Just bought #2055: A few newbie questions.

Thread starter #1
Hello All:
After a long hiatus from sailing I just pruchased a Mod 1 (88 Model) - looking forward to the first sail this Sunday.

A few newbie questions:

1) Is there a type of life vest that is preferable over other types? The typical ski-type vest seems confortable. The kayak version is shorter, but possibly a bit more comfortable. Am I over-thinking this?

2) Is there a hull wax that is preferable over others?

3) The hull has a few minor scratches (not through the gel coat). Should I:
a) fill it and sand it. If so, then fill it with what?
b) no fill - just sand.
c) forget about it - just sail the thing.

4) Reburbishing the teak.

Thanks for you time,
1) Whichever fits you best, but wear it at all times.
2)Any marine wax, but do not use automotive wax, it will turn gummy when put in saltwater.
3) Just sail it.
4)I went a bit overboard with my teak and ended up putting 14 coats of Z Spar Captains Varnish on it, it looks outstanding, but was a lot of work. I took the teak off the boat to do this.
I can't stress wearing the lifevest at all times, your going to go swimming someday!!!

Please let us know how your first sail goes.
Thread starter #3
Thanks for the info Greg. I'll check out the Z Spar and marine wax tomorrow. The forecast here in Clear Lake for Sunday is for relatively light winds. I'll post afterwards.
Thread starter #4
First sail went like this.........

Arrived at the boat ramp around 10am. There was lots of activity; fishing boats, ski boats, a 30 ft power boat, and one good-ole-boy in a chalk green 70s Glastron. The good-ole-boy was having engine trouble, and thus, one of three ramps was down for the count.

After rigging, my wife, Pam, and I, put the Capri in the water, only to realize that the ramp we chose was a bit shallower than the the other. No biggie, I'll just pull the centerboard up about half way. While doing this, Pam lost her grip on the dock. The on-shore wind spun the boat around, and pointed her toward the "quickly approaching" concrete ramp. Luckily, I was able to thwart impact, get the boat pointed in the right direction, pull the centerboard up a bit more, reposition the kick-up rudder, hand paddle to wife, instruct to paddle like mad, man tiller, avoid impact with 30' Fountain transom to right, avoid rocky wave break to left, and wave good bye to a smiling good-ole-boy whose engine just came to life in a cloud of blue smoke.

Not knowing if the jib would overpower the rudder, sending us back into boat ramp traffic, hull damage, and bad language, I elected to paddle through, and away from all of it. I needed a bit more power, so took over the paddle, and persuaded Pam to take the tiller. Having never manned a tiller, she was understandibly not comfortable, and a bit of tense trial and error ensued before achieving desired results. Once away from the dock, I unrolled the jib, and talked Pam (still on the tiller, and still understandibly not too happy) from port to starboard tack. Hey, good tack dear !! No problem !! Let's raise the main !!

The wind was forecast for a steady ~5 to 7 mph from the east. It was more like 0 to 10, and variable. I had Pam head up just bit, and I started raising the main. The main sheet is loose and uncleated, so it should just ease out unpowered - right? The stern end of the boom was tangled under the hiking strap and centerboard bungee. So as I raised the sail, it just powered up and started heeling over the boat. Wife seemed frozen on tiller. Somehow I was able to, cleat main halyard in place, take over tiller, untangle boom, explain to an understandibly-not-too-happy Pam that we are not capsizing, and redirect traveler that somehow got routed on underside of tiller !! No wonder she couldn't steer the boat........she was nauseous, and wanted to drop the sails.

All the above took place in the span of about seven minutes. The surreal site of a chalk green Glastron motoring past in a cloud of blue smoke and cacophony of sounds emitting from a 70hp Evinrude running on one cylinder was enough to distract Pam temporarily from impending hurling. Eventually we got the main up completely, and the rest to the outing was relatively (relatively) uneventful.

I haven't sailed in over twenty years; my last boat being a Hobie 16. With that said, I would have thought the Capri would be a cinch to sail, but my tacks and jibes were awkward at best. We're nowhere close to mixing it up with other boats in a race.

We sailed for about 1.5 hours. Pam eventually got use to the heel of the boat, but unfortunately her nausea never subsided. Time to call it a day.

Again the boat ramp was full of activity: a ~20ft sailboat, a very long Scarab, boats waiting to dock, boats waiting to trailer, and another good-ole-boy in a Chrysler powered puke red tri-hull that wouldn't fire. My thought process went from sailing in under main, to sailing in with jib only, to dropping both and paddling. Pam suggested I buy a motor for the boat. A motor? OMG. This broke my heart. Still, she had a point.

In the end, we entered the fray uneventfully and trailered the Capri with no issues. Somehow, I talked Pam into giving it another go next weekend. We talked about the huge number of unknowns that we worked through, which shouldn't be a problem during the next outing; that in spite of her nausea, and my ham handed boat skills, we eventually began working more as a team; that we never capsized (once, we heeled to ~ 45 degrees in a botched tack when one of us (OK, me) sat on the main sheet); that we maneuvered the boat back to the ramp without raming into 30' Ciggarette Boats. We have a long way to go, and I'm looking forward to the journey - but I'm not the one with nausea issues. We'll see how it works out.

The Boat: We pulled the plug out of the transome - zero water. Cool. The clear plastic strips along the centerboard slot on the bottom of the hull need replacing. There was pressure in the tiller. The boat wanted to round up a bit (weather helm ??), so I suspect I need to rake the mast forward a bit.

As we pulled away from from the boat ramp the ole Chrysler tri-hull finally came to life in yet another cloud of blue smoke. Something about a gas hose not plugged in.
Outstanding, all's well that ends well. Think about getting either a topping lift or Boomkicker for the boom. The topping lift will cost less than $30 while the Boomkicker cost over $100. But the topping lift needs to be unhooked from the end of the boom before sailing while the Boomkicker stays in place all the time. With either of those options, you can sail away from and to the dock with main only, then when the time is right, unroll the jib. Also think about installing a Baby Bob mast head float, the Capri 14.2 tends to keep rolling over until it is turtled when you captize it, and you will captize it. The Baby Bob keeps the masthead out of the water and therefore the boat will not turtle. But you still need to get back in the boat once you have righted it so I installed a boarding/swim ladder on my Capri. I am 63 years old and tend not to push the boat, I sail her solo almost always, but know that someday I am going swiming and want to be ready.
syntax question

Is it only a "captism" the first time or does that apply to succeeding trips into the drink?? And is there a ceremony beyond the colorful language I entoned at my first captism??
Good one, Greg
1) The best lifejacket is the one that you are wearing when you go in the drink, so find one that is comfortable and fits.
2) I wet sanded my hull and used a teflon car wax, not sure I could tell a difference but it made me hope it was faster. i have sailed in salt and fresh without a problem.
3) just sail it
4) teak -- I sanded and sealed with several coats of spar marine varnish

Sounds like a successful outing, no one got hurt and you didn't capsize.

I suggest practice a several capsizing drills. This way you and your partner know what to expect if/when the boat goes over and you can practice getting back into the boat.

Good luck and enjoy the boat.

1989 Capri 14 Mod2
1984 Catalina 22


Sailing on Shelter Bay
It is a "process".

Your first experience was certainly a learning experience, but you sound like a thinker, so I am sure you will work out the details. I have a situation where I can walk the boat to the end of the dock so I can find an easy point of sailing (reach) to leave the dock. If it is windy and I'm alone I sometimes sail under main alone (that works surprisingly well) until I get comfortable and then I put up the jib. As for a motor, it probably depends on your situation, but I find a paddle works fine. If I sail very far from home I make sure there is enough wind to get me back and I always sail first up-current so it helps me back (unless the tide changes!). Good luck. Keep experimenting . The wind variation is interesting. Sounds like you don't have a lot of open water between you and then eye of the wind. Up wind Obstacles on shore can cause turbulence.


Thread starter #10
Things are improving.

Things are improving.

Motion Sickness: We've had 'er out five times. The good news: Pam is over her motion sickness, and has decided to give this sport a go, and in fact looks FORWARD to boat outings. She's read Sailing Fundamentals (Gary Jobson) and Invitation to Sailboat Racing (Alan Brown), so is up on sailing lingo. On the other hand, I still use terms like thingie and do-hickie.

Flotation: Just ordered this mast float - http://www.apsltd.com/c-2709-optiparts-mastfloat.aspx (only 8 liters, but shouuld help). Pam is still a bit apprehensive about boat lean and overturning. Winds have been unusually strong and gusty this year along the Texas coast. Twice we've sailed under main only because of her concerns (and mine) of turtling. Once we get the mast head float, we'll commence with capsizing drills.

Joined a club: We joined the Clear Lake Sailing Club. They offer sailing lessons for newbies, and hold a series of low key races throughout the season. Although most of the races have been blown out this year, we attended one. It was a blast - looking forward to the next one.

The boat ramp: A member of the club pointed out a more appropriate ramp. It's on the other side of the parking lot, and has signage reading SAILBOAT LAUNCH. Geez...who da thunk it. It's deeper, and the pier extends into open waters.

The question: To paddle or not to paddle. No motor. The paddle works fine for our purposes.

The boat: The trailer has new rollers and lights; the boat received a good polishing and wax job; the traveler is tied. The teak needs refurbishing; the clear plastic pieces on the bottom need replacing; a multitude of minor hull scratches need gel coat/sanding. All good off season jobs.

The last sail: Yesterday 5/22 - Sailed early (8am to 9am), as forecast winds were a bit stiff later in the day. By the time we left the boat ramp, Clear Lake was white-capped. The Capri was easily manageable under mainsail only in ~20mph gusts. Sailing off the wind, I think she would have planned, had the jib been up. Gotta man up.