We’re into the final stages of Molly’s Toto. The paint has been acquired and 2 coats of primer are done. The rear flotation box has it’s first coat of bright white paint. Once the second coat goes on today we can screw the deck down with a bead of silicone and finish sanding the rear deck to size.
On Friday, Matt and I went out sailing. I brought the Terror of the Sea out for the first time this season. The weather called for winds to 20 mph. Generally I find the wind reports around here seem to be optimistic and when I get out on the lake you’re lucky if they hit what the weather called for. Friday this was not the case. We launched from Rolling View on Falls Lake around noon and the wind was already blowing strongly. We sailed out into the lake and I realized that I probably had too much sail up for the conditions. There were some pretty good waves rolling on the lake. I dropped the sail into the new lazy jacks while I started to tie in a reef. Even with no sail up we were pushed more than half way across the lake toward Sandling Beach. With the reef finally tied in I tried to hoist the sail again. The wind caught the sail and whipped it around so hard that the thin white pine boom cracked in half at a knot. I quickly dropped sail and started rowing back toward the far shore. Matt came sailing up and his Melonseed seemed to be handling the conditions much better than the little PDR. He thought he could tow me in so we threw a rope across. Then they had trouble getting their sail up and I figured they’d be better off without me. I cut the rope loose and started pulling at the oars again. Matt and Amy started drifting off toward Sandling as I dropped the mast and eventually removed the dragon head from the front of the boat to try to cut down as much wind resistance as possible. After an hour and half of hard rowing I finally made it back. At times the wind blew so hard I had to row at my best to keep the boat from blowing backwards. Once I got the boat loaded up I couldn’t see Matt across the lake. I drove over to Sandling and found them trying to pull the boat into a lee where they could get the sail up and get a good tack angle. It turns out that the fork on the gaff yard had broken on one side so Matt could no longer raise the sail very high. Under heavily reefed sail they set out again and I watched them tack past the old peer.
I walked back to the car and drove back to the point. They were out of sight, so I headed back across the lake to try to catch sight of them again. I made it back to Rolling View and saw them still fighting to make headway near the opposite shore. A man and his son were just launching a bass boat, so I enlisted their help in getting a tow. By now it was 5 pm. I watched long enough to see Matt drop the sail and get tied up to the boat and I headed for home.
Time to laminate a slightly larger boom from multiple pieces of wood to make a stronger piece.
Thankfully the new oarlocks worked well. If those had given way, I would never have made it back across the lake.
I looked up the wind conditions for the airport for the time we were on the lake. It was steady 18-20mph with gusts to 30 mph. Maybe too much wind for the Puddle Duck.