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Maiden Voyage

10/13/2004 - The maiden voyage happened yesterday. I'd say it was a success. It was predictable and controllable, but also quite speedy on a reach. The winds varied from 0 to about 12 knots, averaging around 8 I'd guess. At the higher wind speeds the upwind hull barely rose out of the water. As an experiment when the wind died off at one point, I walked out to the end of the ladder/cross bar to see how bouyant the hulls are. I didn't come close to sinking it. So in retrospect, the outer hulls could probably have been made smaller. They're pretty sleek though, and leave virtually no wake. The retractable leeboards work very well and dramatically change the speed and upwind ability depending on their position (all the way up and out of the water, 45 degrees down into the water, and fully in the water vertically). It goes upwind well, seems to tack easily. No matter how slowly you're going, it comes all the way around when tacking.

Some improvements could include a stiffer mast. The windsurf masts bent quite a bit at the higher wind speeds. At this point I'll finish modifying the jib sail and add that. Also need to add a block and cleat for the main sail sheet.

Set up after the maiden voyage at Appleton Cove near Kingston, WA.

The marina and ferry terminal in the background.

Appleton Cove. Seemed like a good place for the first sail. Sandy beach, the water is close to the parking lot, sheltered waters.

The whole mess on the roof of my Aerostar. "Quite a load" as one guy said when he saw it.