Thursday, April 28, 2016

Turning Over Autarkia

Today went really well!  We got Autarkia turned over and set up on some jack stands ready to be picked up next week and brought home.  The rigging to flip the hull comes from the San Juan Pool website.  In the installation instructions here you can see how the pools are rigged to be turned over upon delivery.  Al Finnsson, my son's father-in-law helped out today.  He owns Masterpiece Pool and Spa and he and I have flipped quite a few pools over the past two years and John. the crane operator knows the drill quite well.

The strain gauge on the crane said 4000 lbs... a wee bit more than I thought!

My son Wesley was on hand - no slouch to rigging and crane lifts since he was a construction foreman on the building of the new Port Mann bridge in Vancouver, and his son Reid, soon to be three in June, oversaw the operation as well.

Here are some more pics:

I drilled some holes in the bulkheads to put the rigging chains through..

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Ready to Bring Home

I have decided to wait on the bottom paint until just prior to launch, so Autarkia is ready to be flipped over and brought home for completion.  The boat mover, Norm from Agonic, left me some jack stands to set her on and I'm in the process of lining up the crane to do it.  Super glad to get to this point!  And isn't Lorri looking good?  She's doing so well just three weeks after the surgery!

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Because I Just Can't Help Myself

So I haven't sailed Little Autarkia yet, but if the rain holds off will do so this weekend.  I'm feeling pretty positive about how well it's gong to sail though.  Per a request here are some pics of the sail sheeted out as far as it will go either side for running downwind.  In all cases and from every point of sail the shape is unencumbered by a mast.  I feel very positive about this.

In fact it has inspired me to develop the design further.  In the following case I envision a truss work to support the yard made from 6061-T6 aluminum two inch square tubing.  All of the joints would be gusseted with 1/8 inch 6061-t6 aluminum plate and these gussets would be bonded and riveted to the tubing with aircraft Cherry Max rivets - probably 3/16".  The trusses  would also be X braced with steel cable.  The whole truss structure would weigh just over 100 lbs and would hinge back on the aft joints.  The height of the trusses would be 20 feet, allowing the use of standard length aluminum tubing.

It is beyond my ability to calculate the strength of these trusses, however from my experience with aircraft I know that the two trusses forming a pyramid structure built as I have described would be very, very strong.

The drawing below shows a sail of around 550 sq. ft. and the yard would be 33 ft. long.  I imagine making that from wood, and it would taper from forward aft.

As far as Big Autarkia goes I have a final sanding coat of epoxy to apply to the bottom.  Today, I am running to the metal super market to buy a square foot of copper plate that I will use as a lightning ground.  I'll get a copper stud welded to it so that when I bond it and nail it to the bottom with 5200 there will be no fasteners protruding.

Then per Dave Zeiger's suggestion I will put an epoxy non-ablative antifouling paint on the bottom.  Then right side up and home to Papa.

Friday, April 15, 2016


I'm very relieved and happy to report that my wife Lorri is doing really well two weeks after her bypass surgery.  She'll be running and swimming circles around me by this summer I expect!

However, in the meantime I've been somewhat of a stay at home nurse.  I did manage to buy materials and supplies to glass the hull of Autarkia and will do so this weekend with the help of my son-in-law.  But as I was mostly confined to the house I decided to finish the sailing model of Autarkia, AKA Little Autarkia.

I got jiggy with her though.  Followers of this blog know that I am very fickle with regard to a sailing rig.  A great concern is the ability to drop the rig to get under bridges.  But another one I have not yet mentioned here is the very light air we normally have on the Fraser, and in the Georgia Strait in general most times except for winter.  A reasonably powerful rig is desirable and also one that is high enough to catch those breezes.

Lug rig has been mentioned to me before and I thought I would re-visit the idea with the model.  One thing that bugged me about the lug rig and the lateen for that matter, has been the issue of the bad tack.  I thought about this some years ago and drew up a quadrapod instead of a mast, which would solve this problem.  Upon further consideration I also surmised that the quadrapod could be lightly built of smaller aluminum tubing than a single mast, and could be hinged so that with the help of a winch, and without a gin pole, be lowered and then further dis-assembled to get under the lowest of bridges.

So how will it sail?  Dunno so I spent some time finishing the model thusly:

It is a honker of a sail, yes.  I will need a winch - no biggie.  The sail would be over 600 s.f. and would be reefable by lowering the yard and brailing up.  The yard is quite long - around 40 feet but could be made of aluminum sections that could be dis-assembled.  The sail on the model by the way is made of roll plastic tablecloth for banquet tables and is reinforced with masking tape.  This acts more like a real sail than sewing one up from cloth, and is faster and easier to make.

Here is the quadrapod.  I made it from steel rod.  For the real one, there would be cross members at the bottom that would hold it together when hinged back from the aft attachment points.  Once hinged back the cross members could be removed to allow it to fold flat.

I made the rudder and boards from dollar store plastic cutting boards.  The rudder hinges are waxed twine and are tied to eye hooks.  I got the idea from Dave's blog and I will use rope hinges on the full sized boat for sure.  On the model it doesn't kick up but it will on big Autarkia.  The leeboards (I have decided on both sides) are hinged on a pin and will carry loads from ether side.  They scale up to 3' by 7'.  That leaves 3' by 3' in the water for each one.  It may not be enough but with the rudder and both boards ther is 27 s.f. of lateral resistance added to another 20 or so s.f from the hull.  We'll see...

I'll sail the model soon.  There is a lot of water around here but I need a pond I can walk all the way around to retrieve her should there be problems.  Might have to drive a bit for that.  In the meantime, I have some help this weekend so getting the epoxy and fiberglass on the hull is priority.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Another Post Unrelated to Autarkia

Well, a sentence or two about Autarkia - she's ready to glass, paint and bring home.  That's coming soon.

An now the unrelated stuff:

Anyone reading this from pretty much anywhere in the world EXCEPT the United States of America will get this.  Because most of the world except the U.S.A has universal socialized health care.

Last Friday my wife had an angiogram at Vancouver General Hospital.  There they determined she had blockages to her heart that were severe enough to imminently threaten her life.  She was scheduled for immediate surgery and had a quintuple bypass operation that night.  Five days later I brought her home to recover, and she will have a full recovery since she had the surgery before a heart attack ever occurred.

Her treatment was world class.  A world class hospital, with world class physicians, nurses, staff and the best equipment.

This will cost us nothing. 

 Furthermore, it is the same treatment anyone - banker, politician, mogul or whatever - would get.  That is why it is called a universal health care system.

What is wrong with such a system?  Nothing.  Could the U.S.A afford it?  In my opinion, yes.  Now up here you may wait a little for something that can wait without threat to your health.  If you skin your knee you will be triaged  to the end of the line in the emergency room and NOT get an MRI.  If you have a stay in any of our hospitals, the food sucks.  And that is what a capitalistic medical system will focus on when they bash us up here in Canada.  They haven't anything else.

Friday, April 1, 2016

On Buying Materials For Any Project

This is April 1st, but is a serious post.  No joke here.

This happened a couple of days ago...

The white pickup is mine.  I was turning into the paint store but was stopped somewhat back from the curve in the curb, waiting for some kids to cross the driveway.  My signal was on, and that dark SUV behind me was stopped as well.  The Subaru behind him did not stop and hit the SUV hard into me.  My bumper was dented and I was knocked forward a good ten feet.  My neck's a bit sore...  But I was not hit that hard compared to the two vehicles behind me.  Both are total wrecks and write-offs.  I did not see it coming since I saw the SUV stopped behind me, and had redirected my attention to the kids.  I think the guy in the SUV saw the Subaru coming and braced but I'm not sure.

So why is this on my blog?

This is the guy who didn't stop and crashed into us.  He was definitely hurt and remained in his car until the fire and ambulance got there.  Can you see the two by fours resting on his dashboard?  He is not a particularly tall guy judging by how low he sat in the seat but his vision was definitely obstructed by the two by fours.  Not a very bright thing to do.  I expect he'll be charged once all is sorted out.

So the lesson for him and anyone is that if you don't have a safe way of transporting your materials, have them delivered. 

 Carrying materials in an unsafe manner is no way to economize.

Delivery costs are expensive, cranes are expensive, and professional boat movers are expensive.  But compromising on safety is something that should never be considered, what ever the budget.  That guy's little project is going to cost him some physiotherapy, a dangerous driving charge and demerit points among other things.  The guy with the SUV has to go out and buy another vehicle.  I have to get mine repaired.  And my neck is still sore.