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is powered up when testing at these angles. On a starboard tack the ama rises smoothly and I had my best speed without using the foil by balancing the sail load with the water ballast.

EVB1YT

Video clip: Large/small

My brother-in-law made a video (right). You can tell I was a bit nervous as the water was still very cold and I didn't want to flip it. I didn't need to lean on the side car as shown in the video but I was still testing out the systems and just need to break that habit. All the tests were done using only the active water ballast and reefing systems and without using the foil. Everything worked great. Winds were 15 - 16 mph with many gusts. Maintaining 9 - 10 knots was easy once I reefed and the boat was as fast if not faster in that configuration. As you can see it is a very dry boat and you can almost see me grinning in not the best of conditions.

When I had my large sail on the 22’ mast the two problems I found while on a starboard tack were (a) the ama was too light, so it was hard to get good drive without using the foil; (b) I had so much sail and mast height it was hard getting up to speed before doing a tack as the boat was on the verge of flipping, even when reefed. The sail shape when reefed also made a big difference. As you can see by the video these problems have been taken care of. The half tank of ballast that I used on both tacks seemed to work well.

The next day was perfect with winds up to 10 mph. I again used about half a tank of ballast and it was very easy to hold the ama just above the water. I also sailed with an empty tank and using the foil, for comparison. I was 1 - 1 knots faster while using the ballast and no foil and the boat felt super stable. About halfway through the video, when I reef from full sail, you can see me just accelerate as soon as I move the boom car forward to adjust the sheet angle at the clew of the sail. The reshaping of the main made a huge difference and even when reefed the sail has excellent shape and drive.

EVB77Mastbasebent

When I returned to shore and pulled the boat out of the water I moved forward a little too much and the mast touched some power lines going across, bending back the mast base support tube by about 20 degrees (left). I was able to get the mast down OK and found that the mast and sail had survived without any damage. I tried to pull the support tube out of the mast base but it only moved about an inch up. The bend had occurred in the support tube right where it slipped into the mast base. I cut the tube as I was going to use it for another project but ended up never using it. The mast base had a slight bend in it when it was originally welded together.

EVB78Mastbasenew

I decided to make another mast base (right) that is perfectly straight and a little stronger. First I installed a bronze thrust washer in the bottom of the aluminum tube that fits in the hull. Then I installed a short flanged bronze sleeve bearing in the bottom of the mast base. This will contact the thrust washer and make the base turn smoothly with little friction. I then added a thin sheet of Teflon plastic that I wrapped around the mast base and slipped the assembly into the tube mounted in the main hull. It turns smoothly and has no side-to-side slop.

EVB79Mastinsert1

EVB80Mastinsert1

EVB81Mastinsert1

EVB82Mastinsert

I made a 12" fiberglass and aluminum insert (above) with a solid bronze sleeve bearing at each end and epoxied it into the bottom of the mast. At the bottom is a 1" long flanged sleeve bearing while at the top is a 2" long plain sleeve bearing. The ID of both is 1". The mast base has a 17" long 1" diameter solid aluminum rod with a bullet-shaped end that sticks up 13" inside the mast insert. A further 4" of the rod are press-fitted into the top of the mast base. There is a bronze thrust washer on the bottom of the rod where it is pressed into the mast base so when the mast slides onto the rod the bronze flanged bearing on the bottom of the mast insert will ride on the rod thrust washer, allowing the mast to turn very easily. Even with full downhaul the mast will turn smoothly as the bottom of the mast cannot bend due to the insert, it is riding on the thrust washer, and side loads are taken up by the sleeved bearings.

I think I will keep the mast base polished for now. Hope it all works well. Once I decide how far I want the carbon boom to slide onto the mast base I will epoxy a black ABS plastic coupler at that point to act as a stop for the boom. Then I'll add a couple of layers of glass and epoxy where the boom slips on and with a final sanding the boom should fit snug but will still be easy to slip on and off.

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