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ALBERG 37 INTERNATIONAL OWNERS ASSOCIATION

C/O Tom and Kaye Assenmacher
Box 32, Kinsale, VA 22488
EMAIL: a37ioa@sylvaninfo.net

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VOL III, NO. 3

30 June 1993


NEWS FROM MEMBERS

John & Becky Long (SOLSKIN II) report they have just completed installing a new furling system, some new sails etc. John recently retired from IBM so now has plenty of time to go cruising!

Des McCrindell (ROB ROY, #142) recently sent a photo of Rob Roy, which is homeported in the busy Confederation Harbour, Kingston, ONT. He also indicated that the Great Lakes Alberg 30 Association is expanding to include Alberg 37 owners (competition????). Des states that he purchased his A-37 through the Whitby brokerage in 1987, and that his boat is equipped with a FARYMANN S-30 diesel engine. It seems that some of the boats built in that time frame (1975) were equipped with FARYMANNs instead of VOLVOs due to a strike or other problem at the VOLVO plant. He had the engine overhauled several years ago, and has given reasonable service. Des has also located a source of FARYMANN parts: SEEBACK and SONS, LTD, 220 Norseman St., Toronto, ONT. M82 2R4.

Gerry and Lea Warwick (AVALON, #162) of St. Michaels, MD called us early in June. They were on a stopover in Solomons, after an extended spring cruise with their cruising group to Edenton, North Carolina. Gerry and Lea related to us that this was a very nice, relatively relaxed cruise beginning on May 17, 1993 with stopovers at Solomons, MD; Norfolk, VA; Visitor's Center in the Great Dismal Swamp; Elizabeth City, NC; Perquimons River; and Edenton, NC. After spending part of the Memorial Day Weekend in Edenton (Great Place according to Lea) they departed Edenton on 30 May again making a stop at the visitor's center on the Great Dismal Swamp (must be a popular place). Other stopovers were Norfolk, Indian River, and Solomons, where they stayed through Sunday, 6 June. The Warwicks' report that the Dismal Swamp Canal carries plenty of water for the A-37, and that the route through it should not be missed! Thanks for the cruise report. We may make that trip ourselves some day.

Lois Jacob and Merle Galbraith (INTERLUDE, #225) write from the Trinidad Yacht Club, West Indies. They purchased INTERLUDE upon completion in November 1981, and launched in June 1982. They sailed her through the summer of 1985 out of the North Cape Yacht Club in western Lake Erie. In September 1985, they headed for the Caribbean via the ICW, Bahamas, and just about every island between there and Trinidad where they are now.

When Interlude was built, they made many changes to the interior (which appear to have been incorporated is some of the later production) which improved the interior significantly. The most visible changes being in the galley/nav station area:

- They eliminated the quarter berth and installed the chart table facing aft.

- On top of the 2 pull out drawers which originally were under the chart table, they had the carpenter continue the cabinet upwards, adding 2 more pull-out drawers and a wet locker behind them.

- Built a counter top cover over the old open wet locker (to keep someone from accidentally stepping into the well). To the right of the steps, they installed a teak locker door, identical to the one on the garbage bin. This door provides access to a series of manual valves that let them use a handpump to drain either the icebox, or the freshwater tanks, or to use salt water.

- They had the water tanks made of stainless steel and used the 10 gallon tank for a holding tank and the 35 and 40 gallon ones for water.

- They increased the sizes of the winches and repositioned them to make it easier for one person to handle in an emergency.

- They repositioned the main sheet to the aft of the cockpit and added a removable inner forestay to use with the storm jib (which hasn't been used yet).

They love the yawl rig and when the wind exceeds 35 kts, it's easy to drop the main and sail on jib and mizzen. The mizzen mast is handy for holding solar panels, and antennae. (Ed. note, we have a VHF and Loran antenna on the mizzen mast, and have seen one of the newer and smaller radar antennas located there also). After 8 years of living aboard they still love the boat, although at times they wish she had a bit more beam. Their lockers hold so much they've had to raise the waterline 6".

The following letter was received in late April from Ken Wood and Murielle Rousseau (SLOW LANE, #232):

"We are currently in Whangarei, about 2 hours drive north of Auckland and 2 easy days cruise south of the Bay of Islands. Have been here about 3 months now with only about a half mile of travel between the town basin pile moorings and the yard where we hauled out for the usual jobs. This is the best place we have found so far for boat work. Virtually any services required are within about 10 minutes walk of the basin.

Pile moorings for us are about $65US/month, with showers, phone, etc. available on shore. Prices on services are very reasonable and quality of work is generally high. Imported goods can be expensive, but even there prices are sometimes surprisingly competitive. One of the best bets seems to be stainless fabrication. Anti-fouling is also an interesting one; the local formulation of what in the US sells as AwlStar Goldlabel for lots of $ is available here at discount for about $16US/liter equivalent. Apparently the $ price is the same here as in Australia except here it's NZ$ and there it's A$, which are bigger than NZ$. Interesting price structure.

Anyway, much time spent doing routine and not-so-routine maintenance as well as a bit of playing tourist. Weather has been less than sub-tropical and is getting cooler with the onset of autumn; Easter was the last big weekend of the NZ 'summer' season. We are now getting back into getting-ready-to-go cruising mode, if we can just wrap up the last few things that need looking after. Then it will be up to Fiji for some much-awaited warm weather and swimming temperature water, followed by Vanuatu, New Caledonia and Australia.

While on the hard this time I tried to get a fairly close measurement of our actual draft. Best estimate was between 6'2" and 6'3", a bit more than the 6' I had been assuming for navigation. For anyone planning an extended cruise, do yourself a favor and raise your waterline by at least 6-8" prior to departure, otherwise the gelcoat will need a lot more cleaning up when you raise the line at your first haulout of the cruise. Yes, we have lots of stuff on board, but are we cruising to rough it, or is it OK to take advantage of some of the benefits of today's technology? After all, this is our home as well as our transportation.

'Immunity' was after information on anchor system for 45 LB CQR. I had a prefabricated roller/platform welded on to the existing platform beside the single roller on the boat to be able to handle a 45 LB CQR and 33 LB Bruce. Cost was less than starting from scratch and system has performed adequately, although it did manage to get a bit bent in some bouncy anchorages with coral heads to foul the chain, The right approach would be to get rid of the existing roller and build a double unit from scratch, with heavy stainless, large cheek plates and good-sized urethane rollers. This would still leave the potential for serious corrosion of the stemhead plate so the ideal approach would be to design and install an integral stemhead plate and anchor platform unit. Possibly easier would be the extended type platform as seen on some of the Hinterholler boats, with the platform constructed of heavy gage stainless tubing and extending beyond the bow as a type of mini bowsprit.

Halfway between Galapagos and Marquesas, we lost the forestay chainplate. At night of course, but fortunately downwind so no serious problem, but it did prevent subsequent use of roller furling headsail. Fortunately, when I installed the furler, I also rigged up a removable inner forestay using the original headstay wire and a lever-type tensioner to be able to set the storm jib and the #1 Genoa, neither of which I had converted to luff tapes, This stay terminated at the aft part of the stemhead plate vertical flange in which I had drilled another hole to give just enough clearance for the furled sail. Upper end terminates about a foot below masthead with a T-type fitting which allows the wire to rotate a bit to the side when not in use, While not as good a setup as a proper inner forestay set well inboard and lower on the mast,with running backs, it has the advantages of lower cost less problem for reinforcing the deck and the ability to set bigger sails (longer luff). Although we haven't yet gotten around to trying twin headsails for downwind work, this should be more controllable than sailing wing-on-wing as we have done to date. Have just had genoa luff shortened slightly to allow it to set properly without interfering with other headsail, so will be trying it out soon. Anyway, the inner forestay works because we sailed for about 10 days with the #1 genoa hanked onto this stay and the main forestay and furler tied off to the pulpit to keep it from flopping around until the chainplate could be replaced. Speed was affected a bit-- we went faster than if furling was available as no way to reduce sail by a little bit. Finally had to go down to the storm jib (only other hank-on sail) 1 day out of Marquesas when the wind was getting up into 30's and lots of rain squalls. The point of it all is that owners may want to check the bend in the forestay chainplate for any signs of cracking when doing rigging inspections.

Original owner of our boat had it delivered with sink installed in cutting board area beside stove. While it is a minor inconvenience to have to keep the through-hull closed when on port tack (we keep them closed underway anyway), I really can't imagine having the sink in the way everytime any engine access is required. As it is, the cover lifts off with only two slidebolts to unlatch. Of course, almost any work beyond the front half of the engine still requires removal of the fresh water coolant reservoir to give some access space above the engine (Volvo MD11D).

Have just finished totally rebuilding engine-driven refrigeration system. After losing 2 compressors and a fancy control valve system, I simplified controls, added in big accumulator and finally went to much bigger condenser to keep pressures down to reasonable levels for when cooling water temp. gets up to 80's. Volvos are notorious for low raw water flows and this particular one is even lower, for as yet undetermined reasons. Tried increased flow rates through original condenser and it did reduce pressures. However, the bigger condenser had a greater effect and overall cost was only a bit higher. As a point of interest, if someone is looking for a bigger pump to drop on to an MD11D, Johnson Pumps type F4B-9, #10-35241-1 has same mounting dimensions as standard Volvo pump but almost double the capacity.

I was interested to read that someone was able to move batteries from above bilge to L-settee. I have filled L-settee with batteries and still need all the space above the bilge. Just managed to fit in two banks of 225 A-hr each, using 6 volt deep cycle batteries for the 2 house banks and a single 12 volt starting battery. For those travelling far from home, battery guarantees don't exist as such. How viable is it to ship a dead battery back to where it was bought? It's for sure that another dealer for the same brand isn't going to give away a replacement for a battery he didn't sell in the first place. If you have to scrap batteries, better that they are less expensive than more expensive. I replaced one bank of Burdettes in the Virgin Islands with golf cart batteries when 1 cell of the former died. They still work just fine.

Early on in our cruise (upper Hudson River, in fact) we found out that a holding tank is not a viable solution to sewage handling unless the boat is set up with its own system for emptying the tank. While the law might have been in place to control waste discharges, the pumpout facilities were not. As a result, I cleaned out the holding tank (35 gal --- midships). It didn't get to the stage where I felt comfortable using it as a water tank, but eventually It was sanitized and deodorized enough to provide us with a very functional and useful 'hold'. In good times it can hold quite a few cases of beer!

During the last haulout, I added a flexible coupling to the drive system to reduce some of the vibration. Because there is so little free space in the aperture, fore and aft shaft movement is very limited. I found it necessary to fabricate a dummy spacer to take the place of the flex coupling to maintain alignment of the engine, then remove the spacer and install the coupling. Who ever said that boating was supposed to be easy?

To wrap this up, a few numbers: so far, 43 months, 2200 engine hours, 18,000 miles. More to come.

Best regards.

Ken Wood & Murielle Rousseau

PS: SLOW LANE is a yawl."

We will be anxious to hear from Ken and Murielle when they make their next port of call. Please keep us posted of your progress and plans.

A hearty welcome to new member, Lee Carey of Toronto (MONDIA, #155). He keeps MONDIA at the Oyster Harbor marina. He heard of our group from Jim and Mona Anderson who keep their boat at the same marina.

We received a note from Martin Violette in the early Spring stating that in spite of the snow (Ed. note: as I write this, it's 93 degrees here in southern Md.) his work on SLYBOOTS is progressing well, including reinstalling the engine and replacing all the wiring. They indicate that they plan to make the rendezvous over Labor Day Weekend. He is planning to take the boat down the ICW this fall and then on to the islands (didn't say which ones). We'll be looking forward to seeing you in September!

We recently heard from Malcolm Blackburn (KAILA II) stating that the newsletter has produced results for him. In the last newsletter, he asked a question regarding finding the lowest point in the bilge. He wishes to thank John Bax (IMMUNITY) who responded to his request. Malcolm finally found the bottom of the bilge which he says is about 28" from the engine water intake.

Malcolm indicated that they have had some good sailing conditions, and were racing a 40' wooden sloop when they were overtaken by a squall which placed the side deck under water. I'd say that was a pretty good test of the rigging!

Malcolm also indicated that a friend of his, who has recently obtained a Ham Radio License, was talking to an A-37 (TIGGER) over the Easter period which was at that time located in the Marquesas. He's unsure of the owner's name, but thinks they are from the Toronto area. If anyone knows the owners of TIGGER, and their forwarding address, let us know and we'll send them a newsletter.

Dianne and Dick Munt advised us of several changes needed in the roster, namely their hull number, and their telephone number (see latest roster). They also sent a photo of D2 (for Dick and Dianne) for the A-37 album. We are accumulating quite a few A-37 photos.

Charles and Helen Bahn (RAVEN, #238) write that they enjoy the newsletter, and hope to contribute an article soon. They keep RAVEN in Galesville, Md. Maybe we'll see you in Solomons this summer.

Jacques Bernier (ALICIA III, #154) reports that ALICIA is berthed at the Trident Yacht Club in Gananoque, Que. They are the second owner, and bought her from Andrew Peterson, who took her for and extended cruise to the Caribbean and Florida during the mid 80's. Having previously owned an A-30 (hasn't everyone?) Jacques knew that he wanted an A-37 when he decided to get a larger boat.

They are planning a one to two year trip to the Caribbean in 1996, and therefore have many projects to begin before that time. They are particularly interested in the following:

1. "Considering that ALICIA III is a yawl, is it possible to install a 'DAVIT' at the stern without interfering with the stern rail and the mizzen boom?"

2. "I found the present bow rail to be weak. Similar problems prevailed on my Alberg 30 and its pulpit was of the same design. Can it be reinforced, and if so, how?"

If anyone can be of assistance to Jacques, please contact him at 55 St. Moritz, P.O. Box 252, Cantley, Quebec J0X 1L0 (819) 827-1629.

Michael Fish (EX-MAID MARIAN, now the EAGLE, #177) writes that since buying the boat in June, 92, he spent the summer and fall getting used to the boat, sailing in the Chesapeake, and making minor repairs and upgrades. This spring has been spent scraping and painting the bottom, and painting the topsides and deck, and rebedding everything on deck. Mike indicates he has a "to do" list a yard long (don't we all) which should keep him busy for a while.

Mike also says he hopes to see us at the rendezvous in September. Give us a call when you're in Solomons, we'll go sailing!

HELPFUL TIPS

Have you ever used masking tape, or for that matter, duct tape and allowed it to remain attached to a surface (namely gelcoat) for too long a time? You know the mess that results, especially with the duct tape adhesive. Acetone, lacquer thinner, paint thinner, alcohol, diesel fuel etc. etc. doesn't seem to cut it. We've found something that does work. It's a product which we found at the local Ace Hardware, called paint brush cleaner. Applied with a cloth, it really dissolves the adhesive without seeming to affect the gelcoat. We haven't tried it on a varnished or painted surface, so caution should be observed on those surfaces. We keep a small container aboard now for those cleanup jobs.

We just finished part of a long involved process of replacing the acrylic in our Atkins & Hoyle overhead hatches. Since the acrylic plastic in both hatches was becoming crazed, and scratched, and seemed to leak continually around the attachment screws, we decided to replace both with LEXAN. Let me tell you, 1/2" smoke colored LEXAN is difficult to find, at least in our area. I finally found one 2' x 2' piece in the Washington, DC area, enough to do one hatch, but still have not found a piece for the second hatch. Does anyone know of a source? Forget Atkins & Hoyle, as they wanted $150 each for an acrylic replacement. We had repeatedly re-caulked them using various sealants, including 3-M 5200, but nothing really lasted. I finally contacted the manufacturer in Canada to determine what they were currently using to bed and seal the plastic inserts. They indicated that they were no longer using 8 machine screws to attach the acrylic sheet to the hatches, but were instead using a high grade silicone sealant/adhesive, and that they would send me a 'repair kit' for $35.00. I subsequently ordered a 'kit' which turned out to be: 1) a $5.00 tube of G.E silicone; 2) about a half ounce of 'primer', a sort of pinkish liquid to be applied to the aluminum hatch frame and edge of the plastic; and 3) about a half ounce of toluene solvent to clean the frame and plastic edges. I followed their instructions, reinstalled the hatch, and waited for a good rain. About 4 days later, we had a good thunderstorm, and shortly thereafter, I checked to see how the newly refurbished had performed. Luckily I had placed a large container under the hatch in question, as it really had leaked. In fact, the silicone had not adhered at all to one side of the frame. Needless to say, we were frustrated. Off came the hatch, and after a major effort removing the silicone that DID adhere, completely re-bedded the hatch again. So far, it seems to be holding ok. Anyone having information relating to horror stories regarding leaks in general, send it in so it can be shared with the rest of us.

In the next issue, hopefully there will be an article regarding refinishing the toe rail.

SPINDRIFT
by the Editor

For members, I'm asking for $10.00 a year to cover costs of putting out a quarterly newsletter. I might suggest to our Canadian members that they send their dues either in U.S. currency or via a Canadian Postal Money Order payable in U.S. dollars. Unfortunately, in order to cash a check drawn on a Canadian bank (even if in U.S. funds), a $5.00 fee is charged. I've tried several banks, but the story is the same.

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.

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. Please mention that you are a member of the Alberg 37 Owners Group and include the Cooperating Group number GA 8325 S when you send in your membership dues. Also mention these items when renewing your membership, as we are required to have a certain percentage as BOAT U.S. members to qualify as a Cooperating Group.

If anyone wants some Boat U.S. literature, I can send you some.

ALBERG 37 RENDEZVOUS

The First Annual Alberg 37 Rendezvous will be held over the Labor Day Weekend, September 4,5,6 1993 in the Hampton Hall Branch, Yeocomico River, near Kinsale, Va. Please be aware that this will a very INFORMAL affair. If anyone is in the area, be sure to drop in for an hour, day or whatever. Kaye and I own a waterfront lot (a little over 3 acres) on the Hampton Hall Branch of the Yeocomico River, near Kinsale, VA, just off the Potomac River, and about 10 miles from the Chesapeake bay. Currently, we have a boat dock, electricity, water and perhaps for the occasion, a "Porta-Jon". We spend a lot of time there during the summer on our A-37 yawl SHEARWATER, and hope to build a home there in about 5 years. It's a very pleasant area, the river is well protected from just about all directions, carries good A-37 depth to about 50 feet from shore, the mid channel being about 10'. We have room for one additional boat at the dock, but there is very ample space to raft up lots of boats in the area adjacent to the dock. We really haven't planned anything except a lot of boat talk and shared experiences. Ice and limited groceries are within 2 miles, and we will have transportation available. As of this date we know of at least 3 boats which plan to join us in Kinsale.

Directions by water: If you have chart #12233, proceed west from Point Lookout (Potomac River/Chesapeake Bay) about 10 miles to the Yeocomico River Light. It's on a concrete base sometimes referred as the 'birthday cake'. It's sort of tilted, and somewhat hard to discern from the shoreline background. However,you will see it in plenty of time. From the Yeocomico light proceed westward to Fl G 6sec "3", then to "2". Note the shoal area to the Southeast of "2". Give "2 a wide berth to the Southeast, and you will have no problem (we've never run aground, but the depthsounder shows a pronounced shoal there. Continue in the West Yeocomico (there are two more red daymarks not depicted on the chart) where there is plenty of water 12' or more. Continue to where the West Yeocomico stops (at Kinsale) and you must either turn left or right. Turn left (right takes you to the grain elevator and marina) and follow the channel into the Hampton Hall Branch (you will see it open up into a small bay). Just continue through the bay until you see a bulkheaded point on the right. Give the point on the right somewhat of a wide berth, and continue to the second boat dock after passing the point. Hopefully you will see Shearwater tied up there anxiously awaiting all her sisters!

Directions if you come by road: Assuming that you have found the state of Virginia in a Road Atlas, proceed south on Rt. 3 out of Montross, Va. About 2 miles south of Montross, you will see Rt. 202 (Ford Dealer), make a left on Rt. 202 and proceed on Rt. 202 through Hague, Va. (about 12 miles, don't blink your eyes, you might miss it). About 4 miles from Hague, you will see Rt 203 (at BP gas station and a sign to Kinsale), make a left on 203 for about 1.2 miles and you will be coming into Kinsale. As you approach Kinsale, (again, don't blink) you will be coming down a hill, just at the bottom of the hill is a 'Reduce Speed' sign, and immediately following the sign, you will see a sign saying 'Hampton Hall Estates'. Make a right turn on the gravel road at the 'Hampton Hall Estates' sign and continue for 1 mile. We'll have some sort of a sign, balloons, etc at the driveway, which will be on the right. Just drive on in and come on down to the water. That's where we will be. Let's face it folks, you have now arrived in the boonies (that's why we bought the place, to our knowledge, there is not one stoplight in Westmoreland County)! Please be advised, that we do not have a home there yet, but do have electricity and water (hopefully installed at the dock). If anyone wishes to stay overnight (those who come by boat, we assume they will anchor out overnight), there is a motel in Montross, and several Bed and Breakfast's in the area. There is a small marina in Kinsale (about a mile by water) which has diesel fuel, water, gasoline etc. It has plenty of water for A-37's also.

WANTED

MARTIN VIOLETTE is looking for a mizzen staysail and a main hatch. Anyone who might have these items should contact Martin at 145 Cascadilla Park, Ithaca, NY 14850 (416) 844-2588.

NEIL BAYLIE is looking for information regarding installation of a holding tank. Anyone with innovative solutions please contact Neil.

WANTED!!!! SEND YOUR FAVORITE CRUISING FOOD RECIPES TO SHARE WITH OTHER MEMBERS. ALSO NEED ANY ARTICLES OF INTEREST. DON'T BE BASHFUL!!

GALLEY TALK

No contributions this issue.

CRUISING NOTES

Although this is not really a cruising article, I will make a few comments relating to a recent day trip which I made singlehanded from Solomons, MD to Kinsale, VA, a distance of about 35 nm. Conditions were: Clear and warm, winds SE 15 - 20 (forecast to be 10 - 15), which meant that about 2/3 of the trip would be a beat.

- The Chesapeake Bay gets a 4' chop about every 2 boatlengths when the current opposes the wind.

- Replace those plastic catches on the locker doors under the settees and above the V-berth.

- The old HYDE STREAMSTAY I works great as a furler, but not as a reefer.

- If you need to use the engine (VOLVO MD2B) at above about 25 degree heel, you should overfill the crankcase by about a quart, or the oil pump will begin sucking air.

- Have larger sheet winches.

- Increase the backstay tension.

- Plan on longer tacks.

- Enjoy green water over the bow.

- The A-37 can take a lot of pounding.

The reach up the Potomac River was great!

Until the Fall Issue or the Rendezvous, have a great sailing summer.