Spring 2014 was late cool and slow to arrive. Fortunately, we did not have a lot to do on the boat herself before launch. We opted to get by on the topsides paint job and simply touched up hull and the bottom before launch. Once afloat (with no sump pump needed) the motor started right up and within a couple hours Sara B was back at the Pleasant Beach dock. No lead mining, no week long soak up, just add water and get her rigged.
That took a solid day with Jim A, Chris and Sue figuring out how she went together. We vow to do a rigging 'manual' with photos so we don't have to try recalling how such and such was lashed or secured. We only had to make one trip up to do the triatic, also. Unfortunately, the engine room continues to demand Chris's time. Tony the Flying Dutchman out in Washington state had suggested a water pump fix that Chris executed. Chris then worked up a 'test bench' so he didn't have to spend an hour to re install the thing only to have it leak. It leaked. He then sought a machine shop in Fulton to lap the bronze surface for the carbon seal mating. It still leaked after that, though less.
Rigging - Jim & Chris
Plan C was rig up a drip catchment and maybe conjure up a way to easily transfer the lost coolant back to the motor. Use it and wait and see. Maybe it will fix itself?? We doubt it. We're still waiting for the tranny forward clutch lining to 'wear in'. There have been a few less than perfect dockings associated with Sara B's ambiguous neutral gear, too. Chris took reverse up half a turn so now we have brakes again. Then this past weekend he actually took forward up a bit. Maybe it is beginning to 'wear in'? We can hope. At the moment we still have forward 'creep' when in neutral, but I'm hoping and imagining it is a little better. And maybe we'll get back out on the mooring again pretty soon. Then we can practice sailing on and off without the motor.
We have had a couple of grand little day sails with Sara B out on the still frigid lake. Looking at the surface temperatures via satellite it looks like high 30s surface water out there 4 to 5 miles out in late May. We know it is way colder than the bay! (It's about 60 in the bay according to Titania's sensor). The so called thermal bar is very much in evidence this year with our abundant ice cover, cold winter, and late spring. It seemed to affect the winds some, too, this year as three times we went out with westerlies and found the warmer bay winds were stronger and sometimes a bit different in direction than out on that chilly lake with its mirage distorted horizon and cold air.
Waiting for some tardy shipmates - Pat, Anne, Bill, Sam
We are hoping that the lake stratifies before our first cruise to Canada possibly around mid June but I wouldn't bet on it this year! (Seagrant says in some years it stays cold until the first week in July!) We hope to do two short cruises this year instead of one long ambitious one. Meantime we are good enough to go for day sails!