ALBERG 37 INTERNATIONAL OWNERS ASSOCIATION
C/O Tom and Kaye
NEWS FROM MEMBERS
Malcolm and Catherine Blackburn (KAILA II #147) say that they need to get their keel patched due too many encounters with rocks over the past few years. Do they make 'Roller Blades' for the A 37??
New member Richard Miller (SPIRIT, #33, 1968) writes form Saunderstown, R.I. that they have recently purchased her, and plan on doing some extended cruising beginning in 1994. Welcome aboard, and please send some articles to include in the newsletter.
Robert Adams (PENINA #12) reports that his sloop is somewhat unique being rigged with roller furling on both the main and the jib, has the galley occupying the entire starboard side of the saloon, and was featured in Don Bamford's(?) book of several years ago "CRUISING UNDER SAIL". Bob also has made several improvements to PENINA including installing a portable chart table, a cockpit table, a complete rewiring and upgrading of the electrical system, a refrigeration system, double bow roller and instrument panel. How about some articles on these projects??!! Bob is also requesting repair and maintenance information, sources of spare parts, and any special tools required for the PARAGON reduction gear system attached to the WESTERBEKE (PERKINS 4-107) engine. If anyone can help Bob, please get in touch with him.
Ed Goveia (ESTORIL #245) writes that they plan to cruise Florida and the Caribbean for at least 2 years. We will be anticipating some great accounts of your travels.
John and Becky Long (SOLESKIN II #58) report that John is ferrying a sailboat from Florida to Maryland. John invited me along, however I had to decline due to job related conflicts (I was looking for a job at the time). An account of your trip through the ditch might be helpful for some of us 'first timers'.
Want to keep that dockside water hose from kinking when you pull the hose to the end of the boat for a washdown? Simply coil the hose in a figure 8 on the dock-- no kinks.
I guess everyone knows about Ziploc bags by now. They are indispensable for storing not only food, but parts, electronic gear, etc. Use the heavy duty freezer Ziplocs.
Those of us with yawls probably all curse the pelican hook arrangement for the mizzen backstays. They are difficult to release when on a reach or run, and are difficult to tension correctly. We solved the problem on SHEARWATER by installing a 3 to 1 tackle with snapshackles on each backstay. Now whenever we tack, it's simply a matter of releasing one backstay and tensioning the other.
Try MURPHY'S OIL SOAP (in a spraybottle) for cleaning the interior woodwork. It seems to clean well, and restores a bit of sheen to worn areas.
Tired of the tedious chore of filling your water tanks by holding the hose over the small deck fittings, sometimes getting an airlock so you think that the tank is full when it's not, and taking forever to fill (especially the tank under the V-berth??? Well, I came up with a better way that's easier and much faster. I took a short length (about 3 feet) of 1/2" garden hose, and with some hose mender parts from the local hardware store, I inserted a 1/2" gate valve about 6" from the end of the hose, and attached a hose coupling close to the valve. Now, I simply attach the hose assembly to the end of my long dockside hose, close the valve, turn on the spigot, take the new short hose and insert it about 2 1/2 feet into the filler neck and turn on the valve. The tank fills quickly, because you can now use all of your dockside water pressure, you won't get an airlock, and you don't have to stand bending over the deck fill trying to coax that stream of water into that hold. When finished, simply take the hose attachment off, and stow on the boat, so you can use it while you're away from home too.
I recently came across a great little catalog published by REAL GOODS, 966 Mazzoni St., Ukiah, Ca. 95482-3471. They sell all sorts of neat 12 volt stuff, like 12v Christmas tree lights, 12v chargers for your nicad batteries, solar cells and numerous other items. One even gets a bit of 'green' philosophy too.
Since my wife, Kaye, manages a book store, it naturally has a great nautical section. Therefore I get to see and read good selection of sailing and maintenance books. Although this should not be construed as a book review, I have recently read 'THIS OLD BOAT' by Don Casey (International Marine Publishing, Camden, Me.) and have found that it is one of the best maintenance books that I have read. Even better than Dan Spurr's book. It's well written, well illustrated, and the projects are well within the average sailor's abilities and expertise.
Want to spruce up the interior of your A-37??? Several years ago, we got tired of the slightly dingy appearance of the sort of yellowish gel coat of the hull liner. We removed all the trim and furniture that was easily removed, washed the interior down with mineral spirits (careful, provide adequate ventilation), and painted the interior with a good, marine quality, eggshell white, satin (it's not completely flat) oil based paint ( we used INTERLUX #221). The interior now has a bright clean look to it, the interior is much lighter, and the surface is easy to clean. For the cabin sole, we used a semigloss polyurethane enamel, a light beige color, which has worn very well. A big cosmetic improvement for very low cost.
Clanking coax and masthead light cables keeping you awake at night in that secluded anchorage? I fixed that problem quite easily and inexpensively. Now I know that some masts have an internal conduit for wires, however, I couldn't get all that I required into that conduit, so I had to run the VHF coax and masthead light wiring up the center of the mast. Put up with it for 9 years, but this past haul-out, we had the mast unsteped, so that was the time to fix this problem. I pulled the 2 wires out the base of the mast (after first securing a messenger line to each). I then combined the 2 wires into one cable by using plastic wire ties. I then went to the local ACE hardware store and bought 3 lengths of foam pipe insulation (the grey stuff, about 4 feet long) for about 79 cents each. I cut the foam insulation into about 8 inch lengths, and secured these short lengths of foam cross-wise to the cable at about 5 foot intervals with plastic wire ties. We fed the cable with crosses of foam insulation back into the mast, reattached the coax to the antenna, and the other wires to the masthead light, and fished the lower end of the cables out the mast hole just below the partners. Works like a champ, no more clanging!
Marty and Karen Kwitek (SPELLBOUNE #8) were kind enough to send a few helpful items. They re-rigged SPELLBOUND in 1989 to lead the main halyard, vang, boom lift, single line reefing, pole lift and lazy jacks back to the cockpit. To do this, they ran the mainsheet directly from the end of the boom to the traveler using a 7:1 purchase. This freed up the Barient 16 near the companionway on the starboard side for the main halyard and boom lift through Lewmar clutches. The rest of the lines run to cam cleats on the port side on either side of the dorade. They realize the MK II models are different, but this layout, combined with a roller furling genoa, provides them with a great deal of security and safety. All original rope/wire was replaced with STA-SET X. A stout padeye just ahead of the forward bulkhead provides an anchor for the pole foreguy and a balanced tack for the storm jib hanked to the spare jib halyard.
-- AND --
The original freshwater tanks were cracked when they bought the boat, so they cut out the fiberglas beneath the saloon sole and installed a 100 liter Vetus bladder in the cavity of the old tank. It didn't fit right at first, so they had to support it with 2-part expanding foam covered with cloth and resin. The forward tank is now targeted for anchor chain storage through 3" PVC pipe leading to a deck mounted chain plate. This will interfere with the forward locker, but will keep the weight low in the boat.
The Shipmate alcohol stove/oven is slow to heat, but acceptable for now. However, the alcohol tank mounted outboard of the stove is difficult to access for filling and pumping. They recently purchased one of the small 12 V auto type compressors and are installing it behind the DC panel with a switch and a hose to the top of the tank. Marty is trying to find out the operating/design pressure for the tank, to include a vented relief valve, just to be on the safe side. The tank is old, and Marty would like to figure out how to replace it, without going through the hull.
-- THIS IS GREAT!! --
Marty reports that the major problem with SPELLBOUND is gelcoat crazing. It is not structurally threatening, but aesthetically unacceptable, especially on a dark blue hull. The cracks run vertically from shear to boot, and are spaced nearly 2" apart from stem to stern. They have had numerous opinions on what caused it, and estimates for nearly $10,000 to repair the problem, with no guarantees. If anyone has experienced this, they would like to hear about it. (ED. NOTE: Our boat SHEARWATER, 1975,#153, has some crazing on the hull at and below the waterline).
Like all members, they are dissatisfied with the icebox. Theirs has been converted to a refrigerator with an A-B ?? system. A front door is installed - (not sure if this was original) - and it leaks the cold. For extended cruising, they use 1/2" closed cell foam pads to supplement the box insulation.
Lastly, they are interested in finding out if any members have PC's and modems. Some of the BBS services would be a good place to converse between newsletters. (If anyone is interested, I'll include that information in the newsletter. Sounds like a fun idea to occupy the winter months.)
For those interested, here are the part numbers for the Hyde Streamstay on SHEARWATER. Be sure and check your setup to ensure that you have the same size.
Rod end swivel bearings (2 each end):
Rod end swivel grease seals.
(need 1 each end) Unfortunately, I seem to have misplaced the numbers for them.
Halyard swivel bearings (2):
The grease recommended by Hyde is Lubriplate #1200-2
A good auto parts store should be able to cross reference these part numbers to other brands (such as Chicago Rawhide etc.) if they do not carry FAFNIR.
Recently had a postcard from John Oliver (LA JOLLA) who is on his way from Florida to Toronto. A couple of days later, we get a call from John who has just arrived in Solomons, Md. Since we live only about 5 minutes away, I jumped into the truck and met John and his fellow sailor Tom. It being one of the hottest and most humid days we've had, there was no hesitation when I offered them a shower and a few beers in air conditioned comfort. They ended up spending the weekend anchored in Solomons Harbor. We went out for steamed crabs on Sunday evening. John is the first A-37er who has given us a call while stopping off in Solomons. John and Tom were off on Monday probably to Oxford, Md., then on to Annapolis, Baltimore and points north. John related some of his continued trials and tribulation with LAJOLLA. Seems that as they were motoring up the intercoastal near Oriental, the drive shaft broke. Why a 1" stainless shaft would cleanly break (looked nearly as if someone had sawed it in two) is a mystery. Hope he gets the bugs worked out.
I'm enclosing a copy of a lab report and a survey report which I found the other day in my files. Possibly might be of interest to some members.
Thanks to those who have sent a few $$ for postage, paper etc. etc. I'm sorry to tell the Canadian folks that unfortunately, the local banks won't cash checks drawn on Canadian banks without imposing an outrageous fee. Perhaps an international money order in U.S. funds would work?
For new members, I'm asking for $10.00 a year to cover costs of putting out a quarterly newsletter. Unfortunately, I'm not able to do xeroxing 'free' at work, and postage being what it is.
The purpose of the newsletter is to provide a vehicle for the exchange of ideas relating to our Alberg 37 experiences (good and bad), maintenance tips, cruising information and to maintain a roster of Alberg 37 owners. Perhaps eventually we may attempt to schedule a rendezvous.
Also, you should be aware of our group's agreement with BOAT U.S. whereby we get membership for half price as members of a cooperating group. Just mention that you are a member of the Alberg 37 Owners Group and the Cooperating Group number GA 8325 S when you send in your membership dues.
If anyone has anything they would like to buy or sell, drop me a line, and I'll include it in the next newsletter.
I recently was called and visited by a Mr. Carl Oelschig, of Charlotte, N.C. concerning A-37's. He had obtained my name through Cruising World's "Another Opinion", and wanted to see an A-37, and since he was passing through on business, he stopped by. He was thoroughly impressed with the boat, and has been looking for one for sale. I gave him a list of members, and that possibly Neil Baylie's boat was for sale. He may be making inquiries. If anyone knows of an A-37 for sale, give Carl a call at 800-776-3862 (business phone).
I'm looking for a good used anchor windlass, anyone have one that's salvagable? I also have a good set of v-berth cushions, which are nearly like new (had new ones made from firmer foam, and re-upholstered the boat too).
CHESAPEAKE CRUISING NOTES
We just returned from a weekend cruise from Solomons, Md. to Crisfield, Md., a distance of about 40 miles. It's an easy trip down the bay, through Kedges Strait, and down Tangier Sound to Crisfield. Going down, we had wind from the NW at about 18-22 kts, and we literally surfed all the way. Averaged 7.5 Kts all the way. It had been 4 years since we had been there, and were somewhat disappointed when we arrived in Somers Cove. Where there had been only a relatively small State owned marina, the marina has now expanded to nearly encompass the entire cove (which was small to begin with. There is still room for several boats to anchor out near the Coast Guard station, but It's not great. Also at the dingy dock at the marina, there is a sign stating "DINGY FEE $5.00". That was the last straw! We tied up anyway, and no one came to collect, but the idea of a facility paid for by the taxpayer having the gall to put up a sign like that....**##XXXX.. Anyway, the crabcakes at Crisfield are as good as ever. Crisfield is still a good place to visit, don't expect a lot of activity, but it's sort of fun, and you can always take the mail boat to Smith or Tangier Island. By the way, there is good water all the way into Crisfield, just be aware of your location, as there is a lot of thin water in Tangier Sound.
Well, I promised myself that I would get this edition out before the summer was over. Let's hear from you! Drop by, or give us a call if you are in the area.