Thursday, April 25, 2013

Boating Updates

Besides being up to my eye-balls in church and family stuff the past few weeks, I've also been busy with the rest of the Dragonfly Racing/Backyard Boatbuilder Collective crews getting our boats ready for the water. So a quick update is in order.

The Cedar Canvas Canoe that I started more than a year ago is sitting in the rafters of my garage waiting for the daytime temperature to be above 15C. At that point, I'll kick the car out of the garage and start varnishing. One coat every day or three for about a week and half ought to do the trick. All the wood working on the basic boat is complete, though I have more seats to build. After the varnish is done we will install the seats and yoke. After that comes a day of skinning the exterior with vinyl impregnated canvas (yeah, it's not quite traditional, but it means I'll be able to get the boat in the water much faster). Then we install the outwales and we are pretty much done. So, as I said, right now I'm just waiting for warmer weather to make progress on the varnishing.

"Redemption Song," the 23' Kirby we bought last fall spent the winter in the boat yard where she had been abandoned for the last several years. We had done some work to get her winterized before we threw a tarp over her last fall. Now the tarp is gone and we are busy doing things like replacing all the running rigging and fareing the hull. This week we had two work nights and managed to replace the bulkheads with new ones that one of the guys fabricated over the summer. I picked up some material to fabricate a new Companionway hatch. We managed to paint the bottom with a special paint that resists algae build-up. We still have to install the motor mount and rewire the electrical, but we expect to launch her into the water and put up the mast in mid-May. Her maiden journey will take her to the Queen City Yacht Club, where she will spend the summer tucked into the slip normally reserved for "Dragonfly," the 30' Ericson we raced last summer. Dragonfly and her family are going on a sabbatical cruise for much of the summer, hence the need for us all to pool our resources and get a second boat to race.

Lots to do before the race season starts. Not least of which is figuring out which regattas we want to try to race this year. Lots of crew organization work to do. And, of course, we are going to have to figure out how to actually sail a completely new boat. But I think we may have a wicked fast boat when all is said and done. We want flags!


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