10 September 2011
Troy / weather better than Florida
Hi all ,
Sorry for the long absence,but a lot has happened since last posting , like time waits for no man , a 5 1/2 year old daughter , another boat and new plans .
5-10 year circumnav on a large cat we purchased last year . Now to sell the open 50 and we will be set for a very comfortable sail around the marble . We looked at changing the deck and putting a lift keel on Nanuq , but then she would have been a neither dog nor cat and it would have cost about $250000 to do it ,so we sunk that money into a new boat instead and bought a cat ,which takes me all day to clean because of all the real-estate . Any who we hope to be off after hurricane season and will start up the blog again . So till then ,fair winds to all you out there and hopefully our paths will cross some time .
And a mix of this
20 April 2008
Hi all out there reading our blog , we are still around and healthy , but have been working flat out on various projects .From getting race boats ready for offshore races to doing electronic installs on cruising boats to working with Steve and Linda Dashew getting their Unsailboat ready for a high latitude North Atlantic crossing to Europe .
I offered my services to Steve and Linda to sort out their computers and various electronics while they where in Marina del Rey readying their FPB Wind Horse for a trip to Europe.These folks are the real thing ,and have many thousands of miles under their keel .Their boat , is intriguing ,a mix of sailboat and powerboat and all the wisdom gained from years on the water .At first I was a little out of sorts trying to put this craft in a category ,but then I went out with them after a storm had passed with a 6-10 ft sea running , we where sitting inside eating lunch doing 11 knots beam on to the swell with not more than 1 degree of roll ,and a 360 view around us .Wow ,this is weird ,for me with thousands of hard wet often fast miles , this makes sense .What kind of idiot sits outside in the bad weather when you could be inside , ME!
We are thinking seriously of building an aluminum expedition boat that has good performance but also an enclosed area where we could run the boat comfortably .
I am thinking of mixing the Dashew's philosophy with my years of racing technology to find a happy medium that will work .If I could do this I think we will have a winner .
A mix of this with!
20 April 2008
Sitting out in the weather???????
Francis the giant
11 February 2008 | MDR
Tepee a mix of old Formula 40 parts
For all you guys out there reading our blog but not in touch with what is going on in the top end of the sailing game ,a certain French sailor has just recorded a record nonstop sail around the world. Francis Joyon is a very dear friend of mine and one of the most awesome sailors I have ever met .This man is old school , he is so involved with what he does that he knows every inch of his boats and how to fix them .When all the other racers have a dock and crew getting the boat ready for a race , Francis is out on a mooring doing everything himself .He is a gentle giant , softly spoken and very accommodating ,but has this look in his eyes that say something ,what I have not been able to figure out .For fun Francis would climb aboard his catamaran Tepee and sail to the Caribbean from France . He built the boat from bits he picked up in boatyards left over from the old Formula 40 class .
He also won the prestigious transatlantic Ostar on a boat that was also bits from different boats .When he gave up his sponsorship with Banque Populaire to follow his longing to ocean race ,the sponsorship went to Lalou Roucayrol who managed to get the sponsors to build a new boat and sell the old one to Francis .Francis got the boat minus the rig and sails ,but managed to get a mast and some sails from Florence Artaud's old boat and put the whole lot together to go out and win the Ostar when a lot of the other boats where going upside down or breaking apart .
Francis then managed to get the old Sport Elec trimaran and went about doing some mods to be able to sail the monster single handed .He accomplished the mods and with a little known sponsor went off around the world to break the non stop single handed record, but fate had him pegged and after achieving the impossible ,by sailing a boat designed for crew non stop he decided to slow down his progress back to his home port to be able to arrive in daylight .Fate collected as Francis woke hearing a loud bang and found himself pinned between rocks .
The boat was a total loss in a matter of hours and this after the amazing high of setting a record time around the world .To top this , Ellen MacArthur went and broke the record soon after .
Just when everybody thought it was all over , Francis's sponsor stepped up and a new purpose built boat was on the way .The new boat was from another planet , slick,lean and with one purpose ,to break records .
Francis was off again , a well deserved break for a man who never asked for anything .Everything came together ,from the designers,to the builders , to the weather router, to the sponsors ,to the sailor and to the weather and the sailing gods where smiling as well .Francis completed another record breaker to the congratulations of the whole sailing community and probably everybody in France .
Well done Francis , this was a long time coming and never more well deserved .And thank you to Idec and ICM for believing in this awesome person.
11 February 2008 | MDR
Idec out for a little sail
Reinforcing Autopilot ram brackets
30 January 2008 | MDR
Troy/cold and windy
In my process of getting the boat ready to sail south I have been looking at all the systems and how they can be bettered with regards low maintenance and strength .
One of the places that I cant afford to skimp on is the autopilot ram attachment points .The rams are attached to the underside of the deck and are designed and built to a spec specified by the designer usually .If you have looked at this attachment you begin to wonder if it is strong enough to handle the push-pull movement of the ram .The loads are theoretically under shear but if the load is not in line with the attachment like with the ram attachment there is also a leverage load . One way to reinforce the attachment is to increase the load surface area or get it in line with the load which is just about impossible with a ram .
What I am in the processes of doing is to increase the carbon laminate in thickness and in area to spread the load over a wider area to stop any laminate to core delamination through the leverage loading of the ram .The peace of mind this modification offers is huge when sailing in the high latitudes where the likelihood of heavy weather sailing is high and the failure of the attachment could cause a long cold ,wet stint on the helm .
The way I am doing this modification is to cut multiple layers of biaxial carbon cloth, with each consecutive layer an inch larger all round than the last so that the load is tapered off at a progressive amount .
This area also takes in a corner which increases the load handling capacity hugely .After I have prepped the area for secondary bonding I thoroughly wash the area with acetone to get rid of any contaminates then start adding layers of carbon coated with epoxy . Once all the layers are in position I cover the whole area with peel-ply , a finely woven poly fabric and then a piece of bagging material which is sealed on the edges with double sided tape then I attach the vacuum pump to the bag via a tube and start pulling a vacuum on the laminate .
What this bagging does is stop any cavities which could form between the different layers as well as pulling all the excess epoxy out of the laminate which also adds to the strength of the bond .
All up this modification is good all round and ensures a higher safety level for sailing in heavy weather .
A test of our pactor HF blog updater
23 January 2008 | MDR
We have just fitted an SCS pactor 3 Bluetooth modem to our Icom 710RT HF radio as another form of communication on the boat . With the use of a handy feature which is part of the Airmail 3 email program we can update our blog at sea . Airmail has this option under the "window" tab in the menu bar which auto configures an email which is sent to Sailblogs server under a specific email address which is supplied to you along with a special subject key by the Sailblogs admin .This Subject Key and the specific email address is inputted into the sailblog journal entry when you first start the feature and is saved for future updates .I would recommend Sailblogs to anyone heading out on an adventure , not only can you write about the day to day happenings ,but you can also update your position which can be displayed on Google Earth so friends and family can keep tabs of where you are .
VISIT FROM BRASIL
20 January 2008 | MDR
The phone rang,Troy said: its a weird number!
Lucky for us they left a message.
It was our dear friends Carlos Edo and his son Sebas, all the way from Brasil!
They where on a business trip with other friends Eloy and Max .Helicopter pilots, aerobatic pilots and skydivers! WHAT A CREW!
They were here in LA, looking for an aircraft and were doing some sightseeing around LA, when they arrived in Marina Del Rey, marina reminded them about ME! Marina
They called Leila,our beloved friend and caretaker in Boituva, Brasil, and she gave them our phone.
We called back and in less than 10 minutes they were here at the CYC, visiting us on NANUQ.
Carlos and his friends and family have support me in my career since the beginning,more than 20 years ago.
It was such a good surprise seeing them, and being able to show them NANUQ.
It was a quick visit, but we gave them the grand tour and explained some of the features and tasks that we are performing on NANUQ to get her ready for the trip south.
These guys are more than special, you can follow their adventures on their websites:
The Boys from Brasil
20 January 2008 | MDR
All things dear
13 January 2008 | MDR
Still in King Harbor Redondo Beach,Troy saw a sailing boat with children aboard ,
so Nina and I went over to say hello . We could see, the guys were busy doing all sorts of last minute touches to their beloved ORCA3.
We introduced ourselves and met Steve the father , he said his wife and kids were at the pool.
We went to the pool, and met the whole family: his wife Dionne, son Kyle(13) and daughters Maya(11) and Emma(7).
Nina didn't think twice, and there she was in the pool with her new friends fully clothed!
There was an instant connection and the kids were great with Nina.
Talking with Dionne I learned they are from British Columbia in Canada and are sailing around the world. They had stopped in the Bay Area, at Sausalito and where on route to San Diego when we met them in King Harbour. It was great meeting a family doing what Troy and I are doing, and seeing kids being raised on a boat, educated, responsible and considerate, it gives you the feeling that you are on the right track with your life and dreams!
I hope sincerely to meet them again!
You can follow their adventures on their blog:
last time I checked, they were ready to leave for Mexico!
safe seas and fair winds!
Activities for all age's!
28 December 2007 | CYC
While Troy was working on a Mumm 30 in King Harbor, Redondo Beach,
Nina and I decided to take a walk towards Hermosa Beach.
On our way there we found one of the most unassuming fun places during our stay here in California.
The SEALAB is a hands-on coastal science education center that offers free and low cost programs for explorer's of all ages.
The SEALAB houses lots of rescued sealife , used to educate people about Southern California's marine life ,for nina and I, the fun part is that you can do tours with volunteers, and you get to touch the animals.
Nina had a blast, she touched sea cucumbers , starfish, horn sharks and bat rays.
We went back there three times.
cost: FREE, donations are welcome!
the touch tank tours time; tuesday-friday at 1,2,3; saturday 10:00 am- 4:30 pm ; sunday 11:00 am - 4:30 pm (tours begin every hour on SAT and SUN)
address: 1021 N.Harbor Drive, Redondo Beach, CA 90277
bring quarters for parking!
We recommend it !
White Spectra anti-chafe cover
16 December 2007
White Spectra anti-chafe cover
Trick things for the cruising sailor
16 December 2007 | MDR
Troy / Great day
Sorry to all that log in to get an update and dont find anything .I have been real busy with tuning my rig and rigging ,doing a bit of electronics and beta testing Expedition performance software . Nick White the creator of Expedition is awesome , no sooner I have a request and he drops me another beta with not just the request but other enhancements as well .
I am going to be doing some electronic configuration on a POGO 40 this coming week and will be running Expedition with a full NKE instrument and gyropilot package .The owners want to integrate some other electronics into the package then get all of it to talk to a Panasonic Toughbook laptop , not an easy task but a great challenge for me .
On the rigging side of things , I am fitting Spectra anti-chafe sleeve to lines on Nanuq . This stuff is great ,it is a fine weave spectra cover that I pull over the line and position it at the areas of chafe then sew and whip it in place , works great on reefing lines where they go through a press ring or halyards where they sit on a block .I would definitely recommend this stuff to cruisers who are going to puddle jump across the South Pacific with spinnakers and polyester halyards , this stuff will save the day with all the stretching and sawing away at the block at the top of the mast .
Well I better get back to the tasks at hand, and keep checking back we will update as often as possible.
08 December 2007 | MDR
Here is something for technoweenies like me .
Over the years of my involvement with sailing ,I have seen things come and go .
It seems I started sailing with the astrolabe (early sextant ) ,I learned to navigate with a sextant both coastwise and offshore then came Satnav and then the GPS .
With the advent of the GPS came the real cool stuff NAVIGATIONAL SOFTWARE .
Now to put you in the picture ,I built my first computer ,a binary computer that flashed lights with a simple program you had to compile .
Well back to the nav software , the first bit of real performance nav software that
I was exposed to was Mac sea (yes maxsea was initially written for the mac computers) a package that ran on a Powerbook 190 , and used on race winning boats like the 94 Whitbread winner Yamaha . This was the hot ticket back then and if it where just race results that prove the package then it was a winner .
With more exposure to these packages came other programs that where trying for their day on the winners podium .Deckman for Windows by Graham Wynn and Kiwitech by the boys down on the bottom of the world where the next packages to be available , then the french continued to develop Maxsea but now under the windows format . Suddenly the big electronics manufacturers started taking note and offered to get involved .Maxsea with Furuno , DFW with Simrad/B&G and Kiwitech with Raytheon ,now renamed raytech RNS .
Now for those that are unaware these software packages do all kinds of trick things ,no they dont clean or pay the bills .
They integrate instruments , electronics with performance figures gotten from the boat designer and weather files from the internet and throw out info on what course to steer and what speed the boat should be going according to the designer .
I am sure some of you reading this will say , where do I get this software ?
You guys need to slow down ,because this is just the top of the iceberg . Firstly is your electronics and instruments correctly calibrated ? Remember if your data going in is BS the data the software produces will be BS multiplied .So the fun begins to calibrate the electronics accurately ,ideal conditions , right wind range ,same trimming on both tacks ,on and on and on........... .thats even before switching the computer on .
Plug in the serial or USB plug from the electronics and turn the computer on ?????
holy smoke , the computer is possessed the pointer is opening all kinds of windows , what the???
Switch off the instruments then go into the system hardware panel and disable that microsoft ps mouse .(this does not happen with a MAC) . Next time switch the computer on first will you .
If you get through all of this you are a little closer to Zen .
Now you need to try configure the software , hamburgers at 10 ,.........
And now how do I get the weather in here ? Open the hatch !
Are we there yet?
Back on a serious note .
After all the time I have lost configuring systems for clients and playing with all the different packages , one stands out from the rest ,with a lean package of tools integrated to do an awesome job of furthering your knowledge about where ,when , who and how and that is Expedition .
I watched from the sidelines as the creator of Expedition ,Nick White slowly worked his magic to produce a package that works great from the start .
Nick developed Expedition for the 2001 Volvo round the world race when he could not find a package to do what he wanted . Over the years since the first edition Nick has continued to develop the package into one used by a lot of the top race boats in all the different disciplines from America's Cup to the smallest of campaigns and Nick has become a sort after navigator ..He continues to incorporate new features into the software between sailing jobs and works with all his customers to add features they need . Talk is that he would never sell the package to some big concern ,so if you are looking to spend some money on a good package , it would be best spent on Expedition and supporting Nick in his endeavor to produce a great package.
Strings and things
06 December 2007 | MDR
Troy/ waiting for the storm
Its funny how history always comes around again.
With the advent of all the hi-tech lines used in sailing , things are reverting back to the old days with thimbles and lashings .Throw away your turnbuckles , blocks , shackles and stays ,all the heavy high maintenance items can now be replaced by string . Over the next few years you will slowly see these high-tech things finding their way onto regular cruising boats .
Regular bow shackles can be replaced with a short piece of Spectra line ,stronger , way lighter ,does not rust and wont ding your deck or smash your toes when kicked.
Turnbuckles can be replaced by lashings of Spectra line .
Blocks can be replaced by thimbles in a lot of instances as the high-tech lines have a very high resistance to chafe .
Stays can be replaced by string as well . More and more race boats are using PBO for standing rigging .
A lot of weight can be saved going to rope and most of the items can be made by any person willing to learn the processes .Check out the pics for some of the things that are used .
06 December 2007
Shrouds lashed through spreader
06 December 2007
Runner block lashings
Jib sheet leadblock
06 December 2007
Jib sheet leadblock
String halyard shackles
06 December 2007
LED'S or more fuel
02 December 2007 | MDR
Troy / sun shining , baro climbing
Thought I would write a little about saving power on sailboats . After looking into all the power requirements on our boat ,I was shocked to see just how much power is consumed on an average days sail . This power consumption has an end result of not only carrying a lot more weight ,but spending a lot more money and burning a lot more fossil fuel .
Now our boat does not have a lot of lights ,but if I switched all 13 lights on , including running , steaming , deck , tricolor and 8 interior lights I would consume close to 10 amps . This was absolutely unacceptable , so I went about looking at alternatives . I believed that I could leave the running and steaming lights as regular incandescent bulbs as I would be under motor when being used . But I would change all the other bulbs to LED technology . The light that would be used the most underway would be the tricolor at the top of the mast ,so I was off looking for an alternative for that . Now LED technology is improving exponentially ,but at the time tricolor lights that where available where in the $300-400 USD range , totally absurd .
I had a perfectly good series 41 Aqua-signal tricolor on top of the mast and was not going to shell out more money , so I looked into modifying the existing system .
Regular replacement led bulbs where also ridiculous until I found a website while searching the internet that built a light that would fit both budget and usage .
The outfit is based on the island of Vanua Levu and was started by some folks looking to put some food on their tables and employ the local people without any impact on the way of life on the island .
I ordered 2 lights that go by the name of masina malosi , a total of around $100 USD .
A week later I got the package . What I found was an awesome light made with 30 LED's cast into a PVC pipe end fitting that almost blinded me when I put some power on the leads . The LED's are cast into the fitting at regular intervals all round the end fitting so you get all around light .
I went about modifying the Aqua-signal fitting to accept the light by cutting the lens in half to shorten up on the height of the unit .
To cut it short I not only saved on windage at the top of the mast , but I saved on weight of wire as I could use a small gauge and I got an amazing power saving .
Check out the items for yourself and a short write up on how I did the mod at http://www.bebi-electronics.com/ and if you need some custom stuff drop Michael an email , he is my electronics guru .
I then went about changing out all my interior light bulbs for LED's I purchased from
http://www.superbrightleds.com/ . Another cool thing is for interior lights I used both red , white and blue bulbs in my old fittings to save on my night vision .
All up I have dropped the draw down to just over 2.5 amps with all the lights on , not that it would ever be done .
Start saving on the power you use , change to LED's