No. 88 - June 1990

 BIG KID by AL LANE #1508

1989 - In mid March we started to prepare our new/old boat for hopefully an early spring launch. We read and reread the Tanzer 22 Newsletters beforehand and opted for many of the suggestions found therein. Here are some of the things we did and the results.


#1509 is a keel centerboard and it was full of rusty blisters.

We scraped them off then applied a rust-eating coating that they use on cars and wrought iron railings. Then we applied four coats of Z-Tar. When we hauled the boat in November there were a few rusty blister areas but for the most part the treatment worked just fine.


Mark, eight year old grandson (The Little Kid) Brassoed the ports inside and out. Took two treatments and they cleared up nicely.


Acetone and brass wool on the rub rail. Much work and it took three tries on some spots to get it looking good. Finished off with Armorall. Stayed nice all summer.


From the looks of the grungy Fiberglas I was sure I was going to have to compound the entire boat. Such was not the case. Used auto cleaner polish, Royal Satin followed by Boat Life wax with sun block. Worked beautifully. I found that this normally labor intensive job was not nearly so difficult if you ignore the manufacturer's instruct­ions. The secret of an easy job is this. Use two rags, one to apply the wax, the other to wipe off. Cover a small area then wipe im­mediately as it dries until you have a nice finish. Letting the material dry is a mistake and only makes for a lot of hard rubbing.


Bottom painting. Used Alumiguard on the keel and Interlux Bottom Kote on the rest of the hull. Both held up well but next year I want to use Micron so I can get multi year use and avoid the paint build up. I also have to figure out what to do about the waterline where I didn't bottom coat and got a few barnacles.




I arrived at the marina at 8:30 for what turned out to be a long enervating day. I was pretty sure from the outset that the marina really wasn't expert in rigging sailboats and they weren't! They tried to release the centerboard while the boat was up in the sling by pounding with a crowbar and sledge hammer. It didn't budge! They offered to really go to work on it, but at $48.00 per hour and the fact that they obviously didn't know what they were doing, I finally said to launch it with the board up. John Charters had assured me the boat would sail well for cruising which is all I intend to do for the foreseeable future. (As it turned out, he was right. I really don't know how good or how badly the boats points so I am happy in my present ignorance.) They got the mast up bending a turnbuckle in the process. The rest of the rigging I could have done faster and a whole lot better myself, but it was good enough to get me out of there but not good enough for me to be able to sail home. I opted for motoring the entire way, about an hour ride. Boy, was I grateful to see my dock!



On the evening of April 26 my wife Pat and I went for our sail. She only agreed to go if I sailed with the main only. was a light breeze and the boat handled beautifully. We had a nice sail. Did the same thing on the evening of May 13 using full sails. We had trouble setting up the jib halyard properly, other than that everything was great. Sorry to report that this was the last time that Pat has been on the boat. It's really a shame because she is a naturally fine sailor.




The fore hatch cover began to disintegrate. We did some patching to keep it together until we could get it replaced. I never thought at the time that this little project would take half of the summer, but it did. My mistake was in not buying a whole new hatch rather than just the cover. I am sure I could have done it quicker and cheaper. As it is I still haven't replaced the hinges as I haven't yet figured out how to drill the holes.


Did the teak with Amazon's Golden Teak Oil applied with an old toothbrush. It looks fine. Perhaps the two part cleaning systems would have been better but I am satisfied and it is quite easy to do.


Had an alternator added to the Johnson Seahorse, but never got around to hooking it up to the battery. Problem is I haven't decided between relocating the battery under the cockpit or running a cable to the battery in its present location. Ideas welcome.


Spent most of the summer sailing on weekends with my daughter, son-in-law and grandsons. Janet and Paul took the Annapolis three day basic course in August. They came back feeling more confident of my sailing ability. The three boys are all learning to sail quite well. Steven who is 15 gets the boat ready to sail, hanking on the jib, running the sheets and all of the other pre sail chores. Bobby, who is 13, is the best helmsman. Seems to have a natural feel for the tiller. The Little Kid, Mark does a little bit of everything well. Next summer I am sure he will be a more active participant.


Grand kids are back in school so I am left with the choice to either sit and look at the boat tied up to the dock or chuck it up and try singlehanding. Too bad I waited so long. It was much easier than I thought it would be. First rule was to try to sail only in light to moderate breezes. Using adjustable shock cord to hold the tiller on course while I raised and lowered sails was the best help of all. It also permitted me to go below to use the radio or get something from the cabin. I also used the storm jib much of the time though the weather conditions didn't require it, but it was much easier to tack and take down the sail. A real confidence builder. Next summer I will probably use the working jib much more. Had some great solo sails, particularly in October when we had some perfectly gorgeous warm days. Still miss not having Pat aboard.




Thursday November 9 1989,8:30 AM. 59 degrees and raining heavily with winds from the South East at about 20 knots.


The previous day we pretty much stripped the boat. Removed the sails and the boom and most things from the cabin.


Motored over to the marina. Motor quit on the approach to the haulout slip. Threw a line around a piling, held on for dear life and was fortunate to stop the forward progress before the bow hit the bulkhead. The actual haulout went quite well. The only thing unexpected was when they were unstepping the mast, the tabernacle plates separated from the mast because all the pop rivets had rotted away. It was a good thing I did not try to lower the mast myself as it probably would have kicked out at the bottom and heaven only knows what would have happened.




One of the must have items I had on my list when I bought the boat was a roller furling jib. As of now I have decided that I don't want one. What I will most likely do is run at least the jib halyard to the cockpit plus a downhaul.


I would like to add a wind vane and possibly a depth finder. A speedometer would be nice but I refuse to put a hole through the hull.




We have had considerable and generally good, experience launching and retrieving fin keel Tanzer 22s, our customers' and our own on various ramps.


We use a 3/4 ton Chevrolet Suburban with 4WD and a single axle trailer with rollers for the keel and on the four quad bilge supports. You need a safety chain to hold the boat on the trailer in case the winch or winch rope lets go, which would leave your Tanzer 22 on the Highway!


Retrieval is easier than launching because you have the power of the winch to climb the boat up onto the trailer, which also avoids such deep immersion of the trailer. In the past I have ventured some pretty spectacular immersions of my Suburban, without apparent problems, but now I am older and wiser. We built a separate wheeled extension, 24 feet long, of 3" X 4" square steel tubing. One end has a two inch ball for the Tanzer's trailer. A couple of feet from the ball is a 2" X 2" steel axle, three feet long with 5.70 X 8 inflated rubber tires. No spring is needed.


I find this extension quicker and easier to hook up that a built-­in telescoping tongue extension; and not nearly as difficult to steer backwards as I had expected. I do have to drop my tailgate and pay close attention to the earliest deviations of the joint between the extension and the trailer. You need a couple of hundred pounds of tongue weight on the Tanzer trailer to keep the extension's wheels firmly grounded.

In our case, we park the extension at the launch site because it is used for many different boats. If you wished to carry it with you, it would have to be made practical to carry aboard the trailer. For Fall retrievals I wear chest-high waders and try very hard not to lose my footing. I'm still here!




Having purchased a depth sounder and knotmeter for my Tanzer 22, the decision of where they should be mounted was next. The position and method had to meet the following criteria.

(a) Good visibility of instruments by both crew and helm. (b) Easily removable when not in use.

(c) The cutting of mounting holes in boat structure was to be avoided.

(d) To avoid having the rear face of the instruments and connections visible inside the cabin.


After surveying many boats the solution appeared to be a separate instrument case mounted on top of the sliding hatch. The finished case would carry the knotmeter, depth sounder, log and countdown timer. Also the knotmeter and depth sounder would be operated through independent switches and protected with fuses.


Having decided on the design, it was apparent that the most suitable material to construct the case was Fiberglas. This choice would also require the manufacture of a mold.




The mold was constructed in two parts consisting of a back shell and a fascia panel. The materials used for the mold were plastic laminate, wood and plastic filler.



After ensuring that the molds were free of dust, a coating of release agent was applied to the mo1ding surfaces. The two sections of the case were molded using the standard Fiberglas wet lay-up methods of gelcoat and glass mat - resin construction. Once set the two sections were removed from the molds and the excess glass mat on edges of mo1dings trimmed.




The knotmeter and depth sounder are operated by independent switches and protected with cartridge fuses.


The wiring from the transducers to the meters is routed via the battery through the storage compartments and up the wooden framing to the sliding hatch. To overcome the problem of a long loop of cable hanging inside the cabin and expandab1e five wire shielded cable was fitted through a 3/16" diameter hole drilled in the sliding hatch and then sealing the hole with silicone. After which a five pin plug and socket was connected to the expandable cable and instrument case cable.




The instrument case is ready for use by connecting the five pin plug and socket, sliding the case over the two attachment bolts and then fitting the two knurled nuts to secure the instrument case in position. The whole procedure of assembly or disassembly can be completed in less than two minutes.


The system has been in continuous use for the last two seasons and proven to be very convenient.





Every once in a while, a truly new marine product is marketed.

Such an item is the "Hart Hook". Manufactured by Hart Systems Inc., the same people that make the Tank Tender.


This neat little gadget fits on the end of your boat hook with a Jubilee clamp (comes with the kit) and is attached to the boat's mooring cleat with a length of line. When approaching a mooring buoy, all one need do is to hook the Hart Hook over the mooring ring, a quick flick of the boat hook and the Hart Hook is firmly attached to the buoy. And release is just as simple.


The price in the United States is $40.00 and in Canada $62.00, plus shipping in both cases (1990). The diagram on the next page shows how the Hart Hook is used.






The Tanzer 22, with its big overlapping genoa, needs a traveler if the boat is to be properly balanced and sailed to its full potential.


There are several solutions. The one I have found to be the best is to install a cockpit sole traveler. True, it does not give the flexibility of adjustment of the full traveler as supplied by Tanzer Industries, but as compromises go, it's not all that bad.


I know some of you have installed such a traveler, right forward almost to the companionway. If the mainsheet is attached to the boom directly above the traveler you will have just about as much adjustment as a full traveler. And for many this is the answer. Shown below is another version - a full traveler mounted as close to the bulkhead as possible. This photo is of Ben Brewster's "Arcturus", #693. And would give even more travel adjustment than the factory one.



However, I still prefer my location for the following reasons. A forward mounted traveler, whether on the cockpit sole or like the one above, does get in the way of the companionway and because the main­sheet is attached more or less to the middle of the boom, more force is needed to adjust to windward, especially if the wind is strong. But the most important reason why I like my arrangement is that I like to have the mainsheet and the mainsheet cleat where I can reach it. Right by my hand.


The photos on the next page show how I have rigged traveler, just forward of the cockpit locker hatches and with control lines angled aft within easy reach. Although I do not much travel as with a full, seat mounted traveler, there is still enough travel to stop the main from backwinding; and in the puffs I can play the traveler to keep the boat from heeling to much. And best of all, it does not chop up the cockpit, nor does it get in when moving forward. And it was easy to install!





I read with interest the comments about topping lift rigs in the December 1989 issue. Let me throw in yet another idea.


I attached a becket block to the swaged eye at the end topping lift and a block and small flag halyard cleat to the tang at the boom end. I bent 3/16 double braid to the becket, led it down through the boom tang block, up through the becket block again to tie off at the cleat on the tang.


This arrangement is neat and easily adjustable moored or underway and still leaves the boom free and independent for roller furling.


I guess I made this modification about six years ago. The attachment of the cleat is a little fussy as there isn't much room and you have to be sure that the tang can still swivel free of the boom end or any attachments. I am sorry I don't have a good close up picture, but the drawing may help.




A Tanzer 22 needs a cockpit table and a navigation station, but on a little boat there is hardly room. What is needed is a cockpit table that will double as a chart board and that will fit into a small space when not needed. The sketch shows what I made.


The chart board is just a 23 1/2" X 19 1/2" piece of Lauan plywood that has been sanded and varnished. When used as a chartboard in the cockpit, I put the folded chart in a big plastic bag to keep it dry and hold the bag and chart to the board with four 1/2" stainless steel banker's clasps (They look like oversize money clips.) that I found at a stationery store. A grease pencil will write on the plastic, but usually I just navigate by sight and scribble a few notes on the cockpit combing as I go. On the back of the board buried between the third and sixth coat of varnish are a group of tables and notes Xeroxed from navigation books or handmade that I find useful to have in the cockpit with me. These include a table of conversions from nautical to statute miles, a time distance speed table copied from Bowditch Volume 2, some VMG tables, a feet-meter-fathoms conver­sion graph, a height of eye and distance off table and a nomograph that lets me determine the boat speed without a knotmeter.


To make the board into a cockpit table, the two mahogany slats shown in the sketch are attached to the edges of the board. The slats have a 1/4" groove cut into one side of them to receive the board and are held together by two pieces of small diameter shock cord. The ends of the slats are shaped to rest on the edges of the cockpit seats just forward of the mainsheet. The whole affair makes a nice table for two when boat is at anchor or at a dock.


When not in use, the board goes under a settee cushion. The two slats are then tied together with the shock cord and are stored in the space under the cockpit.