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Old 13-05-2013, 10:28   #2161
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

Ditto those points Roy, and I might add...

What you do in protected seas on a fast/fun daysail is very different from what you do when at sea cruising. For example, when we sail here in the Neuse River, Pamlico Sound, or (like in the previous photos)... a short duration mad dash at sea to Cape Lookout, then we "almost" never reef the main in high winds. It just isn't usually necessary. On the other hand, when we were in the Eastern Caribbean during winter, we finally got tired of getting beat up going from island to island. About half way down the chain, we put in a double reef, and kept it in for about a month of mostly daysails between islands. Around sunset... when we lowered the main upon making landfall, we just kept the reefs tied in... So what that the next day we would be going just 8.4 knots instead of 9! In those choppy seas, often with contrary current, and crabbing to windward, we were NOT looking for more speed.

You will find that in winds over 20, a reef in the main will not slow you down much, and like Roy pointed out, buy the time it's blowing over 25, it becomes physically harder to reef. It is not absolutely necessary to reef the main then, just way EASIER on yourself to do it earlier than later.

For a short daysail a single reef might be fine, but on a several day/week passage, a double reef, early, is the prudent move. Remember, with our runners set up, as they usually are when on a passage, we can only spill so much of the wind in an emergency, because the boom is restricted to about 45 degrees out angle! Not true of the headsails.

We also have a THIRD reef made into the main, but have never used it. By that time I prefer the staysail alone, which still balances perfectly.


REGARDING YOUR QUESTION:
Low to 15ish: Genoa
15-25ish: Yankee + Staysail
Above 25: Staysail and reef the main
That about right?

WELL...None of the app wind numbers is etched in stone, but that is the ball park. If for example you had a very heavily built genoa, (which most are not), AND you were on a broad reach in protected seas, you could probably fly it up to 20 knots and leterrip!

Off the wind the boat has a MUCH nicer motion and for the same app wind speed, is FAR easier on the sails, rig, and boat. Hard to windward in a gale, is brutal on ANY small boat. Use your gut instints... IF she is scalping the wavetops and pounding hard, it is past time to reef. It is really not about the risk of capsize, 99% of the time, it's about tearing sails or breaking something at sea, where it is hard to deal with.

Now, I sail like an old man. When we made it from Trinidad to the Beaufort NC inlet in 12 sea days, my mantra was:
DON'T GET SICK OR INJURED.
DON'T FALL OFF THE BOAT.
and DON'T BREAK ANYTHING.

We stayed between 6 and 8 knots most of the time, and I tried not to beat as hard as necessary, (50 or 55 degrees was OK), but make up for it later when the wind shifted. It was a pleasant trip, without drama for a change!

In the photos below, (and the one above), prior to the more recent Eastern C cruise, we were beating HARD to windward... up the Eastern Coast of Andros Bahamas in the Tongue of the Ocean. The seas were 13 to 15' and winds 38 gusting into the low 40s. With a double reefed main & staysail, it was doable, but NOT pleasant. I would now ONLY do this for a reason and for just one day.

You will get your instincts for it, it just takes practice.

Mark
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Old 13-05-2013, 15:37   #2162
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

Ok, on and on with my crazy ideas....can't help it! I can't sail it or work on it yet, so I'm still in the dreamy stage! :P

EVENTUALLY, I would like to ditch the outboard motor and go with an inboard (as I mentioned in a PM to mark before). I've read the previous posts about installing inboards and I really like the idea of doing the "hybrid electric" option. Staying away from the large production options, the research I've been doing to price an appropriately sized electric motor (one of the production sites said 2KW/ton displacement) and a generator to run it indicated $3-4k, plus the cost of the gearing and props and other parts. I don't imagine I would bother trying to use any batteries in this arrangement, just plug it right in to the generator.

Any thoughts on this? I know there are probably a slew of problems with this, but I like doing different things.
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Old 13-05-2013, 19:25   #2163
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

I'd suggest getting a midweight Genoa and furling unit first. You'll hardly need the staysail and you'll skip many trips to the pointy end...Works for Jim Brown...In the PNW in the spring and fall the winds are in constant change. I've gone through 3 sizes in an hour hanking and now laugh as I roll in and out to suit the conditions.

On the electric end of things there is a battery being developed at the university in Chicago that could be a game changer. 10 times the power and faster charging. You could jump start your car off something that fits in your cellphone so waiting a bit on the inboard might pay off. But if sailing is easy you won't want to turn the engine on anyway.....
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Old 13-05-2013, 19:38   #2164
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

Well, I'm stuck with the hank on sails for now. My first priority after maintenance will be a cockpit cover, since I'm at a higher risk for melanoma and need to stay out of direct sunlight for extended periods. After that I'll probably look at a roller furler for the genoa and probably leave the staysail hank-on as suggested by Mark.

It's going to be a long while before I can do anything with the propulsion system, and honestly I'm not horribly worried about the setup as is. The only reason I'm even bringing up an inboard motor of any kind is because the way it's setup now (having to haul the motor up and down with a line and brute strength) is going to get old after a while and it would be nice to just turn on a generator and push the throttle forward.
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Old 13-05-2013, 20:17   #2165
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

Sounds like a tackle for the OB is needed....I understand economy. I installed a removable staysail stay early on to make the Nicol a double head sloop technically. The staysail gets used most for adding sail close reaching and working with the chute on long runs though we got it for a storm sail. It is a hank on and easy to leave hooked to the stay, even when the stay isn't rigged. If we get exotic I'll add a line furler to handle the staysail and light air sails.

Our bow goes out about 3 feet past the forestay, recently we picked up a light used genoa for a poor man's code zero and set it flying using the spinnaker halyard and the bow as a built in sprit. I'm going to try real old school brail lines but so far it is easy to get down. Not much trouble to walk it in front of the forestay for tacking but rolling it would be slick. I'll probably make a line furler as the off the shelf units seem very overpriced for what they are.
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Old 20-05-2013, 18:25   #2166
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

To go under the "I Searunner Therefore I am" file here is a pic I just got from the new owner of Corazon. Guess a bit of TLC was called for.
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Old 21-05-2013, 02:08   #2167
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Nice one back to the bare bottom. Way to go. Save a searunner for many years to come. You cannot beat ply when its looking as good as that. Put the best paint on her and it will Last.
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Old 21-05-2013, 03:54   #2168
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I'm trying to save mine. Ck out my pics at buildingmytrimaran.shytterfly.com
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Old 21-05-2013, 06:39   #2169
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

There are/were a couple of roller furlers that use hank on sails, one was the mariner rollerstay which the Dashews used on their first circumnavigation on Intermettzo,a Columbia 50 and spoke highly of, apparently the rolled up hanks are a non issue, these are long out of production, the other is a Kiwi built unit, I don't remember the name, it uses special sewn on slides in place of actual piston hanks. The old mariner is a furler , not a reefer which to me is fine.
I think the advise to use what you have until you can afford a decent furler and purpose built sail makes the most sense to me rather than spending money on interim fixes. Hank on sails, especially set up with a downhaul line work very well. I have a couple of cassettes that the allow for quick changes but ive never tried them.

Steve.
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Old 21-05-2013, 11:34   #2170
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

Quote:
Originally Posted by Boatguy30 View Post
To go under the "I Searunner Therefore I am" file here is a pic I just got from the new owner of Corazon. Guess a bit of TLC was called for.


A COUPLE OF THINGS I MIGHT PASS ON ABOUT THIS PROJECT'S PHOTO:

TOOLS:
First off, this large soft pad rotary grinder in the photo may not be the best tool for the job. Based on the original "Gougeon Brothers on Boatbuilding" book, I used one of their recommended 8" soft pad, B&D "polisher speed" rotary sanders on my previous boat, to the tune of many thousands of hours. They are very good at making things "flat" IF you hold it completely flat up against what you're sanding. The thing is, IF held this way... the 80 grit discs (@ > $1 ea), only last a few minutes, before they don't cut well at all. It is easy to have hundreds of $ worth of sandpaper on the floor at the end of a day! You can extend the life of the paper quite a bit by tipping the sander, rather than holding it flat. This is WAY more aggressive too, however. TOO AGGRESSIVE! It lacks finesse, and will cut swirls past the epoxy resin layer, into the very thin glass job that we aspire to on our Searunners. This means that a total re-glass of the entire boat "may" be necessary, as the glass job on these boats is WAY to thin to be sanded into and still be up to the job. A total re-glass on a SR takes years, btw... IF you want a long term permanent repair, this is no place for shortcuts.

THE PORTER CABLE 7336:
A MUCH better sander, and my personal favorite boatbuilding tool, is the Porter Cable model 7336, RO sander/polisher. I use the 6" "Stickit" soft pad, and peel n stick 80 grit paper discs for most jobs. Bought in boxes of 100, it is a small fraction of the cost, compared to 8" Stickits" for the rotary grinder. Do not get the "velcro" version of the soft pad, as the paper cost a LOT more.

Also, due to being Random Orbit, vs rotary, the sandpaper lasts and lasts. I might use a single 6" disk for 30 or 40 minutes of continuous sanding! This tool is used on a slight angle rather than held flat, and is perfect for glazing over epoxy coatings, removing multiple layers of paint, and carefully feathering glass tape edges, (which we have hundreds of feet of on our Searunners). If you switch to 320 grit, it is perfect for surface sanding "sound" LP paint jobs OR 2 pt primers, before applying your LP topcoats.

After smearing on your color contrasting "guidecoat", you just sand (with 320) the entire surface until the guidecoat is all gone. This way you get ALL of the surface, but do not go through the underlying layer of paint. On our SR 34, I did ALL of the underwing on one side, in < a couple of hours, with this sander.

The Porter Cable 7336 can be VERY aggressive if needed, or used with great finesse when called for. This is depending on the grit used and how you "edge" it! If you get the vacuum sanding hood option, it is an efficient vacuum sander, AND, with their polishing accessories, It also doubles as a metal or plastic polisher for removing scratches from your ports. The bottom/left side photo below, for example, is after polishing out our Lexan that was over 10 years old at the time.

This Porter Cable is a primo multi use tool, that may well last for the duration of a very long boat project. It is highly recommended!

UV EXPOSURE: Forgive my repetition here...
On any project where the epoxy/glassed hull is being completely stripped, OR has peeled off on it's own, a month or two is the MAXIMUM UV exposure allowable, in a sunny tropical environment. This is more true of horizontal surfaces than vertical ones, and more true of epoxy surfaces than polyester ones. In either case, however, this is not just a good idea, it's a serious consideration! Otherwise the epoxy/glass job yellows, chalks, becomes very brittle, crazes, or even delaminates. The time it takes for this damage varies with the context, as I said, but for sure... multi year boat projects should be built under a temporary building of some sort. ALL 3 of my buildings were under $1,000 each to build. It's money well spent, imo.

For shorter projects that are already painted, you can just strip and "grey" prime one area at the time to minimize UV exposure, OR you can strip the decks and throw a tarp over it until you're ready for paint. There are a lot of options, but find some way to minimize UV exposure.

Hope this is of use...
Mark
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Old 21-05-2013, 20:03   #2171
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

Mark

I used a 8" pad on a Milwaukee sander polisher with adjustable speed no the Vardo. With 80 grit discs, I could sand in all the butt joints and screw hole fillings on each hull side in about 4 hours. I have 40 grit discs as well, but use the 80 more as even at very low speed the 40 really tears or off.

I trust Dale is being careful, I told him to make sure he puts on a good barrier coat.

Jeff
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Old 22-05-2013, 09:15   #2172
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

I went with the FessTool a couple years ago. It's a German tool system that couples a high capacity vacuum unit to well built tools. The two tools that I have with this unit are a rotary grinder and the rectangular block sander. They use expensive velcro paper. The place where this costly combination becomes unbeatable is in the local boatyards, which prohibit owners doing external sanding without total tenting. The last time I hauled, I completely sanded, repaired dings, reprimed and repainted all the hulls and underwings in LPU. The yard manager swooped in on me just as I started grinding the underwing, and he was ready to pounce, then he stopped in wonderment. "What IS that thing", he asked. I gave it to him to try, which he did, then he called all of his supervisors in to try it. At the conclusion of their tests, he looked at me with a smile, walked away and said "Have a good day!". It saved me thousands of dollars and earned some good brownie points. Here's a picture of my good friend Jeff Allen, a former SR 40 owner, using the grinder. Notice the black tee-shirt, no mask and no dust.
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Old 22-05-2013, 10:16   #2173
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

SANDERS:
The sander Roy refers to above is indeed GREAT! I believe it is very similar to the 7336 Porter Cable with the vacuum attachment accessories on it. The real difference is that the PC version is locally available and cheaper. That was a good point Roy, btw... With such an efficient vacuum sander, I was allowed to do my own work in the yard last summer, saving thousands. Otherwise, standard sanding was NOT allowed there! I do, however, wear a respirator for protection from the 5% of dust that still flies.


Jeff, have you ever tried out the 6" soft pad, on a Porter Cable random orbit 7336?

The sort of tool you describe (with 8" soft pad), was in fact the workhorse of the industry, back in the day... Some builders still think so.
That is why Gougeon Brothers recommended it, and why I used it for 90% of my sanding on the SC28. We're talking thousands of hours here, over an 8 year project...

With it being flat sided hulls, I found that by fairing the stringers & frames to perfection before applying the ply, then sanding and coating the glass job repeatedly, (holding the 8" soft pad sander FLAT), I was able to achieve an Americas Cup boat's degree of fairness. The thing is, it took way too long and cost way too much in sandpaper. It was still the right choice "for me", 30 years ago when I still had so much of my ego in it.
Now I shoot for just 90% cosmetic perfection, because that last 10% cost too much.

In the photo of the 28's hull below (in my shop), I had her completely sanded, but sprayed the hull with water for the reflection, right before taking the photo. You could literally read newsprint in the reflection. REALLY! Then, of coarse, I painted the boat with flattening paste put in the LP topcoat, because I didn't like the shine. I wanted "semigloss".

The reason I went with "full gloss" paint on Delphys, (except for the decks), rather than "flatened out" LP like I'd used on the SC 28, was that I had learned that flattening paste knocks the potentially 15 year lifespan of LP paints down to just 10 years or so. Luckily I only had to live with "too much shine" for the first few years. As you get "out there" and are full time cruisers, the ever present salt encrustation hides the shine, and soon enough, it turns more semigloss. For the final 5 years of it's life, it will be mostly flat, like gellcoat. (Our current paint job's year 9... See the shot of us hanging in the slings last summer). That finish is still fine with me. For one off "cruising" boats, it is all about your paint's hardness, solvent resistance, and lifespan. Imo... A truly obsessive level of cosmetics has no place in the cruising world, so I have tried to draw the cosmetic line at just the right place this time. Mariam insists on it!

For those builders still ego-trippin with their boat projects, (as I was 30 years ago on the 28)... holding the bigger 8" pad perfectly flat will indeed give a very fair result, hundreds of hours later. It cost a fortune in sandpaper too, for no practical advantage. NOW, if you tip the edge of the same sander, The 8" pad on a rotary polisher cuts fast (for a short while), but as I said earlier, it is big, heavy, and lacks finesse. It only takes one lapse of attention to cut through the glass, and filling the gouges into the glass does not really repair the damage. It only makes it "out of sight, out of mind", until it pops open 5 years later where the glass fibers were cut.

When I started on Delphys over 21 years ago, I had already apprenticed for 4 years and been a boatbuilder for decades. I thought I knew what I was doing, and intended on using the tools I was familiar with, namely... the low RPM sander/polisher with an 8" soft pad, just like you use...

Then a highly skilled friend stopped by who did nothing but boat bottoms for a living. He had probably done THOUSANDS of them! He suggested that I try this new Porter Cable RO sander, so I reluctantly went out and bought one. Later I ordered the vacuum attachments and polishing accessories as well.

At first I found it clumsy and hard to use, until I got the knack of it. I remove the handle, hold just the motor's barrel, and I always tip it a bit, on the side that I am driving it toward. The left side cuts more than the right side.

I'm tellin ya, it cuts "like butta"! After fairing Delphys' low spots with bog, and sanding them by hand with a longboard, then glassing over this... all sanding of resin, glass, or even primer, was done with this one Porter Cable tool. Being a smaller 6" pad and RO, it goes into whoop ti dos better, without doing damage to the glass job from knocking off the hills. As you can see from the photos of our hulls, (and the clear coated one is not yet sanded), I did not get a "perfect" finish on her like previously, but it is pretty damned good! I was shooting for a faster more rational goal. I could 100% sand to a glaze that entire hull side for example, in 2 or 3 hours! The larger 8" sander would have taken MUCH longer IF held flat, and cost 100X more. IF I had tipped it, it might be equally as fast, but would leave either gouges, or at least lots of rotary swirls, that then have to be sanded out with a palm sander. NOT SO with the RO sander. The resulting surface is ready for more epoxy resin topcoats OR 2 pt primer.

Sanding the underwings of a multihull with an 8" soft pad sander/polisher as you describe, IS PAINFUL!!! They weigh 3X as much. You know this!
We're talking 10 seconds spent sanding overhead, and then 20 seconds spent resting... all day long!

My friend had steered me right! This little Porter Cable RO sander is faster than the big rotary guy at leveling resin OR paint stipple, glazing epoxy for the next step, or feathering glass tape or glass fabric edges. It is also perfect for removing bottom paint. Because the paper doesn't load up or get hot, like on the bigger rotary job, it last 20X as long per sheet.
Once I got this tool, I hardly ever got out the big 8" pad rotary sander again.

I don't care if other builders do things the way I do them, I am just trying to pass on the favor my friend did for me, 20 years ago. This change in sanding tools will save my fellow boatbuilders lots of time, money and heartache... It is not even an expensive tool! (about $120)

Like I said, if you want to save time & money... Try this out. In any big project, whether it is a boat or a house, money saved on minimizing the purchase of tools is false economy! Sometimes just $800 spent on tools will cut a multi-year project in half!
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Old 22-05-2013, 11:20   #2174
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

I used to have one of those porter cables, but lost it long ago. I only sanded the bare wood with the 8" to get ready to glass. Then I used my 1/2 sheet Milwaukee orbital. All with the hulls still on there side. I preglassed and sanded all my underwing panels so only need to sand the edges.

It sure does take a lot of work to get a perfect finish. I'm shooting for an OK looking finish. A guy in Punta Gorda, FL building a woods Saturn spent tons of time sanding and fairing and you can still see a ton of imperfections in his paint work. I'm going epoxy primers and 2 part paint. The next owner can worry about a better when finish when I'm done cruising.
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Old 22-05-2013, 19:15   #2175
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roy M View Post
I went with the FessTool a couple years ago. It's a German tool system that couples a high capacity vacuum unit to well built tools. The two tools that I have with this unit are a rotary grinder and the rectangular block sander. They use expensive velcro paper. The place where this costly combination becomes unbeatable is in the local boatyards, which prohibit owners doing external sanding without total tenting. The last time I hauled, I completely sanded, repaired dings, reprimed and repainted all the hulls and underwings in LPU. The yard manager swooped in on me just as I started grinding the underwing, and he was ready to pounce, then he stopped in wonderment. "What IS that thing", he asked. I gave it to him to try, which he did, then he called all of his supervisors in to try it. At the conclusion of their tests, he looked at me with a smile, walked away and said "Have a good day!". It saved me thousands of dollars and earned some good brownie points. Here's a picture of my good friend Jeff Allen, a former SR 40 owner, using the grinder. Notice the black tee-shirt, no mask and no dust.
I remember that photo. It was the fist time I had heard of Festool. Very nice gear but so damned expensive.
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