Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Time to steal a boat

I'm up early today. I thought I could pull off a dawn patrol before work. But my body says no. So here I am.

My friend Ted sent me this video clip

You may have to cut and paste the link bellow.


This summer we have had an unusual weather pattern, in that it has been windy in the middle of the western portion of the sound. As apposed to our "normal weather pattern where you get thermal wind in the Great South Bay. Specifically Heckscher.

So I have been talking about stealing, [really finding " someone with a power boat willing to take us out to the mid sound during one of these thermals; and then pick us up maybe two hours later.

The problem is [as always] that the wind in the bay is much lighter. So you need a big board and big sail to get out there. But once you are out there you wish you were on a 5.5 and a 100 ltr wave board. What I have been doing is rigging a 6.9 and a 125 ltr board and a small fin. This way the slog out is not so bad. But it IS bad! and then out-hauling and down-hauling the heck out of my 6.9; and riding overpowered out in the sound.

In the "old days" we didn't have this problem. First off because it was always winder on the South Shore. And secondly; because we always had some way to access the sound. Unfortunately the overbuilding of Mc-Mansions has privatized our access. When there were only a few "old money" waterfront residents on Sands point, they never hassled us. In fact one nice little old lady used to bring us lemonade when we were through. "you boys must be thirsty after all that 'what is called?' Windsurfing"

As the shoreline was invaded by the new heavily leveraged rich, All our access points were choked off. These new residents called the cops at the first sign of us approaching. The Police were real cool about it at first. But they eventually had to succumb to the homeowners paying their salary.

I am trying to work out something with Matt Myron, and the
Port Water Taxi
But still haven't worked out the kinks, or the price. Meanwhile Matt has been nice enough to let me launch from his dock at MICA. It's still a terrible slog, but at least I'm Windsurfing.

Wow it's 7:30. I've been messing around for 1 1/2 hours; I better get to work. Maybe tonight? If the wind holds.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Back to the Future

I guess I'm going to to just have to break down and buy a new camera. My Cell Phone pics are piss poor, the new cameras are just better, and I am beginning to think that my best chance of finding a compatible cord will be at a Garage Sale. "How much for the cable Granny?"

I did find an old Polaroid while in my search. I read that they are making film for them again. Is it a quest for a simpler time? The search for a non-Photoshop-able format? Or just a retro aesthetic, like Steampunk? Kodak stopped making Kodachrome. Did they stop making Ectachrome as well? Remember contact sheets? Time spent in the "Dark Room", burning and dodging; double exposures? And "Slide Shows"...

I guess the modern blog has replaced the Slide Show. I miss the social aspect of the slide show. [Granted, some of them were the most boring, inane hours of my life.] "Here's another one of Uncle Ted in front of the statue of liberty". I suppose I'm doing the same thing right now. Only you have the choice to skip ahead. So let's break out the folding chairs, dim the lights, have a Fanta, or RC Cola; munch on some Jiffy Pop: the Pigs in Blankets, Tuna Melts, and Fondue will be ready in a minute.

I've been feeling old and insecure lately. So maybe I've just been clinging to to the sights and sounds of my childhood looking for comfort.
My ipod has not played a song recorded since 1979 in months.
Segue, a 1985 Cape Dory, is purposefully maintained to appear as she did in 1985. [No modern looking hardware or sails allowed!]. And I really want to trade her in for a wooden Catboat , or Doughdish. I want something trailerable; beachable, with a centerboard: something I don't have to pay $5,000 a year just to keep it; something I can store and work on in my garage. Wooden watercraft have a soul; Fiberglass does not.Don't get me wrong! I love my Cape Dory, it is probably one of the best cruising boats for a couple ever made. But I never sleep on her. I am purely a day sailor. A light wind day sailor at that. If it's windy; I'd rather be Windsurfing.

I have this compulsion to put wood paneling on the side of my van. I've always loved woody's.

I am also in the market for a 1970's era longboard windsurfer.
And I am thinking of building [as if I actually have the time] a hollow wood longboard. Do I buy the whole kit with material? Like Grain http://www.grainsurfboards.com/ or CLC http://www.clcboats.com/ ? Or do I just buy the frames http://fiberglasssupply.com/ ? I don't know.

And how would I have the time any way? I still have not finished the teak on Segue for this season; and I still have 5 more board repairs to finish.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Long lunch

I took a long lunch yesterday. From 12:30 to about 9:30. Lauralee and I could not decide if we wanted to battle the Friday traffic to the beach or just take Segue for a spin. Segue won.

We had, un-forecasted [ the Weather Channel, iwindsurf, or windfinder all missed it] wind from the West North West. This frontal passage has been difficult to track and predict for the weather forecasters I generally trust. While they were correct about Tuesday's wind at Heckscher and the Great South Bay; They totally missed the wind and size of the surf we had at Democrat Point. Mike Burns [ http://purewindsurfing.blogspot.com/ ] has been hitting the mid afternoon thermals at Heckscher all week. I think the biggest sail he has rigged in two weeks has probably been a 5. something. My usual on site reporter K-dog, has taken on an RJ [Real Job]; temporarily, at least, with the US Census.

Any way, it was way windier than expected. We spent most of the afternoon with one reef in the Main, and 100-120% in the jib. Even though that sounds like good windsurfing wind; it was awfully gusty, and wasn't filling in by the shore. The land was causing any on shore breezes to lift. So we stayed with the sailboat. Later on when I checked my BB at about 10PM, I saw that both Rich and Dommer had called looking to see what I was up to. {sorry I missed your calls guys}. From what I understand Rich S., Bayville Joe, Pete R., and Brewster, all had a good evening sail. I assume that as the land cooled, it allowed the breeze to fill in closer to shore.

Anyway LL and I sailed back to our fleet about 5. The breeze at the dock was pretty light, but really shifty. So we used the opportunity to sail to the dock. It took a try or two to get our communication skills in sync. [I'm getting way to used to sailing alone] But, we managed a nice soft landing. I spent most of the evening up the mast changing out the topping lift shackle. That damn thing has been such a pain in the ass this season. I also lubricated the mast sheaves; they and the topping lift did not like taking the salt water bath from last weeks squall. Paul Meilink Was a great help to me; sending tools I had left in the cabin to me via messenger line. He saved me a lot of climbing; which is very helpful since my left hand is still pretty messed up. [Anybody know a good massage therapist?]

Once I was done with that; I cleaned the water line, and did my best to scrub the bottom. I am trying to avoid hauling the boat this season. But she hasn't been out of the water since last October 09'. And that was only for a week.So I am sure I am not keeping up with any bottom growth. I'm thinking I will beach her at the Club when the weather gets a little cooler.

I had to stop working at dusk as the Skeeters were eating me alive. This means I still have to get a coat of wax on that waterline. Now that she is all white from the acidic fiberglass stain remover; the pores on the hull at the waterline are all open and exposed, until I can fill them with wax. If I don't wax it soon, the hull will be just as dirty as is was before I cleaned it.

Well I hope the weather is nice wherever you are. Looks like a beach day today.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

One down, five to go

Fixed the RRD, and painted it, Still glassing and grinding my fish and the JP. Still using tape as the paint on the nose repairs of both the sumo and the Syncro. And lastly, I have not even begun work on the Naish.

It’s August; I still have not found a replacement cable for my Sony camera; so any photos I post, are going to be poor quality cell phone pics.

The weather patterns are still really screwed up this season… But that is turning out to be a good thing. I’ve sailed Demo twice in the last two weeks. Both times on a 6.3 Ezzy Wave, and my 110 ltr RRD. Last nights session was the better of the two. Plus I’ve sailed the 125 ltr Sumo and the 6.9 three times in the last three weeks right here at home in good old Manhasset Bay.

I am just wrecking my body. Today I can’t even make a fist with my left hand; last week I could not lift my right arm above my shoulder. But I have to say I was proud of myself last night. After two hours of well powered wave sailing, I had one run where I came off a plane for a while. Instead of getting greedy, and exacerbating my various impingements. I sailed for home.

I’ve also had a few nice sails on Segue. So she is filthy again and the teak looks like crap. But how could a person complain? This summer is basically a working vacation for me. The only downside has been lack of beach time for Lauralee. It has affected me too. I haven’t surfed since April. But sailing and windsurfing are really my thing. The surfing for me, is only a way to get on the water when we have no wind.