Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Perfecting ‘Talitha’

Thicker rope for the handles

I hope this is the last time for doing the handles

There are several definitions for the word ‘perfect’ and one of them is, ‘having all the required elements, qualities, or characteristics’. In that sense, ‘Talitha’ is nearly perfect for the boat I thought she would be, i.e., an easily handled day boat for the single hander.

I have sailed her in various conditions, from very little wind up to at least Force 5, possibly more. She has behaved as expected, and I am very, very satisfied with her, but with use I have found that water comes through the holes in the deck for the rope handles. I take the blame, because I foolishly used rope that was too thin. To overcome the problem I inserted small lengths of plastic pipe into the holes, but they worked loose and slipped out. Today, I came to my senses and took the designer’s advice to replace the rope with a thicker section that matches the diameter of the holes. In addition to that, as an extra measure for keeping water out, I spread silicone sealant onto the rope where it passes through the holes. Maybe this remedy will do the trick?

Anti-chafe precaution

As I anticipated there would be, the mast, boom and yard show signs of wear where they come into contact with one another. To prevent further abrasion I have coiled rope around the mast and tacked both ends to keep the rope in place. Leather is the preferred material for protecting spars. In fact, I have a piece which I may exchange for the rope if it doesn’t perform well.

The weather forecast for the next two or three days is not looking too bad, which gives me hope that I may find an opportunity for testing the modifications to the handles and the mast.

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