Baggy Wrinkles

Baggy Wrinkles
S/V Nautica, Hull #614, Built at Whitby Boatworks Ltd., Ontario, Canada 1977, one of the most recognizeable Carl Alberg designs. A masthead sloop displacing 9000 lbs, keel hull, Yanmar 15 hp diesel, LOA 30.27 Beam 8.75, Draft 4.29, roller furling headsail, tiller, berths for 4, interior teak bulkheads, teak cap rail and cockpit teak coamings, 12 volt lighting, aluminum mast support, Harken self tailing winches, in its day was designed for customers as a Cruiser-Racer, the Alberg 30 remains a Classic design of the large Alberg inventory.

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Wednesday, November 25, 2015


The simple is often the most appreciated.  Everything on a Cape Dory is simple!  I think that is why it is such a valuable design and appreciated by so many.   


Saturday, November 21, 2015

Still sailing and more sailing.  

As I mentioned in another post, the fall-winter winds in the Southern USA are perfect for some great sailing.  The winds were pushing a gentle 8/12 kts the other day, overcast a bit, yet provided some pleasant sailing on the lake.  

A fellow itty-bitty cruiser snapped this photo of Baggy Wrinkles and me returning from the "grande large" to the yacht club cove as we exchanged quick pleasantries and tips on the weather...

Baggy Wrinkles on a broad reach with the yacht club in the background skies look threatening and cold but it was delightfully mild with a nice bit of wind to propel us across the lake.

A bit blurry as Baggy Wrinkles heads upwind toward the docks.
The lake wasn't crowded at all of course.  It was a week-day, kids were in school and the parents all working.  A great time to sail.  Single-handing as usual, means I also serve as the photographer aboard.  

These two photographs below reveal a bit about the conditions on the lake, the degree of heel at moments pushed to about 30 degrees but that was the exception not the rule.  Boat speed was being measured by Sail Droid at anywhere from 4.5 to 6.3 as you see below:

I used the handy radio holder for my LG phone here.  I stuck the clinometer to the area just below the hatch doors near the deck sole.  Seems to be a good place to check the angle of heel and is out of the way.  On this day heel was mostly around 15 degrees.  The Typhoon has a niche at which it seems to sail best, and that of course is a balancing act between wind speed, conditions, sheeting, etc.  You can read ad infinitum about this on sailing sites.  I simply try to be reasonable about the heel because I do want to go forward most of the time rather than side-ways.  Too much heel and helm pressure simply becomes a fist-fight with the tiller aboard.

And so this is the result...
Winch is barber-hauling a bit to bring the genoa closer-in, winds are good and waves are minimal.  Conditions were pleasant and temps mild....

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Not much more to say than this....

 Waiting for tomorrow's wind.  Late Autumn and the temps are cooling as is the water, Baggy Wrinkles waiting to chomp some wind.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

I am constantly looking at sailboats for sale on the market.  It's a habit of mine.  But not without reason.  

There's always the live-aboard boat dream which seems to dwell within, a sort of Quixotic condition that effects me, I mean us, with that lure of the sea.  And I include "you" because you probably also have this problem if you're following this.  The best remedy for this chronic condition is to shop for a boat that you will not purchase today, or tomorrow, but in a distant time when less wittingly you will cast your cautions like useless deck lines to shore, and drift out onto the pleasant waters of a time and place impervious to the hectic nonsense of today and resistant to the nonsensical digital flotsam.  A place where you can instead breathe easy and be left alone on your yacht, your world.  A place where you are in control and you can say "be-damned" to the urgencies of the digital monolith and respond only to your wishes and the winds' whimsical attitudes.

Your mind has this all worked out of course.  It's putting it to paper that becomes the reality therapy that causes me to shop.  Shopping delays this fantasy while it also lures me to look.  Yet your daily to-do list keeps you tied to shore and your sensibilities have a tendency to kick-in when your fantasies grow monstrously, scrolling through listing photos of bronze and teak, brilliant under-way glimpses of the yacht you will command, one day, or so you imagine... 

The price of used sailboats varies drastically.  It is also remarkably outrageous how much certain folks are asking for what they have as if they are somehow trying to recoup their personal attachment rather than trying to be frank about the value of their vessel.

So, I did a test of this on and decided to look at Hinckleys, a veritable standard of fine vessels.  You can begin at nearly 1 million dollars for an 1980's 60 footer and drop to 100k for a 30 some-footer of the same builder, there were only 17 listings.  Each vessel however, had its ups and downs, as these vessels are a combination of solid manufacturing and the ordinary wear and tear of a life on and near the water.  Some owners care and others are those who couldn't care, and still others are those who might not have the energy left to care and so the boat listings languish over the weeks, months, years!

Makes me smile and be happy that I'm sailing a Cape Dory which doesn't cost me a fortune nor require a fortune to sustain.  However, if you do the same search for Cape Dory Typhoons on that site, you will find the same disparity of pricing of 31 similar Typhoons, from 22k to 2k.  It is interesting that due to their quality of build that these boats are still available.  They do wear in weather.  And some of the Typhoons listed are in pretty dour condition while others are in stellar condition, at least on the outside!  Like their bigger brother, the Hinkley, it is a good idea to look underneath the deck to see the state of affairs and make sure of the seaworthiness of a potential purchase.

Hull #729, circa 1974 photo taken in 2015
Yet in the end, I am happy to own one of these little buggers for its place in history and its lure on the water.  Like more famous and fast designs, it has its niche and appeal to a certain kind of buyer for a certain kind of sailing.  It's not fast, doesn't point well, and requires updating the varnish all the time, and it rewards its owners with classic lines on the water appearing as something which might have time traveled in order to catch your eye.

Nonetheless, I'll keep perusing the used sailboats' market to see how the hulls are doing despite a market in which anyone can find most any sailboat of most any style, length, price, and fantasy.  Meanwhile, this one sails just right!

Monday, November 2, 2015

What do you do when this happens?

Well it just happens.  Sometimes the wind doesn't arrive on the day you arrive to sail.  And you must have a plan or else leave yourself open to disappointment and the loss of expectations which, thankfully, seem to become less of an issue the older one gets, so preparation is easier at least.
Surely your vessel never looks like this.  The bulkheads are looking rather plain--will have to add some safety information or nautical looking paraphernalia to add a bit of sea-worthiness to this environment below in case grand children show up.  But they'd probably want some food stocks and soft-drinks too!
 So it happened to me the other day.  So I had tied the Typhoon to the dock overnight to arrive for a bit of sailing the next day.  The day was beautiful but the wind was 3 to 5 kts with most of it being 0 to 3 kts.  Temperatures were great and with so many little things to do about the boat I decided instead to "mess around" aboard instead of sail.  That's the phrase borrowed from the Wind in the Willows and it kept coming to mind as I spent time aboard simply paying attention to details I'd shelved for a less active time.  That time had come.  It's important to know these times.

Since resurfacing the hull and painting the mono-urethane, I've been quite happy with the condition of things below the waterline.  Aboard topside, I'm noticing the need for some attention to re-varnishing some of the rub-rail as it gets quite a bit of use and little appreciation for its efforts in daily use.  Making mental notes along the way I randomly paid attention to various items needing attention: the cockpit drain piping I want to replace (again), the caulking between the interior fiberglass surrounding each porthole and deck plate, a bit of cleaning on the same fiberglass, attention to the stainless steel nuts which have attracted a bit of soiling from the environment, a bit of Mothers polish needed on the winches, and so my list grew.  I didn't write these things down.  It's a small vessel.  Discipline is light to recall things to-do although I have left my little plastic clinometer at home several times with the thought that I'd apply that to the bulkhead on my next trip over to the lake.  But this time I brought it!
So this is what these sliders on the cockpit are for! 

But too much for the moment so I decided upon a strategy for these problems, ...I'd have a cigar!  This was not a capricious decision.  I'd brought one of my collection aboard.  I had planned this nexus of things I enjoy for their ability to intersect at moments just such as this.

The cigar was just the right answer for the moment.  I opened the forward deck-plate for some draft and settled in for what I would call some strategic thinking aboard Baggy Wrinkles. 

That time went well.  From my berth below I was able to wile away the time quite efficiently with a cigar I'd purchased from my "pal" Carlos, from the Algarva in Portugal who runs a bit of a store and has the nicest demeanor as he displays a footlocker sized humidor of a thousand cigars stacked neatly like munitions in his custom oak and cedar treasure chest.  They're only about $2.50 apiece contrasted to the exorbitant 8 to 10 dollars wanted online.  The smoke drifted through the cabin while I considered what a great deal this cigar was.  
Some strategic planning taking place aboard Baggy Wrinkles.  Why appear to be busy at such a critical time as this?  Part of being a sailor is taking times to chill-out and think about things. 

Cigars are good when otherwise you'd fiddle with something.  At least with a cigar you can enjoy the flavorful leaves grown for just such a purpose, enjoyment, and money of course.  But for us, the clientele, we of the cigar aficionados of the world, it's not about much more than flavorful musing, and strategic thinking, of course, done while appreciating the pleasant aroma.  A good cigar will also be delightfully aromatic in the air while a poorly manufactured one will reek of pneumonia from leaves whose humidity rose too high and were rolled and shipped to the unawares.  Be advised!

Well this messing-about was going real well I thought, and the weather was quietly impressive too.  I did what sailors have to do in times like this, I straightened things up and found good use of my bright orange crate down below as a catch-all for stuff; another technical term for important things you might need one day.  You always will need a knife and a lighter I said to myself as I confidently arranged things below, and a towel, a jacket, some extra line, bracket for the Go-Pro, assorted burgees, some winch grease, and on and on...

I found this time particularly useful and a great stress-relief.  Sometimes when you're not so 'busy' you have time to take a look around and ask yourself why you've not done such and such, or this and that, and you make a to-do list to get those done.  It all makes for good use of time when the weather is taking a break itself.  No mind, it is a good use of time.  
View from below decks through the forward brass deck-plate found at Bristol Bronze. 

The hours drifted by, with an occasional wave to others paddling a scow or flying-Scot towards shore, reputing my flag stanchion on the taff-rail after spraying it a more pleasant gold color, topping-off my outboard-something which means security to me, and feeding a few squatting spiders to the fish in the murky lake waters below.  I was accomplishing some important little tasks left for times just like this. 
So wrapping the mainsail cover over the boom and tying the rudder amidships, I checked the dock-lines again and tidied up a bit before making my way home having felt confident that this bit of strategic pause was just what was needed today.
Fall weather is particularly seductive with its combination of fading summer hues and the intermittent bold arrival of reds.  Here, Baggy Wrinkles looks particularly ready for some action as the day of messing about down below decks comes to an end.