October 19, 2011

Sailors’ Ingenuity Pt. II

At first glance, Espresso’s bowsprit looks like any other.

© Peter Petraitis

In the October 3 edition of ‘Lectronic Latitude, we asked readers for some of the more ingenious modifications they’ve made to their boats. Paul Petraitis shared some of the very cool addiitons he’s made over the past 20 years to his meticulously maintained Seattle-based CT 41 PH Espresso.

But a custom-cut pulpit and beefy hinge save Peter more than $1,000 each year.

© Peter Petraitis

"I made a big ol’ stainless steel hinge for my bowsprit," Paul writes. "When it’s down and pulled tight by the bobstay, whiskers and forestay, it’s in column and very strong, plus it saves me about $100 a month in slip fees!

Drain holes in the ‘beer can holders’ and a molded-in dome light make this hard dodger pretty unique.

© Peter Petraitis

"Recently, my buddy Don Mitchell and I built a hardtop dodger that has a gutter all the way around to catch water. The water is directed into two drains/beer can holders and from there it can be funneled anywhere. A dome light was incorporated on the underside and we molded up some cool stereo speaker mounts with the wires hidden in the tubing. All that’s left is for my awesome wife Allison to sew up a custom canvas window."

With water-directing gutters and custom-built speaker boxes, all the dodger needs now is a little isinglass.

© 2011 Peter Petraitis

If you’ve made similarly unusual mods to your boat, email photos and descriptions to LaDonna.

Quantum Leap Rescue Caught on Video

As reported last Wednesday, Washington state-based sailor Phillip Johnson, 62, and two crewmen were rescued 600 miles off Hawaii by staff of the 815-ft cruise ship Celebrity Century.

Johnson, a retired U.S. Navy airman with 40 years of sailing experience, suffered serious spinal injuries when his 48-ft aluminum sailboat Quantum Leap was broached by an irregular wave during a night of rough weather. After the crew called the US Coast Guard’s Honolulu office for help via their satellite phone, the 1,800-passenger cruiseliner was diverted and, as you can see in this on-board video, the three sailors were safely brought aboard. As far as we know, Quantum Leap remains adrift, unattended.

The Celebrity Century is one of many cruise ships and international cargo vessels — as well as virtually all international airlines — that voluntarily participate in the AMVER system (originally known as the Atlantic Merchant Vessel Emergency Reporting System), which has been responsible the saving countless lives since its inception in the late 1950s.

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Join the excitement in San Diego within the AC Village on Harbor Drive, where spectators will be able to see the racing from Broadway Pier, as well as from Harbor Island to the north, offering one of the best views of the course.

For more information, race schedule and preferred ticket options, visit www.americascup.com/sandiego.

Free Mainsail From 63-ft Catamaran

This Spectra mainsail has seen 11 years of great service in California, Mexico and the Caribbean. Despite her age, she still has decent shape. Unfortunately, she’s not only got plenty of mold stains, but is also molting taffeta at such a disturbing rate that, while parts of her are fine, she’s absolutely useless as a mainsail.

It doesn’t look like much here, but for all we know, Profligate’s old main might end up as a number of tents for people at next year’s Burning Man.

© Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Not wanting to unnecessarily add to San Diego’s landfill, and knowing people have all kinds of creative second uses for things or parts of things, she’s for sale for $1 — as is, where is, you take her away before 7 a.m. on Monday. Mind you, she weighs well over 200 lbs and is a beast to move. You’ll want four strong guys and a cart to take her away.

If you are seriously interested and are ready to pick her up immediately, email RichardNOT Driscoll’s.

And if any of you have come up with creative uses for old sails, we’d love to hear about them.

Ask a dozen sailors about any subject within the realm of sailing and you’re likely to get a dozen different opinions — even about something as seemingly straightforward as clearance regulations.
Readers may remember that Latitude contributors Ed and Sue Kelly of the Iowa-based Catalac 37 Angel Louise were on hand when Hemisphere, the humungous new 145-ft by 54-ft catamaran designed by Marc Van Peteghem & Vincent Lauriot-Prevost which was started at the Derektor yard in the Northeast and was completed at Pendennis in England, had her private launching party in Plymouth, England a while back.