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Launch Day

Launch 1So the Goth XP, IRL 63 (I need to think of a name) was launched yesterday!  I met Brian O’Neill over at Lough Money to go for a sail.  I was slightly apprehensive, despite the fact that the boat had already been in the pool to check her lines.  How would things go with full rig loads?  Would the be much water ingress?  Would the boat be completely unbalanced?

It was a beautiful day, with a gusty west(ish) moderate wind. When I arrived, Brian was already on the water, and I decided to stick on the ‘B’ rig.  The boat was launched and I beat up the lake towards Brian’s boat.  Brian had his ‘A’ rig up and as we sailed up the lake together, he was slightly overpowered, I was slightly underpowered…..

After a few short upwind and downwind legs, I gybed and something was obviously wrong……the main was uncontrollable……

We got the boat to shore and the boom was no longer attached to the mast.  When I was rig building, I had obviously forgotten to screw the gooseneck onto the mast.  No damage done.  Fortunately, the wind dropped slightly and I put the ‘A’ rig into the boat and relaunched.

Sailing with Brian O'Neills' MX

Sailing with Brian O’Neills’ MX

The wind was gusty, definitely top end ‘A’ conditions, and we enjoyed about an hour of upwind and downwind sailing.  I am so close to the bottom of a learning curve!  However, considering the boat was rigged, without any formal ‘tuning’, I am really pleased with the performance.  I had no idea of mast rake (which looks to be slightly too far forward), rig tension, kicker tension, mast ram……. so I have lots of areas to work on.  Downwind speed is good and performance on one tack better than the other.  However this may well be due to the boat being rigged without any regard to ensuring equal shroud length, or equal rig tension on either side!

Launch 3

The MX (#99) and the Goth XP (#63) sailing downwind on Lough Money

I will spend a bit of time getting the settings correct and hopefully eliminate and differences between tacks, whilst still maintaining the good downwind speed and good performance on starboard tack.

One of the noticeable things from the day was the difference in the amount of pitching between the two boats, with the XP having noticeably less.  The XP’s rig is also slightly lower in the boat, and it has slightly less freeboard, giving the overall

Sailing on port tack

Sailing on port tack

impression that it is slightly smaller.

After about an hour of sailing, we came ashore and I removed one of the deck patches to check for water……..there was a small amount in the bottom of the hull.  I took the battery out, and removed the keel, to see if there were any drips, but the keel looked completely dry and no water came out.

I packed up and headed home.  Once I got home, I thought of all of the places that water could get in, fully expecting this to be a long, drawn out process.  However, after tipping the boat on its side, a steady ‘drip, drip, drip’ came from one of the chainplates.  I had found my leak (hopefully it is the only one) and now need to repair it, before my next sail.

Next Sunday, there may be sailing in Howth, so I will hopefully get everything repaired by then and get back to learning how to sail her!