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Norm's Boat

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  • craig o'donnell
    Last Friday I got a few hours time in Normsboat, that is, Norm s Boat. The Shallow Water Sailors showed up on the Sassafras River not 3 miles from my house
    Message 1 of 2 , May 4, 2004
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      Last Friday I got a few hours' time in Normsboat, that is, Norm's Boat. The
      Shallow Water Sailors showed up on the Sassafras River not 3 miles from my
      house and I went to see what I could see at the launch ramp.

      There was a good breeze, 12 gusting to 18? at a guess. We got downwind to
      Back Creek in a hurry, stayed a bit, and beat back upwind to the launch
      where I hopped off and Norm went to the night's raft-up. Norm was delighted
      to have a chance to get a ride in his boat for a change, and I was happy
      to try out one of Jim's larger designs.

      Notes on the balance lug include -- Norm had one reef in, and said he was
      putting a second in after I hopped back ashore. Windward ability was good
      on the "bad" tack and moderate on the "good" tack. This is I suspect
      because the tack downhaul needed even more tension (Norm uses a 2:1
      "Michalak purchase" on it; I'd say 3:1 would be better).

      The leading edge of the sail would backwind in gusts on the "good tack" and
      the boat would lose power. I think a stiffer luff would help -- but every
      boat would have had trouble in the conditions, where gusts were swirling
      off the points of land and the destination was nearly dead upwind too.

      I don't recall precisely but I think that the head of the sail is not laced
      to the yard. I think a lacing would help in higher winds. I know the sail
      is loose-footed. I'm also wondering if a single batten at the height of the
      3rd reef points would not help in "extreme reefing" conditions, and with a
      Chinese style parrel, as a check on the tendency of the sail to flog on the
      "good tack" when headed by gusts.

      An alternative would be to rig her as a standing lug with a sprit boom,
      which would give you a lot of flattening tension when you need it and
      excellent control over the normally slightly flaky standing lug.... I don't
      know many people who have tried this but Andy Farquahar swears by it having
      used it on several sailing canoes.

      The seats are low but that is aided by sitting on a cushion or two. The
      slot-thru cabintop is excellent. Comfy with two aboard for cruising though
      for overnights Norm says it's really a singlehander. Not too wet in the
      chop and not much of a pounder.

      I'd say for anyone who wants a "lightweight Bolger Micro" type boat this is
      one to look hard at.
      --
      Craig O'Donnell
      Sinepuxent Ancestors & Boats
      <http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~fassitt/>
      The Proa FAQ <http://boat-links.com/proafaq.html>
      The Cheap Pages <http://www.friend.ly.net/~dadadata/>
      Sailing Canoes, Polytarp Sails, Bamboo, Chinese Junks,
      American Proas, the Bolger Boat Honor Roll,
      Plywood Boats, Bamboo Rafts, &c.
      _________________________________

      -- Professor of Boatology -- Junkomologist
      -- Macintosh kinda guy
      Friend of Wanda the Wonder Cat, 1991-1997.
      _________________________________
    • Ron Magen
      Craig, I tried to send this off-list but it got kicked back. So here it is again . . . for all to see . . . I do apologize to all. ... Boat. The ... from my
      Message 2 of 2 , May 8, 2004
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        Craig,
        I tried to send this 'off-list' but it got kicked back. So here it is
        again . . . for all to see . . . I do apologize to all.

        > Date: Tue, 4 May 2004 17:32:20 -0400
        > From: craig o'donnell <dadadata@...>
        > Subject: Norm's Boat
        >
        > Last Friday I got a few hours' time in Normsboat, that is, Norm's
        Boat. The
        > Shallow Water Sailors showed up on the Sassafras River not 3 miles
        from my
        > house and I went to see what I could see at the launch ramp.
        >
        SNIP
        > Craig O'Donnell

        Craig,
        If the River is the Sassafras that flows into the Northern Chesapeake
        Bay near Turkey Point, I'm definitely sorry I didn't 'belong' to this
        Group several years ago. At that time we kept our West Wight Potter 19,
        on it's trailer, in the 'workyard' at Skipjack Cove Marina. Because they
        didn't have a launching ramp, the monthly fee was phenomenally cheap.

        While it was a long drive from Philly, and a long day for only a few
        hours of sailing, it was certainly memorable . . . 'There is Always Wind
        on the Sassafras' is certainly true. {While the Potter is not a 'Bolger
        boat' it certainly fits the principles of his designs - clean,
        efficient/functional, and designed for plywood construction - the
        originals were, and the present follow those lines. In addition, they
        share the same iconoclastic effect - a 'love or hate' design that yet
        has an immensely loyal following. Therefore, I think I am on safe ground
        talking about her, here.}

        Much as I liked the sailing, it was just too much work for too little
        time on the water. We then kept her at a small Marina on the Delaware,
        and now she is on a mooring at a small yacht club.{A Bolger 'Micro'(?)
        was stored in the yard this past winter.} However, the 'dream' hasn't
        disappeared. 'We' acquired a P-15 about a year ago with the idea of a
        much easier, and quicker, to set-up sailboat. I finally replaced the
        trailer, and the main is being 'slugged'. Any chance we could get
        together, later this year ?

        Regards & Thanks,
        Ron Magen
        Backyard Boatshop
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