Thursday, August 17, 2017

Race Management, Re-bedding, Brightwork Progress

Race Committee Aboard Junovia
The first Monday of every month, after my day-job, I head to the Delta Park Elmer's where we hold board meetings for the Small Yacht Sailing Club of Oregon.  SYSCO is the organization that runs nearly all sailboat racing on the Columbia River in Portland.  Our primary events bring out over 100 boats and each boat carries an average of around six people, so it's a pretty happening deal.  In 2015 I became Vice-Commodore and Race Captain for the club which wound up taking way more time than I had expected.  But it has been an excellent learning experience and often loads of fun.  The normal routine is for VC's to move into the Commodore role for a year, assuming you didn't completely screw up and the membership votes you in.  By default the Commodore then serves as Rear Commodore for the next year to help smooth the transition for incoming officers, all of which I've done and now approaching the end of my tenure as an officer.

Pancho, the SYSCO Mark Boat
During this time I've been very active in managing both race organization and the actual races on the water.  It takes several people, known as the Race Committee, to run things on the water but there's always ultimately one person responsible and in charge known as the Principal Race Officer, or PRO.  Over the past few years I've served as PRO in dozens of regattas, as I've become more comfortable with calling the shots it's started to become really fun.  I'm now nearly done completing the process to become a certified club-level PRO with US Sailing.  I think this credential might come in handy to get involved in sailboat racing communities while we cruise around the world.

In other news I've been re-bedding our deck hardware replacing silicone and other old sealant materials with butyl tape.  Surprisingly, many of the bolt holes in the gelcoat that I assume were drilled by the manufacturer did not have countersinks and in some places spider cracks were forming below the hardware.  As I re-bed each part I'm adding countersinks that will both relieve the local stresses that cause spider cracks as well as provide a cavity in which I pack bits of butyl for waterproofing.

Replacing Screw Plugs And Repairing Cracks In The Brightwork
We're making good progress on the brightwork, although it was slowed a bit by a couple days of wet weather.  Tara just finished the first coat of Clear Gloss on the bowsprit and starboard rails Monday.  She has also stripped nearly all the old Cetol off the stern and port rails.  It looks like the project may slip past August but we're looking good to have everything complete before the Portland rainy season returns towards mid-September.

Next week I'm heading north aboard a yacht to work charters in the San Juan's and inside of Vancouver Island.  An eclipse of the sun is taking place Monday with the path of totality just south of us crossing through Central Oregon.  It should be interesting to be underway while that takes place.

Double Duty Aboard The Charter Yacht
The Cal 20 Fleet Approaches A Start

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