Sailmaster: Great for recreational cruising, not rescue missions.
Recently I had the opportunity to take a few friends out on my boat for the first time, here on the Connecticut River. We got there early and managed to sail until about lunch time. It was warm that day and people began to poop out so the decision was made to anchor close to about 25 other boats enjoying the lovely afternoon. Talking, drinking, eating, and festivities ensued on board. There was discussion about getting closer to the shore and hanging out there, but as my boat drafts 2’6” and I have no depth finder I was not willing to bring it in that close…
And I had my first volunteer overboard (swimmer). She was immediately swept away by the strong river current. Needless to say I quickly pulled the anchor and pursued. While 8Hp is enough to push 3,700 pounds of boat along just fine, by no means does it do so quickly. After weaving through a few boats and throwing her a line, we pulled her up to the boat.
There was a concentrated “oh-shit” factor involved but my crew kept their cool and everything turned out fine. Just something to keep in mind when river sailing in a Sailmaster.
In other news I found a free Zodiac type boat on the same day of the overboard. It’s 9’6” and was lying next to a dumpster. I saw while walking through the parking lot of my marina that an elderly couple had a barnacled mess of a semi-rigid next to their vehicle. I thought nothing of it as it looked like they were loading into their vehicle to take it home. I was only half right. They loaded it into their car just long enough to haul it to the garbage. They threw it away because the floor separated from the inflatable hull, and by the looks of it they sank it. WHY WOULD I NOT IMMEDIATELY LOAD THIS INTO MY TRUCK?! Yet another free boat for Brendan. I think with a little thread, toxic, epoxy, or melted rubber I can reattach the floor (I forgot to mention the separation is only 2’ long). The biggest downside to this boat is that the inflation pump is non extant. This will be the most expensive part of the fix, I think. I have literally no knowledge on the accessories to inflatables, so this will boat learning experience #435,329. I know it will support up to a 10Hp motor, which would certainly get me going without issue. I will post information on the inflatable as I find out more.