Tuesday, July 14, 2015
I am currently in Antigua in the leeward islands. They have very slow internet here. All the islands claim to have the best in the world but in reality I believe they just lie like so much of the hype in the world. I am doing all my blog stuff from an IPad. I get up at daybreak and try and post my stuff in the early mornings when no one is online. This last post about the Hogfish was done this way but it's summer here and I feel the digicel and other company's just go to 1/4 power. So I can now see that I will have to redo my pictures again. Will do tonight.
I am also with my daughter and friends helps setting up a new blog site on Wordpress that I hope will be better than this site.
Sunday, July 12, 2015
Here's what the Hogfish looks like today after 26,000 miles of ocean sailing.
The Hogfish Maximus was designed and built in Titusville Florida in 1999. The design was for as small a sloop that could carry all my gear that I would need to raise our two daughters in, my tools so I could carry on working while cruising about the Atlantic basin and to have as big a hard dinghy on board as possible. The design started with the dinghy drawn on deck. I would be single handing this boat for lots of the sailing we would do as my wife Rachel is sea sick for the first day or so and our kids were very young. This meant that the sailplan had to be very easy for me to handle at all times. The rig is what I call a slutter sloop 7/8 th rig with a 110% jib on a roller furler and a removable staysail just aft of this for heavy weather or to be able to be very easy for short tacking into bays and harbors in strong winds. The mainsail is very big with the boom being 20' long. It's very easy to reef this sail with slab reefing taking less than a minute to reef or unreef. With a small cockpit having all sheets led to this area the Hogfish sails like a big dinghy that weighs 16 tons being very easy and maneuverable to sail into anywhere and out again singlehanded.
Her dimensions are thus;
Length on deck- 37'10"
Displacement 16 tons average or more. The most she weighed was 40,000 lbs when carrying Purple Heart lumber back from Grenada to our house in the Bahamas. We know this because we hauled out in Carriacou and got the weight from the travelift.
It took me about 12 months to build the Hogfish , and cost about $ 36,000.00 US to get sailing off to the Bahamas in 1999. She has never missed a tack or ever given us a bit of trouble in many different sea conditions in her travels. She's been a very good boat for us.
But remember " people sail boats places, boats don't sail people places".
Sitting on the shoreline in St. Augustine Florida to get a bottom scrub before sailing offshore to the Bahamas. You can see her little Chine edge that helps when sailing with the daggerboard up going to weather in shallow water and at sea.
The rudder when kicked up will not snag any lines. The wind vane blade is above the bottom and is not in the way unless it's engaged. Then just let it go. There's a break a way line on the pull down on the rudder so if hitting a whale or flotsam it will break free. It works trust me!
Rudder in this postion when sailing is a burden but very steerable. When fully down its vertical with its forward bottom edge just tilted forward. When it moves back an inch you can feel it. In its down postion it's finger tip steering.
The whole controversy from what the Bolger followers and other early flat bottoms disciples and my designs is the bow depth. I say from real experience that if your bow is not under water at rest it will pound too much. The bright red bottom paint is what's under water. How can everybody fuss so much about following Bolgers bows when he to my knowledge never really sailed or cruised. He was a huge influence in my design life in that I feel he was the punk designer of the time. He drew radical stuff that was not Maine Yachty. I loved this. But after sailing some of his boats and seeing their short comings I went in my own direction.
He lived on a boat at a dock. The bow you see here at sea goes up and down and through seas that in sails through. That little bit of bow submersion means nothing at sea. The 7-8" of difference between my bow and a Bolger designed bow at sea is not noticeable. But at rest at anchor a Bolger bow is unlivable period. To keep following this is very naive and you will not be happy with your boat.
Me and my daggerboard. 8'x3'x 3" . It's hollow and floats so it has to be pulled down with a winch. It can float at least five people. A Life raft. It's made of fiberglass sheets bent over a cord and then heavily glassed. It's weighs 150 lbs.
Going in. I use the main halyard to hoist out. It's offset of the centerline 6" to make the interior work.
Now it's bottom is level with Hogfishes bottom. The forward line is to hoist level with the bottom.
The aft one is to crank down with a winch.
Talk about a hole in your boat. The white piece you see is a fiberglass plate that the trailing edge rides up and down on. The bottom of the case is angled back a foot and has foam stuffed up behind this. When the board is down to its full 7'10" when I hit something the board will tilt and pivot back a bit and absorb the impact. If is a reef then I'am temporarily aground like a normal boat. But I just relaese the down line and up pops the board and away we sail leaving the normal boat behind to kedge off.
I have hit so hard that it's nocked us to the deck. No damage yet at all, except to my reputation.
Our wind Vane " Sinclair" it's an Aries Mark IV the best ever made. I bought this vane for $600.00. It is 45 years old and had never been used. It's life of rest is over now.
Lead ! Lots of lead. The round pieces I salvaged years ago from a wreck. 1,800 lbs worth. I have just sold them for $.90 a lb. The normal lead for Hogfish is 6,000 lbs. now more room for rocks and sea glass ! All lead is stored under these floorboards that are screwed down securely. Each section has no more than 1,500 lbs in each section. I forgot about having that 150' of 3/8" chain under there !
The dinnet looking forward. This table moves up and down. My thought was in really cold weather cruising we would just live in the main cabin only heating this area with the rest of the boat closed off. We have a 45 gal diesel tank and heater. But we have not gone north yet. Soon though.
Looking aft with the dog outside.
The diesel heater with its flu removed. The tank is right next to it. All my tanks can be removed from the boat in minutes. The tiles were a collaboration of me drawing the fish and friend firing the tiles.
Galley looking forward. Stove is not gimbaled. Rachel likes a gimbaled stove. But I sail offshore alone and like it this way. Nice secure area leaning between the daggerboard trunk and galley area.
To do again I would install stainless steel counter tops every where. Very inexpensive and nothing can hurt it. I like very high fiddles in my galley as when stuff spills it's no big deal. So stupid to see these dainty littel cut outs in the fiddle corners on yachts watching what you spilled flow onto the floor. We use foot pumps with salt water aft and fresh forward. Simple copper spouts.
Port aft cabin looking out stern ports. The top one is in the cockpit. They are the Herrshoff opening ones made in aluminum. If the Hogfish were to have its mast in the water these are above the new waterline. I have sealable outside covers that go over these when sailing offshore. That was a double bunk that our daughter Kalessin grew up in. We sailed engineless back then so had more room where the engine is now. Now it's my workshop and General storage area.
Lilly's old cabin starboard side looking aft. That's my dads sextant that I grew up with. Its British and about 100 years old now. He bought it from a retired sea Captian that's last name was Rudder.
This is our guest cabin now. Both cabins are exactly the same P&S. No arguing.
The double bunk is 6'6" x 52" wide. Some sails and a dog pillow in there now.
Your view looking out forward into the main cabin if you come to sail with us.
The forward cabin looking at the bow. The round hole is where the chain is. I also have a spare mainsail, storm sails, and 600' of extra 3/4" rode in there. The winches on the floor I've just got for free and have to store away for future use for swapping or selling.
On the bunk looking aft that's Rachel corner of the boat. She has a desk and place for her stuff. Hanging lockers to port. The egg cartons are full of categorized sea shells she has collected. The wires that are hanging are the mast headlights switch. It's long and comes apart. In lightening storms I pull it apart so as to not give the Lightning a good lead to he rest of the boat if the mast is hit.
My side of the bunk looking aft. I get a little settee to lounge on. The aluminum pole is the mast compression post. I call it Rachel's stripper pole.
Rachel has a seat and her clothes in the shelf above.
Typlical storage on Hogfish. You can see the 45 gal. Diesel fuel tank with its site hose in there. That tank comes right out that hole. Kinda like playing with a Rubix Cube though when first seeing it in there. Notice the simple door constrution. Took one day to make all the doors on HF.
Rachel's hanging locker.
The daggerboard case and our walkway forward. On paper this looks very tight but the biggest people ever go right through without a thought.
Food storage, almost out. We can store in the dinnett lockers 185 grocery bags of stuff here. All lockers go down to the bottom of the hull. Most other designers design their boats with you walking on the hull bottom. You loose so much storage this way.
Food gone but really cool stones for the house in place.
This locker is under the forward bunk just aft of anchor locker. Right now it has a 5 gallon bucket of bottom paint in it. 600' storm rode, 500' spare lines, drouge, storm jib, 75 lb. Luke folding anchor, and about 2 five gallon buckets worth of sea glass and assorted rocks. All locker lids can be locked off in a second.
Here are two 100 gal Stainless steel water tanks. Both can be removed in minutes when empty. All is secured so as to be able to survive a roll over. We lift the bunk lids when filling as they have lexan viewing ports in them. Easy to clean this way and see what's happening in there. Since launching in 1999 we have removed and cleaned them out twice. There never has been much in them except dust.
We use a charcoal filter before the foot pump.
Sides of water tanks, lots of spare lines and two 55 lb Luke anchors here. On the port side another two anchor rodes of 300' each. Plus some more lines.
Our bilge pump that I've had through 4 boats. Have never used it but keep it for good Karma.
The engine. Before I installed it we never had water in the boat. But with a shaft you get some in. It's shaft and prop are offset to port. I can get to every inch of this engine to work on any part with out straining. This is the way engines should be in boats. The foot pump is to use in bailing out the aft bilge area into a bucket after motoring a lot. Very simple and always works. Not much water gets in there.
Engine with the two aft cabin door on each side.
The doghouse. The GPS in front we use its large format screen to see our speed. I still navigate with paper charts so only want is postion when plotting. Very secure in here on watches and at anchor when all hell is breaking loose. Can see every where from here.
The cockpit I designed to fit me and my needs only. I can sail this boat single handed from here in any weather tacking into any harbor with ease. Everything is at hand. I can put my butt against the wheel and crank away on the winches. Under the white box- seat is an Edson rack and pinion steering system. I will be modifying it in the next year to have seats and be more daysailors friendly as I will sell this boat someday.
Main hatches are big and very simple. With a sea covering the deck they do not leak. Lots of air comes in these in the tropics. Also easy to stow big stuff through them. The dorade boxes are my design and work way better than the Yachties design. In 120 mile an hour hurricane no water passes through these.
Big winch I use to warp the boat around in dock areas in big winds. Been very handy to have.
Stantion bases are one 1/2" bolt welded in the middle of round pad. These never leak and are very strong.
Anchor well. In order to sail singlehanded without an engine you must have a never fail anchoring and retrieval setup. This is mine. The anchor chain goes straight down into its locker where it stacks on top of each other. This means it will flow out ALWAYS with out fail. All other systems are dangerous. The two other secondary anchors rodes are flaked here as they come aboard. No kinks when going out fast.
I currently use a 66 lb Bruce copy on 150' of 3/8" chain and some rode as the Main anchor. Then I have a 55lb Luke fisherman as a second anchor with 250' of 3/4" rode. This I use when I want the boat to stop sailing about in high winds. Then to port I have the BRAKE which is a 75 lb Herrshoff fisherman on 1" 300' of rode. This I put out to make sure I'am not moving. All my other anchors are stowed below around the main bunk and can be put on deck in minutes through the hatch. I have used all 7 anchored in really bad blows many times and have never ended up on shore. Not so for lots of others about me at these times.
This anchor windlass is a Chinese copy of an old Simpson Lawrence winch. Works great. I see these for sale for up to $800.00 these days , a great bargain. See how the chain flows in strait to the gypsy. The chain drops down a nice hole which is easy to plug when off shore. I have 8 separate cleats up here to tie all my rodes to when in storms.
Folding bow sprit for a code zero, and asymmetric chute. Remove one bolt and it pivots up. Remove the other bolt and off it goes.
Dinghy chocks, dinghy is very secure this way. The lexan is covering a deck prisim.
All boom blocks are laced to boom this way so as to not have noise when in light airs and to soften the shock load when jibing and flopping about in light airs.
The head of choice for me today is the Levac. Very simple. Both through hulls are right here so we open and close them every time we use the head. The shower stall is always full of stuff as we are always in warm weather.
Shower stall with my legal holding tank above. Never used it. I want to stow pickles in vinegar in it when sailing in US waters.
Engine diesel fuel tank. I can open these ports in a minute to see the quality of the fuel. I use a strait stick as a fuel gauge from the deck. This tank comes right out too. The green board is the daggerboard for the dinghy.
Hogfish from above with Glenn Maxwell and his Matt Layden Paradox design rafted to Hogfish.
We are about to sail across the Atlantic together. My Dinghy is as big as the Paradox.
This is my area on the boat. My design office, great place to sleep when off watch when single handing and my navigatin table. The Grundig radio receiver does all my time tics, and weather reports. I can use it to down load weather grub sheets to a laptop but I don't do this. I feel you leave with a good 2-3 day forcast and then just deal with what comes afterwards. I have a nice Icom-m700 SSB radio on the shelf there that I bought for $75.00 with the tuner. I have not hooked it up yet. All my electrical wires are run to buss blocks then go their separate ways. So it's very easy to trace a problem electrically.but so far nothing's happened. Everything is run down the port side just under the sheer. In lightening storms we stay in the dinnet area because only a small wire there.
The black object is an old film container that has coins from our past trips in it along with some Peruvian worry people, curls of hair from a friend that was struck by lightening and survived, and a bunch of grey hairs from a dear old departed freind that was 94 years old when I asked to have a lock of her hair as a good luck token. She had sailed around Cape Horn in a 31' ketch in her 70s and had done it all and survived. So yes I'am covering my butt as a superstitious sailor. This is all under our mast and as they say lightening never strikes twice in the same place. So far so good.
I've been messing around with plywood shoal draft boats for a long time. That's me and my family's British built Silhouette bilge keel sloop built in plywood. To this day I still remember it as a huge boat at17'6" long. We sailed out of Mission Bay in San Diego in it. Circa 1961
Life is good. See you out there.