Wednesday, January 9, 2013

winter coat, wooden charts, weather

It was warm enough for another coat of varnish this morning.  It should be in the 60's both today and tomorrow.  I hope to get another coat, that will be the fourth, on tomorrow.  I'm finding that it takes about two hours to sand, mask and varnish the rub rails, tiller and boomkin.  You can see here it is a workboat finish.  I'm aiming for my goal of a pretty good looking 20 foot boat - i.e. stand 20 feet away and she looks pretty good.

I can see how people enjoy the fine art of varnishing.  It is interesting to watch the luster build as coat after coat goes on.  I'm sanding now with 320 grit paper, just a wipe really to take what a boatyard friend called "the diamond" off the varnish.   While I do admire the varnish I see on some very nice boats passing through Norfolk, I enjoy sailing much more than varnishing.


Above is a wooden chart of Chesapeake Bay, something I read about on Barry's website.  You can read his post here.  A company called Below the Boat is making these laser cut, layered charts that are three dimensional and give a feel for the contours of the bay.  They have charts showing several bodies of water - the Chesapeake Bay is my favorite of course.  I'll have to suggest they do one of Pamlico Sound.  Their prices do seem reasonable for what can be an interesting piece of art.  (But just because I say "reasonable", that doesn't mean I can afford one.)


Checking on the weather for my trip to San Diego I was surprised and happy to see that SailFlow has redesigned their wind forecast pages.  During the sailing season I visit their forecasts for Norfolk almost every day, hoping for just the right amount of wind and sunshine for sailing.  Their hourly forecasts, particularly those made less than 24 hours in advance, can be surprisingly accurate.

And their weekly forecasts give a pretty good feel for the coming wind and weather.  I will start watching the weekly version a couple of weeks before every cruise.  All of these forecasts shown here are for the Mission Bay area of San Diego.  Looks like a pretty nice forecast, doesn't it?  

(There is an odd winter occurrence this weekend according to the graphs - the weather will be warmer in Norfolk than in San Diego Saturday, a rarity for this time of year.) 

Just seeing these charts make me long for the warm weather days from March through November when I can think about getting out on the water.  I've got about seven weeks to go, then I'll be checking the forecast every day and hopefully be out on the water most weekends.



Bill said...

I think she looks pretty good up close, too!

The forecast for this Sunday actually looks like pretty nice, easy sailing weather. I'm seriously considering de-winterizing the engine in my boat and going out for a quick day sail, just because I can.

Steve said...


go for it!


Baydog said...

Steve, I love how you downplay how damn good your varnish looks. It's good to be modest.

Steve said...

"A modest man, but then he has so much to be modest about"

.......Clement Atlee

WIND APP said...
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