Sunday, April 10, 2011

Getting to know her

Today was a sailor's gift.

Temperatures reached 82 at the lake and winds started between 5 - 10 then soon provided a steady 10 with gusts to 15. A few hours later it was all white-caps for extended periods.

Did I mention that I headed up to Moraine State Park? Who would have guessed?

The little video clip of a nice broad reach as she is purring along quite nicely, don't you think?

You might say that I had an opportunity to take my little skiff  through her paces.

I am accustomed to boats whose bows slices the waves. This one goes up a hill and down a hill.

I am accustomed to boats that jump on a plane when they reach a certain speed. This boat seems to be planing before it even starts... albeit a "lightness of being" sort of plane.

Since the PMD has an exceedingly short water line, I suspect that under a number of circumstances, the boat might be faster with a second crew aboard since it would obviously lengthen the water line and thereby the hull speed.

So far, I have only single handed the boat.

Initially I expected more boat speed by simply heeling the boat since that would also lengthen its line on the water. However, from my limited experience so far, I did not find this to work the way I'd expect. The boat tracks better when sailed flat. Surely, the skegg has something to do with that result.

My preliminary conclusion:
The PMD offers a comfortable and relatively dry ride, even when "the sheep come out to graze".  I have no doubt that on most points of sail the gunter rig with jib will out-sail the lug-rig. Downwind is an altogether different story. On a broad reach and run, the balanced lug-rig soars.

If after a bit of sailing fun you wish to do a little rowing, you drop the spars, roll up the sail with spars and then pull out the mast and lay right on top of the sails, or the other side. Then you can row without the mast rocking

C-Lute is a lovely boat.

It's hard to think back now that in December I had only started to sand the bare wooden strakes.


  1. Thanks for sharing our build with us. One question for you. I'm trying to decide whether the Gunter rig or Lug rig. Would the Gunter rig typically sail faster than the Lug rig? It seems like the Lug rig would be easier to store & quicker to setup when you want to get out on the water. I also have kids 8-16 years old, so I'm guessing that the Lug would probably be easier for them to handle on their own as they initially learn to sail.

  2. Rich, I would expect the gunter rig to be faster on most points of sail simply because the main and jib at a combined 77 sq.ft. have quite a bit more sail area than the lug which I believe has 65 sq.ft. or so. I'll have to check the exact number.

    However, the lug rig is simple, beautiful and quick to launch. And yes, a single sail is obviously easier to handle.

    On a broad reach or trial run the lug rig might possibly be a tad faster.

    I suspect that in the end you would be happy either way.

  3. I just checked: the lug-rig has only 62 sq.ft. So that is a significant difference... almost 20% less than the gunter rig.

    I suspect that some day it might make sense to build a light air lug sail. You'd have to make the yard and boom a tad longer. I'll ask John Harris his thoughts on that.

    For now, I don't feel the need to change a thing though.