Finally the Golden Gate

Boat handling, ideas, questions...

Finally the Golden Gate

Postby Camino » Sat Apr 28, 2018 11:28 pm

This Friday i head out from Emeryville ca single handed with goal to make the gg bridge, in this 1 1/2 yr old nw to me Freedom - spent most of my time so far working on her and precious little sailing yet . Depart at 10:45am. My buddy in his J35 (1976) left double handed 30 minutes before me - hes the same guy i double handed with crossing the pacific in 2009 on that same j35. By the time i clear the Emeryville channel markers and out he is no where to be seen but i think i see him 3 miles away. Wind is W at 15-17apparent. Im 5 tacks to horseshoe cove at N End of gg bridge and takes me 3 more tacks to beat out from there ( there was one upturned small fishing boat there too, but there were three boats presnt to assist so I beat away). Im under the bridge and about 1/2 mile west and i see Red Dress (J35 ) coming back in- he passes me heading in and i tack around to head back too -he’s 100 yrds ahead of me. Wind is 17 apparent at about 120 to me going back in. In no time he is 1/2 mike ahead of me and i cannot catch him. He heads to sf city front, still 1/2 mile ahead of me and i still cant catch him. Im going 6.5-7 kts in 17 to 20 apparent (thought I’d be quicker, i roll up the jib and main alone with lots of weather helm and im hand steering (i hate hand steering). Thinking i need to jibe to go to tip of treasure island, i fool with the auto pilot and accidentally jibe and round way around :D and then back on course. Last i see of him, he has made a hard left turn and is scudding north to north side of alcatraz movingl better than 7 kts. His usual is to move to pt blunt and then cross over to Emeryville. I really did think id do better speed than i did! Whats up? Boat handled nice in this wind and the couple times (3) i did round up were my fault completely. I maybe I could have / would have gotten better speed if I had hand steered?
Last edited by Camino on Fri Nov 16, 2018 8:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Finally the Golden Gate

Postby mike cunningham » Sun Apr 29, 2018 12:15 pm

I heard about the overturned fishing boat on the VHF about half way home to Discovery Bay.

Sounds like you had a great sail. Singlehanded too...uh oh, next stop Hanalei Bay!!. Just steer out the gate, set a course for Southeast Farallon and keep on going.
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Re: Finally the Golden Gate

Postby gamayun » Sun Apr 29, 2018 10:01 pm

mike cunningham wrote:Sounds like you had a great sail. Singlehanded too...uh oh, next stop Hanalei Bay!!. Just steer out the gate, set a course for Southeast Farallon and keep on going.


Heck yeah!! Three Freedoms doing the singlehanded race to Hanalei -- how cool would that be?! Congrats, Camino on doing the GG trip :!: :!: There are few things in life more exhilarating than you and your boat together in perfect sync. I remember my first round up singlehanding in 30 knots of wind with full sail up, just to see what that would feel like ;) As to steering, I'm pretty sure your AP steers better than you (no offense, huh?). My guess is that you were over-powered. I reef much earlier when solo than when I have crew. And IMO it's just not possible to sail at your optimal VMG for very long when you're solo.
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Re: Finally the Golden Gate

Postby Camino » Tue May 01, 2018 2:30 pm

Im getting used to the f35 pedrick- that huge main ! So question- can you be dragged around with just your small jib and main put away? Couple weeks ago i went to Angel Island for the weekend and tried jib only but wind was too light at 17 aws with me beating - my speed fell way down so used main of course. So wondering using jib only in winds like 25-30. Have you tried that? Looking for ways to save energy for mr AP
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Re: Finally the Golden Gate

Postby gamayun » Tue May 01, 2018 2:51 pm

How is your 33 different from the F30 and 36? The day I mention above when it was blowing 30-32, I tried it first with just my jib. There was too much windage and I could not steer the boat. That's when I decided, what the heck, let's see what full main does. So my take away, is to keep jib and reef main, especially on close reach course. IMO, the jib should get dropped when DDW. It's just useless and annoying then. At least that's how it works on my F38.
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Re: Finally the Golden Gate

Postby Goose13 » Tue May 01, 2018 7:10 pm

On my F21 in winds greater than 25 and very gusty I would cruise along on just my jib and I was hitting 7+ on the speed. I would assume your boat would do the same. The boat handle fine and the jib on the 21 is tinny.
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Re: Finally the Golden Gate

Postby mike cunningham » Wed May 02, 2018 11:38 pm

I've sailed with jib only a number of times. Easily make hull speed in 20kts aws on a reach. I can get up to maybe 70 degrees off the wind and still make headway albiet slowly, maybe 3 kts. I used this to get some sleep offshore in 25kts when, due to sea state, I was a bit worried about falling off so just started forereaching on the jib alone. This worked well.
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Re: Finally the Golden Gate

Postby gamayun » Thu May 03, 2018 2:17 pm

This is good to know, Mike. I should confess that I was still a very green sailor when i trued to sail on jib alone so might have been doing something wrong. It's always good to revisit old (and maybe incorrect) assumptions!
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Re: Finally the Golden Gate

Postby mike cunningham » Fri May 04, 2018 11:33 am

Yea, I would try more combos with the jib. I do feel it can work well as a fallback when the windy reach gets to be too much. At least it does on my boat. Your 36 is bigger so the dynamics may well be different. If you get out on the slot at 20Kts you should be able to do some productive experiments to see what is what. It does take quite a bit of wind to make things work. Interestingly I found the short chop in the Bay to be a negative when it came to jib only performance. The longer swell at sea seems to give the boat a little bit more time to pick up steam between bashes.

Having said all this, you did the Longpac in the 30s so, by definition, you know your boat well. The vast majority of folks (including me) blanch at those conditions.

With regard to old assumptions, when I look back on myself when I first started sailing the Freedom 30 I just have to laugh at some of my thinking. Heck, I didn't even know how to rig the reefing lines properly until I owned the boat for a year or two.
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