Brad and I have been out of sorts to say the least about this whole no boat thing that may come to pass in a couple weeks. Right now Brad is at the boat fussing with the main battens which don't want to furl out properly.
The main on CALIX is in-mast furled and vertically battened. This a great system and also a massive source of frustration (read semi-terrible system). Now I believe we've done it to ourselves to some extent but only because we've been diligent boat owners and have cared for the sails each season by taking them down, getting them looked over by the sail-maker, doing any repairs that might be needing done and this year we even tossed in cleaning. Yes, we cleaned the sails in a giant washing machine that a tent place has to keep their tents clean. Clean by the pound - the jib is 80 lbs and the main only 30 lbs. Anyway, in the process of stitching the batten pockets securely and then adding a little tape to the end of the metal battens so as to avoid possible tears to the pockets, the sail got a little thick in those 4 places along the leach. Given that the opening in the mast is only so wide, not even an inch, what do you think will happen? Things are going to get hung up.
Why am I even talking about this? Well, tomorrow is the survey and sea trial. I'm pretty sure that a nicely furling main sail is going to be a crucial part of selling a frickin' sail boat. Our broker was helping Brad to get the sail out so the battens could be removed. This required the broker taking Brad up the mast. I'm sure this was quite the ordeal, but it got done. Why wasn't I there? Well, my office is a bit too far for zipping back and forth to the boat for something like this - I'm either on one side of the Bay Bridge or I'm not. Thankfully between the broker and Brad, they know half of Annapolis when it comes to servicing boats and Brad took the battens over to UK-Allan Sailmakers and Scott there said that cutting new battens the same length would be the right thing to do, but the key being the new battens will be less thick and therefore hopefully not cause the hang ups we're having. Here's the deal, the batten pocket has a cover that you push into place to keep the batten inside the pocket and velcro is the mechanism to make it stick - that's a lot of thickness just for the sail and then toss in batten itself and you see the problem quite literally in the picture below! That is one seriously ugly sail. Another issue? Safety, because if you had to get the sail in or out quickly and properly for some unknown reason, and it's always an unknown/unforeseen reason when it comes to situations and safety, this main is a serious safety glitch. I'd hate to have to take a knife to a perfectly good sail that isn't furling properly!
Well, wish us luck tomorrow for the survey, that the weather is favorable, the surveyor finds no crazy major problems, and that the possible new owners of CALIX are genuinely looking forward to a great boat in their future.