Monday, December 31, 2012

Sunday, December 30, 2012

After the storm - Friendship, Cushing and Thomaston

Friendship (lobsterman's wharf and traps), Cushing (Salt Pond, South Cushing Baptist Church, Acorn Grange No. 418), and Thomaston (Town landing - St. George River) [click pix to enlarge and for slideshow]

A Room of One's Own - Cave Dwelling

My room.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Dusk before the storm.- Friendship, Maine

Friendship Harbor at dusk, an hour after the snow began to fall.  December 29, 2012

Happy New Year

Happy New Year!  Stay Warm!
- George & Marilyn

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

New Mast - Sitka spruce

scarph - 12/1 ratio

Pat Montalbano, the fine boat builder at Barron's Boatyard on City Island has built a new mast for my Buzzards Bay 14 - North River 2 which was dismasted in the September 2012 storm. It is a 24 foot, tapered, glued wooden box mast made of Sitka spruce.  The joints types are rabbet and feathered edge scarph.  The glue is West System G Flex.  That glue held when I was dismasted.  The wood split, not the joints.
A guy I found on a chat room, T Cubed says: Box masts are easy. Well, conceptually, but not in practice.  T Cubed has a lot of good advice. (beow)  Pat set up on a solid, level surface = a 2x8 plank, right next to the re-assembled broken mast so he had a full scale model right there.  Above  are some shots of Pat's work:

T Cubed's work plan: Get your work surface true and straight and draw on them marks to follow when gluing. If you use work horses get a half dozen of them and use wedges and taut string to get it all straight mark the horses (As in the mast needs to go exactly between this mark and that mark on each one).
Draw chalk around each leg so if you nudge one you'll know about it and you'll also know where it should go. Set up on a hard surface.
Don't use fat bulkheads inside the mast as they create 'hard spots' that actually make it weaker and add weight. Minimal bulkheads made of thin stuff is fine.
It is very much worthwhile to rabbet each side of front and back planks so the side planks have somewhere to press against when you clamp it all together . Once everything is lubed up with epoxy and you're working against the cure time clock you'll be glad you remembered the 6 P rule.
(6P rule ; proper preparation prevents piss poor performance)
Make a scarph box and scarph up the four planks first into their full lengths. Then work in all the tapers paying close attention to precision. Rabbet crisply where needed. Setup everything. Mark everything. Have twice as many clamps as you think you'll need , even if they're jury rigged clamps. (rope, sticks, wedges) Don't forget lots of plastic shopping bags to place between clamps and glue (plastic bags release well from hardened epoxy).
Do a mock run with your helpers to make sure there are no glitches.
Then glue it all up in one go with slow epoxy. Do a final check by sighting along it that it is indeed true and straight, as you still have a ton more clamps to place and a few more minutes of working time. It should be perfect since you set up the guiding marks with care.
If it ends up with a half inch of (it should not if you did everything right) curve, don't get depressed, it will not make the slightest bit of difference."

In Vendée Globe Yacht Race, Riding the Waves on Eco-Power -

Javier Sanso has an all-electric system
no fuel carried on board
In Vendée Globe Yacht Race, Riding the Waves on Eco-Power - by Chris Museler
"This week, in the same storm-tossed Southern Ocean... the British sailor Alex Thomson is struggling to conserve diesel fuel while competing in the Vendée Globe, the offspring of that first race in 1969, then called the Golden Globe Race.

Diesel is the lifeblood of Thomson’s Imoca 60 racing yacht. All the electrical systems on the boat are run off a battery, which is charged by the diesel engine on board once or twice a day. Without energy produced by the boat’s diesel engine and two hydro generators, the autopilot and essential navigation systems would be lost. After losing one of the hydro generators that trail from the back of the boat in November, he is at risk of running out of fuel and abandoning the race...

[B]ut there is one boat today that can [go] on, seemingly indefinitely: Acciona 100% EcoPowered. It took three years of intense trial and error, but Javier Sanso’s eco-powered, 60-foot racing yacht in the Vendée Globe has been fully charged since the start of the race in Les Sables-d’Olonne, France, in November. And he is poised to make gains on the eight skippers in the front pack based on that fact alone.

“People have a decent amount of diesel,” Sanso said in a satellite phone interview last week while entering the Southern Ocean. “I’m hoping they don’t have an energy problem, but I believe eco-power is a really good advantage.”

Sanso’s boat has an electric engine, the first in the history of the race, and an array of solar panels built into a large part of the boat’s deck. Two wind and two hydro generators are additional power sources, and a fuel cell can charge the 15 lithium ion batteries twice over if needed, and run the engine."

'via Blog this'

Monday, December 24, 2012

Gaza Cease-Fire Expands Fishing Area, but Risks Remain -

photo by Wissam Nassar/NY Times
Gaza Cease-Fire Expands Fishing Area, but Risks Remain -  and 
 "GAZA CITY — Khader Bakr, a 19-year-old fisherman, was thrilled to hear that he could now fish up to six nautical miles from the coast, up from the three-mile limit Israel had had in place since 2009. The change was part of the cease-fire deal that halted last month’s fighting in Gaza between Israel and Hamas.

The deal that halted fighting between Israel and Hamas allows Palestinian fishermen to go six nautical miles out to sea, instead of three, increasing the quality and quantity of catches — at least at first.
But testing the waters late last month, Mr. Bakr apparently sailed out too far. An Israeli gunboat patrolling against arms smuggling ordered him to stop and strip to his underwear. As the Israelis sank his boat, he jumped into the sea, and was hauled aboard the Israeli vessel for questioning."

'via Blog this'

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Ft. Tryon Park

click on photos to enlarge and for slide show

Friday, December 21, 2012

Poet Laureate Philip Levine's 'Absolute Truth' : NPR

I bought Philip Levine's new volume of poetry Breath.  But first a couple of older pieces.
New Poet Laureate Philip Levine's 'Absolute Truth' : NPR:
Levine reading  What Work Is on Fresh Air in 1991

That poem is based on a real experience, Levine says, of waiting in line for two hours for a job at Ford's Highland Park plant in Michigan.
"I needed work. There was an ad in the newspaper that Ford Highland Park was hiring and they gave the hour — at eight o'clock — when they would open for our applications. And I got there around eight o'clock and there were quite a few guys ahead of me, and it turned out that they weren't opening until 10," Levine says.
He waited anyway. "I began thinking about why the hell did they advertise for eight? And then it occurred to me: they wanted us to wait two hours because they wanted men who were willing to wait two hours. In other words, people of sufficient docility to become robots."
Levine says he's still angry today — "It'll never leave me" — but adds that he discovered something else, in addition to the anger, as years passed.
"I had been in contact with people of enormous character and sweetness and affection and courage and strength," he says.

'via Blog this'

Sculling - video with Maynard Bray

Sculling -how to by Maynard Bray  [ from Off Center harbor (paywall)]

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Global Maple Syrup Reserve Burglarized -

Drums of maple syrup in the global strategic reserve in Quebec
It's good to know that we have (or had) a global maple syrup reserve.  Do we have one for chocolate chip cookies?  That's something for survivalists to work on. - gwc
Arrests Made in Maple Syrup Theft From Quebec Warehouse - "OTTAWA — It was an inside job of sorts. Thieves with access to a warehouse and a careful plan loaded up trucks and, over time, made off with $18 million of a valuable commodity.
The question is what was more unusual: that the commodity in question was maple syrup, or that it came from something called the global strategic maple syrup reserve, run by what amounts to a Canadian cartel."

'via Blog this'

Monday, December 17, 2012

Issuma's Journey NW Passage = Sail World

Sail World reports on Issuma's navigating the northwest passage.  I hadn't known that Richard's great uncle Huberht was Shackleton's navigator.  Talk about coming from good stock! - gwc

"In 2011, Issuma, a 15m centreboard steel staysail schooner, sailed from east to west, skippered by Richard Hudson, who comes from a long line of sailing adventurers. His great-uncle [Huberht Hudson was navigaor aboard Endurance] Ernest Shackleton's ship on his famed, but ill-fated expedition to Antarctica in 1914-16. 
When undertaking the journey Richard, who had begun sailing at 12, had already sailed over 40,000 nautical miles and had been a teacher with the New York Community Sailing Association. His 7,500 mile journey started in Toronto on May 2, 2011, and ended June 3, 2012, when he docked in Victoria. Giant icebergs, pack ice, gales, fierce headwinds and equipment failures had not deterred him, but it was not as icy as they had anticipated and the journey was relatively trouble-free."
h/t Jesse Fradkin 

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Vendee: Thomson hits object, generator, rudder damaged

HUGO BOSS 081112 2108

Alex Thomson, sailing Hugo Boss was flying in the Indian Ocean, 150 miles from the leader, on day 31, about halfway round the globe when his boat struck an object. The damage to his starboard hydrogenerator is so severe that his ability to finish is doubtful. These boats use a lot of power - lights, computers, SAT phones, GPS. All those have to go into power save mode, weakening his links to his shore team, depriving him of information. And the rudder repairs sound dubious to me. Nonetheless he is again back on track, doing 19 kts., having lost only one position.

Damages Alex ThomsonThe rudder repairs were harrowing. Alex reports:

"On inspection the starboard rudder fuse had broken and the rudder had lifted with minor damage. The hydro generator blade was damaged and one of brackets was in pieces and eventually lost overboard. The rudder tie bar (the previously unbroken one) was also smashed in 3 pieces.
I set to work swapping tie bars to get the leeward rudder operational so I could steer safely in the right direction. The waves were very big and were coming up and over the transom and mainsheet traveller and were hitting the rudder blade while lifted. Both rudder cassettes sustained some damage while doing this and it was pretty dangerous hanging off the transom while being completely submerged by the waves.
Eventually I got the working rudder connected and started sailing again with the port rudder in the air. I contacted the team and started affecting a repair to the tie bar. I have been unable to sail at 100% while managing this repair. The repair has been done in a similar way to the previous tie bar but it has been more difficult and time consuming as the breaks were not clean and the conditions to affect a repair less forgiving. I will not be able to repair the cassette damage until it is dry on deck but the team feel that these repairs are not critical right nowI expect to have both rudders working bythis morning.:

Monday, December 10, 2012

Marjorie L. Riley (1921-2012)

Marge at her 90th
Marjorie L. Riley, 91, of Califon Borough died on December 8, 2012.  She passed peacefully at home in the company of her son Gary K. Armbruster of Cranford, and her daughter Marilyn J.  Armbruster and son-in-law  George Conk of New York City.  Born on August 4, 1921 in Roselle, to Gertrude and Ernest Hanson, she was a long time resident of Scotch Plains where she raised a family with her late husband Hans L. Armbruster.  He enlisted in the United States Army for the duration of World War II, served in the Philippines,  and was honorably discharged with the rank of Sergeant. 
Marjorie’s second husband the late Vernon Riley, Jr. was a native of Califon, and member of the Fire Department.  Mrs. Riley was a stalwart volunteer at the Top of the Barn, Califon United Methodist Church, and regularly served as a poll watcher in the Borough.   She was predeceased by her sister Charlotte Murray and is survived by her elder sister Dorothy Johnson.  She is fondly remembered by Theresa Conk, daughter of Marilyn, by Charlotte’s son Thomas Murray, Dorothy’s children Deborah Meehan, Charles Johnson, and Robert Johnson.  She is also warmly remembered by Vernon’s daughter Diane Conlin and his grandchildren Patrick, Shiree, and Shaena.  
The family is grateful for the end of life care provided by the staff of Anita’s Angels, and the Hospice staff of Hunterdon Medical Center.

Viewing will be held 7 – 9 PM on Friday December 14, and memorial service 9:30 AM sharp  Saturday December 15 at Coughlin Funeral Home, 15 Academy Street, Califon, NJ 07830; followed by interment at Fairview Cemetery, 1100 East Broad Street, 1100 East Broad Street, Westfield 07090.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Vendee - 27 Days out - into the Indian Ocean

27 days out the 13 remaining boats in the Vendee Globe fleet are strung out over 2,600 nm.  Leader Bernard Stamm is south of Madagascar (39 South, 50 East), 16,000 nm to go, 24 hour speed 13.9 kts.  Alex Thomson (GB) is in 4th 129 nm behind the leader.
Bernard Stamm 2012
Bernard Stamm leads the Vendee Globe