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Raptor UK canoe sailing

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learned to use this technique. It allows me to accelerate as soon as the sail fills after passing through the wind. I also found that grabbing the boom and pushing the sail into the wind helps if completing the tack is in question.

I normally have the foil down while on a starboard tack. There are usually puffy winds and a chop in Kaneohe Bay by the time I get out. In the past my schedule allowed me to start sailing early in the morning, before the day heated up, when the winds in the bay can be moderate and steady, which allowed me to leave the foil up and attain better speeds. I could fly the ama without using the foil. This required more concentration and it is not possible once the bay heats up by mid-morning.

I found that switching the foil retraction line to the left side of the cockpit permits much faster tacks from starboard to port (right hand turn). When I am ready for the tack I come up very close-hauled, initiate the turn and, once I have passed through the wind, cleat the mainsheet. Then simultaneously pull the foil retraction line with my left hand and collapse and toss the foil control handle to the stored position with my right hand. The retracting foil will create drag, increasing your turn, while throwing the handle outboard will counteract the centrifugal force keeping it from swinging back out and getting jammed on the iako or sidecar rail. Alternately, if I am not going to raise the foil, I give a hard down input, which creates drag on the right side and makes for lighting fast right hand turns.

I rarely carry any weight in my sidecar. I recommend tacking practice without the tramp. Take off the sidecar rails too as they can interfere with the view of the foil and ama. I find I can get my best, consistent speeds with the front of the ama out of the water and above the chop but letting the rear skim the wave tops when it is rough. I have accidentally capsized only once. That was on my third outing and I had gotten my lines tied in a knot. This is the best advice I can give. The sidecar was not part of the original design. After removing this extra weight and with a clear view of the ama and foil, it is possible to fly the ama with ease. I have kept mine in the air for over a quarter of a mile. Once you get this down I don't think you will ever accidentally capsize again.

I have the tops of both sections my mast sealed and tape the connection together. This creates a sealed section on the top half of the mast that acts as a float. I got the idea from reading RobertB's review of Occam's Toothbrush. He was looking to fill the top section of the mast with closed cell foam. When I inspected mine I found that the caps on the tops of each mast section were not watertight as the caps had grooves for O-rings but none were present. I added O-rings but still had to use a thin layer of silicon sealant to make the caps completely watertight. I abandoned the foam idea when I realized that I could create an airtight float out of the top section by taping the sections together. I used to store my mast taped together. I currently store it disassembled and tape the sections together each time I sail. It takes only a minute to tape and un-tape the sections.

I saw DaveM's hull damage photos during his Five Lochs expedition. I've suffered similar damage to my Raptor in the past. The carts that I use wore the gel coat away and the carbon fiber was visible. I had both the main hull and ama repaired with a layer of fiberglass added to the area where the trolleys attach. I then added a layer of closed cell foam to the cradles as a cushion and to increase the contact area. The fit of the cradle to the ama is good, while the fit to the hull is marginal but seems to get the job done. It's not the best construction, but it works. I've used the cradles for about six months and haven't noticed any wear to the hull.

My trolleys are from Quantum Engineering in Wisconsin. The wheels in the photos are temporary. The originals worked very well but had bearings that rusted out from the salt water. The replacements will be the wheels in the photo of the trolley for the main hull but with two wheels on each side. Quantum sent me replacements (with bushings as opposed to

bearings) free of charge, three years after my initial purchase, when I contacted them to buy replacement wheels. That's customer service!

I sail outside Kaneohe Bay during the late summer and fall. I've sailed as far as Kahana Bay to the north and Kailua to the south. I find that it's not worth the hassle to load the boat on the car and transport it to another launch area, as there are few suitable launch sites without obstructions or surf. Sailing around the island would be possible from a sailing standpoint but the problem is the lack of camping sites. There are very few safe campsites on Oahu. It's ~160 miles around the island and the entire west side, a stretch of 70 miles (20+ miles directly into the

wind sailing either clockwise or counter-clockwise), is unsafe for camping. Some club members have circumnavigated Oahu on a Hobie 16 and a Getaway, but they did it over a series of three weekends, trailering their boats to the launch sites each day and sleeping at home. I was planning a trip around the island of Hawaii, which has remote and relatively safe campsites, but the inter-island ferry shut down and there is no way to get a canoe between the islands other than sailing it.

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