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Old 15-09-2016, 21:06   #1
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Shake out to Alaska

Hope I'm in the right spot. Hoping someone here will offer solid advise. My goals for this next 14/months are simply to move my HR33 up the coast to the SF Bay Area, likely the delta.

Put her on the hard, do the bottom and thru fittings, back into the delta, for work ups. Sailing the bay to learn, tweek what needs tweaking. Re wire the boat, and manufacture a solar panel towers, with 4 150w panels.

Learn the self steer system, radar, etc, closely monitor the new rebuilt motor, sail her in the bay, different weather different winds. Week long trips, mooring at different marinas as we go.

Early spring, weather dependent, up the coast to Brookings, " we're hoping to home port her here. Not critical, just closest marina to our Oregon home.

Sail of the coast often. Then up the coast to Alaska, for the summer. 90/120 days. Return to Brookings , rework anything needing work. Set up for the South Pacific.

Constructive critics welcome. Not a blue water sailor yet. Like I said a smallish boat, Hallberg RASSY 33 Mistrail. In very very good shape already. Upgraded motor 4-108m 51 hp, bigger fuel and water tank">fresh water tank already on board.

Other then the solar power project, and 6 large batteries, my only other add on would be considering a freshwater maker. Maybe a wind power system.

Thank you in advance.


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Old 15-09-2016, 22:31   #2
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Re: Shake out to Alaska

One comment, Dirk, experientially, it's a long way from the delta to the bay for sailing. I can see the attraction for it for working on your boat, but it's all river sailing around there My guess is that for Bay sailing, you want to be based on the bay, and even Richmond is a fairly long sail from the middle of the bay. For bay access, Emeryville or Alameda are handier.

How far north in AK? What you have described is a pretty tightly scheduled shakedown. The summer is short north of 50 deg. The winter storms may begin in Sept., and it's a long, cold, dark winter. Don't get me wrong, summer in AK is beautiful, it just doesn't last too long.

I don't know the entry to Brookings, so cannot comment.

Although small by today's prejudices, I think the HR will stand you in good stead.

After you've delivered her to SF, there are a number of CF'ers around who will offer pointers. Make a note of your average days' runs, it is really useful data to have, for future planning.


Ann & Jim, U.S. s/v Insatiable II, SE Qld, for a while
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Old 15-09-2016, 22:50   #3
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Re: Shake out to Alaska

Concur on what Ann said, especially about the weather up N. & the seasons there. The first of the winter's storms have usually arrived in WA & BC by now, let alone Alaska. With 50kts+ being the norm.

SV Denali Rose has a good blog/website on their boat, gear, & sailing in AK. They're members here, their user name is wrwakefield & the website is Denali Rose And like Ann T. Cate, their posts are usually top notch.

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Old 15-09-2016, 23:15   #4
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Re: Shake out to Alaska

Crescent City is a better port. You can usually get in and out in any weather. I commercial fished out of Crescent City. Often the Brookings boats would have to stay at sea or come to Crescent City because the Brookings bar was closed.
Look on a map, it's not that far from Brookings.
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Old 16-09-2016, 07:49   #5
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Re: Shake out to Alaska

Thank you for the responses. Understand, the delta situation, it's eight hours. In and eight hours out to/ from The bay. Do have a brother in law enquiring at Lowrys marina, in San Rafeal?. Possible option. Comes down to costs.

Example , I know I need to go on the hard, need to blast, and paint the bottom, check thru hull fittings, and determine/detect any soft spots, for repair.

Being retired I'll take the boat to whichever lift has the best deal, any all Maintanance will be accomplished by me. Any parts, supplies etc etc come out of a boat fund I've set up.

After reviewing your thoughts, I'm thinking a 24 month time table is a better, more practical date, also allows a more relaxed learning/ maintance curve.

My wife will fly into Alaska, and hang with me, then fly home. Her focus is our grand children, two little boys, 7 and 2 right now. She dosent want to miss a moment with them.

I on the other hand am needing adventure. My associates and me all bought adventure motorcycles, BMWgs style bikes. These guys are brothers, and everytime one has an inch lead the other has to take it back, dosent take long and were racing, not tour riding. Not for me, I want to slow down and see everything.

I'm rarely willing to ride with these guys anymore, just not into it. I'll keep the bike, but headed off to sea, where I feel free.

Crescent city, haven't thought much of that harbor, after watching it get trashed by the events in Japan. I will have a look, just really want to stay clear of California, to many rules for me.

My Alaskan destination is really just sailing up the coastal highway, checking out the old ghost towns. Eventually ending up in Skagway. And spending time in the Haines area. I really enjoy the eagle sanctuary, and can spend days just watching the Eagles.

We're not interested in doing the tourists thing, one of the biggest problems we see is the cattle ships, carrying tourists , so we'll aim for off the wall ports, and smaller places, to hang out. Also well anchor. I recently purchase a HUGE anchor specific for anchoring out. Perhaps we'll use community owned mooring balls as well.

We have a decent sized hard bottom zodiac, with either a 6 hp, or a 9.9 motor, for scooting around, exploring the coast line. I'm told by some Native American friends from Sitka, to take gold pans, and work any and all rivers to the sea, for fun they have over the years scored many ounces of gold. I was initially not interested, as we weren't sure if they we BSing us, these folks are true Alaskans Indians, and have a very playful nature.

However over a smoked tri tip and salmon and a few corona's they got specific and shared their gold spots. FYI they own San Juan 29's. And spend their summers sailing, we'll be meeting up with these folks.

Which brings me to safety equipment, we'll be purchasing the safety kit needed this winter borrowing the suits for the transit from Moss landing to the Bay Area.

Thank you for your time, again any input, or ideas of places to travel while there would be welcomed.

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Old 16-09-2016, 08:30   #6
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Re: Shake out to Alaska

Given locations I certainly would not rely on solar. I think a wind turbine is a must. Florida and the Gulf is a very different story.
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Old 16-09-2016, 08:53   #7
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Re: Shake out to Alaska

Think about leaving the boat in Sitka, Auk Bay or Hoonah for the winter. Nothing like SE Alaska.
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Old 16-09-2016, 09:19   #8
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Re: Shake out to Alaska

Alaska is a land of extremes. Be prepared.
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Old 16-09-2016, 10:27   #9
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Re: Shake out to Alaska

From what I saw of Alaska in the early summer, there isn't a lot of sun or wind. The inside passage is also a windless area in the summer. Good idea to go overboard on solar as you'll need it to get decent output when it's overcast. Same goes for the engine and fuel to run it plus a smart controller for a largish alternator. Some form of cabin heat will be a big plus for Alaska and probably for Oregon Coast as well.

Going south, you could probably ditch a panel or two after getting through the mid latitude greys. Ususally sunny once below about 30N. Wind generator will work on passage but not worth a lot at anchor as you don't get the strong winds common to the Carribean. Still, if you are a big consumer of amps, any addition to the replenishment kitty is a good bet. When you say six batteries, are you talking Golf Cart batteries for house batteries plus a 12v battery for the engine?? For most people in a boat your size 4 GC batteries plus a start battery would be adequate. Refrigeration will be your big energy users and the best way to cut down on the amps it uses is a well insulated ice box. 4" of blue board foam for the Frig section and 6" for the freezer. You can cut down the insulation with high tech. like AeroGel but at great expense. Polyisocyanurate insulation is cheaper but haven't found a way to get it where I live.

Instead of a water maker, use your shade awning to catch rain water. Won't work in Baja but will in SoPac and areas of normal rainfall. We never had to schlep water to the boat in a year and a half of cruising Polynesia. You'll need the awning to stay cool in the tropics in any case.

Problem with SF Bay is live aboard slips are virtually non existant without bribing the marina staff. May be able to stay aboard boat as a cruiser but then you might get hit with transient slip costs. Found a slip in Sausalito for a couple of months R&R'ing boat to sail to Hawaii but got hassled in Alameda if I stayed aboard for more than a couple of weeks.

Keep us informed of your travels. Have been threatening to do Alaska so may see you up there.
Peter O.
'Ae'a Pearson 35
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Old 16-09-2016, 14:14   #10
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Re: Shake out to Alaska

You probably don't need much in the way of solar on the Inside Passage. You will motor most of the time, even if you have a performance boat. The solar will be great when you head off to the SP.
The windgen won't get you much on the west coast.
No real need for a watermaker going to SE Alaska. Plenty of rain and enough docks to fill up with safe water. If you install the WM after AK you will have less issues with pickeling and flushing.
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Old 16-09-2016, 14:24   #11
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Re: Shake out to Alaska

Thank you again for the timely responses. I'm down the road from my house, rebuilding my Perkins 4-108m. Being very very methodical in cleaning every gasket surface. I've got 15 hours literally into those surfaces, alone. Sounds extreme, but we discovered water in our oil pan, and no valid reason on the mechanical side.

Also running a tap thru every hole on the engine, and a thread chaser on every bolt. The motor has a new updated alternator, like 120 volt or is it amp. New rebuilt starter, etc etc. upgraded fuel filter set up from " Foley Diesel" and an upgraded oil system.

also trying the new rear pan gasket upgrade, alledged to,stop that persistent oil leak in that specific area. Regarding the solar system, I already have the panels, the pmmt stuff, wire, and related products to do that part of the job.

I lack a frame to support the panels, I need to design one, thinking the Bimini and the solar panel support will be different. My minds eye pic of the solar panel, frame is all the way aft, basically off the stern of the boat. However it has to sit high enough to keep it out of the AUTOHELM system.

Batteries, do not have a specific of what I want. I,also have a couple Honda 2000 four stroke generators, one will be assigned to the boat. Useful tool.

Can anybody tell me what brand names I should be looking for in the wind generator arena.,,I'll start researching them

Off to finish the head. Thanks again.

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Old 16-09-2016, 23:50   #12
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Re: Shake out to Alaska

Too many rules and regulations? Brookings is a USCG training site. You will be boarded, time after time. Sure, Crescent City is susceptible to tsunami, but at least it doesn't have a bar that keeps it closed much of the time. Tsunamis are relatively rare, and usually give you many hours of warning to get your boat to deep water. Just about every other port from Cape Flattery to San Francisco Bay has a bar, and when things are kicking up, they can be impassible, sometimes for weeks at a time.
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Old 17-09-2016, 10:46   #13
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Re: Shake out to Alaska

If you are set on getting a wind gen - try looking at a D400 from Eclectic Energy. They are supposed to be the most robust and quietest going. Not cheap though. You may be able to find one on craigslist.

Micro Wind Turbines manufactured by Eclectic Energy Ltd
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Old 17-09-2016, 11:06   #14
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Re: Shake out to Alaska

Just getting up from the Bay to Washington is more adventure than many are willing to take on. It really depends on the luck of the draw with weather of course. I have had some beautiful trips and some nightmares. It seems it would be your first time in the real ocean. You may want to do some shake outs out side the bridge up and down the coast a few times to at least get some experience in that.

Going to Alaska is that same type of adventure on steroids. I have not made that trip, yet, but it is on the TDL. We sail in the San Juan Islands which are basically inland but the winters even here can be challenging at times, e.g. 50-70kt winds in my marina when a low pressure system rolls in and it blows like hell for 4-7 days. Even in the summer it can occasionally be more than some sailors will care for.

If you are on a deadline, you will be much more likely to try and go before the weather clears up enough to get to the next protected anchorage. Sailing to Alaska is a challenge for even very seasoned sailors and will require some gear that many will not have, e.g. long anchor rodes, stern anchor setups, and most of all, a really good heater.

We took off for Mexico and the Pacific in 2004 from Anacortes, WA, having sailed around here for 5 years in and around the San Juans and Gulf Islands. We thought about going to Alaska for a shake down but decided to just go around Vancouver Island. We took 2 months to do that. It was absolutely one of the best trips we have ever made. It gave us confidence in the boat and our skills. However even that was not the same as going farther north to Alaska since we could always get to a protected spot without any over nighters and we has the luxury of waiting for the occasional gale to pass by.

Don't get me wrong though. You can certainly make a trip to Alaska in your boat. I have many friends who have made it on the same size and capable boats. The main issue I would raise is having a schedule, especially having to meet someone at a specific location on a specific date. We have only had grief doing that in our travels and will never do it again, even in warm tropical places.

So I would encourage you, strongly, to give considerable thought to your schedule. It should have lots of slack on the way up certainly. If you need a critical part in Alaska on on the way up, it can take two weeks or more to get some parts, and mechanics are very busy during the summer with their regular customers - provided you can get to a port where you can get the parts delivered and a mechanic available. You really need to be fairly self-reliant on most everything on your boat and have tools on board. And really make sure the boat has the gear and reliability to get to Alaska and back. Good luck with your boat and prep. We did it ourselves with no experience to start and made it work to New Zealand over four years.
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Old 17-09-2016, 19:39   #15
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Re: Shake out to Alaska

I'm taking it all in. Every post is an opportunity to learn. Sorry about dissing Ca. I'm very conservative, and made a choice to leave Ca, back in the 80s. For me, my choice has proven to be the right choice, for my family and me.

Clearly I need to articulate a bit better. No agenda, no time table could leave on the first or the 21 st. My friends live in Sitka, again native americans, and the patience of saints.

I had mentioned in a recent post I just purchased a mondo anchor, 100 foot of chain, and 300 yards of used anchor line, salvaged off of a crashed boat some where in Ca. I will switch the existing anchor on the boat to a stern anchor.

I was told the existing anchor, was a bit lite, but adequate for the job. This was via a survey. I didn't like the sound of " perhaps adequate". In my mind, I'd rather have the mondo anchor, AND the second anchor, for the stern. I paid like 350.00 for a like new CQB, and 150.00 ish for the used chain and line, which I thought was a reasonable price.

As I stated , or thought I stated, I'll spend this next winter in the bay, learning the boat, the systems, and how to maximize their intended uses.

Im in the market for a good used heater, like to stay with Diesel, as I've got a decent size fuel tank on the boat. Also I'm the market for sea anchors and drones.

I just received comformation that my new main is in route. After its arrival, I'll price a set of stand along storm sails, lil tiny things, to deploy in a decent or big blow. My bow set up is still, " these sails are the only items I've purchased new"

The boat came with three head sails, in very god condition. the main sail and the boom were allegedly lost via a bad jibe, off of Santa Cruz. I sourced and purchased a newer extruded boom, 13.1 long, and have the boom and the goose neck, down at a machine shop, to re space the origional goose neck, to fit precisely this new boom.

The boat did not come with a dodger, or a Bimini, I've sourced the metal work for both, used, for under 500.00 and will sew covers here at home. Also sourcing a sail rite sewing machine, which I have not purchased yet, but will in the next month. Figuring 600.00/ 800.00 for the industrial unit I want for the boat. Again used.

The boat came with a zodiac survival raft, and I already had a 10 foot hard bottom zodiac, with a choice of a 6 hp, or. 9.9 motor to push it around.

I've had great luck on Craigs List the entire west coast, and watching Florida, however not needed to source, or purchase anything from the east coast, to date.

My salvage friend did tell me he does have a diesel heater in good shape. This guy has piles and stacks of sailboat stuff everywhere in and around his house. I had to laugh, when I purchased my boom, for 150.00 and a like new spinnaker pole for a total of 350.00

Two #26 winches to upgrade my mast winches for 200.00 in fantastic shape. He is also the source for the Bimini rails and the dodger rails. Guys it's like a candy shop for sailors.

I've got the time the patience, the discipline to do it right.

Good point about getting out of the bay, into the open water. As soon as my mentor sailor says I'm ready, I'm out the bay, into the ocean. Their is the matter of coming up the coast. I intend to sail up, the coast, " " I need the learning time" however motoring might sadly be what is required.

Moss landing, to the Delta isn't really that far, 60 ish miles. Depending on the conditions. I can bag it, at Santa Cruz, or just a bit north, the marina name escapes me.

The other item I really need, and have not researched is a radar reflector, suits, and I need to learn the radios, which were on the boat along with a a plot,charter.

Sorry to be long winded, not sure if I'm trying to convince you all, or me. If you can't tell I'm truly excited to be in the infancy of this great adventure. What's the old saying, God smiles on the bold!


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