No. 36 - April 1979

 

ODDS AND ENDS ON TRAILERING

Don Anderson, no. 363. 62 Little Rock, Pointe Claire, Que.

 

Last summer I acquired a spanking new blue trailer from David Law* for my Tanzer 22. The result is an added dimension of satisfaction with the dear old girl, "Tantramar", who trundles around on it when she is not in her natural element.

 

For one thing, the sailable waterways within a day's trailering seem a lot more accessible now that I have eliminated the hassle of trying to borrow or rent someone else's trailer. The Maine coast, and Georgian Bay are only a short sprint away.

 

Moreover, it's dandy having her handy - where I can keep an eye on her! She spent previous winters down among the riff-raff in the boat yard. I was always a little uneasy wondering about acquisitive or mischie­vous hands -----. Now she sits in the front yard behind a snow bank and a big fir tree, just outside the dining room window. Her sails and gear are still aboard. Not only do I save a few dollars on boatyard storage, but, at the same time, I alleviate the storage problem in my basement.

On New Year's Eve, we planned to climb into her cockpit and drink a New Year's toast to the New Year, and to her very good health. But she was sleeping so peacefully under the tarpaulin and a mantle of snow that I had not the heart to disturb her. (Moreover, the knots in the ropes holding the tarpaulin were iced up and frozen so stiff they were too hard to undo. Further, the tarpaulin is very brittle when so cold, and would probably have cracked with such an invasion.)So I drank her health looking out the dining room window. Sometimes, storing everything in the boat has disadvantages - as when Old Chortle Horse Guzzle IV, our Pontiac Safari-very-willing-towing-vehicle refused to start one morning. I went for the stove alcohol in the lazarette. That should fix Old Chortle's cantanker ---. But I ran into the frozen ropes problem again. Never mind - it turned out to be a broken fuel pump anyway.

 

My wife accuses me of patting her lovingly (No, No! The boat, you idiot!) fore and aft before I go to work each morning. That is just not true! Maybe a few gentle words of encouragement --- and a brief --- er --- inspection --- once in a while ---- to see if she's still --- er --- steady ----.

 

I propped the trailer frame up on four fireplace logs to take the weight off the springs and tires. "There you are going to stay until the grass grows next Spring," said I to her. I had heard that the authorities in our town take a dim view of trailers parked in front of houses for indefinite periods. I did my best to hide her behind the big fir tree -- but then, you know -- 22 feet --! So I asked a few neighbours if they thought it was objectionable in any way. Without exception (i.e., all 2 of them), they avowed it was a down­right pretty sight, and why did I have to go and pull a big black tarpaulin over her? Hmmm - a pretty sight -- they have a point --­nice blue trailer --- white hull, blue stripe --- graceful lines --­hmmm. The children are intrigued with her there, too: "Daddy, who is Surreptitious Pats? And are you going to give our boat away? Cause I heard mummy say you were giving her two surreptitious pats."

 

On exploring through old T22 Newsletters I found that John Charters (in no. 5 and no. 19) and Woody Woodward (no. 31) have been guilty probably of surreptitious pats, and CERTAINLY of much useful comment on trailers. The eager novice should acquire copies (Ed. note: Nos. 5 and 19 - in Newsletter Compendium, Vol.I; No. 31 will be in Vol. II.) My comments are mere supplementary (and surreptitious) pats, based on my own experience and a useful chat with David Law.

 

First off, I'd like to take a clout at the trailering industry for unnecessary proliferation of standards: Balls, hitch balls, that is. They come in three diameters (that I know of): 1-7/8", 2.0" and 2-5/16". The T22 trailer will use a 2" diameter ball. There are four varieties consisting of different shanks, lifts and two constructions - single welded and double piece. I got hung up with the wrong shank, the wrong lift and the wrong construction. Be wise: Get your ball from the same source as the trailer and it will probably fit. I find it hard to justify all these varieties, and two diameters as close together as 1-7/8" and 2". Really! You trailer-fellows!

 

If you go on a trailer acquisition bender, right away, you will have to decide whether to buy a two-wheel or a four-wheel (tandem) trailer. Two wheelers are purported to be alright up to 2500 lbs. The T22 is 3500 lbs. or more puts it in the tandem class. Otherwise the pitching, or hobby-horsing - even with the lower slung centre-boarder - may be too great. The second feature is the better control in the case of a blowout. With a tandem rig, a blowout is barely noticeable, not counting the noise. The extra axle and two wheels of the tandem add only 12% to the cost. Speaking of flat tires, I don't carry a spare for the trailer. If one is lucky, the car's spare will fit the trailer; and for your peace of mind you should check this. The fitting of the bolt holes is all that matters, usually, since a small difference in diameter will be compensated by the trailer's suspension. It is not advisable to depend on running on a flat tire, even with a tandem rig. If worse comes to worst, you can always remove the flat, drop the trailer where it is, go and get the flat repaired, and then reverse the procedure. (Ed. note: Oh wow! On those backwoods Maine roads?)

 

David Law makes a special trailer for the centre boarder, and I mention it because it impresses me as being quite elegant. It is equipped with a "launching kit". This consists of a winch up front, a trough-like arrangement for guiding the keel, and an extendable tongue which slides out 8 feet from under the body to allow backing the trailer further into the water without doing a John Charters (see Newsletter no. 19; there, that will make you curious!) The 8 feet does not help much for the fin keel operation and this kit is not as valuable for this model. However, devices as described in the above references for keel guiding when retrieving are very worth while, as it is difficult to place it exactly under 3.5 feet of murky water.

 

Speaking of placing the keel accurately on the trailer brings up the important topic of balance. My experience trailing Tantramar last summer nicely illustrates the problem you can run into. On the first trip to Lake George - she trailed along behind at all speeds like an obedient little puppy on a string. On coming back from Toronto - on the second trip - I was appalled by the tendency of the trailer to want to sway back and forth, usually on being disturbed by the wind from a passing truck. This effect was worst at about 55 miles per hour, to the consternation of my daughter who was following in a car behind. Things were under good control driving at less than about 48 miles per hour.

 

The explanation of what had changed lies in the fact that, thinking to make the boat fit the pads better, I had had it loaded as far back on the trailer as possible, but still keeping the keel in its "box". I had put too much boat weight behind the centre of lateral resistance (to borrow a term) of the wheels, and the system acted like a pendulum strung out behind the car with the boat weight and trailer springs dictating a natural period which just suited the "wander" of the trailer at 55 miles per hour. The solution was to get the weight for­ward. The rule of thumb is that 10% of the weight should be on the tongue - 350 lbs. or more for the Tanzer 22 boat and trailer, and this is critical. About 3 inches in placement made all the difference, but, of course, disposition of heavy items inside the boat would matter, too. This sway is one problem the "equalizing bars" are supposed to eliminate. However, my opinion is that, if one is careful with one's positioning, they are not needed - and besides, they cost an additional $250.

 

There is no question about the sex of a boat. The delicate lines, the response, even the song in her rigging betray that she is of the fairer sex. But what about the willing towing vehicle? My Old Chortle has masculine written all over him - noisy, swills too much, trampy, rattles and bangs. Once on towing the fair lady last summer he started to overheat. Moreover, what with overheating and excess of chortles, the exhaust pipe came unslung and started dangling up and down on the road. True, he's old enough to know better - or maybe that was the reason. Anyway, we took him in to the body shop where they cured his dangle and changed his thermostat from 195 F to a 1650F one to keep the temperature down.

 

Speaking of overheating. There is another place these ill-mannered beasties can get too hot. That is in the transmission box. Normally an automatic transmission is cooled by a circulation through the main radiator. If your towing vehicle is too small, you may be sending a little boy on a man's errand, and he's liable to get burnt in the transmission clutches. The first time he tows the fair lady a signifi­cant distance, have a good mechanic look at his transmission when you stop for gas. If it is overheating, it will feel too hot and will be dripping from overflow. The mechanic will know. You may have to take it easier. In severe cases it is possible to provide extra cooling by installing a small extra radiator in front of the main one especially for the transmission. Don't let all this talk frighten you. The average car will trail the T22 quite adequately on the average road.

 

Boat trailers will have either surge-hydraulic or electric brakes.

 

The surge type requires a hitch at the end of the tongue which is com­pressible 1 or 2 inches when the hitch has a reverse force on it. The reverse thrust works a piston in a cylinder which applies hydraulic braking to the trailer wheels. Advantages and disadvantages are:

1)  The brake system is complete on the trailer and needs no special coupling to the towing vehicle. Thus, the trailer with a surge hydraulic system is more compatible with any car with an ordinary hitch.

2) The system is quite simple.

3) On the other hand, the breathing hole in the main cylinder reservoir tends to let in water which mixes with the oil and the ensuing rust may cause the seizure of the piston. Wear develops readily in this cylinder.

4) If you try to back the trailer uphill, the trailer brakes will be applied, unless a special hand locking device is used to prevent this.

 

An electric brake is an ingenious arrangement consisting of an electro­magnet attached to a lever capable of pressing one of the two brake shoes against the rotating drum. On being powered by an electrical current the electromagnet clamps itself to the radial-steel-disc- part of the brake drum, thereby levering one or the other of two brake shoes (depending on the direction of rotation) against the circumferential part of the drum. The current is derived from the towing vehicle's battery through a special black box. Principally in the black box is a hydraulic cylinder connected to the car's hydraulic system. When the foot brake is pushed, this piston in the black box pushes successive contacts against a coil of resistance wire, thus shorting out more and more of a resistance which is in series with the electromagnets back in the trailer's brake drums. A spring adjustment in the black box matches hydraulic piston movement to the contact-making so as to provide adequate braking in the fully loaded trailer. Advantages and disadvantages are:

 

1)  The black box is mounted right beside the steering wheel. A lever allows the driver to manually control the braking.

 

2)  The degree of braking is in no way dependent on the load on the trailer, and will drag the wheels of the unloaded trailer whenever the car's brakes are applied. This can be obviated by jamming the manual lever so that it cannot move when there is no load on the trailer. Braking on the unloaded trailer is not needed anyway.

 

3)  The electric brake requires the "black box" installation in the towing vehicle, thus hampering the interchangeability of towing vehicles. This installation must be done by a qualified mechanic. For Old Chortle Horse it cost a total of $89 for device and labour.

 

4)  My brakes are a bit grabby and probably need more series resistance - available as an extra.

 

5)  I cannot comment (yet) on the result of water immersion on the electromagnets. Even though they are well potted in resin, the electrical plug should be pulled before immersion to minimize any electrolytic corrosion.

 

* (MASTER TRAILER BUILDER) CMF Metal Fabricators Ltd.

2975 Cote St. Charles Rd. Hudson, Quebec, Canada. JOP IHC Tel. 514-458-7737

 

 

TRAILER TIP (WOODY WOODWARD): If you have Bearing Buddies on your wheels, check frequently to make sure they are full of grease. If you don't have them, be sure your wheels are completely cool after travelling before immersing them, and repack frequently. Better yet, get Bearing Buddies.

 

TOP-LOADING ICEBOX

Allan Gray, no. 1111. 514-458-4209

 

Last winter while preparing my Tanzer 22, Sunkissed, for a two and a half month trip down South, I decided that the only thing that the boat really needed was a top loading ice box. I had rented space in a shop to do a general overhaul of the gear in preparation for my trip, so at the same time I decided that I would redesign the galley area and install a top-loading ice box. Now, a lot of people might wonder why one would want to go to all the trouble and expense of installing one, but it only takes a couple of short cruises to find out how inefficient the standard one really is. First of all, every time the door is opened, all the cold air is lost, thus shortening

the lifespan of the ice considerably, not to mention the fact the door can only be opened when the boat is sitting flat or heeled on port tack. I don't know how many times after a hard-sailed race I would go below to get my crew a well deserved beer, only to open the door and have the beer fallout all over the cabin sole. And no one likes a beer that is all foam - least of all, my crew. So, I decided that before mutiny struck in some foreign port over bad beer, I would do something about it.

 

The first step was to sit down and decide what was good about the galley area, and what could be done to improve it. Working with a friend who designs and builds boats, we laid out what we thought was a very workable galley, and at the same time, very attractive. The first step was to remove the old box and measure how much space we had to work with, than to decide where we would put the new unit. We also decided to eliminate two of the three stowage compartments behind the sink because they take up a lot of valuable counter space and only seem to gather junk. At least, on my boat they do. When we had measured how deep we could make the ice box before hitting the curve in the hull, we discovered that we had room under the box for a drawer that would be as wide as the old unit and would be six inches    I high. This drawer would be sectioned off inside and would be perfect for cutlery and dishes.

 

Once all the plans were made, it was time to start the construction. The first step was building the ice box itself, which was done from a mold of an ice box from another sailboat. The mold was first sprayed with white gelcoat to give the inside of the box a smooth finish for sanitary reasons, and then the fibreglass was laid on. Once this was dry, two inches of Styrofoam were put around the whole unit and another layer of fibreglass was put around to seal the whole unit. During construction a drain was installed in the bottom which would lead to the same bottle that came with the boat. When the unit was being made, a one inch flange was left around the top so that when it was installed in the counter it would not fall right through.

 

Next, we removed the sink, the water pump and all the teak on the counter. If your boat is very old, be careful when removing the sink not to break the bolts holding it in place. Next, we cut the hole in the counter top to lower the unit into, being careful to make sure the flange would sit on the counter top. We then made a template of the whole counter top and put on it the cut outs for the sink and the water pump, along with the lid for the ice box - which would be con­siderably smaller than the actual top of the ice box. The new counter top was made from half inch plywood-with arborite glued to it for a nice finish. After all the cut outs were made the new top was glued in place with silicon around the edges to stop water from getting in underneath. The new counter top formed the last side for the ice box by sealing the top off and allowing entrance through the smaller lid which had already been cut out. The sink and water pump were rein­stalled, and a teak fiddle was put around the counter, hiding the edge of the new counter top and also preventing things from sliding off. The last thing to be done to finish the top was to cut the old teak stowage compartments so that there would be only one, and then this was reinstalled in the corner behind the sink.

 

The last step was to cover the hole left by the old ice box and to build the drawer and install it. The drawer was made from pine and had one divider in it that would help to keep things in some sort of order. I bought a piece of vinyl teak plywood big enough to cover the whole opening left by the old ice box, with an extra inch all around. The edges were cut at a 450 angle for appearance, and a section was cut off the bottom and placed on the front of the drawer; and installed a sliding bolt to keep it shut. I made a wooden frame under the drawer for it to slide on, but have had some trouble with this system, so it's back to the drawing board for that part of the project.

 

When I finally left for Florida last winter, I found one of the things I was looking forward to most was a chance to try out the new ice box; and to say the least, I was not disappointed. Not only could it hold more, but ice lasted much longer and things stayed a lot colder. One added benefit was that by leaving out the compartments behind the sink, I found I could put my stove right at the back of the counter and still get into the ice box, thus making cooking a lot easier.

 

You will notice that I have not supplied a lot of measurements, nor have I described step-by-step procedure on how to build the unit. There are a couple of reasons for this. One is that I am not an expert on fibreglass work, so I don't feel qualified to try and tell someone how to make the actual unit. And, second, I just want to give people some ideas of what can be done at a very reasonable cost; rather than try and say that this is the only way to build one. However, if you can do a bit of carpentry work and find someone who can do glass work, you can come up with a very rewarding result. If you have any questions, I would be glad to try and help anyone. And if you want to see mine, just watch for no. 1111 and come on board for a guided tour and a nice ice cold beer!

 

 

FRONT LOADING ICEBOX

N. David Morgan

 

My mate and I consider that the T22 galley layout, with the front loading icebox, is one of the best features of the boat. Its convenience is beyond argument. Imagine yourself seated at the dinette table, facing aft. You want a drink. Without leaving your seat, you reach over with your left hand, open the door, lift out your drink, transfer it to the galley top, table, deck or wherever, and close the door. With a top opening icebox, you first must leave your seat and assume the attitude of prayer which marks a T22 owner below decks. Then you remove the items from the top of the lid of the box, put them somewhere, remove the lid, put it somewhere, reach down into the box for your drink, put it somewhere, and then repeat everything in reverse. You are then free to resume your seat, remember where you put your drink, and retrieve it. You'll need it even more by then. Of course, if you have a pop-top you can do all this standing, but you'll still have to do it. . . I do not think you have any right to persuade Tanzer to alter the icebox design without consulting the membership, and I hope you don't intend to.

 

.. On no. 802 Don Cobb used a cooler under the cockpit and removed the icebox entirely. He put in beautiful teak-faced drawers where the ice­box had been. What are your ideas? Andrea will be waiting for them.

 

 

SALLY RANTI

 

How do you say goodbye? That we will miss you? That things won't be the same? And even more important, how do you say thank you? Thank you for your years of help and encouragement; advice and counsel, and when needed (often) a gentle prod when things were not getting done?

 

My first clear recollection of Sally was one blustery afternoon, during a local regatta, when Sally did the most magnificent broach under spinnaker, missing our boat by a whisker. That was the summer, if my memory is correct, that husband Jim was finishing off his masters degree, so Sally was racing their Tanzer 22 with her two small kids as crew. Picture, if you will, Sally standing at the helm, sheet and guy in her hands, clutching the main sheet with her teeth, and steering with her knees. Not only that, she went on to beat us at the finish.

         

Several years ago, when sailing into Bucks Harbour (Maine), I was hailed by an elderly gentleman on an Alden yawl, with the comment that wasn't my boat a Tanzer 22, and did I get the Class Newsletter. Without waiting for a reply, I was informed that his daughter in Montreal ran the Class Association. At that time I was the Class President, and was tempted to correct this statement but on reflection realized that Sally was, in fact, the Class Association - I was just the front man.

 

I could go on and on, but I have only been allotted X amount of space in this Newsletter. In any case, it would probably embarrass Sally. So let me just say so long, it has been great fun. Muito obrigado. (I'm showing off, we're just back from Portugal.) From all of us who have worked with Sally over the years, thank you and good bye. Please keep in touch.

          John Charters 

 

 

 

SINGLE HANDED SAILING

Mac McLeavey, no. 992, Sarnia, Ontario.

 

90% of my sailing is done single-handed, and I've been out in storms that have kept most other boats at their berths. I've even won club races single-handed against full crews, so I can't agree with Mike Leiter's comment that the T22 is "Not the best boat for single-handed sailing".

 

The only problem is winching in the Jenny when the boat is "on her ear" and you can't let go the tiller. So, when I'm single-handed in any sort of wind, I take a turn of the sheet round the leeward Genoa winch and then across the cockpit and round the windward winch. I then have two choices: To winch in by holding the tail-end with one hand and pulling the centre of the sheet where it crosses the cockpit with the other hand; and then taking up the slack on the windward winch, and finally cleating on the aft mooring cleat; or, alternatively using the winch handle in the windward winch. Either way, I remain seated back by the tiller and can restrain it with my knee.

 

Of course, I keep my boat balanced and in many winds can hold course with the tiller "floating". But I don't use the standard Tanzer sails. I have the 1/4 Ton Genoa of 174 sq.', and a Folkboat Genoa of 125 sq.', which is triangular in shape and uses the same block positions as the larger Genoa. These sails balance the boat in all winds and give one finger steering. Last year I came home in winds gusting to 40 MPH with a deep reef in the main, and the Folkboat Genoa. The working jib that comes with the boat is poorly balanced and has a tendency to cause the boat to fall off with lee helm, especially when going about. It pushes the centre of pressure too far forward.

 

As a single-hander I have experimented widely with self-steering and have achieved considerable success with my balanced combination of sails. Many times I have overhauled and raced past boats up to 30' while my boat steered herself with me sitting astride the bows with a beer in my hand. The arrangement of elastic and lines to the main­sheet as described in Letcher's book works fine with any wind in the forward quarter.

 

I am still experimenting with vanes and have designed a support which clamps onto the stern and will hold either my vertical or horizontal axis vanes. These are designed round a bicycle hub bearing for minimum friction. The vanes work but are temperamental and need more experi­menting.

 

I guess I don't have to tell you that I think the T22 is the finest of its size, and larger.

 

PS: Has anyone ever tried a skeg ahead of the rudder?

 

(Ed. note: If you have, the boat would not conform to Class Rules; but we'd like to hear about all experiments and the results.)

 

Here are Mac McLeaty's single-handed sailing set-ups ,so that you can try them for yourself.

 


 

 

Comments