Thursday, July 08, 2010

Element is for Sale in Florida:

This is a great deal on Tiki 21 in this condition.  Read the rest of this blog for all the details on the work I did to her.

From the classified listing on the James Wharram Designs website:

Element I, completely rebuilt in 2006, including new Jekels sails and forward tramp, new rigging. Currently in the water in Pensacola, ready to sail. Trailer with modification to transport either disassembled or fully assembled. 2009 Tohatsu 6hp 4-stroke.

First in class winner at 2009 and 2010 Pirates Cove Wooden Boat Festival. See website below for more details.


Saturday, May 17, 2008

Update: Element is For Sale Again, May 2008

Bill Cotton, who purchased Element from me last year and took it to Colorado, has recently asked me to post a notice here that he will be selling the boat. The sailing season is short on the mountain lakes of Colorado, so the boat has not seen a lot of use since he moved it there last summer. I'm sure it is still in the same excellent condition it was in when I sold it. If you're looking for a Wharram Tiki 21 in the U.S. that is ready to go and needs little, if anything, this could be your boat. This blog documents all the work that put into it, as well as the equipment upgrades such as the new engine, rigging, and Jeckells sails.
Below is photo of Bill with the boat, and under the photo the description and contact info he asked me to include:

This boat was beautifully restored by Scott Williams. It comes with main, jib, and spinnaker, a 5HP Nissan 4-cycle OB, a deck tent, trailer, ground handling equipment including two hull dollies and tow bar. It is a great sailing boat; goes well to weather, ideal for shallow water sailing as no center board or dagger board, no deep extending rudder. I have had it up to 15kts. It is very stable. It handled well with no hull raising in 50kt+ downburst.  SOLD!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Element Moves to Colorado

I've been slow to post an update on the latest happenings with Element, but I assume most of you who read this also read my other blog about the building of my new Tiki 26, which will become Element II when completed. If so, you know that I sold Element, a couple of weeks ago, and she is now sailing on a lake in Colorado.

Even though I decided to build a Tiki 26 while I was still refitting the Tiki 21, I had envisioned keeping the 21 until the new boat was almost complete. But the reality is that paying docking fees, worrying about hurricane season, and keeping up with the maintenance on the 21 was taking time and money away from the current project. I was beginning to think about advertising the boat for sale anyway when I received an email from someone interested in buying my Hita 17. Since I sold it just last November to Bill Barker, of Colorado, it was no longer available, but I said I would sell the Tiki 21 if I could get my full asking price. As it turned out, the interested party (ironically also from Colorado) was serious and quickly arranged a trip to Biloxi to see the boat and go for a demo sail. Element, of course, met all his expectations, and after an afternoon of fine sailing we closed the deal. I went back to the coast the next day with my trailer, and with the help of my sailing buddy Artie Vaughn, disassembled the catamaran and brought it home.

Last day of sailing in the Mississippi Sound. That's me with Element on the beach at Deer Island during a break in the demo sail. We had strong SE winds that day, and averaged 10 knots and higher reaching back and forth between Deer Island and Point Cadet.

Element on the trailer and ready for the long road trip to Ft. Collins, Colorado

Part of the deal I made with the new owner was that I would meet him near Okalahoma City, the approximate halfway point between Biloxi and Ft. Collins, Colorado. I drove all night to avoid heavy traffic and at dawn I was in the open country west of Oklahoma City. The boat trailered well and I had no problems pulling it this distance with my Mazda pickup.

Here is Bill Cotton, the proud new owner of Element with his new boat. This photo was taken in Calumet, Okalahoma, the tiny rural town we chose to meet at so we could swap the trailer from my truck to his. Bill is an experienced multihull sailor who has owned several trimarans, including a Farrier Tramp and an F-27. The Tiki 21 is his first catamaran, and he chose this design for its stability and seaworthiness. In addition to sailing on his local lake in Colorado, he hopes to trailer the boat to bigger waters such as the Sea of Cortez and possibly Florida.

Bill Cotton didn't waste any time getting Element back in the water. This photo was taken the very next day by Bill Barker, who bought my Hitia 17. Bill Barker and his son Houston drove the hour and a half from their home to Ft. Collins to help Bill Cotton put the boat together for the first time. Since they helped me launch it back in November off the beach at Biloxi, they knew a lot about it and everything went together as designed. They went sailing that afternoon and Bill Cotton has reported that he's been sailing several times since then. I'm glad he's happy with Element and glad to know he will sail her.

I will be without a boat for awhile until I can get Element II completed and in the water, but I'm okay with that, because at last I will have the boat I've wanted for years. Losing my 26 foot monohull Intensity to Hurricane Katrina in 2005 put me back on the path to a simpler kind of sailing, and restoring and sailing Element solidified my choice of designers, bringing me back full circle to Wharram catamarans, where I started when I built the Hitia 17 in 1998...

Friday, May 25, 2007

Changing Halyard Blocks on the Beach

I've had difficulty raising the mainsail ever since I re-launched Element after the refit. The problem is that there are two halyards for the main, one for the peak of the gaff and one for the throat. In the Wharram plans for the Tiki 21, Tiki 26 and Tiki 30, maybe other sizes as well, a side-by-side double block is shown hanging on a penant from the masthead for the purpose of handling these two halyards. The problem is, the double block wants to twist and bind, even if you try to keep equal pressure on both halyards when hoisting the sail. This is especially true in stronger winds when singlehanding and it's difficult to keep the boat headed upwind when raising and lowering sail.

From reading of other Tiki owner's experiences on the forums, I determined that it would be best to do away with the double halyard block arrangement and replace it with two separate single blocks, one for each halyard. I put this off long enough, so during my 4-day sailing trip last weekend, I decided it was time to remedy the problem. I didn't have any extra single blocks on board, so I decided to "borrow" two from the mainsheet traveler arrangement. The winds were near calm this past Sunday morning when I woke up at anchor off Horn Island, so I moved the boat as close to the beach as possible, set my main anchor off the bow and pulled the stern to the beach until the rudders were stuck in the sand. I set another anchor off the aft beam, carried ashore onto the beach to hold this position, and lowered the mast so the masthead was hanging over the beach to make changing the blocks easy.

Element backed up the beach with stern anchor set and mast lowered.

The new separate single halyard blocks. These are hung from the masthead on Dacron lanyards. The throat halyard block is positioned slightly lower than the peak halyard block, to prevent them from binding each other. This job only took a few minutes and the soon the mast was back up and I found the mainsail was easy to raise and lower, without any binding or hanging up whatsoever.

Here's a shot of the masthead showing the new halyard block arrangement, (Click on the photo to view full sized). This completely corrected the problem, and made me glad I had a boat small and simple enough to lower and re-raise the mast on my own, on a remote beach.
You will also notice the halyards are outside the mainsail luff pocket. I will put them back inside next time I remove the sail from the mast. I had pulled them outside the pocket due to the sail raising difficulties, but now know that this didn't have anything to do with the problem.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Gulf Islands National Seashore

Here are a few images from my sailing trip on Element last weekend. I left Biloxi and first sailed to East Ship Island, where I anchored for the first night. The next day I sailed over to West Ship Island and went ashore to visit a friend who is one of the captains of the Ship Island Excursion boats. West Ship is the only island in the Gulf Islands National Seashore with regular excursion boat service, and as a consequence it is usually crowded with sunbathers and beachgoers this time of year. I didn't stay long before pulling up the anchor and sailing to Horn Island, where I spent the next two nights sleeping aboard at anchor. Horn Island is the centerpiece of the Gulf Islands National Seashore. It is a designated wilderness area, over 12 miles long and approximately 1 mile wide in most parts. It is superb wildlife habitat with forests, marshes, interior lagoons, dunes and beaches, and is home to such creatures as alligators, raccoons, otters, rabbits, ospreys and many species of wading birds. The photo below is from the north shore of the island, about half way between the east and west ends.

Horn Island offers miles of usually deserted white sand beaches and pine forests

Marshes like this are found throughout the interior of the island, making it difficult to hike across the island except in a few places.

Here's a shot of the "galley" on Element, a two-burner propane stove on deck. This worked great even in the 15-20 knot winds I experienced the first night anchored out, due to the windscreen formed by the stove's lid. Dishes were easily done in a bucket of seawater, followed by a fresh water rinse. Stainless steel cookware is the way to go.

Every night of the trip I had perfect sunsets like this. I anchored far enough out to avoid the mosquitoes that are thick at night on the beaches, so at night I burned a white L.E.D. anchor light just in case any powerboaters cruised through the area. This portable L.E.D. light was great. I burned it all night for three nights without having to replace the AA batteries. When I get to the point of outfitting Element II for cruising, all navigation and interior lighting will be L.E.D.

The water can be quite clear around the barrier islands, such a contrast to the murky waters off the mainland coast in Mississippi. This photo was taken just off the beach at East Ship Island. The next day while sailing across the same area of shallows on the way to Horn Island, I saw a large shark, approximately 10 feet long cross my path just ahead of my bows.

Element anchored off Horn Island.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Approaching Horn Island

Here I'm returning to the north shore of Horn Island to find a place to anchor for the night after a full afternoon of great sailing. I spent the last two nights of the trip anchored off these beaches, and Sunday night after the weekend crowd left there was not another boat in sight and I had the island to myself.

Reaching in a Good Breeze

Here's a clip from a fine afternoon of sailing in the Mississippi Sound just north of the coast of Horn Island. In this southeast breeze, I was maintaining a steady 9 knots. It starts getting fun at this point. The spray was just beginning to fly a bit, and I could tell the boat would really pick up and go if the wind would just increase another 5 knots or so.

Broad Reaching along Horn Island

What's great about multihulls is the ability to sail in shallow water. This is particularly true of Wharram catamarans, which have no underwater appendages like daggerboards or centerboards to worry about. On this trip I enjoyed a lot of sailing like this, cruising along the beach in 2-3 feet of water just as I would normally do in my sea kayak. The shallows extend so far out from these barrier islands that I could never get anywhere near this close in my deep draft monohull.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Four Days of Beachcruising

I just got back yesterday from a four day trip on Element. I went to the barrier islands off the Mississippi coast, in the Gulf Islands National Seashore. It was a great trip with near-perfect weather and good wind for sailing. I slept and cooked aboard the boat, and only made brief visits ashore at East and West Ship Islands, and Horn Island. I have lots of photos and some videos from the trip that I will post in the next day or two, so check back here soon.

Monday, March 19, 2007