Thursday, April 18, 2019

Chestertown Life

MaryLou was nice enough to send this photo from the Chestertown Life facebook page.  I believe that is SPARTINA on the right.  At first I thought it was from a down rigging festival but now I'm am not so sure.  Maybe this past fall?  Anyway it is a nice photo and my thanks to MaryLou and photographer Jamie Kirkpatrick.

It's a good reminder that the next time I sail in to Chestertown I want to spend a day or two there.

Monday, April 15, 2019

update on Webb

Webb passed near the southern tip of Baja California in the last day or so.  Light winds out of the north right now.  Winds will strengthen but stay out of the north so we should be tacking his way up the coast.

Monday, April 8, 2019

at the ramp

Peaceful morning, non-existent breeze.

Only boat at the quiet ramp.

SPARTINA, with new spring coat, slides into the water.

Breeze arrives about noon, wonderful sailing.

Thursday, April 4, 2019


Stand a few feet away and paint looks ok.
Add an instagram filter and it looks better.
White deck paint next week.

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

maintenance, big and small

SPARTINA is ready for her new spring coat.  Hopefully that will go on on Wednesday when the high temperature should be about 70 degrees.  The bottom paint might wait until after the spring cruise.


About a dozen miles away maintenance takes on a much larger scale with the VIRGINIA.  Above is one of her two masts.  It was cut in two and rebuilt with multiple laminations, a job I don't even want to imagine.

And while on the water the VIRGINIA'S transom was removed and is being completely rebuilt.  I'm not sure if it was a design issue or building technique, but I have heard for years that the transom was slowly separating from the hull.  Very glad to see the problem resolved.  

Still lots of work to do on the schooner's masts, rigging and transom, but he captain says no problem having her ready for the first sail of the year in a few weeks.

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

wind, lost and found

Webb has found the wind.  As opposed the the knot or less GANNET was making a few days ago (below), at times losing ground, they are now making four to six knots up the coast of Central America.  You can find Webb's yellow brick track here.

Monday, March 25, 2019

the last mango sail

I was surprised to see the lot nearly empty at the ramp in Betsy town yesterday morning.  Cool in the early morning hours with a forecast of clear skies and temperatures warming to the low 60s.  I was also pleased to see that there were no "ramp rangers" (I'll credit Clark with that perfectly descriptive term) on site to give me grief.  I usually take my time rigging SPARTINA but I rushed because I wanted to get out on the water as quick as I could.  

Steady, stiff breeze out of the Southeast, coming right up the river.  I slipped on my mango drysuit for what I imagine will be the last time this spring.  The drysuit and thermals were perfect for the cool morning.  I made long tacks back and forth down the river, going past Forbes Bay, Cobb Point and sailing into near Treasure Point.  Late morning I saw a sailboat out on the river, such a perfect day and  only two of us out there.  I don't get it.  I won't complain, the solitude was perfect.

The drysuit has proven to be a good investment.  I will take it along on the cruises with me for those rain-all-day events, which have occurred more often than I like.  As for cold weather sailing, it got me out on the water routinely in December, January, February and March.  My best winter sailing ever.

Still touching up the bright work.  I may paint the hull this week.  I want SPARTINA to look good for the summer season, which will be here before we know it.

Friday, March 22, 2019

I will never use varnish again

Spring touch up for the bright work.  Not using varnish, instead using Bristol Finish, a two part would finish.  I heard about it from the crew of the Schooner Virginia, and they heard about it from the crew of the When and If (scroll down to the bottom of this post and you'll see that schooner).  A light sanding on the old varnish with 220 grit paper and then put the Bristol Finish on.  Great thing is that if the next coat goes on within an hour or two there is no sanding required.  Easier to apply than varnish, harder finish and, according to the schooner guys, longer lasting.  Hope it is true. 

Don't let photos fool you, I'm staying true to my "workboat finish" standards, hoping for a good looking 30 foot boat (stand 30 feet away and the boat looks good).

So brightwork this week, sailing this weekend, then paint the hull next week, new bottom paint the week after.  And maybe it will be warm by then...

Thursday, March 21, 2019

the wind has not been kind

Webb seems surrounded by light winds,
making a knot or less, even backtracking 
in the current.

Forecast show conditions might persist for a few more days.
He needs to get out the blue/purple and into the green.