Progress has been inch-worming along on our Everglades Challenge boat, the Frankenscot. With three months to go, it's a question of divide and conquer, with teams of Igors performing surgeries on various portions of the corpse of the former Flying Scot sailboat.
Chris Morgan is working his fiberglass & faring magic on the centerboard blank, transforming the big wafer project from this summer ("Everglades Project: the Kernel of a Centerboard") into a sleek, hydrodynamic (hydrofoil?! Darned old spellcheck) fin.
A few short miles away, OH Rodgers is creating a rudder. The rudder is the sticky-outy thing at the back of the boat. It's used for steering and is usually attached via a kind of hinge to the transom. OH, however, is fabricating something a bit more swankalicious.
He's making a cassette system, which allows the rudder to lift in and out -- a bit like a sword into a scabbard. There's a built-in blow-out area, as well. So if the rudder comes into contact with a hard object, like, oh, a bit of sandbar, the blow-out area will break away gently, allowing the rudder to kick up without (we hope!) damage. A handy feature for navigating those narrow, tricksie passages through the Everglades.
Leslie Fisher at Masthead Enterprises has been creating sponsorship deals for the Frankenscot program. She knows seemingly everyone in the marine biz, and she knows how to find stuff. Every modern Prometheus (and its creators) should be so lucky as to have a Leslie in their corner.
The Frankie requires quite a web of lines, and it's Leslie who's spinning like mad to make it happen. R&W Rope has a variety of specialized cordage, including lines for sheets and halyards, and running rigging.
Leslie is also working with Harken distributed through Sailing Services over in Miami on the wish list of cool mechanicals: blocks and cleats and cleats and blocks.
If a Frankenscot tee-shirt comes to life, it will doubtless be thanks to Leslie.
Even a monster needs a nice suit of clothes: Rod Koch used Tom Barry's SailTechnologies software and plotter and Masthead Enterprise's floorspace to create headsails for Frankie. The list includes: a storm sail (a small jib) for the really nasty stuff -- it's just a wee hanky of a sail at about 10 feet tall by 5 feet at the clew. A standard headsail, roller-furled, resembles a regular jib. And that maxi-dress of jibs, a code Zero -- a very large lightweight genniker for reaching.
(Bah humbug! The beastie can SO wear a maxi-dress! He's a Scot, for heaven's sake.)
The mainsail is already done, a winning Bill-Drayheim Flying Scot sail from Gus, modified to include two reef points. The spinnakers include a seasoned Lightning symmetrical spinnaker from Bill Fastiggi at Vermont Sailing Partners and a spanking-new big-boy asymmetrical ("Big Red') kite from Josh Willus at Doyle.
Captain TwoBeers is hopeful that the pieces will come together in time for a galvanic shocking in a matter of weeks. Then will come another round of sea-trials --with luck it will be a trial of sails, oars, AND blades.
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