PIRATE BAIT: Laura Dekker v. Johansen Family

31 Oct

Laura Dekker map Indian Ocean

I haven’t mentioned teen sailor Laura Dekker in quite some time, because, as I expected, her voyage–a standard westabout milk-run circumnavigation–has so far been largely uneventful. But now she’s in the Indian Ocean. She left Darwin, Australia, headed west over a month ago and soon should be arriving at her destination.

Only thing is… we don’t know where that is.

On leaving Darwin, Laura refused to say where she was going, and since leaving has not posted position updates on her website. She has maintained a written blog, but publication of her posts has been intentionally delayed by ...

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Friends and a Fan

29 Oct

Gatekeeper 2.jpgwalt1.jpgI’m lucky. I have made a lot of friends in this business. Of course there was the builder from Florida that did not like his review in SAILING. He called and said he was coming to Seattle to “Cut your head off!” He didn’t come to Seattle and his boat was still a dog.

Then there is Dr. Walter Berdon. We have been corresponding for years. We met through my reviews in SAILING and Dr. Walter started writing me letters with ideas and comments on the boats I had reviewed. Dr. Walter is 81 years old and lives in Mamaroneck, ...

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CRASH TEST BOAT: Onboard Propane Explosion

28 Oct

In case you had’t noticed, the staff at the British sailing comic Yachting Monthly have been having some fun over the past year torturing a 40-foot Jeanneau Sun Fizz to death. The denouement, featured in this BBC news report, came earlier this month when they blew the boat up with propane gas.

Previous adventures included setting the boat on fire:

onboard boat fire

And intentionally dismasting it:

dismasting a sailboat

As well as holing it, capsizing it, disabling the steering, and running it aground.

This has all been the brainchild of Yachting Monthly‘s editor-in-chief, Paul Gelder, who is due to retire early next year. ...

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Saturday and rain

22 Oct

TrippDrawing1.jpgI think I will experiment.
It took me a half an hour to get that sail plan the way I wanted it here. I’m not good at this.
It’s fusterating, as my son Max used to say.

This yawl was my attempt at drawing a CCA type boat for a good client that is constantly in search of the “perfect boat”.
I was trying to Channel Bill Tripp but as you can see I fell short. My bow is not right. I should have added another 18″ of overhang forward to give it more grace and allow me the length ...

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Perry and "Sons" aka Rick Beddoe

12 Oct


image 3.JPGcape horn3.jpgI’ll get back to rudders eventually but as I walked the dogs this morning I had the thought that I should have you take a look at this.

I first met Rick Beddoe (we call him “Sons” on Cruising Anarchy because he uses SONADORA as his handle there) years ago when he asked for drawings for his Baba 30 so he could do some 3D renderings of it. Time past and soon I received some images from Rick. They were awful. The little Baba 30 was turned into what I thought looked like a blow up bathtub toy. But I ...

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Rudders, let’s start here

10 Oct

Icon new rudder.jpgThis is ICON’s revised rudder. As you probably can guess the bumps on the leading edge are what was added to my original rudder shape. These bumps are called “Tubercles” and can be found in nature on the leading edge of the fins Humpback whales. They can be seen as vortex generators. So, why were they added and did they work?


ICON’s original owner and skipper were Happy with the boat’s performance and I never heard any complaints about the rudder. But ICON sold to a new owner and he was campaigning the boat heavily and quite successfully. The

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6 Oct

We managed to get the hits on Jill’s hospital blog up to almost 900!

Jill and I appreciate the support. It was amazing.


I think we did what we could do and now it’s time to turn the blog over to some subject matter more cheerful like,,,how come I can’t steer my boat?

I think I’ll do a rudder blog this weekend....

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A Million Bucks

3 Oct

If you’ve been playing Johnny Yachtracer for a while, you’ve said it yourself. If you’ve been playing Johnny Yachtwriter for a while, you’re written it.

There were no losers.

It’s a trite but perfectly-accurate assessment of an event in which scads of people had fun on the water, and a few of them won a thingie to take home. Happens pretty often in sailing, but nowhere was it ever more true than last weekend at the Leukemia Cup Regatta on San Francisco Bay, an endeavor that raised a record $1 million for cancer research.

This annual all-out effort at The ...

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Hogg Blog— I am going to ask you for some help

1 Oct

spike.jpgRobert Hogg was Spike’s doctor at Swedish hospital in Seattle. If he had correctly diagnosed Spike’s illness as bacterial pneumonia Spike would most probably be alive today. Bacterial pneumonia is easily treated but it requires antibiotics.
Spike was given an anti inflammatory drug, anti depressants and an anti nausea drug, no antibiotics. He was sent home to “rest” and died the next night.

I would appreciate it if you could visit this web site and look at Jill’s blog about Spike and bacterial pneumonia. I want to keep this blog active and busy.
I am not asking you to comment ...

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