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Thread: What might have been.

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Jun 2020
    Location
    Seattle, WA
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    4

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    Pleasure Palace-what a badge of honor! We normally enjoy ice cream on board, although the freezer draws too much power so it will be soft serve in order to keep the pilot going. I'll save some if you want to meet up when things calm down. You can find me on the rhumb line for now, as I've got my hands full fixing things, throwing up, and trying not to crap my pants. Time limit may be an issue once we get out of the hell-storm we're currently in.

    I don't have many external pictures of the boat sailing. The first one is quite old, that is my better half driving. The boom on the staysail is gone now. The second one is from May, and is me tacking out of Neah Bay on a singlehanded adventure. As mentioned, we're not fast!

    Tim
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  2. #22
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    247

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    Run whatya brung! Will we see you in the SHTP next year?

    Quote Originally Posted by patience View Post
    Hahahaha, right? Cape George 38. She's not a racer, but she's what I've got;-)

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Capitola,CA
    Posts
    2,191

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    X+3 6/30/20 Noon Position 33-15 N x 130-45. 24 hour run 165 miles @221m (234t). Speed average = 6.8 knots. Current wind NNE@16-19 with 5-8' seas. 75% overcast. Baro=1021 mb.

    As WILDFLOWER enters the SE lobe (ridge) of the Pacific High, the wind has become puffy and shifty. Puffs are headers and can be seen as a darkening on the water. A puff might last 5-15 minutes with wind direction from the N. After the puff comes a lift as the wind lightens by 3-5 knots and veers to the NNE. This is fertile area for hand steering, or having the windvane drive. Autopilot steering a compass course would be slow, as half the time the sails would be either over trimmed or under trimmed if not staying attentive at the sheets.

    With apparent wind (AWA) averaging 110 degrees aft the bow, yesterday afternoon at 1500 I set the spinny. With the pole near the headstay I used a reaching strut on the guy. It was full on hand steering and trimming, with only brief breaks while the AP steered during a lull. The spinnaker gave us an extra knot of speed, and we could steer lower. Left hand on the tiller, butt in the bean bag, and right hand ready to sway or surge the spinny sheet.

    Hand steering can be a chore after a few hours, even when comfortably seated. After 4 hours, about 1900 hours, I was ready for a break and some food, even if it meant giving up some speed. I had the twins ready to hoist on the headstay, the 125% JT to leeward and the 117% #2 to windward, hanks staggered.

    I bore off to a broad reach,started the spinnaker guy and tended the sheet while dumping the halyard with one wrap remaining on the halyard winch for friction. This was a maneuver I'd done many times and the spinnaker came aboard cleanly under the boom and down the companionway hatch.

    I then went forward and put the windward jib sheet in the pole and hoisted both jibs as one. I squared the pole for an AWA of about 130, and we were off again, the windward twin feeding air leech first across the sail and into the leeward jib. The windvane steering likes this rig and there's no windshift or puff it can't handle. The tradeoff was about .25 knot of speed loss from the spinnaker, something I could accept, especially with a dark night coming on. Handsteering in these conditions with a cloudy sky at night and no stars and half moon that would set about midnight can be especially tedious, and I was happy I had this well mannered "go to" rig that would let me get some dinner, rest, and catch up on office work (log entries, charting, weather files, etc..)

    This is begiining of day 3, and weather is definitely not tropical ....grey with occasional mist. Here's a bird's eye view from 22,000 miles overhead from the GOES West satellite. We won't begin to see tradewind popcorn clouds and consistent sun until south of 30, west of 140.

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    Sail ho! 0945 this morning. Abeam and about 4 miles abeam to windward, bearing 342. Looks like a red and white spinnaker. I don't see anyone on AIS, nor do I have a handy list of competitor spinnaker colors, so your guess is as good as mine. SHARK on BLUE GRASS? SEA WISDOM? HULA?

    I reset my spinnaker about an hour ago, 1100, giving the AP a chance to show it's stuff. The Autohelm 2000 tillerpilot works in true windspeeds up to about 16 knots, so its definitely at its upper limit. But WF has a full length skeg in front of the rudder, and tracks well. Now the boat is more level, it is increasing difficult to hang over the windward rail to "check the blades." I purposely steer high and temporarily over trim the spinny to get enough heel angle to see the underhull appendages. If we've caught something, I quickly drop the spinny, put the boat head to wind with the preventer holding the boom out, and attempt to back down. Usually works, except the "back down" part. Dead in the water is usually the best I can do.

    Sailing the 2003 Transpac with Stan and Sally on Cal-40 ILLUSION we snagged something substantial on the rudder, went head to wind and backed down. Didn't work, and Stan peeled to his shorts and dove overboard to clean the rudder. We had him back aboard in less than 30 seconds.

    Tim's Cape George 38 PATIENCE has a full keel and therefore much less a problem catching Pacific Gyre ropes, nets, and plastic. Fin keels, exposed props, and spade rudders often catch something obnoxious at least once during a passage to Hawaii. But if you don't look, it isn't there.... WILDFLOWER has a underwater window, but it's position means I can only see the back half of the keel and prop. Better than nothing and works at night with a flashlite.

    Noon posits, Day 0-Day 3
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    If you haven't seen this 2 minute video of a just completed, 48 day voyage into the Pacific High, it's an eye-opener. Many of you know Mary C. and we congratulate her and the crew of KWAI.

    https://www.oceanvoyagesinstitute.org/news-and-updates/
    Last edited by sleddog; 06-30-2020 at 09:21 PM.

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Jun 2020
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    4

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    WBChristie sorry for the delay! I had to clean up the huge mess that got created on the Windy Reach. It was a bit crazy and there was crap everywhere, but I made it. I think I'm too far north on the course, but I think I'm more or less committed now.

    I would love to do this race! It's probably not realistic for me to get my qualifier done and boat ready for next year. Probably the one after that.

    Tim

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Capitola,CA
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    2,191

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    Since last log entry, we ran yesterday afternoon under spinnaker, pole squared about 2' off headstay, in 15-16 knots of NE wind. Excellent sailing at mostly 6.5 - 7 knots, as the seas have smoothed to 4-6 feet and, glory bee, some glimpses of the sun's rays poking through.

    The moon is now over half full, and high in the sky at sundown..with moonlight filtering through the cloud deck making night sailing less like navigating the inside of a cow. With these conditions I was in less hurry to rig for night sailing and kept the spinnaker up until 2100 PDST (We will keep the ship's clock on PDST even as we advance westward towards Hanalei, which uses HST, -3 hours UTC.

    At 2100 I'd changed out the #2, 6oz. dacron, 117% jib which was hanked to starboard on the headstay for the Dave Hodges built, 125%, 2.2 oz ripstop nylon JT, the only new sail I'd bought for the 2008 SHTP. This lighter sail has a shoulder high clew and a large amount of foot roach. And between it's hanks are small grommets so I can yarn the sail and hoist in stops even though it is hanked on the headstay opposite it's twin, the .86 poly JT built by my brother in 1996.

    At 2115 I dropped the spinnaker, then, before hoisting, wung out the twin jibs mentioned above on their dedicated whisker poles, one being a converted windsurfer mast, the other a telescoping twist lock aluminum pole I had pinned with a bolt as I don't trust twist locks.

    Hoisting the twins with their staggered hanks was easy, and off we went under wind vane steering after about a 10 minute "pit stop" where the speed had dropped to 3.5 under main alone. Ideal AWA was now 150, starboard pole slightly forward of the port pole, trimmed more aft. The cool thing about this sail combination is the combined sail area equals or exceeds the spinnaker, and you never have to worry about a spinnaker collapse or wrap. The worst that can happen is the windward twin might go aback for a few seconds. And then refill, indicating its pole is slightly over squared. Sure, I'd love to have GREEN BUFFALO's AP that will drive with the spinnaker up in most conditions while the skipper naps. But that takes instrumentation, electricity, and equipment I don't have.
    Last edited by sleddog; 07-01-2020 at 01:03 PM.

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Capitola,CA
    Posts
    2,191

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    Day 4 7/1/20 Noon Position 31-44 N x 133-25 W. 24 hour run 167 miles @220m (234t). Speed average = 6.9 knots. Current wind NNE @14-16 knots with 4-6' seas. 75% overcast. Baro=1022 mb.

    Running under twins, genoa staysail tacked to windward rail, and full main on broad reach. The red and white spinnaker I briefly saw yesterday has reappeared 4-5 miles to windward, hull down, bearing 330m. As well, a southbound container ship, MSC HANSUN, passed astern earlier, likely headed Asia to Panama. I briefly tried giving both the ship, and the red and white spinnaker a call on VHF 16, but no reply. The ship shows up handsomely on radar at 8 miles. The sloop intermittently. I rarely turn the radar on, only at night in squall country, or if on apparent collision course with oncoming traffic. I know WILDFLOWER shows up on ship's radar in smooth seas at 12 miles as once reported by Captain Bob, on the Matson SS KAUAI. We carry a masthead radar reflector, for whatever that is worth. Probably not much. At night, when not on deck, I run an amber strobe on a removable pole on the transom, which nicely lights up the main and other white sails.

    HEDGEHOG, the Olson 29, is out here somewhere, running in stealth mode. I suspect David is 100 or more miles ahead in the van. Maybe he will give us a shout. Or not. My reference to using HEDGEHOG as a "weather probe" may have silenced his position reporting.

    Here's tomorrow noon's GFS GRIB file. We are aiming at theoretical "Pt. B", 28N x 140W

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    Last edited by sleddog; 07-01-2020 at 01:07 PM.

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    Bodfish, CA
    Posts
    161

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    What are you using for a barometer and how was it calibrated? Recording version or spot readings?

    The electronic gear on the boat is minimal so I am curious.

    Thanks.

    Ants

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Capitola,CA
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    2,191

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    Quote Originally Posted by AntsUiga View Post
    What are you using for a barometer and how was it calibrated? Recording version or spot readings? The electronic gear on the boat is minimal so I am curious. Thanks. Ants
    Hi Ants,
    Thank you for the question regarding WILDFLOWER's barometer. We use a Speedtech recording electronic barometer that hangs on the main bulkhead. It powers on 4xAAA batteries, which last about 2 years. The unit is about 20 years old, and I doubt is still made. I check it regularly with the nearest airport pressure, and it is ivariably accurate. It also reads temperature and humidity. The Speedtech measures 4″ x 5″ x 3/4″, and weighs 4 oz. It has a pair of switches in the back to select metric or English units; It also has on the face four push-buttons to adjust for altitude and to recall all readings made over the past 24 hours. It once sold for $99. A glance at the display presents a clear picture of pressure trends over the past day. All readings over the past 24 hours are stored, so the display can be turned back an hour at a time to see what has happened.

    The only thing bogus about this barometer is it shows a sun, a sun with clouds, or clouds with rain..I've taped over that part of the display as you can see in the below photo.

    Before the 2020 SHTP start I checked it's calibration with Oakland Airport.

    I have no experience with barometer watches. I could ask Stan Honey if you wish.

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    Last edited by sleddog; 07-01-2020 at 08:17 PM.

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Capitola,CA
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    2,191

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    Day 5 7/2/20 Noon Position 30-15 N x 135-59 W. 24 hour run 156 miles @220m (234t). Speed average = 6.5 knots. Current wind NE @13-15 knots with 3-5' seas. 50% cloud. Baro=1022 mb.

    I have been asked how to tell where the SE lobe or ridge or the Pacific High lies. Best way is to look at a pressure map of the Pacific featuring lines of equal air pressure called "isobars." On the 24 hour surface analysis forecast below, where the isobars have the greatest bend SE of the Pacific High, lies the ridge. If you connect a line from the "H" through the bends at each isobar to the "L", that line would be the ridge, an area of lighter wind each side of the ridge where the coastal northerlies of the Windy Reach shift to the NE tradewinds. Usually it is best to cross the ridge at right angles.

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    As the wind and seas slowly diminish, we changed from the twins back to the spinny this morning at dawn. Though the twin jibs don't require hand steering like the spinnaker, the spinnaker gives .25-.50 knot better speed. It just needs more attention.

    This morning an hour before sunrise, dead astern, rose one of the patron stars of this and past SHTP's: the planet Venus. Venus is so bright, it is easy to mistake for the masthead light of a nearby, overtaking ship. Just ask TIGER BEETLE, who attempted to radio Venus on VHF in the 1996 SHTP.

    After sunrise coffee, executed in a #4 paper cone filter over my mug, I made breakfast. Except for once/week omelette with fried toast and jam, I alternate between Bob's Red Mill Quick Cooking Steel Cut Oats and brother-in-law Tom's Best Ever Granola. Both are delicious, healthy, filling, and easy to serve. I add a diced apple, raisins, and brown sugar to the oatmeal, and long life milk to the granola.

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    Water temp has risen to 68 degrees. Time for a lee rail bucket bath this afternoon. We carry multiple buckets of different sizes for different purposes. As many have learned to their dismay, a smaller bucket is best for fetching bath water over the rail.

    That red and white spinnaker sighted twice to windward comes and goes. Currently gone. A red billed tropic bird is hanging out above the backstay, its loud cry quite shrill and piercing. I did pass a net island, about 10 feet in diameter, 25 yards to windward..would not like to have entangled in that!
    Last edited by sleddog; 07-02-2020 at 03:10 PM.

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    Bodfish, CA
    Posts
    161

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    Quote Originally Posted by sleddog View Post
    Hi Ants,
    Thank you for the question regarding WILDFLOWER's barometer. We use a Speedtech recording electronic barometer that hangs on the main bulkhead. It powers on 4xAAA batteries, which last about 2 years. The unit is about 20 years old, and I doubt is still made. I check it regularly with the nearest airport pressure, and it is ivariably accurate. It also reads temperature and humidity. The Speedtech measures 4″ x 5″ x 3/4″, and weighs 4 oz. It has a pair of switches in the back to select metric or English units; It also has on the face four push-buttons to adjust for altitude and to recall all readings made over the past 24 hours. It once sold for $99. A glance at the display presents a clear picture of pressure trends over the past day. All readings over the past 24 hours are stored, so the display can be turned back an hour at a time to see what has happened.

    The only thing bogus about this barometer is it shows a sun, a sun with clouds, or clouds with rain..I've taped over that part of the display as you can see in the below photo.

    Before the 2020 SHTP start I checked it's calibration with Oakland Airport.

    I have no experience with barometer watches. I could ask Stan Honey if you wish.

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    Yes, I would be interested in any comments from Stan Honey on barometer watches. I have used a Suunto version for about 30 years. The barometric function measures elevation as well as barometric pressure. How does the watch know if I am moving vertically or the weather is changing. The elevation increment is 20 feet so when I drive past an elevation marker on the road, the watch shows an elevation within 100 feet of the road sign.

    The only weird variation was while driving through AZ mountains and thunderstorms. The watch was about 2,000 feet off and took about a day before it settled down.

    The weather and barometric device you have looks nice. I think I will look to see if any like it is still made.

    Ants

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