could have, for a mere $2000 or thereabouts, made our own watermaker with an output of 100 litres an hour.
An added advantage of this was that this DIY watermaker did not have to be constructed in one unit, but its parts could be apportioned around the boat in convenient small locations. Follow the diagram shown or Google for other versions.

4. The salt water tap:
What a boon this little beauty was when added to our boat.

Best operated with a foot pump (don't forget to carry a spare), it gives an unlimited supply of water to either swab the decks (eliminating the need to pull buckets up from the ocean), cook vegetables, rinse the plates or a wide range of other minor tasks where it doesn't matter if the water is salty or not.

Don't leave home without one!

5. The 'Med Hook':
This natty little hook is named after the place were it was invented, the Mediterranean, but it is useful anywhere at all where you are likely to have your anchor tangled with another boat's. The first time our anchor became tangled with another it was a comedy of errors that amused everyone in the anchorage – if only we'd had a Med Hook!
Two lines are attached to the hook, one for lowering it in the hook position, and another for tripping it so that it releases the chain it has been carrying. It is particularly handy in crowded anchorages where another boat has laid over your boat and then gone touring for a few days.
When you want to leave, you simply slip the Med Hook down the other boat's chain, lift the chain while you retrieve your own anchor, and then use the trip line to release the chain. You'll never have to wake the crew of another boat again when you want to leave early in the morning! 

Monday, June 18, 2012

Super Yachts in St. Barts

Had a very nice sail out to Angel Island with my friend Kiwoba.  Winds in the low 20's on the way over along with a gorgeous day.  Anchored in Craig's Cove again to get Kona over to the beach.  As I stood on the beach, the boat was in a different position and Kiwoba was up at the anchor.  A motor boat offered to take me back to my boat so I took them up on their offer and we made it out to the boat.  The anchor had picked up and Kiwoba had reset it with a hard yank on the rode.  We reanchored closer to the beach and I swam back in to get Kona.  He had been playing on the beach with two girls from the motor boat.  They were about 5 or so and wanted to get back to the boat.  One of the girls said she couldn't swim and needed help.  I had her grab Kona's tail and he swam her back to the boat.  It was a sweet moment.  The sail home was fast as the wind was up.  We returned shortly after 5 and Kiwoba was on her way.  I had some time so I returned for a sunset sail and came in after dark.  Had a short night onboard as I was tired.  Hit the hay and then took care of some painting projects in the morning.  Almost thought about going out again but the wind was gusting to over 30 and it looked pretty nasty out there.  Got some work done and headed home.

Here is the vid of our sail from Kiwoba:

Monday, June 11, 2012

Great Day on the SF Bay

With our water leak down to a few drops, I took out a crew of 5 (geoff, elsa, julia, brian and kathy) for a spectacular day of sailing.  The wind was perfect, the crew was in good spirits and the sky a brilliant blue.  We tacked our way out to the end of the Berkeley Pier and made our way to Angel Island.  The wind was in the low 20's and we had a reefed jib up along with the main sail.  We were trucking along at 6 knots under blue skies and no fog in sight.  We stopped at Craig's Cove on Angel for a very nice lunch and swim into the beach with Kona.  It was my first swim of the year in the bay.  64 degrees water temp.  After lunch we headed up Raccoon Strait for a beautiful couple tacks.  Everyone was digging the sights and the tunes.  We zipped back to Emeryville and were back in the dock shortly after 6pm.  What a great day with friends old and new!

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Leaking Engine is Fixed

We have been dealing with a leak in our diesel for the last several months.  It has kept our boat from being out on the water on the weekends.  We had one mechanic tell us we needed to pull the engine to get to the leaks.  $2000 and most likely more.  I wanted a second opinion.  I contacted another mechanic and he suggested JB Weld epoxy could help us.  The area we need to work on is a small space and hard to get to.  I covered the leaking freeze plugs and then went looking for more leaks.  It took a couple times to find the areas that were leaking.  Went up to the boat this am and started her up and no leaks!  What a great feeling. I spent about $20 on JB Weld.  Beats the heck out of $2000 and possibly more headaches.  Very happy at the moment and looking forward to a sail on Sunday!!

Monday, June 04, 2012

Best Sail Mag on the West Coast...and Free!

For the last 30 years or so, Latiude 38 has been putting together a wonderful free monthly mag that is a must read for all sailors.  The insights, content and pictures from around our sailing world are superb.  If you have never downloaded and read an issue on your computer or tablet, today is your day.  The Letters section is always interesting, I really enjoy Changes in Latitudes, and hey, if you are looking for a boat to buy, you have a ton of options.  We purchased our boat from these pages almost 13 years ago!  You can download this months issue (or any issue of the last 10 years) right here. Reading this mag for the last 15 years has sparked my dream of sailing across the Pacific to New Zealand and Australia in 2018!!  Maybe it can spark your big dream!  Read it and find out.

Friday, June 01, 2012

Awesome Song

Not a big fan of the original but this is an amazing version of "Sexy and I Know It".  Just a young guy with a mic and guitar...and 8 million hits on youtube.  Enjoy!

"Sexy And I Know It"

Yeah, yeah
When I walk on by, girls be looking like damn he fly
I pimp to the beat, walking on the street in my new lafreak, yeah
This is how I roll, animal print, pants outta control,
It's Redfoo with the big afro
And like Bruce Leroy I got the glow
[a reference to the 80's martial arts classic "The Last Dragon", where martial artists, having attained master status, start to glow when practicing their moves, and also get some special powers.]

Ah... Girl look at that body [x3]
Ah... I work out
Ah... Girl look at that body [x3]
Ah... I work out

When I walk in the spot (yeah), this is what I see (ok)
Everybody stops and they staring at me
I got passion in my pants and I ain't afraid to show it, show it, show it, show it

I'm sexy and I know it [x2]

When I'm at the mall, security just can't fight them off
And when I'm at the beach, I'm in a Speedo trying to tan my cheeks (what)
This is how I roll, come on ladies it's time to go
We headed to the bar, baby don't be nervous
No shoes, no shirt, and I still get serviced (watch)

Ah... Girl look at that body [x3]
Ah... I work out
Ah... Girl look at that body [x3]
I work out

When I walk in the spot (yeah), this is what I see (ok)
Everybody stops and they staring at me
I got passion in my pants and I ain't afraid to show it, show it, show it, show it

I'm sexy and I know it [x2]

I'm sexy and I know it...

Check it out [x2]
Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle, wiggle, wiggle yeah [x3]
Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle, wiggle, wiggle yeah, yeah
Do the wiggle man
I do the wiggle man
I'm sexy and I know it

Ah... Girl look at that body [x3]
Ah... I work out
Ah... Girl look at that body [x3]
Ah... I work out

Yeah I'm sexy and I know it!