Advanced Sailing Skills – May 27, 2017

Little in the way of new theory discussed.  Carla did show a nifty trick for stepping a Laser mast if you’re light:

  1. Make sure there’s a tire under front of boat
  2. Stand mast beside boat (point head of mast into the wind to have wind help lift it)
  3. Stand on deck of boat
  4. Can now lift mast vertically onto deck of boat and into mast step

Alternatively, just sail a Byte and you don’t have to worry about the mast.

Since there’s not much else to write about, I’ll mention log books.  If you don’t keep a log book, I recommend doing so.  Sometimes it’s fun to look back at past sails.  Sometimes you’ll remind yourself of a long-forgotten tip.  My typical log book entry looks something like this:

May 27, 2017 – KSC Advanced Skills
Forecast: 6 knots from the W, sunny, high of 24
Observed: About 4 knots with occasional gust of up to 6, coming from S.
Boat: Tasar (blue)
Plan: Sail into the gusts, if available.  Work on using heel to facilitate steering both tacks and gybes.  Since this is first time sailing with Frank in a couple of years, focus on communication between skipper & crew.  Tasar likes to be sailed flat (even more so than Laser) so work extra hard on keeping boat level when we’re not trying to turn.
Postmortem: Communication with Frank was excellent in both directions, regardless of who was skipper and who was crew.  Heel during turns was working out well, although occasionally heeled in the wrong direction (1/4 of the time, maybe).  Rounding leeward mark was easy regardless of whether we approached on starboard or port tack.  Had trouble picking starboard layline to windward mark, and often came at mark on beam reach.
Lessons learned: Tasar points higher than the Lasers I’m used to — take this into account when calling layline.  Don’t forget to rotate Tasar wing mast when crew.

Doug Peckover (world class Laser sailor and author of Improper Course blog) goes into much more detail in his log entries than I do (here are his logs from the 2016 Worlds in Mexico)