Monday, June 29, 2015

Fabric for Dinghy Chaps

Since it was raining - I did get something accomplished.  I bought the fabric -

6 yards of Cadet Grey  Sunbrella 60" wide.    Also got a scrap of the lovely aqua-green second from the bottom.  I'll use that for a few accents. 

Hey, at least I accomplished something!

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Next project....sewing a cover for the dinghy

Get ready for monotonous posts with me cussing......I ordered a new heavy duty sewing machine:

This sewing machine was well-reviewed to be able to sew quadruple seamed denim - so it should be able to do what I need.  My original sewing machine I got in college is just not up to it.

The upcoming project -  "dinghy chaps" - 

The dinghy will be exposed to constant sun - so a good way to protect it is to sew "chaps" that cover the inflated pontoons.

Here is an example (stolen from another sailboat blog) -

There's no pattern for this - you have to make your own to fit around all the handles and rings.  I read that sane people do not attempt this.  

I called to inquire about a professionally made cover at Inner Banks Sails (the sail maker in Oriental that has done some repair work for us).  She laughed - literally laughed and said "it will cost you more than the dinghy is worth to have us make them for you"!   Then she said - "alternately, you can go to South America where labor is really cheap and have some made for less than $1000".  And she laughed again. 

So, I've read and read about it - and I'm going to attempt it. 

It's raining - my excuse for not starting yet!

Monday, June 15, 2015

A different type of sailing!

We've seen the announcements on the about the Monday night sailing at Bow-to-Stern Sailing.  They do a lot of sailing classes, for kids and adults. 

But this is just a cheap, easy way to sail a small boat for an hour or so on Monday nights.  $5 to be exact!

We knew that we might get wet, so no cameras were taken on board......

The FJ sailing dinghy's - about 14' of fun!  We had #2.

It was likely that we'd get wet, so we left all cameras on shore....this photo is from their website.  I'd like to say that Duane and I looked this good - maybe!  It was fun and much more sensitive than our big ole' catamaran!

Sunday, June 14, 2015

A different dinghy

I have lost my camera.   Sigh. 

It's not that it's a fancy camera, it just has some photos left on the memory chip that I want!!    Oh well, I'll do the best I can with the photos I have.

Remember the cute little dinghy we got when we bought the boat (that I was pretty pleased with)?

Well, our first real use was on our trip to Ocracoke a couple of weeks you can see, the bottom seams came unglued.  Not surprising, just disappointing.  It's fixable - but a real pain.  And the glue is finicky from what I read. 

So, we decided to get a much better dinghy.  After researching we decided on a fiberglass bottom AB brand dinghy.  We tested an AB aluminum bottom dinghy - but it didn't sit correctly in our davit system. 

We were all set to fork out $$$ to purchase a new one when we happened to see a used one in Richmond, VA on Craigslist.   It had been on a trailer in the fellow's back yard, covered for years.  He had bought it new to play around with his kids but said it was rarely used.    The best part was that it was substantially less $$!

So, we trucked up to Richmond (4 hours!) and we were the proud owners of a lightly used 9.5 AB dinghy!

It was dirty and dingy from years of dis-use.  The photos I had were of that cleanup process.  Oh well - you'll just have to know that a gallon of bleach and elbow grease made it a pretty nice looking dinghy!

Oh, and when you get a much larger have to get a much larger motor!  It's Christmas!

All set up on the davits - we've taken it for a test ride out in the rivers near Oriental - a lot of fun with this one.  It gets up "on plane" so you can really scoot along at a nice clip!

Thursday, June 4, 2015


The winds on the Pamlico were forecast to be we decided it was a good day to experiment with the spinnaker. 

It was a lot of fun ....really neat - we were being pulled along at about 5 knots in 6 knots of wind.  Pretty cool!  And peaceful too.

And then the winds increased a little too much, too quick.  We quickly and very clumsily doused the sail.   We're going to have to work on that procedure to make sure we don't rip the lightweight sail.