I started hearing rumors about a year ago that Selden Mast was going to start making winches, which in itself would not be a surprising development. Selden, which traditionally limited itself to spars and furlers, has been steadily creeping into deck hardware over the past few years, offering bits like blocks, cleats, swivels, etc. It made sense they'd ramp up and get to stuff like winches eventually.
What is surprising is that their very first winch might just revolutionize the whole concept of "winch." I don't know much yet, but from what I understand this new "reversible" manual winch is not only self-tailing, but also self-easing. When trimming in it operates like any other two-speed winch--grind one way for low gear, grind the other for high. But when you want to ease, all you need do is press the button at the top of the handle, grind clockwise, and the line will go out.
Boats & Gear
Not long after Lunacy got back in the water with her new Ultrasonic Antifouling system, fresh bottom paint, and a few other goodies (like a new stereo!), Clare and I at last managed to take almost a whole week off to embark on a short cruise together sans children. We'd been trying to organize this all summer, but had been repeatedly thwarted by the Dogs of Employment and Parental Responsibility. Having finally evaded the curs, we elected to swoop all the way over to Rockland, on the west side of Penobscot Bay, to check out some of our old stomping grounds.
The Lunacy Report
I have been remiss in not remarking on the passing of two sailors of note, both of whom were important to me. A couple of weeks ago I learned of their departures on the very same day, within the very same hour, and was a bit stunned by the news.
News & Views
One nice perk of this boat scribe game is that manufacturers are often willing to loan you kit to test on your boat. Sometimes you aren't really interested in the gear, but agree to test it anyway just to be polite. Other times you are dying to get your hands on it, as you are convinced it not only may solve some intractable boat conundrum, but will also mow your lawn, wax your car, and walk your dog as part of the bargain.
The latter accurately describes my reaction to the news that Ultrasonic Antifouling Ltd. of the UK was willing to send me some of their gear to try out on Lunacy. The timing was most propitious. Even as I was scheduling a haul-out so that I could at last (hopefully) resolve at least some of Lunacy's intractable bottom-paint problems, there came word from my print comic SAIL that they were hunting for a boat that could serve as a sonic anti-fouling guinea pig. I at once raised my hand, jumped up and down like the smartest kid in class, and volunteered Lunacy for the job.
With its classic long overhangs, perfectly pitched sheer line, wide side-decks, graceful cabin profile, and distinctive near-vertical transom, the Bermuda 40 has inspired severe lust in the heart of many a cruising sailor. Designed by Bill Tripp, Jr., it is without doubt one of the most attractive production sailboats ever conceived. The B-40, as it is often called, was the very first fiberglass boat ever created by the famous Hinckley Company of Southwest Harbor, Maine, and was also one of several CCA-era keel-centerboard yawls built on a production basis after the great success of Carleton Mitchell’s famous yawl Finisterre.
Unlike its contemporaries, the B-40 endured for a very long time, surviving both the advent and demise of the IOR regime that supplanted the CCA rule in the early 1970s. The first of these gorgeously proportioned hulls slipped down the ways in 1959. The very last hull, number 203, was launched over three decades later in 1991. So far this is the longest production run enjoyed by any fiberglass auxiliary sailboat anywhere in the world.
Thousands of vessels sneak past Cape Hatteras each year without mishap, but you should never assume its reputation as the Graveyard of the North Atlantic is undeserved. To get an idea of how dodgy a place it can be, you need only contemplate the fate of the various nav aids that have been stationed at the end of Diamond Shoals, which jut out some 13 miles beyond the cape itself.
Techniques & Tactics
Page 68 of 90
Offshore Passage Opportunities
Attainable Adventure Cruising
Blue Planet Times
Father & Son Sailing
Cruising Sailor's BB
Good Old Boat
North American Sailor
Liz Clark and the Voyage of Swell
Onboard with Mark Corke
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