It’s been a while since I made a post – here is what has being going on.
We launched the Peapod, for sea trials under oars. She proved a delight to row – quick and responsive. The weather was calm, light wind and small chop, so I haven’t had a chance to assess her in more weather. She rows nicely from the forward position, with a passenger in the stern sheets. I made a pair of oars for her, 7’ 6” long, spoon blade. Instead of the usual round shafts, they are ellipsoid – kind of egg shaped – in cross section. This makes them lighter and stiffer – the larger dimension of the cross section is in the plane of the greatest stress when you pull on them. They still fit in conventional oarlocks. I really like them – the light weight saves a lot of effort. I hope to be able to offer them for sale. They won’t exactly be cheap, but they should be competitive with anything comparable. You can see them in the bottom photo – I have varnished them and added leathers since this was taken
I hope to be able to try the Peapod under sail next weekend. I have her all rigged, but there was a glitch with the sheeting system, which needs a new set of blocks. The weather is a bit warmer now, so I will take the first opportunity – we need a nice day with a good breeze to get an idea of how she will handle, and some good photos at the same time. I have been working on the drawings and the building manual. Both are approaching done, but there is a huge amount of work in doing these, to include the kind of detail that I feel is due the unsuspecting amateur builder, so it will be a few weeks yet before they are available.
I have made a bit more progress on the Grace Eileen. The big news is that I have found a mast for her. It is carbon fiber, which should be a real plus for performance. With her light displacement and clean underbody, she should really show the benefit of the saving in weight aloft. The mast is not finished (which is why I can afford it), so there will be quite a lot of work to be done on it. I am very happy to have secured it.
Otherwise, time has been spent in cutting firewood, with house painting waiting when that is done. There as always something that needs doing when you would rather be working on something else!