Hints and Tips

Questions & Answers

If you have a Hint or a Tip that you think other members might find beneficial, let us have details

Issues with Rudder Settings?

Please read the attached document

Varnishing made Easy

Painting and varnishing tip from Ken Shell.
I was having problems with getting a fine gloss finish with varnish on wooden decks and Ken advised putting enough varnish for one coat in a small jar or tin and standing it in warm water.
Chef’s call this a Bain-Marie. This reduces the viscosity and allows the varnish to be applied thinly and it flows to a beautiful finish.
I have christened this method of applying varnish “SHELL LACK”. This procedure has also been successfully used with enamel paint.
Well done KEN thanks for the tip.

Take Care of those Crystals

And I don’t mean just look after the pins because if you damage them the crystal becomes virtually useless. I have noticed that some of the more recent crystals I have bought, although clearly marked as to their frequency with paper tags, after some time of use, the paper separates and may become detached from the actual crystal. The older ones are marked on the case of the crystals themselves both as to frequency and if they are transmitter or receiver crystals.  More recent ones don’t seem to be marked so if you lose the tag, you don’t know what frequency they are and whether for tranny or receiver.
My solution is to remove the paper tags before they wear and replace them with an equivalent size piece of deck patch. Write the details with a permanent pen on the new tag and you shouldn’t have problems of separation as the two self adhesive faces stick together like you know what.

Cut piece to sufficient length and width, say, 60mm x 8mm.

Fold in half BEFORE removing the backing paper
Cut off the corners of the folded end so that they make V inserts

Remove the backing paper and stick to crystals inserting the pins either side of the V inserts.  Ensure the spare ends stick to each other nice and square.  Mark up the tags with frequency and R or T.

Avoid Accidental Polarity Reversal

If you,ve ever encountered that situation where your winch(es) have needed to be returned for repair because polarity of the power lead has been reversed, there are a couple of possible solutions.
1. Use Futaba style 3 pin connectors for the centre pin is always positive and the 2 outer pins are negative and signal.  Although these connectors normally have a tang that effectively prevents the plug being put into the socket the wrong way round, sometimes people remove the tang to make insertion a little easier.  Even with these if you push the plug in the wrong way round, you will not reverse the polarity, you will simply not make a circuit so no damage will be done.

Mike Nichols recently showed me an even clearer way of avoiding problems.  He puts a small piece of deck pathcing material on both the plug and the socket such that when he pushes the plug nto the socket, the two pieces of tape are om the same side – Nice and simple but very easy.  Thanks Mike.

Quick release Luff Rings thus making quick sail changes easy

Whilst largely for the likes of A Class boats, a common complaint is the inability to changes sails quickly because it will often involve removal of the rig from the boat, then removing the sail and re-assembling.  I overcome this by making my own rings from plain wire.  Effectively they can be simply described as like a figure of eight where the small circle goes through the luff eyelet and the larger circle goes round the mast to hook back on itself.  The added bonus of this is that the edges of the wire near to the jib leech are smooth so it lessens the possibility of the jib leech line catching when the sail comes through.

Whilst it is a little fiddly fitting the rings in the first place, they are left on the sail in situ in the closed position and just popped open to fit or remove from the mast.

Pictured below open  and closed positions before fitting to sail luff eyelet.