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Free Range Human, Sailor, Writer, Artist, Videographer  

Monday, July 19, 2010

On the End of the Boom of Doom

Falling back into the cockpit narrowly missing in what would have been an unfortunate and expensive trip to Compac for a new tiller the HideAways settled, if it could be called that, into blasting along with their rail firmly planted in the water. 6.0 - 6.5 – 6.7 - 6.8 -7.1 claimed the GPS. That’s’ not possible maintained the Capt. Perhaps the tide suggested the crew. Tacking back produced high sixes as HideAway roared along her rail awash and her crew tiring quickly. A reef was in order and soon.

Reefing HideAway is a one man show as long as the crew handles the tiller. Rather than round into the wind HideAway heads up a little and lets the main out enough to luft then hardens the jib to keep the boat moving.

Kneeling by the mast on the house the Capt removes the sail stopper and stows it in a pocket then releases the main halyard to drop two sail slugs off the mast. The outhaul line is lead forward along the boom so it is an easy task to set the clew. Then the tack is cleated to the mast and the main halyard hauled in less time than it takes to explain the process.

During the reefing process the boom slides down the mast a few inches which can be viewed as lowering the center of effort and that is not a bad thing during a high wind event. The bunt lines are tied in later.

Of course if something happens to the crew the whole process can take an unpleasant course. The Capts’ first indication of a problem came with the swinging boom and the realization the boat had unexpectedly tacked and that he was on the wrong side of the boom. Raising for the second time that day, the possibility of the Capt swept over board, this time by the other end of the boom.

The Capt dived towards the boom of doom hoping to clear the bottom of the boom and top of the cabin to land somewhere on the bridge deck. A wise choice considering the options, however

To be continued . . .