Test Your Engine’s Health

Test Your Engine’s Health Warren Elliott Feb, 2007 Hull #: 44 Although we are sailors at heart, and hopefully by practice, we do need to call on our auxiliary engines regularly. With some luck, it’s only off and on the dock, or in and out of the harbor, but sometimes our “iron genny” will be cranking away for hours at a time. Whatever the modes of operation, there sometimes appears a cloud of doubt: will she start ok?…or how long can the engine keep going like this? To bring the sunshine–and dispel any clouds–there are at least two general approaches, [maybe three if you include Happy Hours]: maintenance and testing. Most of us are patently familiar with the former: change oil regularly [about 100 hours], keep cooling system in good shape [strainer, impeller, heat exchanger on the raw water side, antifreeze/rust inhibitor for the fresh water system [use the fairly

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Baby Stay on Early C387’s

Baby Stay on Early C387’s Warren Elliott Feb, 2007 Hull #: 44 For C387 captains with the baby-stay configuration [hulls #1-60+], a few of you have reported, on our Sailnet email discussion group, a bit of damage to the baby-stay tie points in the forward cabin. These have been- or are in process of- repair. Please note that various conditions can put excessive strain along the baby stay, just as they can on any stay or shroud. I suggest checking the at-rest rig tensions, especially on both the baby stay and forestay; over tensioning the former and under tensioning the latter can be problematic. A “Loos” gauge or equivalent may help you get the best set-up. The forestay should be moderately tight; some riggers suggest the tension be set as tight as 10% of breaking strength, which is about 1000 lbs. If a back-stay tensioner is installed, know your

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Drain for Swim Platform

DRAIN FOR SWIM PLATFORM Warren Elliott Feb, 2007 Hull #: 44 Are you tired of that small pool of often dirty water that accumulates on the swim platform of your otherwise beautiful boat?? Well, help is at hand!! I was surprised– almost shocked– to recently learn, via our Sailnet email discussion group, that many of our fleet do not have this simple, worthwhile device which eliminates water accumulations on the swim platform!!. How can this be?? It’s now taken at least two, maybe three happy hours for this info to sink into my brain and for me to do something about it! So you know that the value/$ of this upgrade must be high: at least semi-infinite!! In other words, this clearly worthwhile upgrade can be done for almost nothing!! Picture, if you will, a brass tube, maybe 3/8″ diameter and 2″ long, flared

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Freedom 800 Windlass

FREEDOM 800 WINDLASS 2 Richard Herbst Date: Feb, 2007 Hull #: 93 Following is the second of two articles on this subject, this one by Richard Herbst, second owner of C380 #93, a late 1997 boat. The extra emphasis on the Freedom 800 is because of several serious relevant problems reported on our Sailnet email list and due to my desire to maximize your happy-hour time, at least for the captains of the 300 or so C380’s out there with this windlass. Other boats in the fleet have the VW800, either horizontally mounted [first approx 75 C380s] or, for late C380’s & C387s, vertically oriented. Background & Repairs I would like to amplify Warren’s article appearing in the previous issue regarding the Freedom 800 windlass. Warren was right on target when he advised owners to wash down that windlass frequently. A vertical main shaft only encourages water, salt, mud, silt

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Siphon Breaks and Engine Failures

Siphon Breaks and Engine Failures Gordon Croudace May, 2007 Hull #: , C380 #18 The head on my C380’s Westerbeke engine recently underwent a costly overhaul as a consequence of seawater entering the engine exhaust manifold. It was determined that the siphon break [aka “anti-siphon valve”] had seized shut, allowing seawater to flood the engine exhaust manifold after engine shut-down. Having discussed this with various marine engineers involved in engine overhauls, it is likely that the lack of attention to siphon-break maintenance, and sometimes the installation approach, is the cause of many failures of inboard marine engines, irrespective of manufacturer. It can affect any engine mounted below the water line, in both sail and power boats. This unfortunate experience [perhaps fortunate for our readers- Warren], has prompted me to write this article in the firm belief that all owners should understand the role of the siphon break and inspect the

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Companionway Doors

Companionway Doors Warren Elliott November, 2007 Hull #: C380 #44 As many of our stalwart Sailnet chat group members will recall, a few months ago we got together a group buy of doors for our boat’s companionway. These particular units are made by Zarcor [.com], a frequent Mainsheet advertiser. They are fabricated out of starboard, a white plastic. While the well-known alternative doors are made from teak [Glebe Creek, sold by Cruising Concepts, also a Mainsheet advertiser] and look very nice, I, and presumably all of our group buyers, do not want to deal with the upkeep required by their wood construction. So, we purchased and installed the Zarcor version, which have been in place now about a month. I thought some readers would be interested in how the installed doors look on a C380, [specifically mine], which you can see in the two accompanying photos. Installation is quite simple.

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Companionway Slider Replacement

Companionway Slider Replacement Michael Barry May, 2007 Hull #: C380 #53 Drama Queen, C380 hull #53, came with a gray, “full-size” Plexiglas companionway sliding hatch, as did all early 380s. After a few years, our slider needed replacing due to the appearance of some cracks. I spent a great deal of time shopping plastic supply companies to have a replacement made, but I had no luck. I then contacted Catalina and ordered a new slider [about $250]. The newer sliders are made of fiberglass with a small Plexiglas insert. I was told that the new slider would fit the older boats. Well, it sort of fits. [Note- the original allplexiglass design had a tendency to sag or warp, especially in southern heat, thus the new design– Warren] To replace the sliding hatch, first I removed the screws that secure the large hatch cover, then slid the cover out from under

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Electric Halyard Winch Conversion [C 387]

Electric Halyard Winch Conversion [C 387] Dale Hartwig August, 2007 Hull #: C387 #85 Powering Up Footloose Regardless of where we sail, how we sail, and with whom we choose to share our sailing, I suspect most of us spend time evaluating options to make our experiences easier, simpler, and safer. Bottom line for me is: anything I can do to increase my time on the water is a primary consideration – physical effort included. When we moved from our C320 to our C387, we chose the Forespar LeisureFurl mainsail boom furler option. This article is not about our “learning” experiences with the boom furler but about our decision to replace the standard manual halyard winch with a powered winch. In discussions with Forespar, while “Footloose” was in production, we understood a powered winch was recommended, to make raising the big main a snap. However, we had missed the

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Engine’s Water-Injected Exhaust Elbow

Engine’s Water-Injected Exhaust Elbow Warren Elliott November, 2007 Hull #: C380 # 44 Cooling sea water flows through our engine’s heat exchanger, then through the anti-siphon valve discussed above and to the elbow fitting at the aft end of the exhaust manifold. Here the water is “injected” into the hot exhaust gases, where it cools them while transiting the exhaust system, ending up back in the sea. This elbow fitting is therefore in a very harsh environment, suffering the rigors of both very hot gases and warm/ hot salt water. [Fresh water sailors have an advantage here.] So you can imagine that this part is likely to be on the earlier, rather than later, timescale for failure. This occurred to at least one captain, albeit in a benign fashion. Over a period of months, his engine gradually exhibited higher and higher operating temperatures. After checking all the likely sources of

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Inexpensive SSB Antenna

Inexpensive SSB Antenna Bob Bierly August, 2007 Hull #: C380 #255 “I constructed a separate insulated antenna that runs from one of my my davit arms to the mast head using a spare halyard. I made this antenna from number 10 steel wire (from West ) and 2 porcelain insulators from a ham radio store. That proprietor recommended the longest possible wire as an antenna, which I have. I also avoided cutting the backstay and the expensive insulators for that purpose. Once the metal long wire is up you merely attach the insulated antenna lead from the antenna tuner directly to the steel wire with a hose clamp or a copper u-bolt ( which I found in Home Depot). My total cost is maybe 20 bucks.” –Bob Bierly, C380 #255, “C’Mon Wind” Bob’s antenna is certainly simple, and should perform well at least in some circumstances. However, as much of

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