(6 replies, posted in Sails & Rigging)

HI Jordan,

Here's a cheat sheet (no pun intended) on which sails to use when.

0-12 Knots--------------------------Genoa and Full Main

13-18 Knots-------------------------Jib and Full Main or Genoa and Reefed Main

19-26 Knots-------------------------Jib and Reefed Main

26-32 Knots-------------------------Jib or Reefed Main

The others may have other suggestions but it gives you an idea which you can adjust to suit your sailing comfort zone.



(10 replies, posted in General Questions/Comments)

I'm a little late in responding to your query but I've always thought that the Garmin eTrex Legend H would be more than suitable for your purposes.  It's a small b&w mini chartplotter which has a high sensitivity meaning that you can use it down below without fear of losing contact with the sattelites.  I'm comfortable with this model and if you compare it with the other models for the price (CDN$ 145.00), I think you'll agree that it's an excellent choice.  What's more, it's waterproof, has USB connectivity and lasts for 18 hours on 2 AA batteries. 

Having said that, I'll reiterate that you should still know  and practise  traditional modes of navigation concurrently with your GPS in case the unit malfunctions as all of them sometimes do at inopportune times.  Use the unit only to check how good your ded reckoning skills are.  JC


(5 replies, posted in Cruising)

Hey Suzeh!

Temendous feeling isn't it?  That lump in your throat as you pull out of your slip hoping nobody sees you if you accidentally ram that boat portside due to prop walk.  Then, motoring away as you clear every obstacle in the marina to the open water trying not to white knuckle that tiller and trying to remember what to do next.  Is it ease the vang and harden  the topping lift before hoisting the main?  Damn, the sail cover's still on!!  Eventually, however, you manage to get your sails up still in irons everything sounds frenetic until you pick your tack and your boat heels as you try and get comfortable all the while admiring how beautiful your sails look as they do their thing.  Then,.........the moment of truth is upon you.  You shut off your engine and all there is is sweet tranquility and more of it as the minutes then the hours pass.  The sun warms your face and the wind gently caresses you while your boat, all the while reassures that she's there to take care of you no matter how much you err during your voyage.  You remember nothing else except how heavenly the feeling is and how you wish that it would last forever.

Yeah, I remember my first solo on Tessa and each voyage reveals more and more about myself and my boat and I hope that you get the same experiences on Suselle and I'm sure you will.  Congratulations on your maiden voyage. 


p.s. With regards to a more accurate reading on your speed, I recommend getting a good handheld GPS unit and using that to track your speed over the ground.  A really good unit for less than $ 200.00 is the Garmin E-Trex Legend H.  It's a chart plotter unit which last approximately 18 hours on two AA batteries but please practise plotting your course on a paper chart as a backup using sound navigational practices such as Dead Reckoning, Running Fixes, etc., etc......Happy Sailing!  Two more months to go till haulout.



(4 replies, posted in Technical)

Hi Bert,

I'm pretty sure that all the bunks in a Contessa are 6'6" so it's going to be a little snug for you.  Check out our friends, Nina and Henrik of "Bika" from Norway.  They've been circumnavigating for about three years now and he's around your height.  Here's the link...........



(9 replies, posted in For Sale)

Hey John,

Thought I'd pipe in as I hear the news.  I do agree with Christopher and Jose.  Give it some time if you can, that is.  I'm feeling rather the same way these days as you've all noticed that I've hardly posted at all.  The weather's been awful, the economy sucks and with it all that we have to do to survive.  For me, this is probably the worst summer ever.  So bad that I have to admit that I haven't even stepped my mast to this very day.  Something always seems to be more important or pressing which has prevented me from even cleaning or prepping my boat properly to prepare her for the season and I live five minutes from the marina.  I remain optimistic that I will sail Tessa this summer and early fall until haul out and if not, there's always next season.  We all know how you love having Cavendysh in your life so please don't be hasty in her sale as of yet but we do understand that you know what's best for you in whatever's happening in your life right now.

If you want to chat offline, please feel free to contact me anytime.

Best regards,

José (the other one!! ;-))

I would love to try the bio diesel particularly when it comes to the dreaded fuel smell in the cabin.  Does anyone know how to source out dealers or manufacturers of B100?  Thanks all!


Hi jose,

I have heard about it from a friend of mine who drives a Jetta TDI.  Doesn't it involve using fat/lard  as diesel fuel?  Makes it worthwhile to pick up a bucket and a few litres from the Colonel.  One stop shopping indeed!!  Oh happy days...........


Hey Adrian!

I'm guessing that anything is better than circa 1976 technology so perhaps I'll just proceed and install a replacement filter/water separator.  I looked at the set up of the incumbent filter and it's just attached to the side of the engine with two bolts which roughly correspond with the bolt set up of my other filter/water separator.  It could be as easy as taking one off and putting the other one in its place and replacing the old lines leading to and from the filter. 

While I've grown to love that diesel smell, it does take its toll on the guests from time to time.

Thanks for the response, however, Adrian.  I expect to hear from you this season!! :-))


Hello All!!!

Yes, it's been a while but it life certainly has a way of getting in the way of boating.  In any case, I do have a question for the forum.  I am contemplating of bypassing my fuel filter which is attached to my Farymann and putting it through a more efficient and leak proof fuel/water separator unit which I already have between the engine and the fuel tank.  Has anybody else done this and are there any considerations/potential problems that  I have to keep in mind?  Please advise and thanks.



(24 replies, posted in General Questions/Comments)

Hey Everyone!

Long time to post but it's great to be back.  Count me in for the 10th!  Looking forward to seeing everyone again.  Did you get those errant rubrails yet, Gadget?  You're leaving the dock this coming season with or without them!!! ;-)


Hey Ivan and Jose!

I've unfortunately made plans encompassing the weekend of Aug. 1-4 but I am available the following weekend (Aug. 8) if both of you and anybody else who's available and willing wants to rendezvous in Toronto.  Let me know and I hope that everybody is having a great season thus far.

José (the other one! ;-))


(11 replies, posted in Sails & Rigging)

Hey Suze!

I'm sure that the sail loft guy can re-size, re-shape and re-stitch the 180 to a fine 120-130 with enough left over  for a storm jib.  By the way, what's up with the engine?



(3 replies, posted in Technical)

Since your boat's still on the hard, why not just change the thru hull to match the hose sizes?  Just a thought.  Good luck on your impending launch.




(11 replies, posted in Sails & Rigging)

I, frankly, wouldn't use anything more than a 120 for your roller furling.


(7 replies, posted in Cruising)

Hello All,

Bika's talk on tomorrow at Frenchman's Bay should be a treat to anybody who is fortunate enough to make it.  I truly, truly recommend it and it's a chance for everyone to see how an ocean going Contessa 26 is rigged and configured from the inside & out and Nina and Henrik are more than willing to answer any questions that you may have.  Hope to see you all there.



(13 replies, posted in Repairs/Modifications/Upgrades)

Another viable alternative to the ST-1000 is a Simrad TP-10 (good to boats up to 33')which draws a measly 0.5 amps on Auto and 0.06 amps on standby.   It is more powerful than the ST-1000 and is super quiet.  I have used it extensively on Tessa last summer using only my starter battery for 5+ hours straight and "Otto" kept the course quite impressively with absolutely no hiccups whatsoever and the battery still had enough to start the Farymann.

I think that for the most of us who don't really go out offshore would probably opt for an electronic tiller pilot instead of a windvane for the obvious cost/hassle factor but  I do recommend to everybody that they have a house battery or two just to offset the load.  This season, I'll be installing a 75 Watt solar panel to keep the house batteries charged up while under way with "Otto" engaged as well as powering other electronic gadgets on board.  I do believe that Tania Aebi uses the Simrad TP-22 for her Devilliers 36 (Shangri-La) in conjunction with a Monitor windvane from the link that KodiakGirl provided a couple of days ago.  Thanks for the link, by the way, KodiakGirl.  It really makes me itch for the season to start.

Cheers everyone,



(7 replies, posted in Cruising)

I'm definitely in for this rendezvous.  A couple of our forum members who have been on the hard for the last few seasons and a relatively  new boat owner will be in the water this season as it has been revealed during our TO Boat Show get together so this may be the opportune time for them to show off what they've been toiling at all these years.  Doubly exciting as we can actually sail with Bika for a time and get some quality time with Nina and Henrik and hear more about their past and future travels.  The more the better!


I'm in for tomorrow. Looking forward to seeing everyone who can make it.


Exactly!  Looking forward to seeing everyone there on the 12th.  Have we set a time and place yet?

....I'm in for the meal and the second rounds on me.  Oh just to clarify, I'm buying the second round. ;-)

I'm flexible with my schedule and it seems that the deals for accommodations rings true for the 12th so if it's all the same with everyone else, I'm in for the 12th so let' s make it the 12th.  Let's spill more beer on Adrian!;-)



(14 replies, posted in General Questions/Comments)

Hello Ivan

Thanks for the words of sympathy.  I truly appreciate it. 

With regards to the boat show, I'm definitely in.  Last year's meeting was a blast so let's do it again and hopefully, more of us will be there.  One suggestion, however.  Either post a pic with your rsvp or look at last year's group pic (Motley Crew in the Gallery section) to zone in on who's going to be there so we could actually "meet" this time.  I know that Stefan last year didn't know who anybody which posed some  problems.  Again non-boat owners are welcome so that means you can actually come, Adrian! ;-)) Also, ladies don't be shy!  Same spot as last year?  Let's decide and we'll clarify it for the rest who would like to join us this year.



(14 replies, posted in General Questions/Comments)

Yeah, we should talk about it.  I know I said I'd make it there this year, Ivan but it's been that kind of year for me as well.  My dad was rather ill during the summer which meant staying close to home base.  He passed away early last month so it's been rather sombre lately.  In short, I'm like Adrian, I would imagine,  in seeing this year end and perhaps start a better one which of course includes plans to go up towards the Thousand Islands.  I met this guy who just bought a 28' Kirie from Montreal and decided to drydock his boat in Hamilton for the winter but we decided to go to the Thousand Islands in the late spring early summer with me in Tessa and him in his Kirie.  I'll consider the trip as practice as I'll probably do it a few times this summer to make up for the last couple.  Let's set some dates and proceed to make it a reality.  Adrian, you're more than welcome to crew with me.  Bring some Sleeman's! ;-)



(14 replies, posted in General Questions/Comments)

I'm sure that it's only temporary.  You're welcome to sail with me anytime.  Hang in there!  I know that it's been that kind of year.


Christopher wrote:

How crazy an idea would it be to hang a short bowsprit on the boat?  Say 1 metre or so?  This would facilitate rigging the boat with a staysail as well as the jib.  In addition, with a bowsprit, anchor rollers are a snap.  A benefit would be that the rig center of effort would move forward, reducing weatherhelm. 

The devil is in the details of course as this would not be an inexpensive mod.

Not so crazy an idea, the bowsprit.  If you look in the gallery section, you can see "Shannon's New Baby" which actually has a bowsprit.  Perhaps you could contact her for more detailed pics.  Does the marina pay for the damage on the boat?  I think that it's quite negligent of them not to put a cross strap/chain between the two hauling straps which could have easily prevented this from happening.  Best of luck with the repairs.