ALBERG 37 INTERNATIONAL OWNERS ASSOCIATION
C/O Tom and Kaye
Dwight and Carol Kraii have succumbed to the fate of many "dyed in the wool" sailors and have recently bought a trawler! They now have a 36' Albin (36') which they keep at the Miami Beach Marina for the winter. Dwight and Carol have no definite plans for the summer, although they have sold their home in Pittsburgh. Carol and Dwight attended the 1995 Rendezvous aboard SAUCY while on their way south for the winter. How about attending the rendezvous in BONNIE LASS? We would have plenty of room for the "power auxiliary".
Mark Lay reports that ELIXIR was recently launched after spending the winter on the hard at Hartge's in Galesville Maryland. Mark limited his off season work to minor sail maintenance, a lower gudgeon repair and a coat of black antifouling paint, which Mark says, looks great with her dark blue topsides and white bootstripe. Last year, Mark had a fresh coat of white paint applied to ELIXIR's spars, after having removed all the hardware, and although Mark now has an intimate knowledge of every mast detail he recommends that anyone contemplating this job should recognize the magnitude of the undertaking.
Mark relates that his friend and sailing companion, Prentiss Vallender, did a beautiful job refinishing ELIXIR's brightwork - light sanding, a few coats of Cetol, and two final coats of Glossy Cetol made her a show stopper. After one season, the finish is still in good shape, but they plan to do a maintenance coat after the weather warms up - their only problem applying Cetol occurred when the temperature dropped - for a good finish follow the application instructions.
They also had the interior cushions redone in navy blue Sunbrella with white piping. This upgrade coupled with a good cleaning and teak oiling makes ELIXIR's cabin quite inviting. On the water, Mark has continued to tinker with her running rigging configuration, and last summer they purchased a used mizzen staysail at Bacon's (in Annapolis) for $100.
Through the 1996 sailing season, Prentiss and Mark made weekend hops from the West River to Annapolis, Easton, Oxford, St. Michaels and other more secluded spots. The light winds on Labor Day weekend, kept them from the Rendezvous in Kinsale - maybe they will make it this year. After a late November trip to Annapolis with night-time temperatures dropping to freezing, they have considered installing a heater (any recommendations from our Canadian members?). (Ed. note: we installed a Dickinson "Chesapeake" diesel/kerosene heater about 7 years ago, and it has given us good service; however, the"Chesapeake" is no longer in production, but other similar models are still available.).
Even outfitted with her cruising gear, ELIXIR showed her muscle finishing third in their Class (a time-corrected fourth) at the Annual Hartge Cup. Mark desires information on the A-37 PHRF ratings. Can any of you racers help?
Time permitting, Mark plans several projects for this year: Installation of a battery monitor for his 440 AMP house battery bank and start battery - Mark desires any recommendations from members; also planned is the installation of a new faucet and sprayer (pressurized water) foot pump, and saltwater sprayer for the galley sink - Marks asks the eternal question - have other members had problems with the limited size of the galley sink(s) - which is a RESOUNDING YES! Mark is interested in hearing from anyone who has reconfigured the galley.
Mark relates that his experiences with the Hartge Yacht Yard on the West River, just south of Annapolis, have been nothing but great. The slips are filled with real sailors, and unlike many yards, the facilities are always spotless. Luke Frey operates a first class service department which provides professional work within budget and on time - while Hartge is a full service yard, you pay reasonable prices for top quality work. If Alberg owners are looking for a nice overnight stop or are contemplating serious service in the Northern Bay, Mark strongly recommends this yard. His previous experiences with Dozier's in Deltaville, VA were not nearly as positive.
Lynne and Gerry Purvis (TRONDELAG) report that they left Mexico in March 1996 and have spent the last 8 months cruising the "milk run" in the south Pacific. They enjoyed the Marquesas, Tuamotos, French Society Islands Suarrow in the Northern Cooks, American and Western Samoa, Tonga and are now based in New Zealand for the next year. It was a wonderful experience and their A-37 covered the miles in fine style with no major problems. Their only comment is that the boat is very wet and a hard dodger or a better waterproof fabric one would have made the cockpit more comfortable on those wet days. The boat performed extremely well and their Monitor wind vane was in use 99% while under sail. They never did find those 15 knot trade winds and decided that since the wind was either was 0 or 30 knots - that's the average. They have also noticed that the UltraViolet (UV) rays are decidedly worse since leaving Mexico, and has had a marked effect on their (new) paint job from 1992.
Tom Westrand (BRIGHTLINGSEA II) reports that he is nearing the end of a major refit/renovation. Tom says she SHALL be on her way this summer. Their tentative plans are to have her launched and shaken down in Lake Ontario mid to late summer, then put her on a trailer for the Chesapeake. They are aiming to get her launched into the Chesapeake for Labor Day so they can attend the Fall Rendezvous.
John Volc (STORNOWAY) of North Vancouver, BC is organizing the second "West Coast Alberg Rendezvous" on 21-22 June on Silva Bay, Gabriola Island, British Columbia. All Albergs are welcome. We've included their flyer in this issue of the newsletter. John also reports that he is finally getting around to installing the mizzen, converting STORNOWAY into a yawl.
Fred and Phyllis Owen report that PRINCE MADOC is now permanently moored in Wiarton, Ontario. They spend a lot of time in Bradenton, FL, and may attend the '97 Rendezvous by car on their way there in the fall.
Mario and Jackie Brunetta, having attended the Winter Rendezvous, recently sent some cruising photos of LOTUS. They hope to attend the '97 Rendezvous from the Cohansey River as part of the "upper bay flotilla".
Charlie and Amy Frasher report that DOLPHIN is receiving some tender loving care on the hard on the Rappahannock River in Virginia.
Tom and Agnes Westran report that the refit/renovation of BRIGHTLINGSEA II is still progressing slowly, becoming virtually a complete rebuild. They still have not set a "get-away" date, which will depend on how quickly work can be completed, but Tom says it SHALL be this year. Agnes has decreed that even if it is late in the season before the boat is ready to go, they will truck her South. Their memories of the great time they had in the Chesapeake 2 years ago are still very vivid and they can't wait to get back. Tom and Agnes plan to keep us informed of their progress and promise a detailed description of their project once it is complete.
Welcome aboard to the following new members:
Steve Smith of Elmhurst, IL is the owner of the 1976 yawl, THISTLE. Steve bought THISTLE in September, 1994, and keep her on White Lake, which is attached to Lake Michigan. During the summer, they live aboard most of the summer with their 2 boys, 4 and 10, and spent 3 weeks cruising Lake Michigan last year.
Being the third owner, they report that THISTLE is in nice condition, after having solved some cabin top water incursion between the fiberglass around the forward hatch (deck drilled, dried and epoxied). They also had a new shaft installed to correct an alignment problem.
Just for fun, Steve went to Whitby Boatworks while in Toronto on business last March and met Alex Magnone, who built the boat 20 years earlier. Alex showed Steve around the facility, in which he was restoring an A-37 at the time (Alex said that wet decks are a common problem).
by the Editor
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.
We suggest $10.00 a year to cover costs of publishing the quarterly newsletter. We also might suggest to our Canadian members that they send either U.S. currency or 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.
Also, you should be aware of our group's agreement with BOAT U.S. whereby we get membership for half price ($8.50 vice $17.00) 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 83253 S when you join Boat U.S. or send in your annual renewal of membership dues. Boat U.S. membership is no longer required to make purchases from their stores or catalog, however, membership is still required for the purchase of boaters insurance.
One of our Canadian members has recently had ongoing problems renewing his membership at the cooperative group rate. This problem has been more or less resolved, however, we would like to know if any other Canadian members have had any problems with Boat U.S. Cooperative Group policy.
A-37 pennants are still available for $26.00 U.S. (cost plus postage). This is a very tastefully done and durable pennant.
As you have probably noticed from the letterhead, we no longer have our home in California, Maryland. We have begun building a waterfront home on the Hampton Hall Branch of the Yeocomico River, near Kinsale, VA (God's Country) - we hope to be moved in by the Labor Day Rendezvous. Since both Kaye and I still work in St. Mary's County, MD, we spend the weekdays in a 40' houseboat just off the Patuxent River, near Solomons, Maryland, which is a major stopover on the Annapolis - Norfolk run. We will be disappointed if you don't at least give us a call as you pass through the area.
Also, to all A-37ers transiting the Chesapeake, Kaye and I extend the offer to stop by our homesite near Kinsale, VA, about 10 Nm from the mouth of the Potomac River, on the Hampton Hall Branch of the Yeocomico River, and is an easy sail from Solomons Island, MD. We are there every weekend, and sometimes during the week. We have several slips, water and electricity, deep water, great scenery in a very rural setting, good protection, and best of all, it's free .
Unfortunately, this past quarter, we didn't hear from as many members as we normally do, and so the newsletter is a bit sparse this quarter. I guess we will attribute that to the weather, and that most of you are busy getting the sloop or yawl ready for the '97 sailing season.
We have met with some success in gathering a few new members through some of the "free" advertising that we have managed to obtain, namely through some sailing World Wide Web pages, and by having the Association written up in several sailing publications, namely, Cruising World, Spinsheet, and Coastal Cruising. We have also lost a few members, some selling their A-37s, others we have simply lost track of when the newsletters are returned with 'No Forwarding Address". Some members, such as Carol and Dwight Kraii, who have recently transitioned to the "sailor's powerboat", a trawler, wish to remain in contact through the Association. As we have less than half of the production A-37 hulls on our roster, there must be owners who have not heard of our group. Help us get the word out!
Several issues ago, I asked the membership if anyone would want to help assembling an A-37 "Owners Manual". So far that person has not come forward. This would be a good winter project for someone. In the meantime, we always solicit and accept any and all maintenance shortcuts/tips etc. that apply specifically to the A-37 (and also tips in general).
STUFFING BOX REPACKING
By Dick Wilke
(The boat should be out of the water to avoid flooding).
Remove companion way steps.
Disconnect water hoses from faucets, and drain hose from sink.
Withdraw four bolts under corners of sink top
Remove sink top.
Remove wood strip above engine.
Loosen engine coolant Y behind hinged panel and push hoses out of way.
Push bilge pump hose out of way.
Using pair of wrenches of suitable size, with cords around wrists to prevent loss, loosen lock nut and packing nut.
Pry old packing (3 rings) out with ice pick or packing removal tool.
Clean and polish propeller shaft.
Shaft is 1 inch diameter. Cut three rings of 1/4 inch flax packing, 1 inch I.D., using 19mm socket as mandrill.
Push rings into packing nut one at a time, with cuts 120 degrees apart. Seat each firmly.
Tighten packing nut until shaft turns by hand with some resistance (transmission must be in neutral).
Reassemble sink top, latches, hoses, drain hose and steps.
With boat in the water, inspect for leaks. There should be no drip when shaft is not turning.
Start engine and run in gear for a minute. Stop engine and feel stuffing box and shaft. If slightly warm, this is OK. If hot, loosen packing nut.
Normal drip is 2 to 3 drops per minute with engine running and transmission in gear. None with engine stopped. Must have some drip to avoid burning packing.
1/4 inch flax packing.
Stuffing box wrenches
Ice pick or packing removal tool.
Very fine abrasive wet or dry paper, (or crocus cloth).
As dripping increases with running, gradually tighten packing nut.
Check to make sure overheating does not occur.
Repack as needed, about every three years.
The Second Annual Winter Rendezvous was held on March 8 at the HarbourTowne Resort in St. Michaels, MD. The following members attended: Bryce Inman (TIDINGS); John and Becky Long (SOLSKIN II); Tom and Kaye Assenmacher (SHEARWATER); Gerry and Lea Warwick (AVALON); Mario and Jackie Brunetta (LOTUS); Bobby and Connie Fields (JOYOUS); Charlie Deakyne (SCRIMSHAW); and Wayne and Sherrill Bower (TEELOK).
Several members took advantage of HarbourTowne's mid-winter special ($159 for the weekend including a great continental breakfast on Saturday and Sunday ). The location was great, right on the Miles River, about 4 miles north of St. Michaels. Each of the cottages are on the water, either the Miles or a small inlet off the Miles. We will certainly consider this location again next year, or perhaps Solomons, Maryland.
For the Rendezvous, which began with cocktails at 1800, we used the upstairs bar area, where many a sea story was related. For dinner, we had 2 tables in the main dining room. The food was very good, however, the service at one table was, to put it charitably, not good. However, all in all, it was a nice place to get together, and everyone enjoyed the cameraderie that only Alberg'ers can achieve. We even flew the "LARGE" A-37 pennant (sewn by Wayne Bower) from the main flagpole yardarm. We hope there will be even more interest next year. Anyone have any ideas for dates/location etc.???
Dwight and Carol Kraii are offering their 1982 A-37 Sloop, SAUCY. She is in fine condition, and is well equipped for cruising. Her inventory includes Radar, Wind Generator, and a Heart 20 Inverter. Craig Elliott at the Minnesott Yacht Sales, Arapahoe, NC is the broker. He can be reached at (919) 249-1562, FAX (919) 249-0504. Dwight and Carol can be reached at (305) 534-0288.
Mark Lay (ELIXIR) is looking to sell a 1992 Plastimo Offshore 4 person life raft (Model #11245) which has been annually inspected through October 1994, and stored indoors since September 1996. It includes a hard case and a mounting bracket. Anyone interested should contact Mark at (703) 356-5857 or E-mail email@example.com.
Looks like it's time to get this edition in the mail, so we can get to work on SHEARWATER. We probably won't get much sailing done this summer, as we are in the throes of building a house, jobs, etc., but we do hope to get out and about on some weekends.
We are soliciting any members having E-mail addresses and are willing to have them published in the newsletter/roster, to please send them to us. So far, we have several addresses. Next issue we will include them in the roster and/or the newsletter
For all those heading south this fall, or who normally cruise the Chesapeake in the fall, be sure to mark your calendars for the ANNUAL A-37 RENDEZVOUS in Kinsale over the Labor Day Weekend, August 30 through September 1, 1997. We hope to have the largest turnout ever, so plan now to join in the fun!!!!
Till July, have fun and WRITE (or call).
Tom and Kaye Assenmacher