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11618Re: Tortoise Question

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  • Vince and Mary Ann Chew
    May 2, 2001

      I also enjoy my Tortoise. I don't have a sail for it yet, but on the
      other hand I do sometimes run it with my 2 HP Johnson outboard. I have a
      bolt-on motor bracket. When motoring, I sit on the after deck and my
      wife sits near the bow. I can steer the boat hands off by leaning. We
      only motor our Tortoise on small inland lakes.

      As for rowing, it rows stern first very well when solo. Then, after you
      get tired of not seeing where you are going, you spin around and push
      row for a while. I believe that if you locate the oarlocks to pull
      facing aft while solo, they have to be far enough forward for your hands
      to clear the after deck. This might put your weight too far forward. The
      other issue is rowing with a passenger -- where would he or she sit? As
      it is designed, the passenger can sit on the after deck to balance the
      rower who now sits in the bow and rows facing the stern. It works very
      well for my spouse and me. We keep a sailboat on a mooring, and use the
      Tortoise to get out to it.

      One thing I learned the hard way is NOT to step from the dock to the
      Tortoise forward of midship. It is quite easy to depress a corner of the
      bow below the surface and ship a few gallons of water before you have
      time to scramble aft.

      Vince Chew
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