Arwen's meanderings

Hi everyone and welcome to my new blog. My name is Steve and i am the lucky owner of a John Welsford designed 'navigator' named Arwen. I built her over three years with the help of my father, father-in-law and two children. She was launched in August 2007 at Queen Anne's battery marina in the barbican area of Plymouth. This blog is a record of our voyages together around SW England.
Arwen has a YouTube channel of her own. Search "plymouthwelshboy".






Sunday, 3 May 2015

Discretion is the better part of valour.

The forecast had rising winds for the afternoon. I was going to be off the water by then. It didn't say ANYTHING about squalls, rising winds first thing!!!!

Oh my. It was a good job my friend was helming as he watched me struggle to reef Arwen. I suspect one or two prayers passed his lips as it went to top of force four and nasty gusts well into force five. And all this was inside the Plymouth breakwater.

Oh my. My deed!

I struggled with the slab reeling. The sprit boom had a mind of its. Own and decided to park itself over the side of the coaming. It all went pear shaped.
One of the eyes that the down haul runs through along the centre casing port side, decided to part company with the wood into which it had been screwed. The rudder has taken a hammering. Three nasty cracks have appeared in the runner stock, lower end where the rudder blade inserts. They will need to be dried out and then either epoxy or burgess hydrolsealer dribbled into them. It will then need some form of plate screwed in pulling the pieces tightly together again.

I haven't got Arwensmeanderings wen rigged right. It is so hit and miss each time. That crease appeared today so I am guessing I didn't have the main top boom halyard tied further aft enough.
When you tighten up the down haul, the sail almost comes into the boat and a 12 cm gap appears between luff and mast. I tighten it up with a rope strop with parrel beads on it.

The sail flogs. The top boom never seems to say starboard side of the mast. Today she was banging away up top despite me getting on tension through sweating the line a little.

When reeling, the slab halyard works an the rear of the leech falls. I can move the downhaul to correct luff cringle hole. I can tie the spare sail up but the boom seems astonishingly low. So what am I doing wrong.

The other thing that bugged me was the fact that today the sail base was easily two feet away from the boom. Should it be that much? How do I adjust the sail at its base? Is tha what the snotter does? Because if so, even fully in, the snotter is not moving or adjusting that sail at them base.

Questions, questions, questions!!!

4 comments:

Alden Smith said...

Sounds like a bit of an adventure! Good for you!

steve said...

Yep
An interesting experience!,

paula said...

Hi Steve, i have a sprit rigged yawl Navigator ("Leighton") here in coffs harbour NSW and I have trouble with reefing the mainsail as well - every other thing about it I love. No answers but you are in company.Cheers Lester Searle

steve said...

Lester hi
I understand your pain!!!
I'm going to have to put a lot of time in getting it rehearsed until I can do it automatically before I set off on sailing adventures this summer
Good luck
Stay in touch
Great place to save a nav I should think
Have fun
Steve