Log of SV Free Spirit and ships company

The chronicles of the schooner Free Spirit and her crew, embarking on an open ended journey upon the great rolling heap. Free Spirit is currently pursuing humanitarian and commercial goals in the Dominican Republic, on the island of Hispaniola. Working under the Ocean Reach USA and Paradigm Research banners, she is serving as logistics headquarters, workshop, and development laboratory for many ongoing projects. This is the log of her journey.....

Web sailfreespirit.blogspot.com
If you are joining us for the first time, click here for an introduction!
Books and more, at the Schooner Free Spirit Chandelry
Clothes and more, at the Free Spirit Logo Shop!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The Great Chesapeake Bay Schooner Race ~ October 15th-18th

While out one evening in Urbanna at Cafe Mojo, Megan's Dad started talking about how great it would be if we entered The Great Chesapeake Bay Schooner Race. After some scheduling changes, rigging measurements and logistical issues, we went on line and signed up. It turns out that we were probably one of the last boats out of 56 to enter the race for 2008.

All of the vessels left out of Baltimore and headed for the starting line about 21 miles towards Portsmouth down the Chesapeake. As 1:00 pm drew closer all the boats were raising sails and shutting down their motors.

During the Parade of Sail the day before the start, a large portion of the vessels did not raise their sails. It was absolutely amazing to see all of us out there from 31' to 177' feet, under just the power of the wind.

A quaint little lighthouse.... One of my personal dreams is to rebuild a run down lighthouse and live on it for a while.

We ended up inviting 2 guests (crew) aboard for the duration of the race from Baltimore to Portsmouth. Paul B. on the left and Ken on the right lending a hand and raising sails. We were short handed for the race, and greatly appreciated all the energy and effort they put into Free Spirit's success in the race. THANKS GUYS!!

Paul and Blayde raising the Main, with Tamer at the helm.

Some crazy water vehicle that we saw near Norfolk, on our way to the dock in Portsmouth.

Ken and Paul B, in rainy weather gear managing the deck and helm station.

Paul B. standing by at the aft winch....

The finish line for our class of schooner was about 35 miles north of Portsmouth. Because of acclimate weather, we decided to motor sail the rest of the way. Here is the crew lowering and getting the sails stowed for our rest and dock time.

By the time we reached the docks, we were near the end of the fleet, it was dark and raining, and we were all exhausted from our 33 hour race down the Chesapeake Bay.

Of course, typical of arriving late to the party, we were put on a portion of dock that was condemned and falling apart. Here are Paul and Tamer replacing a board in the dock, so that no one would fall through. He had removed it from the stairway leading up to the shore line where it was being used to block and pedestrian traffic.

Due to the severe tides during our stay, the water level would come about 3 feet above the actual dock during high tide. A couple times we actually launched the dinghy, went to another dock and went to shore that way.

We really love the water, dontcha know??

We ended up coming in 7th out of 9 in our class with only a working set of sails. We had a fantastic time in Baltimore and Portsmouth, supported a good cause, made some good new friends, and completed our very first race!

One of the high lights to the whole event was meeting Mr. Dudley Dix, the designer from South Africa that designed Free Spirit, a Hout Bay 50. We were in a gated marina in Baltimore 6 days before the race in the Inner Harbor. One day while the guys were out working on the deck, preparing for the race, we heard someone call out to Free Spirit. Tamer went over to the gate, and was surprised to fing Dudley there wanting to come aboard Free Spirit and meet us. We have been in limited contact with him since our initial questions directed towards him when we were deciding to buy her in 2003. The Hout Bay 40 (Adventure), that is pictured in the Parade Of Sail post is the boat that he was on for the race. At the awards ceremony in Portsmouth, we got to spend about an hour with him and his wife, and for that we are thankful and humbled. Paul took a picture of us with him, and Blayde was accidently cut out... He was there and able to share in the moment and enjoy the meeting along with us.


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Introducing Propcalc 4.0

Use Propcalc to easily match your hull with your engine, transmission, and propeller
Put the known data in the top fields, then hit the Update button to get the answers.
Results, of course, should be verified by a Naval Architect or qualified surveyor.
Data is provided for three bladed propellers of average type
For two or four bladed props, use the modifiers shown below.

Fill out the fields as follows:

Vessel LWL (ft) = Waterline length
Vessel Disp (lbs) = Vessel displacement
(max) HP = Rated Engine Max HP
Engine RPM max = Engine RPM at Max HP
Engine RPM cruise = Desired or estimated cruise rpm
(Cruise or Max) Kts = Speed to work the calculations for
Slip = Propeller efficience. 45% is average for a displacement cruiser.
Gear ratio = 1: Gear ratio of transmission
SL Ratio Adj. = This value will be added (or subtracted, if a negative value) to the calculated S/L ratio.

Key information:

If the "hp required" is greater than the "cruse HP", you have your cruise RPM set too low for your engine parameters.
If the "hp required" is significantly less than the "cruse HP", you have your cruise RPM set too high for your engine parameters.
If the "hp required" is greater than the "Max HP", then your target speed is too high for your engine/hull parameters.
The S/L ratio is calculated automaticaly based on your input. It can be adjusted if necessary, but normally it should be left alone.
If the calculated S/L ratio exceeds S/L MAX, then the results are likely to be non-predictive. Try a lower speed requirement.
SL Ratios of 1.1 - 1.4 are typical of displacement hulls. Semiplaning or planing hulls can go higher.

Typical propeller slip values:

Sailing auxiliary, barges, etc less than 9 Kts............45%
Heavy powerboats, workboats 9 - 15 Kts....................26%
Powerboats, Lightweight Cruisers 15 - 30 Kts..............24%
High speed planing boats 30 - 45 Kts......................20%
V bottom race boats 45 - 90 Kts...........................10%


it is possible to get irrational answers by irrational input , I.E specifying excessive speed for hull type and length
Any attempt to exceed hull speed (1.34 times the square root of the waterline length in feet) with a displacement hull are likely
to fail unless the hull is extremely fine (multihull) or otherwise exceptional. In such cases, an S/L adjustment would be in order.

2 and 4 bladed props:

For two bladed propellers, multiply the diameter by 1.05, and the pitch by 1.01
For four bladed propellers, multiply the diameter by .94, and the pitch by .98

Vessel LWL (ft) =
Vessel Disp (lbs) =
  (max) HP =
  Engine RPM max =
  Engine RPM cruise =
  (Cruise or Max) Kts =
  Slip =
  Gear ratio = 1:
  SL Ratio Adj. =
  Prop rpm max =
  Prop rpm cruise =
  Pitch =
  Diameter =
  Static Thrust =
  Cruise HP =
  Cruise HP% =
  SL Ratio =
  DL Ratio =
  SL Max =
  HP Required =