The rowing hardware was added to the boat with some adjustments and the boat was complete. The oars arrived from Croker Oars. (Great quality and value.) The guy on the phone even remembered Colin Angus and the Bering Sea crossing that was done using Croker oars. Next I modified the box trailer (it has an extended drawbar for 6.2 m ocean skis) and off to the lake for the sea (lake) trials.
I have rowed in a flat water four and in a surfboat but only with a sweep oar. I have never sculled. So I had an idea on what the oar is supposed to do but putting an oar in each hand was a new challenge for me. So back to Youtube for some good examples of sculling.
Sea Trials 1. It was quite windy when I moved out of the protected area in the photo for my first row. The boat was empty so the first problem was the wind would push the bow to leeward and would not track across the wind.
The second vital statistic that I need to mention at this point is that I weigh 110 kilograms. My son hopped in the cabin and the bow had a chance to bite and tracking was good. I gained confidence, smashed my knuckles a few times on the rigger and then as a finale, smashed the stretcher from the cockit floor. (Since rebuilt)
Sea Trials 2. The next day I went back to the same lake. I put an anchor, chain and rope in the boat in a clothes basket. I added a cooker, a pot, water, food and coffee. I also found a beach chair, the kind that is about 10 cm off the ground and that fits perfectly in the cabin. All of the gear was pushed towards the bow. It was really blowing today, about 25 knots and I had no son with me this time. I struggled going upwind as I was still not competent at sculling. The bow kept falling off the wind. I gave up and went downwind and found a protected inlet and dropped anchor.
I took out the cooker, boiled a meal in a pack, made coffee and felt quite proud of myself. I might not be a great sculler yet, but I can prepare a meal in the RowCruiser. On the way out of the inlet the pin attaching the gate to the rigger started to come loose. On the other side, the bolt holding the rigger to the hull started to come loose too. I made it back to the car and tightened everything.
All good to go.
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