Nose Job

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Rating: 4.00/5 (2 Votes)

Yep as the title suggests High Anxiety has had a nose job! (Or should that read Bow Job?) Either way our great friends at Northshore Marine Group have finished work on the prodder and it is now attached to the boat. This is another project ticked off our wishlist and we will now set about acquiring some new (or used) asymmetrical spinnakers to wrap around the fore stay.

Some of you may recall that the boat came with a deck mounted Selden Bowsprit. This is a refresher for those that have not seen it / don't remember.

Old bow

I was warned by Gary the previous owner to probably not use it in more than 15 knots. On further inspection I could see why, the under deck mounts seemed to be offcuts of normal wood which had got wet and warped. The attachment to the anchor roller at the front had broken one weld and if that wasn't enough the stainless steel attachment point for the dolphin striker didn't look reinforced.

Even after all of that I probably could have fixed it and lived with it except for a few things that became non-negotiable.

  1. Firstly, it was leaking water through the bolt holes that go through the deck and potentially doing damage with water getting into thecore material of the deck. (Foam like stuff between 2 layers of fiberglass/epoxy).
  2. Secondly and probably most distressing to me personally, was the impact on the new headsails. Where the tack (bottom at the front) of the sail attached was on one side of the deck mounted pole. So on one tack the bottom of the sail was forced to do some sort of Yoga and wrap over the top of it which meant the shape of the bottom part of the sail was compromised and the  sail was stressed.
  3. Easier to use with less crew (no gybing spinnaker poles in big waves)
  4. Finally and most importantly - At the heart of it I just want to go fast; Longer Bowsprit = Bigger Spinnakers = Going Faster = More Fun

northshore logo3 So decision made, what to do next?  That surprisingly was actually the easy bit - call in somebody that knows all about boats, going fast, and most importantly going fast in asymmetrical boats.

I had bumped into a old sailing buddy of mine down in the yard at RPAYC when High Anxiety was in for her keel repairs. Heath Walters was our skipper on "Boxer" for the Adams 10 Nationals back in....hmm... ok lets just call it a few years ago. I found out Heath now operates Northshore Marine Group out of the boatyard at RPAYC.

So I got the boat over to the club and Heath and I went over a bunch of stuff that needs fixing, replacing or improving. We worked out a bit of a schedule that balanced stuff that has to be done, against stuff I want to get done, versus how much I want to spend. It was very helpful to have Heath and his experience assess the cost vs reward and discuss things I hadn't really thought of.

The priorities ended up something like the below -

  1. Make it watertight - Fix anything that is putting water into the boat  
  2. Make it safe - Fix things that are broken.
  3. Make it faster and easier to sail. Fix things that give you the shits or add things that will make you faster.
  4. Make it look better. 

So after a new Front hatch, and Companionway repairs, we are now watertight. The deck mounted bowsprit was the last big leak. I will update another article on the other stuff we have done since as this article is supposed to be about the prodder!

IMG 6355 600

The rest is pretty straightforward, we taked to Ben and Toby from OneSails in Mona Vale about optimum lengths for the best sail area and Heath and the boys from Northshore got to it. First up the design and specs (above). Look I will be honest that didnt mean alot to me but Heath explained it was all very important given the loads the bigger sails would be generating. 

 320IMG 6445 300 Next up the core was made ready for the carbon lamination as you can see on the left. 
 320IMG 6455 300  320IMG 6458 300
After that the Carbon goes on as you can see in the photos above. I think the boys were pretty chuffed with how it was coming together. 
 320IMG 6542 300  320IMG 6541 300

After that comes test fittings. Now this proved to be a bit painful for all concerned as we were still racing weekends so the guys would have to pull off the:

  • bow pulpit (Stainless steel thing holding the lifelines on at the front)
  • Navigation lights 
  • Forestay
  • Old Deck mounted bowsprit

Then of course Friday would come and all that would need to go back on again so we could go racing on Saturday. We ended up leaving the boat over at the club in a pen for the last 2 weeks of the painting and fitting to make it easier on both Heath and me. 

IMG 6536 600

All that is needed after all that is paint and fitting and the new arrangement for securing the Dolphin striker. Heath called me one morning while I was at the office between meetings and politely infomed me he had a hole saw in his hand and was off to cut a hole in the boat. Needless to say I was only mildly concerned as I figure he knew what he was doing. 

It turns out that a small hole is cut through the bow and a stainless steel fitting is secured with epoxy and the rope holding the end of the prodder down is looped through. 

So I know blah blah what does it look like now it is done?

complete 300

photo4 complete 600

Awesome hey? I will update this post with some pics with the new spinnakers flying from it when we get it out and get some photos.

Big thanks to the team at Northshore Marine Group who did an outstanding job, I can't recommend these guys enough.

Boats 600

Well she stands out in a crowd now! This was my first hint of how it had all come together....