Thursday, July 2, 2015

2015 Racing Season Take Two: Marblehead-Halifax

Eagles Dare has a new rudder so we’re off to the races again, this time to Halifax. I’ve done it three times, twice fully crewed on other people’s boats and once double handed on Jeroboam so this is my second DH entry. Mike can’t make this race so we recruited light air sailor extraordinaire, Russ Hancock to co-skipper. Many of you will recall Russ’ significant role in Jeroboam’s DH division win in the Bermuda Race last summer and we’re gunning for another one starting this Sunday, July 5th around 1 PM.

All boats in the fleet are equipped with trackers so you can follow along at the YellowBrick site. Eagles Dare is in the PHRF division.

As usual, I’ll post updates here and on Facebook during the 360 mile, ~3 day race and on the delivery back to Marblehead which I'll do solo.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Check-in/OK message from SPOT Eagles Dare

Eagles Dare
GPS location Date/Time:06/07/2015 19:21:30 EDT

Message:Rudder broken. Gutted. Limping to Newport.

Click the link below to see where I am located.

If the above link does not work, try this link:,-71.08231&ll=39.31847,-71.08231&ie=UTF8&z=12&om=1

Eagles Dare

You have received this message because Eagles Dare has added you to their SPOT contact list.

Ready for Adventure

Friday, June 5, 2015

On our way

Eagles Dare had a fine start, though I was a little behind the group.
The only class one boat to carry a code zero across the starting line, I
soon caught up and overtook the others. This was only the second time
I've flown that sail so I still have lots to learn, particularly an
efficient takedown. Outside the bay, as the wind headed me, I needed to
do just that. It's on a furler but it still took me 20 minutes to get it
in, while the others in my class pointed up and headed for Bermuda.
Behind again, I started clawing my way back and I've made some good
ground on the group though we're all still very close together.

It's been overcast since we got out of the bay, occasionally spitting a
little rain, and as the sun goes down, the temperature is descending
quickly, as is the fog. Samba was to my starboard a half hour or so ago
but has since been enveloped, as has Flying Turtle who was hot on my heels.

All is well on board though I lost my right shoe overboard. I simply
didn't have it laced up tight and it flipped off into the sea. Oh well,
I still have my boots.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Check-in/OK message from SPOT Eagles Dare

Eagles Dare
GPS location Date/Time:06/03/2015 21:53:42 EDT

Message:Pre Bermuda 1-2 test check-in via Spot.

Click the link below to see where I am located.

If the above link does not work, try this link:,-70.87282&ll=42.51485,-70.87282&ie=UTF8&z=12&om=1

Eagles Dare

You have received this message because Eagles Dare has added you to their SPOT contact list.

Ready for Adventure

Friday, May 8, 2015

Bermuda 1-2 Prep

Preparation for Bermuda 1-2 is progressing very well with the work list gradually dwindling. Accomplishments include:
Radar Reflector
  1. Replaced stern wire lifelines with dyneema
  2. Resolved gear shift issue for battery charging
  3. Stern knife replacement
  4. Soft shackles for jib sheets
  5. Soft rail for barberhaul/reaching and adjustable "car"
  6. Reworked main reef lines
  7. Reworked headsail in/out haul
  8. Rigged jacklines
  9. Improved NMEA data interface between autopilot and other boat systems
  10. Instrument calibrations
  11. Improved VHF DSC interface
  12. Full electronics checkout
  13. Tested bilge pumps
  14. Thru hull valves checked
  15. Nav light test
  16. Replaced inflatable PFD
  17. Added more smoke signals and emergency food rations to ditch bag
  18. Mounted and tested radar reflector
  19. Jib halyard replacement
  20. Paper chart kit checked
  21. Updated safety equipment location chart
  22. Comms test
  23. Applied race numbers to hull & deck
  24. All race provisions, mainly freeze dried food, acquired and organized by leg
  25. All Bermuda 1-2 safety requirements checked and dealt with
Additionally, we've had some good training days on the water but haven't been able to test the new code zero yet. Still tons to do and only 28 days until the race start. Charge!

New jib halyard next to an older one

Monday, April 13, 2015

We had a brutally cold winter in Boston this year and life on the boat was cruel. Water temperatures in the inner harbor dangerously approached the freezing point but thankfully there were only pockets of ice and my slip, on the outer edge of the marina where the Charles River current is strong, escaped getting iced in.

The water lines on board froze, as did the winter water lines the marina strings about a meter below the surface so I was without fresh water for a month or so but that was good motivation to get to the gym. Huge thanks to Sebastian and the crew at Constitution Marina for all their hard work at keeping the water flowing and the docks and parking lot clear of snow.

I've been busy getting Jeroboam ready for sailing season. Even though I'm not racing this boat to Bermuda in June, there are still lots of other things to be done and other races later in the season to prepare for. Spring work list includes:

  1. Remove canvas cover
  2. Bend on sails
  3. Check all running rigging
  4. Check all standing rigging, up the mast, inspect all the masthead gear
  5. Full electronics/autopilot test, re-calibrations for all
  6. New red/white LED bulbs for cabin
  7. Galley light housing replacement
  8. Auto pilot ram bolts re-torqued
  9. Clean water tanks
  10. Switch to propane water heater, commission, test
  11. Commission dinghy, outboard, bottom paint
  12. Replace stern vent covers
  13. Commission mooring, attached pennants, replace shackles, dive on mooring to inspect bottom chain and shackle
  14. Clean barbecue grill
  15. Dive on boat bottom, clean, replace zinc
  16. Spare docklines, fenders, hose, winter gear to storage
  17. Engine maintenance, oil/filter change, coolant/gear oil check
  18. Winch maintenance, disassemble, de-grease, re-lube

Having finished most of the above, I departed Boston yesterday for my mooring in Salem Harbor. Mike Piper's J/111 Eagles Dare is slashing in Fairhaven today and we're sailing back to Marblehead this weekend so the race to prepare/train for Bermuda 1-2 is officially on.