Monday, July 30, 2012

White Bear Sail

I got the boat in the water for the first time this summer. I've been trying to do that for a month or better. 

 As you can see this boat does not have any mechanical propulsion. You can use skill and knowledge or you can paddle it like a canoe. I always try skill and I win 90% of the time. We'll cruise out and leave others wondering how we made that look easy. We don't have sails on at this point, we are 'bare pole'. I'm going to teach a little bit in this post, if you don't mind. If you do, enjoy the pictures of White Bear Lake and stop reading.
 This is just after we launch. Full sail. The bar over me is the boom, it holds the end of the Main sail. The rope called a Main Sheet controls the Boom. The small rope is called a traveler and it allows the boom to travel across the boat but still be controlled by the Mail Sheet. The stick behind my head is a pole so I can reach the rudder from a distance. It's called a 'hiking stick'.
 The sail in front is the Jib. It helps the Main sail by forcing wind into it. That dangling yellow cord is called a Boom Vang and it holds the boom down when needed. It's not needed now.
 Main Sheet, Traveler, Rudder and you recognized shore. :-)

 These people are racing. White Bear has a history of sailboat racing. They do not have Jibs, the font sail, because it's just one person and a jib needs two people.
 The rope on the right is called a Sheet, Nothing is called a 'rope' on a boat. A "Sheet" controls a sails trim. This being a "Jib Sheet", controls the Jib. The wires in white going almost straight up are "stays" they hold the Main Mast, so they are called Main Stays.
 The rope front left is the Main Sheet, It controls the trim of the main so we can apply wind power to the boats hull. It's counter force (everything has a counter force) is the 4.5 foot long center board. We need 5 feet of water to move or I have to lift the center board but then we lose control.
 Skipper and able crew.
 The 'seat belts' in yellow at the bottom are so you can hook your feet when you 'hike' out to hold the boat from tipping over. Our weight counters the wind, the center board counters 'crabbing' or sliding sideways. If you don't hike and the boat slides, you 'trip' over the center board and go for an unplanned swim. So the Main's counter is the center board, the wind's counter is the crew.

We're done. About 3 hours of sailing. We have lunch while sitting on the rail. 

We had good winds all day. Something like 5 knots, maybe a bit more at times. We sailed from the north east shore to the south west bay and back.

We did not use the big sail called a spinnaker. I should have but played it safe for the first sail of the year. The spinnaker produces a lot of power so you need to control it well or you "go shrimp'n"

We'll fly the spinnaker soon. It's really fun.

1 comment: