Friday, April 8, 2016

Miami Boat Show

In the last blog, I promised to share with you our pick of the boat show lineup. 

We are winding down here in Marathon.  Plan to haul the boat on the 29th to do the bottom.  That will be up in Cape Canaveral, so we'll start heading that way the end of next week. 

Because of our remodel, our taste keep changing in what we would want in a boat.  Yammy was actually mad at me when I was looking at other boats.  She said I finally gave her what she wants, so why are we even looking.  I guess if we win the lottery, we need to keep abreast of what's on the market. 

Yammy's pick:  Privilege 5 Series.  It is a 50' with a large salon and master suite.  I didn't like the 5'2" draft, but everything else they said they could modify to my liking.  Just have to fork over $1.6M.

My pick of new catamarans was the Balance 526.  This was the company that designed boats based on what cruising couple said they needed in a catamaran.  The 45 was a disaster, but this larger platform gave them the room they needed to create a masterpiece.  No changes needed for me at the $1.2M price tag.

Our broker friend, Peter (Catamaran Company), has been wanting me to see a used catamaran that has been on the market for awhile.  It is a 55' Dix Harvey hybrid boat.  Built like a gunboat and extremely roomy.  It was there at the show and we had a chance to board it.  I liked it, but Yammy did not.  $1M takes it away.


    A dollar and a dream.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Strange Weather Everywhere

Still here in Marathon.  The winter to remember as we started by setting record high temperatures, now we ware setting records in consecutive low temperature days and record rainfalls for December, January and February. 

I just got back from traveling to PA, NJ and NH.  The first day saw 60F, then it dropped to the 30's and snowed.  At my office in PA, it is back up to the 60's, but a snowstorm is expected by the end of the week.

We did get to sail to Miami for the boat show this year.  It was challenging sailing with cold temps and high winds.  In Biscayne Bay we saw 35 knot wind gusts with sustained winds of 25-28 knots.  First time reefing the main, we were able to point to 35 degrees in that blow and only have 8 degree leeway.  During the wind gusts, we were actually breaking 9 knots.  A fellow Lagoon 410 owner could not point high enough and had to motor the 25 miles up the bay.  Thank you again Haarstick Sailmakers!

Learned more about the boat on the way back.  The winds were expected to be high again and out of the SE.  That would make the Hawk Channel rough for anchoring overnight, so we took the inside route for the first time.  We actually enjoyed it.  It reminded us of sailing on the Indian River, but with a few narrower channels.

On the second day, the wind was blowing a steady 30-32knots with gusts up to 42 knots.  We sailed with just a single reefed main from 60 degrees to 120 degrees and making in the 7 knot area.  With all of the lobster and crab traps, we had to hand steer most the day.  Usually there is no feel to the helm and impossible to keep a steady track, but with the weather helm (which I didn't know cats could get), from the unbalanced sail plan, we effectively steered all day. 

The other thing was that sterns squatted every time the wind gusted up.  It felt like the equivalent of pushing the throttles forward and having the bows rise from the prop thrust.  What this created was a standing wake that was big enough to actually touch the bottom of the dinghy.  Because of this phenomenon, no matter how high the wind gusted to, we could not get above 7.5 knots.  We sailed the same speeds whether the wind was blowing 30 or 40 knots.  This is below 90 degrees.  Something new to ponder.    

I'll talk about our boat picks, from the show, in the next post.  

 Sailing through one of the narrow cuts on our first day on the inside (Jewfish Creek).  Freaked out many of the fishermen anchored along each side.  They were staying in here to hide from the high winds.     
 All to common site in Florida.  Someone's dream just rotting away on a shoal.
 Never saw a flock of cormorants before.  They were all sitting in a long line on the water before I stirred them up.  
Sunset at Tarpon Basin in Key Largo.

Friday, January 15, 2016

Happy New Year!

Been a crazy start to the New Year with record breaking weather and record breaking stock market.  Guess we'll wait out both.

We had the pleasure of spending three nights at Friend Key.  That was our way of getting away from the hectic New Year's Eve crowd and enjoy an anchorage without a sole around.  On new Years' Eve, we had our own light show with jelly fish lighting up the water all around us.  We just wish we could have caught it on camera ( never came out).

 This picture was taken from the internet.  It is the same type of jellyfish we saw, bit the light was more like a ball traveling around its body.  I always think of an electron traveling around the network of nerves in its body.  Really cool to experience.  I read it happens as a defense mechanism or to attract prey.
 New Year's Eve at Friend Key
Got caught drinking a beer in Boot Key.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Merry Christmas

I know we have been silent for a few weeks.  It has been one of the rainiest Decembers on record here.  So, a lot of time spent reading during the off work hours. 

We have been to the reef  twice and sailing twice.  Hope to do more cruising when we get back from our Christmas trip to see the grandkids. 

 Yasmine Ann lite up for the Christmas
 One of the boats in this year's boat parade.

Gulf view from our walk on the 7-mile bridge.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Weight Loss`

It is official.  We had two goals with our remodel.

1.  Comfortable and functional salon and galley.

2.  Shed weight, as all multihulls are faster the lighter they are.

You have seen the pictures and # 1 was definitely hit. 

Now after a few weeks of getting things put back to their proper locations, we have seen exactly what we hoped for.  The whole boat has lifted 1.5"-2" out of the water.  Good news is that it is down the whole length.  So, we shed weight without becoming bow or stern heavy.  When you consider everything we added, including a washer/dryer combo, we are very happy.

Based on the lift, and experience of hull lift with the battery replacement, we estimate somewhere between 800 - 1000 lbs. of weight taken out.  The immediate effects are .3 knots faster motoring speed.  I am sure this translates to sailing speed as well, but that is harder to track. 

 Notice the thru-hull.  This is the galley drain, located aft of mid-ships.  It used to be completely submerged.  You can see the old waterline down the whole hull and even where the bottom cleaners used to scrap of barnacles is now above the water.  Charles, a multihull enthusiast here, noticed we were sitting higher the moment we pulled in the harbor.     
Back to our amazing sunsets here in Boot Key!

Monday, November 9, 2015


Winter home that is.  For those who don't know, we have made it down to Marathon.  Finally had some sailing with 3 great days of sailing from anchor up to anchor down.

Some oddities of this trip:

The gulf stream seemed to be within a 1/2 mile of shore going from West Palm Beach to Miami.  Thermal imaging confirmed it, although NOAA had it out 11 miles.  The water temps were in the ,mid 80's, so that is another indicator.  Marathon locals said the stream is moving slower than usual and spreading out this year. 

We are just 3 hours shy of the our winter season engine hours.  With the ocean rolling everyday, we  motored most of the way.  Since we got the last end mooring ball, in our favorite spot, it was worth getting here early.  We are just too picky!

 Found a stowaway yesterday.  He dropped down when I opened the rear lazarette and immediately went into this defensive position.  It kept lunging at me like a rattlesnake.  From what I could find out, it is a grey rat snake.  They have the same defensive characteristics as a rattle snake.  Either way, it was only about 20" long and swam away.  Not sure if it is from around here.  It may have been aboard since the flood in Myrtle beach.   
From our anchorage in Cocoa Beach.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

New Video Link

Had to upload the video again.

We made it to West Palm Beach Today.  Wind still looks good for a sail to Miami tomorrow.
Code O reaching on the flat waters of Indian River.