Rain and Boat Repairs

I was expecting a nice wind today, but it was shifty and gusty too and I hated it. Mike, Steve and Brent were away to the the Bury Lake Young Mariners Laser Open, so competition would be lower. I didn’t really like it because we were just 5 of us for the first race. I capsized once, to windward, because the wind died on me completely as I rounded mark 8 and as I was bringing it up again a gust hit me and brought the boat on top of me. Oh, I hated it! It started raining and it kept raining for the rest of the day!

I finished 3rd with Ben and Charmian behind me and Dan and young Ben ahead of me. on the last leg, the wind picked up quite a lot, and on the top end of the Welsh Harp the wind was stronger. I didn’t want to go out for the second race, but young Ben talked me into it. So I went out again and this time we were only 4 Lasers. The race officer couldn’t anchor the boat properly and it was being dragged back by the wind. They moved the committee boat 3 or 4 times during the start sequence. I took transits twice, but it was pointless. The Merlin Rockets started while the committee boat was moving forward!

Anyway, we started and on the second lap I realised that my kicker was jammed! I couldn’t be bothered I was reaching from mark 8 to mark 3, the boat was planing and I was yanking the kicker to unstuck it. No luck. So I decided to go straight in, because if would try to finish, I would have to beat with the kicker off and that would be very hard in such strong winds.

After I had a shower and lunch I decided to do some minor repairs to Bubble. I replaced the gudgeons, I replaced the mainsheet block (I bought one yesterday at the Dinghy show), I made a long tiller extension from an aluminium tube, I got a second hand carbon tiller from Brent, I replaced the traveller and I put a shock-cord at the back of the cockpit in order to attach a drinking bottle. This shock-cord will need adjusting, but once I find the right length, I will post a diagram here.

Pete had to work on “his new” Laser too. Actually it’s not new, it’s about 18 years old and it’s not his either. It’s Nicole’s but he will be using it from now on in exchange of insurance and berthing fees.

The weather was not good for boat repairs but since we had brought all the tools and bits n’ pieces, we though we might as well do it. I am quite glad I did them though, because now they are out of the way. The rudder fits snugly into the new gudgeons with no play at all! I really think that Bubble is worth 300 more now, than when I bought her, and it’s a pretty good boat for what I have paid and spent on it. I only need a new sail, which I will have to buy soon. We’ll see. Hopefully, next Sunday the weather will be better.