Friday, August 28, 2009

SOF Covering

Well I was just going to repaint the SOF so I could seal up some of the little holes. As I was trying to clean off some of the silicone spots I had dabbed on as a temporary fix for some of the major leaks I got carried away. The skin was somewhere around 5 or 6 years old so it was time to check out the frame work anyway. I found everything in remarkably good condition under the fabric. I should consult a couple of the local builders here on the what I should do next, but it looks pretty strait forward, maybe oil the wood, decide what to cover it with and do it!

Friday, August 21, 2009

We're Going!

I have to wonder how many people cancel trips because of the forecast. I know this lake can make its own weather, and we have to take in all the information we can to make a safe decision. But ... Only a few short hours ago the forecast was even worse than the earlier one.

Small Craft Advisory is Cancelled
Wind less than 15, waves 1-3 all weekend.

Apostle Island Weekend

The plan is to head up to the Apostles tonight and spend the weekend with a group on the islands. Tonight is Oak, then Stocton for Saturday night. The weather forecast is not looking like it's going to be one of those calm relaxing weekends. Winds up to 25 kts and 4-6 ft waves for today, then 3-5 ft for Saturday. So many times the near shore forecast changes quickly. I've driven up with a forecast of calm winds and less than 2 ft waves and when I arrive I find the lake all cranked up with wind and waves. The group I'm going up with isn't ready for 3-5 footers. Will have to watch the weather closely and make some decisions soon.

Monday, August 17, 2009

More Skeg Stuff

I suppose I shouldn't beat up on P&h for the Cetus skeg issues .. when I first picked up my Valley Nordkapp I had some issues with the skeg. It was so stiff I could hardly move it, I then took the boat on a quick trip to the Apostle Islands without taking the time to find out what the problem was and promptly bent the cable when I forgot to raise the skeg as I paddled up to shore on Basswood Island. I spent the rest of the weekend with the skeg stuck half way. the fix on the Nordkapp was to replace the now bent cable, and tip the boat upside down and spray WD40 in the little hole where the cable comes out in the skeg box until the stuff is running out the slider. That seemed to fix the Nordkapp cable skeg .. also I attach a short rope to the skeg so if the skeg ever gets stuck in the up position, I can ask one of my paddling companions to reach down and yank the rope to free the skeg. A not so much fun task when the water temp near freezing! I've added the rope to both the NDK and the Nordkapp, and have had to use them a number of times. Most of the folks I paddle with do the same. Much better than a bent skeg cable! I also had problems with my NDK Poseiden with the seemingly trouble free rope skeg. For some reason the whole system was binding, and just didn't work well, also the tube the rope went through leaked. I took everything all apart cleaned it up, reset the bungee tension, and tightened up the leaking tube. I also had to re glass around the skeg box for some leaks there too. Both these boats have had trouble free skegs now for years, and I know the Cetus will be resolved too. P&H needs to be commended for standing behind there product and taking care of the problem.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Cetus Skegs

A close friend has just purchased a new P&H Cetus. An awesome boat to paddle, very responsive, edges nice, good stability. The only complaint she has with the new boat is the skeg is almost impossible to operate. Douglas at "Seakayak Photo" has written a comprehensive post on the subject and has spent a good bit of time working on the Cetus skeg also, and anyone trying to fix the skeg issue should check this out. She brought the boat over to the hanger today so I could help her install a new compass for her up coming trip to the Pukaskwa next week, and we also wanted to have a look at the offending skeg. If she can't resolve it this week she will have to take her old boat on the trip instead, the skeg is just that hard to operate. I spend a fair bit of time working on mechanical things .. aircraft have a plethora of cables, pulleys and such, and looking at this set up I can see a leverage problem from the start. I really don't think the small cord is binding inside the cable housing. The angle is off coming into the skeg box enough that the cord is chafing, and will break at some point. We may try a lighter shock cord first, it that doesn't help I'd recommend taking the boat to the boys at Northwest Canoe for some modifications to the cord angle. Some sort of cam to offset the increased tension from the shock chord could work too.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Black and White

From my last post Silbs mentioned he would like to see this image in black and white. The sky was a bit washed out so I added some saturation to bring out the clouds ... I like it ... I wouldn't have thought to try it in black and white. Always learning!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Sand Island

I finally got around to adding some images from the Apostle Island trip last week. Lots of wind and waves. Our campsite was protected from the wind so any waves that came through to the beach were coming from around the point. The big stuff was out a few hundred yards. Real fun weekend!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Two Harbors and Point to LaPointe

I've been going to the Two Harbors Kayak Festival now since 2003. It's been sort of a personal annual event. This year however I didn't enter any of the races, or even participate in any of the events, I just showed up and watched some friends start the race in the fog, and then headed off with DaveO, Chris, Steve, and Cheryl on an outstanding 7 mile paddle along the North Shore. We put in a little before Split Rock and went up to Silver Bay. It was a real nice afternoon, and I didn't miss pounding away on an 18 mile race at all.
The real fun event I did participate in this weekend was the two mile swim from Point to LaPointe as a support paddler. I swim pretty much like a rock, I can do it, but not for any distance. These people really impressed me. An open water swim for two miles in Lake Superior is in my book a daunting task, and not to be taken lightly. I was assigned "community swimmer" Todd. Todd impressed me more than the elite racers who started in the first wave who everyone knew would make the finish. The community swimmers are the everyday folks who are getting out and taking new challenges. These people were required to have a kayaker as an escort all the way across. I was happy to be asked to go along with Todd as he did the two mile swim. He did an outstanding race!

Friday, August 7, 2009

Point to LaPointe

Heading to Bayfield tonight for an early morning paddle with 200 swimmers. The Point to LaPointe swim has been going since 2006 starting with 24 swimmers, and in just a few years has grown to 200, the max allowed by the Coast Guard. Myself along with 30 other kayakers, will be escorting swimmers across the bay. Then it's off to Two Harbors for the Annual Kayak Festival. I'll be arriving late so I'll not be able to enter any of the races, but it's a great place to hang out for the rest of the weekend anyway.
Last weekend I had my little Optio W20 along with me on an Apostle Island trip with DaveO and most of the skoac renegades, I think I may have some water in the camera because the photos I took all weekend didn't turn out so well.