So we woke up and packed new lunches, and lots of water for a day out on the water (and we drank all of it). We arrived at the dock at 9am, and we quickly got down to the business of reinforcing some things we learned yesterday after applying some of the book knowledge to an actual sail.
After an hour or so we were asked to complete our tests, I finished mine yesterday so I took the time to stretch my legs, talked with the instructors about our past sailing experiences, discussed my plans for Schooner Camp, some of our building projects past and present, and so forth. Once every one was done with their tests we went below to grade them and reinforce questions answered wrong. Elyse scored 92%, great job!!!
Skipper asked me to take the boat out of the marina so he could focus on the other students, we got stuck waiting for the tressle bridge to open, but otherwise uneventful. Once we were out into the river we hoisted the mainsail, did a few tacks then unfurled the 130 Genoa. Heading out toward the Long Island sound the wind slowly picked up to about 15 knots at its highest, and it was enough to put the boat on her ear, and we were moving along at about 7.5 to 8.5 knots over water for a good portion of the sail.
We practiced tacking and jibing, and avoiding collisions per the rules of the road and overall it was a lot of fun watching everyone take up their stations.
As I mentioned in the previous post, this sailboat is new to the current owner, so we were all learning something today. One of the folks was putting the sailboat so far on its ear that the boat started turning up her no matter how hard she tried to stay on course. Leaving the transmission in neutral causes the prop shaft to vibrate when we are moving at a good clip. It took a while to figure that out. At first we thought it was a shroud vibrating in the wind, then maybe the keel harmonic vibrating. When the skipper put the transmission in gear, the vibrations went away. Hmm, that’s something to look at.
By the end of the day we’d gotten plenty of sun, and plenty of wind. Bringing the boat back in, the skipper asked me to man the helm again while fenders were deployed, sails furled, taken down and secured. This time the bridge was wide open for us so we didn’t have to putter around in circles, and once we got to the dock we cleaned up and packed up and our certification was logged in our books.
A really nice feature of being a student with American Sailing Academy (not to be confused with the ASA) is that current students are offered free evening sails on most Wednesday evenings at no cost. It’s a sales gimmick to increase continuing interest in ASA103, 104 and 105, but this a gimmick that has real value in giving students some more time and experience on the water. I am planning on taking advantage of it to log some more sea service recency for my USCG Captains License. I have enough time overall, but not within the last 3 years.
I want to thank both Captains Dave and Dave (yes both are Dave) for providing an excellent program and service. They are both fine sailors and they have a lot of experience to offer to new sailors in the New England area.
You can find them at American Sailing Academy