Originally Written By Bob Blake Sr. in 2000. (Recent upgrades and minor changes In Italics by Bob Jr.)
In recent issues of The Day Sailer Quarterly, we’re had two rigging guides for stern traveler set-ups. (See the spring 1998 issue, pp. 45-51, “Good Ship Lollipop,” by Phil Root and the summer 2000 issue, pp. 25-44, “#316 Viejo,” by Ken Reitz and Dave Keran.)
So here’s an account of a classic O’Day Day Sailer with a mid-boom traveler system with descriptions of our other rigging solutions, developed over some forty (now 50+) years. The purpose of this account is to describe in words and show by photos some of the solutions to various rigging problems so an interested reader won’t need to re-invent the wheel when rigging a Day Sailer and go through the trials and errors Bob, Jr. and I did to arrive at a boat that has the controls that work in all kinds of weather and are virtually always available to both skipper and crew on all points of sail.
The Blakes have sailed “Dumpling” since 1965 (Photo 1). With a double plank Skaneateles Comet and a homemade wooden trailer as a trade-in, the brand new Dumpling and new Teenee trailer cost $1500. Boy, what a bargain for the fun and excitement all the family has had with this beautiful boat!
Photo 1 – Dumpling in 2011 nationals (Photo by Brett Elizabeth Blake)
Talk about a stock boat! She had mahogany floorboards (We still have them in my garage.), wonderful coaming to prevent water from coming in when we hiked out (but tough on your rear end), jib leads out to the gunwales, a jam cleat for the main sheet on the centerboard trunk, a shaped centerboard and rudder all right—shaped like the proverbial barn doors—and no tiller extension.
A word about originally doing our own rigging. At the Brockport Yacht Club on Lake Ontario, just 18 miles west of the home of daddy Kodak, we had plenty of do-it-yourself tinkerers in our club. And were they clever at creating and re-designing boat “stuff.” So I tried to keep up with them. I fashioned tiller extensions from aluminum tubing but they always collapsed. And many a homemade spinnaker pole fitting bent out of shape in any kind of moderate wind.
I’m a slow learner, but I finally came to realize that I would be better off to let professionals produce all my fittings rather than trying to jury-rig my own parts just to keep up with those “handymen” in our club.
My first move was to take off the jam cleat from the centerboard trunk and get a stainless steel sheet, bend it over the centerboard trunk and bolt it to the thwarts (Photo #2). (By the way, the original thwarts have been replaced with the present oak ones.)