the Seawind newsletter
SEAWIND OWNERS ASSOCIATION NEWSLETTER * * VOL. 1, NO. 2, SEPTEMBER 1979
Sitting aboard SOLUTION the other day, we were thinking what a short life the Seawind Owners Association had had. After all, we reasoned, seemed that we had hardly any newsletter inputs at all. So why not split for Tahiti with all that cash?
Before shoving off, however, we Stumbled across the overflowing file folder that serves as an office for the Seawind- Owners Association. Faced with a choice of moving it or touching up the brightwork for the umpteenth time this season, we moved it only to have it spill open... revealing more than enough inputs for a newsletter. (When they come in one by one, it just doesn't seem like that many.)
Volume one, number one of the Seawind newsletter is a hard act to follow. G.G. Smith's comprehensive letter last time made your editor's job easy. But, in spite of two excellent inputs this time around--one from Lamar Neville and one from George Curranthings have changed.
Potpourri is a word some people like to use when they have a little of everything mixed into one. It's probably an apt description of what you'll find in this newsletter, but since my secretary can't spell potpourri (and she won't type my newsletters anyway), we'll have to make do with something else.
How about assortment? That's what you're about to get: an assortment of information about an assortment of Seawinds. And it ranges from the highly authoritative (see Q&A with Tom Gillmer) to pure (well, almost) gossip.
So, here goes.
But remember, we need your help. After all, the position description here calls for an editor -- not a writer. And if we don't get your inputs for the newsletter, we'll have no choice but to leave for Tahiti with all that money you've sent us.
HULL-DECK JOINT PROBLEMS WITH SEAWIND IIs
If we were running a meeting, we'd try to deal with old business first. That seems a reasonable way to lay out the newsletter. So, first, lets dispose of some important old business.
In our last very exciting newsletter, you'll remember that Gerry Smith had a paragraph of lament about the hull-deck joint aboard GIGI, hull number 29. "One fault with the Seawind II," he wrote, "is the sealing of the rubrail joint." He went on: "I don't know about yours, but mine leaks like a sieve.... I am having the people in Tortola take off the rubrails to see if it isn't possible to seal that joint on a permanent basis.
As it concerns comfort, I consider this an inherent design weakness, not offset by the builder's construction method, at least not in the case of hull #29."
Seawind designer and Seawind Owners Association member Tom Gillmer was quick to respond. He wrote:
Commenting on the item that focuses on the hull deck joint under the rub rail of Seawind II in C. C. Smith's letter: he considers this, and rightly so, a serious fault. I will, of course, not agree that it is a design fault but rather a manufacturing fault. Having said that, I will also say that while it is an engineeringly sound method of joining the two members it is not the simplest. But it is the type of joint which Allied requested in their early outline of design priorities, primarily because it would match the deck hull joints used in the Mistress and Princess boats then in production and lend itself thus to production techniques. With care and attention in the fabrication, this juncture can be made, and on most boats is, watertight. Of course, there should be zero exceptions.
The hull and the deck moldings both are formed with a flanged edge. These two flanges must fit exactly and when so fitted with a soft, wet layer of fiberglass mat between, bolted tight, and fiberglassed inside with a continuous seal this is a solid watertight joint. The joined flanges outside are covered by a heavy aluminum serviceable rub rail; its extra heaviness is effective and sets it off visually from many rubrails on other boats which obviously are nothing but cover-up for extrusion type moldings.
All this may be interesting or not but to the Seawind II owner who has a leak problem at this joint is not especially therapeutic. For this problem I can only suggest that the whole rub rail be removed (at least that portion in the way of the leakage if it can be isolated locally). When the flanged joint is exposed, seal the joint or seal with a permanent type sealer.
Lamar Neville of SW II #28 (the hull before G.G. Smith's) had this to say:
Because the boat is fairly stiff, last fall was the first time I had experienced an hour or so of rail under the water. To my surprise, water poured in from somewhere. Not just a few drops, but enough to soak everything in the lockers, bunk cushions, and soak the floor. I finally decided it had to be the deck joint. Whether it takes a couple of years... for the bedding to break dawn, or whether it is merely the result of a long enough exposure for the water to get through, I don 't know. A yard workman varnishing the boat in the slip next to mine, when I asked him about it, commented that that is not a good joint. He suggested for temporary repair, put masking tape on the fiberglass, and another strip down the rub rail, both top and bottom sides (for neatness) then run a bead of the best caulking you can get along those lines. He said the best solution is to remove the rubrail and completely re-bed the whole thing. I think this would be a good question to raise with the factory. What is the solution? Can that joint be fiberglassed
inside and out, and then bedding put under the rubrail, or does it need a little flexibility to work? It would be work, but much of it could be glassed with several layers of cloth from inside.
Robbie Pierce, vice president (operations) for CFG/Allied, said in a phone call that virtually all SW IIs seem to have had leakage problems around the hull-deck joint. One of the problems, he explained, is that the company cannot get an aluminum extrusion long enough to cover the entire hull-deck joint, and one extrusion must be "spliced" to another. The leaks generally seem to begin around the splices. The company has experimented with all kinds of methods of keeping water out of the present hull-deck joint because the aluminum rubrails have been so popular with owners. It looks, however, like they may have to abandon this kind of hull-deck joint -- and they may do so next time they have to make new molds, which isn't so far off according to Pierce.
Where does this leave the Seawind II owner with a leaking hull-deck joint? Holding the sponge, we're afraid. Unless someone has a foolproof (and proven) solution.
Have you had leakage problems around the hull-deck joint? Have you found a solution that really works? If so, please share it with other owners through the newsletter. That's what this newsletter is all about!
Robbie Pierce, who bought a Seawind II himself, has designated himself as a point of contact for Seawind owners who need helpine or advice from the factory.
First, he'd like you to contact your dealer if you have a problem or need advice. Allied's network of dealers can probably solve the majority of your problems, he says. But if you feel that you need some help from the manufacturer, call Robbie at 518/943-5000 --and tell him you read about his offer to help in the newsletter.
Pierce tells us he joined CFG/Allied after eight and a half years at O'Day, where he was in charge of production. At CFG/Allied he oversees what goes into new boats (and what doesn't), sales, dealer relations, and owner/consumer relations.
WHAT' S NEW IN SEAWINDS
According to Pierce, CFG/Allied will display a Princess and a Seawind II at each of the three major fall boat shows -- Newport, Norwalk and Annapolis.
Among the changes you'll see in the new Seawinds:
--A more open interior. Gone will be the sliding doors in the main salon. They'll be replaced with open shelves.
--A larger V-berth, but (alas) a smaller chain locker.
--A Universal 24 horsepower diesel, which is fresh water cooled and drives a three-blade propeller. And fairwaters to smooth the flow of water past the large aperture around the propeller.
--More teak and upgraded upholstery in the interior.
Pierce emphasizes that CFG/Allied is still building the strong, quality boats that Allied has been renowned for through the years and says there are no plans to change this fundamental concept.
Whether you’re in the market for a new boat or not, the Annapolis in-the-water boat show is the granddaddy of them all -- it's one not to miss.
Last year, we thought of the Annapolis show as more a happening than just a show. If it had to do with sailing, you could probably find it at the Annapolis show -- everything from Abaco charters to Z-spar paint.
As with most boat shows, best days to visit are the weekdays. This year in Annapolis that means Wednesday, October 10 (if you can manage trade or press passes), Thursday, October 11, or Friday, October 12. If you have only a few boats or other products you want to see and you don't mind long lines, try Saturday or Sunday -- but go forewarned that Saturday and Sunday of the Annapolis show will likely leave you only tired and frustrated.
If there's enough interest, we'll schedule a meeting of the Seawind Owners Association in Annapolis late on Saturday afternoon of boat show weekend. After all, it might be better to sip a glass of wine and munch on cheese and crackers than to stand in line right up 'till closing time.
Interested in another meeting? Drop us a note. If there's enough interest (and we hear from you, say, two weeks before the show), we'll schedule a meeting and mail out details to those who respond.
Robbie Pierce has said he'd like to meet with owners at a meeting during the Annapolis show.
SUCH A DEAL?! Gordon and Janet Groene (actually, it was Janet who signed the letter) wrote to wish
2O% OFF ........... us luck with the Seawind Owners Association and said they'd had "many pleasant dockside gams" in the Bahamas and Florida with longtime Seawind liveaboard Stu Hopkins. "As a compliment to your club...," Janet wrote, "I've arranged a confidential discount for any club members who want my THE GALLEY BOOK... a compehensive reference covering provisioning, preserving and other galley concerns." To get the discount, order from BOTEBOOKS, PO Box 248, VeLeon Springs, FL 32O28. Send $8.96, which includes postage and packing, and be sure to mention "SEAWIND."
Someone writing to request information about the SOA said he was particularly interested in learning whether anyone has come up with a half model of the Seawind.
Being more than a little pleased with the half models we'd received in years gone by, we contacted their maker to see what he had to offer and came up with what follows. Got your wallet ready?
Tom Harsch, a naval architect, operates the Scale Model Company and makes beautiful scale models to order. You pay handsomely for the privilege of owning one of Tom's half models, but they're worth the price. At least in our book they are.
Tom's scale models range from quite large (he did one of Gerry Smith's GIGI which is perhaps three and a half feet long and faithful in every detail) to the smaller, standard half model you see from time to time at dealers.
There are two prices: the high price is for hand-carved models, and the less high (we can't call it cheap) price for the molded model. The difference? You could probably never tell by looking, but before a mold can be made there must be a hand-carved model to make the mold from. So the hand carved models, which take many hours of work, cost exactly twice what the molded models cost.
Prices for the molded hull with standard white hull and black boot-stripe at one-half inch to the foot: $87 for a Seawind I and $89 for a Seawind II, plus these extras (if you want them): $20 for custom paint in your colors and $4 plus l6 a letter ($3 minimum) for an engraved brass nameplate. All models come on a mahogany plank, with teak planks available at extra costs.
There's one important catch: right now Tom doesn't have a mold for a Seawind I. If he receives six orders for Seawind I half models, however, he'll carve a half model to make the mold from. Also, for six or more orders for the same half model, he offers a 15% discount.
You can write to Tom at: Scale Model Company, 1905 Poplar Ridge Rd., Pasadena, MD 21122.
Anyone know of a half model maker who does good work for a better price? If so, let us know and we'll publish details in the next newsletter.
Several members have indicated an interest in self steering. If you have a steering vane (or other self-steering mechanism), why not write a short report on how well (poorly?) it does board your boat. We'll compile any such writeups into one piece, together with an evaluation of our own Aries vane which performed superbly on our round trip from Annapolis to Newport in July and August.
Can you answer any of these questions sent in by other Seawind owners? There are always lots of questions, but not always so many answers. So try to help out. After all, the next newsletter might be the one with your questions ... and they’re welcomed here.
FLASHERS AND MIZZEN STAYSAILS. Who's had experience with flasher-type headsails and mizzen staysails in light air? How do they do? What recommendations do you have?
BEES IN THE RIGGING. Ed Rhudy (SW II #40) reports that he has "this infernal buzzing like a swarm of bees in the rigging with certain winds -- at anchor and on the hook." He believes it's due to the backstay but can't seem to eliminate it. Have you had similar problems? Have you worked out a solution?
KETCH, SLOOP OR CUTTER? Has anyone tried sailing SW IIs rigged in all three configurations? We all know what the book would say, but what does your practical experience say? What are the real differences?
CONSIDER THE COMPASS. Richard Koumjian (SW II #92) has a cutter rigged SW II and wonders where to locate the compass. The forward bulkheads in the cockpit are a bit too far away from the wheel, he feels. (One cutter rigged SW II we saw this summer had a pedestal wheel and a conventional binnacle. This may be a solution, of course, but it'd do away with the reliability of rack and pinion steering.)
SWAP CHARTERS? Are you interested in trading boats with other SW owners for a weekend, a week, or longer? If so, perhaps the newsletter can serve as a medium for exchange of such information.
If your Seawind has a Westerbeke engine, let us recommend that you do your best to attend one of the Westerbeke seminars. Judy and I (and Tim and Paula Coiwell of SW II #84) attended one in Annapolis last fall, and we all came away with a great deal more knowledge (and respect) for our engines.
Last year's seminars were one day long and included lectures, discussion, questions and answers, and even lunch. Everything (except lunch) was illustrated on cutaway models of the W-30 (4-91) and other Westerbekes.
The seminars can probably save you hundreds of dollars -- not to mention lots of frustration. For information, write to either Westerbeke or to Marine Engine Sales and Service in Annapolis.
If there's interest, perhaps in a future newsletter we'll include a few tips from the seminars.
Seawind designer Tom Gillmer has kindly offered to answer questions for the newsletter which relate to the design of the boats or to design problems. Send questions to the newsletter editor, and -- space permitting -- they’ll be answered in the next newsletter.
QUESTION: My Seawind II is ketch rigged and it seems to me that by adding a forestay about three feet aft of the headstay I could slightly increase my sail area and, more important, provide a more effective rig for smaller headsails. In short, I’d envision using my larger headsails on my roller furler, and keep the working jib on the new stay. Is this worth undertaking? How should the chain-plate for the new stay be supported or reinforced? What about opposing running backstays?
GILLMER ANSWERS: I am sorry that I must give you a negative opinion on this. It is not that I wish to discourage anyone from experimentation with their rig, but I see thats as a retrogressive experiment. In the first place, your premise insofar as efficiency of your head-sails is not well taken. For a given area, that is your whole fore triangle, a single sail is more efficient than two, even though you may overlap and have two sails whose combined area is larger than a single. Unless, of course, under certain conditions you are using a large Genoa and a baby jib to give an added pull, I would not advise this. If on the other hand you think of this as breaking up your single headsail plan into smaller more workable units, your new forestay can be added with the deck terminal about as you indicate but with the mast terminal about one third the distance between and above the spreader sockets on the main. You will also need either running backstays or backstay shrouds which will slightly inhibit your boom arc. I would advise some professional design assistance if you decide to go ahead. It depends, I think, on your objective.
QUESTION: By pinching the split backstay of my SW II with a block and tackle arrangement pulling on a couple of wire blocks, I am able to harden my headstay significantly and this seems to help me point higher. Only problem is that the triatic stay is quite loose when I've pulled down on the backstay, and the mizzen mast moves about more than I’d like. Is this a problem?
GILLMER ANSWERS: Your quickie system of hardening your backstay is quite practical and a good idea for improving your pointing. It is of course a common racing practice. In so doing, your mast head moves aft slightly and the triatic stay slacks off. This operation is a temporary thing and I wouldn't worry too much about the mizzen other than to be sure the mizzen shrouds are well set up and perhaps your mizzen portable backstay (for use with mizzen staysail) hooked in.
On the next few pages are letters from two members, edited only slightly, which contain a great deal of information. Our thanks to Lamar and George for their articulate letters. (We’ll continue to publish such letters in verbatim or near-verbatim form, and we’d welcome one -- or more -- from you.)
1709 Marshall Court
Annapolis, Md. 21401
June 6, 1979
This will have to be short and quick, but realize that if I don' write something hurriedly I'll never get it off to you.
Thanks for the excellent job with the newsletter. I too found Gerry Smith's letter fascinating. Hope we can have a lot of exchanges. I'll quickly comment on a number of items.
Gel coat on hull. Because I had put on a soft bottom paint, which proved to be very slow on two years ago, this year I completely scraped it off and sanded for a new coat of Woolsey Bluestreak. To my surprise there were a dozen or so blisters about the size of a thumbnail, each with water behind them. There were thousands of blisters about the size of a pencil eraser. These tended to be in broad areas - the turn of the bilge particularly. All apparently containing water. Because I did not have the time and supplies with me, I merely epoxied the worst ones, and then painted over it. Inquiring about it, this seems to be very common with most fiberglass boats, so a yard doing the work just ignores the situation as being normal. Better boats with better quality control have very little of it. - So, unless you do the work yourself, and unless you either feel for the blisters, or sand back down to bare fiberglass, you may notice them, even if they are there. Evidently the correct solution is to remove and refill each blister, if isolated, or thoroughly sand the areas where there are lots of them, and recoat it with some kind -f epoxy repair material made for this purpose. Next time, I'll be prepared for this and may go ahead do the whole bottom properly. There were also some voids right above the rudder shaft at the corners of that part of the hull. These had no glass or fiber backing up the gelcoat, so just cracked like an eggshell. - Again, a nuisance, but easy to repair. If you haven't checked carefully and want to do it, just be prepared to spend the extra time to the job when you haul.
Zincs: Bob Wright had insisted the Seawind doesn't need a zinc, and there was none on my boat at first. This is a bad mistake, so be sure to keep a good one on your shaft. This seems to have solved my problem, Although George Curran also put one on the base of his rudder support - whatever the correct name is. And don't forget the pencil zinc in the heat exchanger. Because the manual doesn't show one, many people don't know it is even there!
Chain vs line: I have 12' of 3/8" chain followed by 200' of 5/8" West "SuperBlue" nylon. For the Chesapeake and such areas, I think chain probably pulls up entirely too much mud, unless you wash it carefully as it comes up, and is really unnecessary for our conditions. I would stick with the line + a length of chain for the bay. I have 25 lb. CQR which I use as a working anchor. It stows and handles easily, looks nice on the bow, but I have dragged with it several times in a good blow. Maybe a 35 lb would not drag, other people swear by a Danforth for the Bay.
Boom crutch: I would be interested in seeing Gerry's drawings, as this is an item that seems to me absolutely essential for offshore, and a welcome comfort in any blow. The end of the boom is right where it can make some noticeable impressions in one's skull!
Whisker pole: I have a Forespar adjustable, which I stow above the port V berth by boring about a 3" diameter hole in the chain locker. It works fairly well, but one section often compresses when there is any load on it. I stow a 13' mast for the dinghy by putting one end on the end of the bow sprit, and then the rest of it is
outside the first stanchion or so and back to the chain plates. I believe this is the best stowage for such an item or a spinnaker pole if one wonders how to keep it out of the way.
Cooking: We have a Shipmate propane with an 11 lb. tank in a separate compartment in the stern with an overboard drain out the transom. We were one of the first Seawinds to get propane, and I helped Bob Wright work out this arrangement. We have a Marinetics valve which can be opened or closed from the stove, which opens or closes the gas within the compartment. Would highly recommend it. I very much like the propane, and one cylinder lasted for two years, and cost $2.50 to fill. Helen would like to get compressed natural gas because it is lighter than air, but it would cost us $300 0 to convert, so aren't likely to, although this is what I would now get for cooking. Was not available when we got our boat.
Heat: We have a small Ratelco stove on the port bulkhead in the main cabin. Burns charcoal, coal, wood, etc. Does a good job, but actually we have used it considerably less than I had thought we would. On the next trip to Nantucket and Maine, will probably get more use. For quick heat, I turn a clay flowerpot upside down on a propane burner, and this makes a dandy heater.
Hatch slide: I cut a plexiglass piece (actually was part of a broken desk chair pad at the office) the same size as the hatch by tracing around the slides laid on it. Whenever it is raining or cold, we find this makes a great window for looking out the back, as well as brightens the cabin much more than the regular slides. I keep it stowed flat inside the chart table.
Boom vang: This is probably the single most important piece of equipment, and I would urge everyone to get one. Instead of using a normal one with a jamb cleat, I bought two fiddle blocks with snap shackles, and one with a becket to which was spliced the end of a 3/8 dacron line. Then I laced it through the blocks, fasten end to the base of a stanchion and the other block to the vang strap. The other end of the line is then run back and cleated to a cleat at the cockpit. (Haven't put any special cleats on so use the mooring cleat usually) It can be easily tightened or slacked from the cockpit, and to jibe is a simple matter of just easing out the line until the boom is all the way across, then stepping up and moving the bottom fiddle over to a stanchion base on the other side. If the bottom fiddle has a cleat, then you have to go forward to the block to release it everytime you want to make an adjustment. This way, it can be done right from the cockpit. I have a canvass strap instead of a claw because Bacon's had real good used one on sale cheap, and because it will slide over our dinghy which we usually have on the cabin top, whereas the claw might not clear the dinghy at times, although it can be moved more easily fore and aft to the precise location wanted on the boom. Not only does this arrangement prevent an accidental jibe of the boom, but it tremendously improves the shape of the main anytime the boom is beyond the end of the traveler.
Sails: Mine are all Murphy Nye except for an Oakum Bay (Marblehead, Mass) DRS (Drifter Reacher Spinnaker) Have main, 110% and l50% jib, both cut with a high clew, and a mizzen staysail. Unless it is really blowing, I never use the 110, as it just won't go to windward, and I haven't rigged a special block for it. Find the mizzen staysail a great deal of fun. Takes some practice to figure out how to use it, if you aren't familiar. I run a line from the tack to the windward stanchion base nearest the mast and then back to the cockpit for ease in trimming. The clew lingoes through a block on the end of the mizzen boom and down to that mooring cleat. The head is pulled by a halyard on the top of the mizzen. It can be us anytime the main boom is outside the mizzen spreaders allowing room for the staysail. The more into the wind the boat is pointing, the flatter the staysail
needs trimming, and the more off the wind, the tack can be moved further aft giving more of a spinnaker type bag.
The DRS has been delightful. It is the only headsail I had up this entire week-end Fri-Sun. I bought this one, because at the time, it was the only company advertising one, and making fantastic claims for it. How it compares to the Ulmer Flasher, and the Hood, etc. whatever, I don't know. Everybody is now making one, and they all seem a bit different. Mine has a radial head, as you can see from the magazine articles, four light weight hanks, which make it possible to either hank it on the head stay or fly it free like a spinnaker. It goes well down wind, off the wind, and in light air will point about as high as my regular genny, although in beating, it doesn’t take very much wind before you have created a bag & drag. The combination of the DRS & mizzen staysails with the main & mizzen moves the boat nicely in light air - and looks pretty!
I didn't mean to ramble on so long, but think that is enough for the moment. Can comment on other items another time.
Again, really hate to miss the rendezvous, but unless something unexpected changes, will have to catch the next one.
Also, I fly an Ensign from the leach of the mizzen. Tom Gillmer advised me to get a big one, which I did, although I don't recall the dimensions off hand. But the bigger one is pretty. When there is no sail on the mizzen, simply snap one end on the end of the mizzen boom and the other corner to a line which can be wrapped on the mizzen sheet and tied to the stern rail. Viola, no pole!
Thanks again for the good work.
Lamar F. Neville
NAVAL ACADEMY SAILING FOUNDATION, INC.
ROBERT CROWN SAILING CENTER
ANNAPOLIS. MARYLAND 21402
I promised some time ago to share some ideas with you and other interested SEAWIND II owners that reflected my experience with the boat. As you know I sold this line of boats for approximately three years, have delivered a few from the factory, and currently own Hull #50. Without question this is the best all around boat I have ever owned. No boat is perfect -- but the SEAWIND II comes close. This is not to say the boat is without fault, and unfortunately quality control and equipping has varied with the various owners of the ALLIED Company. I would be most happy to discuss any of these problems, suggestions or others that may plague owners. I can be contacted at the above address or by calling 301 2684894, 267-3962 or at home 849-8598.
Steering System Most SEAWINDS MK II have the Edson rack and pinion system. Some were delivered with almost the same system made by Eagle. Both are excellent systems if installed and maintained properly. Of course proper lubrication and adjustment are essential for reliable performance. Where most of the problems occur at sea is when nuts vibrate off and the system comes out of alignment. To correct this problem I have installed elastic stop nuts on all the bolts holding the system to the boat. Even if you have two nuts on each bolt I would recommend adding a elastic stop nut if there is enough room or remove one nut and replace it with a stop nut. In over three years I have not had any bolts come loose since making this modification.
Deck Scuppers Prior to the new deck mold on the SEAWIND II the deck scuppers drained down through PVC hose through one through hull in the transom above the waterline. There was a large gate valve to control the discharge (I understand the gate valve is not being installed on current boats). he manual bilge pump also drains through this same restricted opening. There are two problems here: 1) all three water sources being restricted by one drain hole and 2) the tendency of the PVC hose to crack when water freezes during the winter. If you discover water in the bilge and can't find the source check these scupper drain hoses. I cured this problem by replacing the PVC hoses with heavy black reinforced hose. To improve drainage I drilled another hole in the transom on the starboard side above the waterline, added another gate valve and led the starboard scupper hose and manual bilge pump through the star side and the port scupper through the original port transom opening. I have also heard of owners rerouting their scupper hoses directly below to openings above the waterline on the side of the boat. I would like to see this installation if any reader has done this. Of course the new deck mold eliminates through deck scuppers and drains directly overboard like the Princess -- a great improvement for which I was partially responsible. Another example of builders listening to owners and dealers.
Mainsheet block and traveler The standard traveler is difficult to adjust when tacking under load. On some SEAWINDS the fiddle block on both the main and mizzen are of marginal size. As part of the upgrading on my boat I replaced the original traveler with one of the new X track sections with roller bearing car. Because of constrictions below and the desire to use the same stainless steel backing plate the new traveler is the same length as the old one. The traveler car selected is roller bearing with the thwartship controls leading off the car through small cam cleats on the car. This eliminates the requirement for a turning block or cam cleat mounted on the seat or side of the wood coaming in the cockpit. This works well, and one person can easily sail the boat and with little effort play the traveler for optimum sail adjustment. To make it easier to trim the main and mizzen I exchanged the mainsheet fiddle block with a larger one, and moved the replaced block back to the mizzen. The original mizzen block was then used for one of the running backstays which I installed for the mizzen staysail. Should anyone desire information on installing running backstays I would be delighted to explain or show how mine were installed. These running backstays can also be used to tighten up the entire rig in heavy air. Although I find the rigging of the SEAWIND to be excellent and requiring no modification under most conditions.
Sea Hood Leaks This is a common problem in most SEAWINDS that were constructed prior to the new deck mold. I believe Hull #84 or 85. were the first boats constructed with the new deck that changes the way the sea hood is molded. These leaks are also a problem in other Allied boats that used the same deck molding technique. Although I have attempted many fixes and glassed the inside corners of my sea hood Hull #50 I have not really solved this )problem. To eliminate leaks in this area I have installed a dodger which prevents water under most conditions from entering underneath the hatch -where it slides under the sea hood. If anyone has found a solution to this problem please write it up for the news letter.
Hood Sea Furl System. There are several excellent and several not so excellent roller furling systems on the market. Properly installed I consider the three extrusion luff systems superior to the others currently on the market. When properly installed these systems make sail handling a joy. As I grow older I appreciate opportunities to ease the workload and enhance safety, especially during adverse weather conditions or when you are sailing alone as I am during much of the time. I have also tested these systems at sea over extended cruises with excellent results on several different types of boats. Although the SEAWlND performs best in winds up to 20 knots with a 150 or 170 % genoa, for most cruising all you need is a 130-135% genoa. A sail of this size can be used over the entire spectrum with a furling system. For a good set you really need some inside track for proper trim, however you can get by with the standard track installed on the toe rail since the total amount of sailing under drastic reduction of sail will be minimal. I have installed more of the Hood systems in boats that I have sold with excellent results. As a matter of fact I have one on my boat. Here are the keys to watch during installation to insure happiness.
1. The Hood Sea Furl excrusion comes in sections and rotates around the headstay on teflon bearings. It is essential that this section and the headstay be cut the proper length. Since the only adjustment to the rig is in the backstays I recommend the use of two toggles on the headstay. Once the rig stretches out one of the toggles can be removed.
2. The head of the sail must not be more than 12" from the top of the mast. If you can get it- closer than 12" without binding on the headstay this is even better. If more than a foot separates the head from the top of the mast you probably will experience the halyard twisting around the head stay.
3. The furling line should furl with the lay of the wire in the headstay. Normally this means the drum will furl in the sail in a clockwise direction and run free when you pull the sail out with the sheets in a counterclockwise direction. The protective sail cover would then be on the port side.
These systems require maintenance like your winches. Annually I take mine apart, clean off the crud and old grease. A good heavy duty marine grease should be applied and the unit reassembled. To prevent dropping parts overboard I slide a box (usually from a case of beer) around the unit to catch the critical parts when they fall. I learned this trick several years ago when servicing winches on a big ocean racer. As you know these parts are difficult to identify and locate most of the time.
Milt, please excuse my typing. For some reason I am all thumbs today. This is what happens when you have been away from the Pentagon as long as I have.
Keep up the good work--- happy sailing
George W. Curran
Seawind II #50
As you may have seen in recent issues of SAIL, Cruising World, and some of the other sailing publications, we put out the word that there was a Seawind Owners Association -- and received quite a response. Not all the applications for membership are back in yet, but we can welcome these new members:
--Edgar R. Lemon and wife Donna of ASA BERT, SW II hull number 15. They're just moving from the northland (New York) to the Virgins, and their new address will be: Frenchman's Cay, West End, Tortola, BVI.
--Lynn Williams, who just purchased SW I hull number 47, SUMMERWIND. Lynn lives in Key West (123 Ann St., P.O. Box 2, Key West, FL 33400) and comments: "After some research, I think the original Seawind ketch designed by Mr. Gillmer is one of the best small cruising yachts ever produced.
--Ken McClave Jr. and wife Kay of LONGTAIL II, SW II hull number 32. We met Ken and what seemed like all his relatives in July when they were cruising the Chesapeake. They'd sailed down from the Jersey shore, where LONGTAIL II is home ported at Belmar. The McClaves home address: 1811 Ocean Avenue, Spring Lake, NJ 07762.
--Richard W. Schaefer and wife Marlene of SHANGRI-LA, SW II hull number 58, keep their boat at Mystic and live at 145 Woodhaven Rd., Glastonbury, CT 06033. They're particularly interested in problems and effective cures, improvements, and potential cruises as a class -- perhaps the Marion-Bermuda race next year or cruising in Maine together.
--Charles W. Ogletree wrote in July to say that he'll be buying a SW II in the fall. Meanwhile, he's the association's only member without a boat. His address: 5 West Main St., Columbia, N.C. 27925.
As the tag end of this edition of the Seawind newsletter, SCUTTLEBUTT/BITS ‘N’ PIECES aims to take everything that just didn’t fit elsewhere.
GEORGE CURRAN MOVES. As you probably suspected from the letterhead on his letter, George Curran has left Atlantic Sailing Yachts. He's taken a position as executive director of the Naval Academy Sailing Foundation, and his new position involves locating yachts suitable for donation to the Naval Academy and handling the transfers.
SEAWIND TO BERMUDA. Scott Kuhner, who circumnavigated with his wife in their Seawind I BEBINKA some years ago, finished 13th in this year's singlehanded Bermuda race in BEBINKA II, SW II #52. A total of 20 boats, ranging from 22 to 41 feet in length, took part in the race.
NEWSLETTERS. Doug and Edith Siegel (SW I # 119) report that they now have a complete set of the excellent newsletters issued by Jules Siegel (no relation) and they're willing to share them with SW I owners who might be interested. Call Doug or Edith at 703/892-5960.
SEAWIND I DRIFTER. James DeMund recently sold his SW I and has a 160% drifter for sale.
It's a 1976 sail, made by VanZandt. It's available for $300 and, according to its owner, is an excellent light air sail in very good condition. Call evenings: 203/233-7410.
NEW ROSTER. We'll aim to get out a new roster sometime in the next couple of months -- perhaps with the next newsletter. If your name, address, phone number, or other information listed in the roster has changed recently (or if we got it wrong in the first place), be sure to let us know.
FEEDBACK. We welcome feedback on the newsletter and other undertakings by the Association. Don't be bashful -- let us have your brickbats and bouquets. The only way we can provide you what you'd like to have is through your feedback. Is the newsletter hitting the mark? Or is it way off base? Is it too short? Too long? Too heavy? Too light? What else would you like to see covered?
FIRST RENDEZVOUS. The first SOA rendezvous was a great success, in spite of threatening (no, rainy) weather. A total of six boats rafted on the Rhode River: PILGRIM (Dremnianys), SWEETIE TOO (Egans), VARIANT (Jeffries); ____________ (Koumjian); PARFAIT (Siegels); and SOLUTION (Bakers). In addition, Kent Mewha sailed by in his new SW II but couldn't take enough time to stop and join in the festivities.
AND, FINALLY, A REMINDER:
1. Send inputs for the newsletter.
2. Send feedback.
3. Get tickets for the fall boat show(s).
4. Let us know whether you want to have a get-together in Annapolis on boat show weekend
5. Order a half model for Christmas.
6. Give us a report on your experiences with self steering.
7. Make reservations for the Westerbeke seminar. -
8. Send in a question for Tom Gillmer if you have something that's design-related and has been bugging you.
9. Sail safely.
All best wishes,
(3351 Breckenridge Court
Annandale, VA 22003)