Saturday, October 10, 2015

Geezer Bloggers gather around a Penguin Dinghy

I went over last weekend to help George A. of Mid-Atlantic Musings> move one of his boat collection into a U-Haul. It wasn't a Moth but a Penguin and was being collected by her new owner. George's Penguin dinghy was one of six originally built in the 1960's by a guy named John Walton in Brigantine, New Jersey. This Penguin, most likely being the sole survivor of the six, was being rightfully reclaimed as a family heirloom by John's son Bill, who had flown up from Texas.

In the photo below, George is going over the history of the Penguin with the blogmeister. Turns out George helped build the six as kid. He was on the centerboard trunk building crew. (Forgive the odd colors of the photo but I wanted to highlight the beautiful interior wood of the Walton Penguin and was working from a very dark I-Phone photo.)

Photo by Bill Walton

Some other posts about the Penguin dinghy.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Classic Moths in the Mist

At this year's Classic Moth Nationals we had a marine layer settle in Saturday night, giving us fog on Sunday morning, a rare event for Elizabeth City, North Carolina. The fog started to creep out towards Pamilco Sound around 9 a.m. and racing commenced, on time, in sunshine.

I took a couple of photos.

The fog didn't stop the sailors kibitzing about Mothboats.

Two transoms in the mist. The Laser transom of the Maser and the wide Europe Dinghy style transom of the Mousetrap Mistral.

The view from the Pugh's pier.

The original post of the 2015 Classic Moth Nationals can be found here.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Music Whenever; Indigo Girls "Closer to Fine"

When you look on the InterWebs for the top 100 folk songs of all time you generally won't find the Indigo Girls "Closer to Fine". However, for me, that song makes it into the top ten of all-time folk songs.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

The Florida Cricket Class - A Missing Link?

The Cricket class was a 15 foot, chined, V-shaped, catboat with wishboom that died out in the early 1960's. By that time the Cricket fleet was only found at the Miami Yacht Club and, given the small numbers at the demise, it is today, a forgotten class. But in digging through U.S. sailing history more comes out about the Cricket.

The Cricket class was designed sometime during the 1890's, in or around Atlantic City N.J, where it became extremely popular. Reports indicate hundreds were built and about one hundred were racing out of Atlantic City in 1900. It was, as far as I can determine, the earliest example of a chined, V-shaped sailing dinghy in the United States. More about the early development of the Cricket class (who was the designer? what prompted the design? when did the class die out in Atlantic City?)  has been hard to come by.

In the 1920's, when Northerners began to flock to the remote, but bucolic winter paradise that was Florida, the Cricket class was also exported in numbers from the New Jersey shores. It was reported that twenty five Crickets were shipped to southern Florida with most of them destroyed in the hurricane of 1926. The  Cricket class would rebuild in Miami and would form the core of the Southern Florida Sailing Association (later the Miami Yacht Club) when it was organized in 1928. The Cricket would become the boat to beat in the free-for-all under 150 sq. foot (sail area) class.

When, in 1931, Bill Crosby designed the Snipe for the Florida West Coast Racing Association's free-for-all Trailer class, he must have been mindful that his Snipe would initially be compared against the Cricket class, at least in Florida. Between the two, the hull design similarities are striking. It does seem that Crosby started designing his Snipe using the Cricket as a baseline and then added user-friendly features (a sloop rig with a high boom being the most notable one). The Snipe went on to international fame, the Cricket, to oblivion.

Some photos:

A smattering of classic Florida sailing dinghies; on the left, the Optimist Pram, behind the Pram, a Mothboat, in the center, a Cricket, with the other Cricket, bow on, in the foreground. Behind the Cricket is a Suicide class.

Crickets launching at Miami Yacht Club, late 1950's.

Crickets going upwind. In all three of the ones in view in this photo the crew are hiking using skinny hiking boards.

The closest we have to a set of lines for the Cricket was this one-design commissioned by St. Petersburg Yacht Club as featured in The Rudder, 1919. The lines look very close to a copy of the Cricket although the length for this one-design is a foot longer than the Cricket.

Friday, October 2, 2015

One Project of the Super-Rich

This is one project of the super-rich where the beauty just radiates outward into one colossal superlative and, even if you are to the left of the political spectrum, all you can say is, "Well done, well done!"

LES VOILES DE SAINT-TROPEZ 2015 - DAY 3 : C'est bon ! from GMR+G1 on Vimeo.

My post on the resurgence of the J-class can be found here.

An aside

Is it me, but doesn't one of the professional sailors look a lot like Otto (Kevin Kline) from a "Fish called Wanda"

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Drone Video of the A-Scows Racing

For some reason my favorite drone sailing videos are the ones filming the American scows - (there is more Over here ). This video features fleet racing in the big monster ILYA scow, the A's.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Header Photo: 2011 Classic Moth Midwinters

From left to right; Derek Dudinsky in a Mousetrap/Mistral, Bob Patterson in a Duflos, Greg Duncan in his modified Mistral.