Baggy Wrinkles is now protected from the elements. After nearly two years of ownership, and the past six months of measurements, conversations with the manufacturer, and recalculations, and decisions and time, the cover is finally here and on the Dory. It is the first Cape Dory Typhoon Weekender cover made by the Sailor's Tailor, and the experience and professionalism shows.
So it was off with the blue tarp and dangling bungies as 1st Mate and I jumped into a fitment process the other day.
The beautiful Southern weather in the USA is not to be taken for granted. Just days after this photo was taken, the storms moved in with their sub zero temps, rain and sleet, and wind. Just what a cover needs to show off its strengths!
Leaving the sail flaked on the boom, I rolled up the boom cover, which I will use when she's docked and then hoisted the boom upward with the topping lift to accommodate the cover's peak roof effect. Due to the weight of the cover, I utilized the main halyard to raise the boom at the tack reef hook, so the cover would have plenty of support from mast to stern points. This creates a tent off which the debris will tumble. Whether it will be as effective with snow is to be seen. However, we don't see much of that in the south! If it were me, I'd put some sort of flexible reinforcements if I were in a snowy climate.
Once the tarp was removed and the boat readied, it was time for fitment. The 1st Mate dragged the cover from the Suburban across the yard getting its first coat of debris! She was also in charge of photos! She did quite well I'd say.
This was a wrestling event between me, the 1st Mate, the Dory and the Cover itself. Having no shape of its own besides the obvious stitching, it slopped one way, then the other, as we tried to wrestle it into position on the boat. You really don't know the cover and how it is supposed to act at this point, so it's just a matter of slapping it into place. While I was tugging and wrestling, the 1st Mate took some pics of the quality of the cover for some of my fellow Cape Dory Sailors who are thinking of a cover for their Little Yachts.
This sequence shows the quality build, the corners, stitching, and the weight and durable character of the item. It is a poly cover rather than acrylic, somewhat heavier and does well in this climate.
These two photos are of the tang area at the end of the boom. The closure includes a leather wrap inside which is shown latched in the next photo.
So there are 3 closures and once buttoned up, looks quite secure and ready for work. It was a bit punishing at first but the cover was finding its way into place step by step.
Here is the front of the mast, revealing a similar closure trio of items and the reinforced stitching to go with the closures.
Good thinking to include entry points at the mast and at the starboard quarter deck area. This permits entry without disturbing the ties if you want to go find something you left down below.
Some more tugging and pulling as I try to line things up, taking note of what has an effect on what else. I'm balancing the rig so that when the debris and rain arrive it will best repel the junk and protect the dory.
So here is a close-up of an entry point showing the sewn-in bungies, the multiple layers of protection at the seam, all designed to withstand weather.
So after a couple of hours of tugging, pushing, and pulling, we arrived at what we thought was a good solution. Yet, after getting home and taking a look at the photos later, it still wasn't quite balanced and looking in the photo below, the untrained eye can see that something isn't quite right fore and aft.
After a good night's sleep I returned to fix what I really could not see until after I'd had time to study the photographs. Study this photo and you will probably see what I failed to see after a couple of hours of tugging and tying it in. It really is quite obvious but we were probably so overcome with joy about getting the cover on Baggy Wrinkles we didn't have time to figure out the fine-points of it all!
The next entry will show how it finally turns out....