Please visit our home site at www.TRILOBOATS.com.

Anke and I are building our next boat, and writing about it at ABargeInTheMaking.blogspot.com. Access to the net comes and goes, so I'll be writing in fits and spurts.

Please feel free to browse the archives, leave comments where you will and write, and I'll respond as I can.

Fair winds!

Dave and Anke
triloboats swirl gmail daughter com

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

WAYWARD at Last

WAYWARD under sail...Photo by Peter Frost

Spring is sprung,
The grass is riz.
I wonder where
My paintbrush is?


WAYWARD at Last

Finally a picture of WAYWARD sailing!

The Lion of March has turned sheepish away up here in Warmsprings Bay (Alaska). Unseasonable warmth and light winds make for pleasant turns around the bay.

In this pic, we're approaching the dock.

The mains'l (forward) is close-hauled and the mizzen (aft) is eased in anticipation of a 270deg turn in probably fluky breezes. When the wind is forward, the main is trimmed to drive us, and we can haul the mizzen in with a hand on the boom. When the wind is aft, it's the eased mizzen which drives us with the fores'l blanketed. Either way, we have good control and a range of options without the distraction of over-hauling or -easing line.

Since it's a tight corner, we'll send one of us ashore in the dory to catch a line. Sail in, round up, tack and dock (in steady, onshore wind). Or, if it flukes us, we'll settle for sail in, round up, nose the dock and warp alongside (cranking the stern in with the sculling oar against the bow line if practical). If it had been woofy, we might drop an anchor, row a line to the dock and warp in.

The rig (split junk mizzen) is in prototype, right now. The draft is set via 'Thai Style' lacings between individual panels at 8%. This worked out perfectly, so we should have just built the full sail from the git-go without all those inefficient gaps. Oh well. Eventually, we'll change the sheeting geometry to flatten the mains'l leech... all required curvature is cut into the sail, so (unlike a flat cut sail) twist is detrimental.

Adding the curvy shape to the sail is considerably more work than flat cut, and it doesn't look its best in very light to no wind (sags). But it points considerably higher, or alternatively, draws more powerfully at any given windward point. Since the mizzen is flat, it doesn't point as high, and the main is accordingly drawing powerfully at a wider angle. The net effect, however, moves us along noticeably better.

Real sea-trials are quite a ways off, however. We'll have something substantial to report a year from now-ish, from a longer boat with a bigger, split junk mizzen.

Stay tuned!


*****

PS. The photographer, an experienced blue water sailor and delivery skipper came out with us the next day, and we turned command over to him.

His comment... this is the Cat's Ass!

This means a lot, to me... for all my years on the water, I've only once or twice sailed aboard another's vessel. Our boats are limited to a lifeboat conversion and a series of square boats, under-rigged by choice. So I don't have a lot to compare with.

Pete says the boat feels and handles well in the five or so knots of wind we had. I can vouch for the rest.

Not winning races, but hearts?


Friday, March 2, 2018

Hope Ain't a Tactic

Catfishin' Clip from the movie, Deepwater Horizon


Wish in one hand; s**t in the other; see which fills up first.
-- Folk Wisdom

Fishin' for Trouble; Hope Ain't a Tactic

The movie Deepwater Horizon depicts the events and poor decisions preceding and exacerbating one of the outsized, normal accidents of our age.

In this clip Mark Wahlberg, playing Chief Electronics Engineer Mike Williams, presents the seemingly obvious:

If you go fishing for trouble, you'd better gear up.

To embark upon dangerous pursuits, it helps to arm ourselves with knowledge, tools, skills and practice, practice, practice. Err on the side of caution. Get our heads in the game.

All too often, hope is mistaken for a tactic.

We plunge ahead, counting on fair weather. On our reflexes. On our instincts. Our guts. Our ability to wing it. On rescue. We imagine that these will pull us through. Often enough they do. But now and then things go south in a hurry.

And we're caught out.

Recently, I heard blind risk described as putting a paper bag over one's head with a bucolic scene painted on the inside. Running through that imagined or wished-for landscape is bound to end poorly.

We can't rule out risk, and really, we don't even look to minimize it. After all, most of the worthwhile pursuits in life are inherently risky. Risk is something we accept as the price of living large.

But stupid risk. Blind risk. The kind of risk that predictably cuts short the pursuit of happiness...

I mean, c'mon!