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Issuma
Setting Sails
Richard
Thu Apr 19 13:03:10 EDT 2012, Sitka, AK

The weather is much nicer now that spring has arrived. While setting sails on a testsail a few days ago, a local motorboat came over to say hello. They kindly took some pictures of us.

Thu Apr 19 14:33:35 EDT 2012 | george ray
I know you have had some roller furler replacements and problems the last few years. What furlers do you have now and how happy are you with them?
Fri Apr 20 23:16:36 EDT 2012 | Richard Hudson
I have an original (30 year old?) Sarma furler on the yankee jib. It's been modified to use carbon-steel DIN-spec bearings (which are commonly available, as opposed to the original stainless steel bearings it came with). Where it attaches to the extrusion has some wear and I will need to either have some pieces milled or replace the furler with some other unit in future.

The main staysail has a 3-year old Facnor furler. The design makes adjusting stay tension more difficult than the much older Sarma design, and the Facnor seems to have more friction than it should (considering the small size of the sail that is on it), but overall, it functions adequately.
Mon Apr 23 11:02:59 EDT 2012 | bowsprite
ah, how beautiful it looks there! well, it should be! we took your grey and chill down here! brrr! warm greetings from a nippy drippy nyharbor!
Mon Apr 23 13:23:02 EDT 2012 | Richard Hudson
Thank you, Christina. It was a very nice day. This morning we are back to heavy rain.
Unloading
Richard
Wed Apr 18 11:57:35 EDT 2012, Sitka, AK


Wed Apr 18 19:34:17 EDT 2012 | george ray
Great pics, ... unloading what??
Wed Apr 18 23:54:16 EDT 2012 | Richard Hudson
George, thanks. Unloading herring, I believe.
Off With The Bowsprit! Part 2
Richard
Tue Apr 17 0:33:51 EDT 2012, Sitka, AK

The easy part was cutting off the old bowsprit with an angle grinder. Then, without the bowsprit in the way, I could see how the anchor could be made secure.

I had some stainless steel pipes bent to the angle of the plates where the bow rollers were, and welded them on (the anchor shank and chain run between them). At first I used my wire-feed ReadyWelder, which is a device that runs on batteries--12, 24 or 36 volts. I welded the first pipe on with 24 volts, and, after doing some hammering, it broke off, as the penetration wasn't good enough. I had better results from adding another battery to get to 36 volts, but even better results when a neighbor on the dock lent me his stick welder (which plugged into shore power). Another neighbor who was a former pipeline welder helped me get the machine setup correctly.

I tried to bend the old pulpit into shape to be able to use it, but was not successful, so put a piece of blue, reinforced plastic hose in place for now.

The anchor is now held in place by the windlass holding the chain, a safety chain hook, and by turnbuckles on either side that attach to shackles in holes drilled into the anchor. I think the anchor will stay securely in place well when the waves push across it.

Final painting is still to be done.

Off With The Bowsprit! Part 1
Richard
Tue Apr 17 0:25:55 EDT 2012, Sitka, AK

Last year, friends moved the jibstay off Issuma's bowsprit so the bobstay could be removed (the bobstay was taking a real beating breaking ice). I wanted to test-sail the boat for a while before removing the old bowsprit (which was then just excess weight in a bad place).

It has taken me a while to get around to doing this job. For the Northwest Passage trip, the bowsprit proved a useful place to store the grapnel anchor I carried for use as an ice anchor.

Here is Issuma with the bowsprit still on.

Another Dinghy
Richard
Sun Apr 15 12:08:46 EDT 2012, Sitka, AK

This is a similar "dinghy" to the one in the previous post. Note the large propeller and how well it is protected from getting caught in nets.

Sun Apr 15 13:25:09 EDT 2012 | doryman
Richard,
There are a few of these "dinghies" around here, too (Newport, OR), though I've never seen one at work. They probably transit to Alaska as do many of the fishing fleet.
I've been thinking about your comment that fuel is not expensive enough to force people to fish from sailboats. It's true that these big trawlers make big money and cost a lot to maintain, but I can envision a fleet of smaller boats, employing many more out of work people to do the work by hand. Can't get away from the feeling that by out-sizing and out-competing smaller boats, the fishery has not served the community well. Perhaps there is a driving force more important than money. I know it's heresy to say this today.
Mon Apr 16 10:32:48 EDT 2012 | Richard Hudson
Michael, it certainly would seem that using smaller boats would provide employment to many more people, though I think there are limits to how many people want to work hard at sea for little.

Other than Brazil (where fishing boats as small as dugout canoes are quite common), Yakutat is the only place I've seen where they have managed to keep the size of fishing boats down and the numbers up. Yakutat has a lot of little fishing boats fishing Yakutat Bay, and that really seems to keep the community alive.
Mon Apr 16 20:06:58 EDT 2012 | will
i've seen these on vessels that operate off gloucester, ma and nova scotia also
Invincible's Dinghy
Richard
Sat Apr 14 1:19:17 EDT 2012, Sitka, AK

The "dinghy" in the picture has a big diesel engine. It is used for bringing the end of the net back to the bigger boat, which is why it needs a lot of power.

Mon Apr 23 11:07:07 EDT 2012 | bowsprite
well, the necklace of blue fenders upstages the engine. But i'm thinking "Etsy."
Mon Apr 23 12:27:35 EDT 2012 | Richard Hudson
That's a point I hadn't considered. :)
Neighbors, Invincible
Richard
Thu Apr 12 23:46:40 EDT 2012, Sitka, AK


Sailing/Fishing Boat Dryas
Richard
Sun Apr 8 11:40:50 EDT 2012, Sitka, AK

It was nice to watch this fishing boat, Dryas, sail onto the dock. I didn't get a chance to talk with them. The sailing-fishing boats that I have talked to say they don't really fish under sail, but use sails if the wind is in the right direction, or to reduce rolling, or to go pleasure sailing with.

Wed Apr 11 14:01:16 EDT 2012 | John H
More importantly, to save on fuel and reduce air pollution!
And what better way to appreciate the sea when it's quiet?
Thu Apr 12 23:57:48 EDT 2012 | Richard Hudson
I think the cost of fuel is not high enough to make fishing under sail productive at present. Pleasure sailing, when not in a hurry to arrive, that is really nice...
Chain Stripper
Richard
Wed Apr 4 22:37:32 EDT 2012, Sitka, AK

My old anchor chain was showing signs of wear (mostly in the first 10m which gets the most use), so I decided to replace it. This sounds simple, but really isn't :).

I wanted to keep most of the old chain as a spare chain, so I built a new chain locker in the bilge to hold it (can't just put the old chain in the bilge--if the boat ever rolled over, it could come out, so it needs to be held in place securely).

The old anchor chain is 12mm, which I could not find in the USA. So I went with 7/16" chain, which is almost the same size. That meant that the 7/16" chain wouldn't fit the 12mm chain wheel. So I bought both a new chain wheel and a barrel (300'/90m) of 7/16" chain (Grade 43, which means the steel is better quality than "proof coil").

The new chain wheel, shown in the picture, was a different diameter than the old one, so the old chain stripper did not fit. The chain stripper is necessary to strip the chain off the chain wheel, so that it will fall down the hawsepipe. The old chain stripper was cut off the deck (it had been welded in place), and a new one made that would bolt on.

It took a few tries of cutting, then welding back up the chain stripper to get it functioning correctly (the part that strips the chain off the wheel is inside the chain wheel, so not visible in the picture), but it is now working.

Fri Apr 6 16:54:04 EDT 2012 | Victor
Once you started another part didn't fit and had to be replaced. So it was Chain Reaction. Good its fixed now. You should test it now somewhere at where there are no abandoned fish nets at the bottom of sea. Alaska has that problem and every year Coast Guard drags out many tons of nets and those nylon and poly are bad.
Sun Apr 8 0:45:27 EDT 2012 | Richard Hudson
Victor, thanks, yes, it was Chain Reaction. I still have more testing to do, and hope there wont be any abandoned nets on the bottom where I do.
Daysail
Richard
Mon Apr 2 11:04:32 EDT 2012, Sitka, AK

While spring has arrived in Sitka and all the snow has melted, as you can see from the clothes being worn, it is really not all that warm yet.

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