As the snow maps indicate, the area is pretty much snow free. Ice is about 9" deep but surface would be a bit slow (spongy). I've been trying unsuccessfully to ice sail these twenty or thirty miles of Mississippi backwater mazes for about ten years. Whether wind gets here before snow or a thaw is problematic, as usual.
As the big press to identify a site for the DN Worlds which begin late this week, sailors will be out on thin, perhaps perilous ice in two or three time zones of North America looking for that elusive combination of: a perfect sheet of ice, big enough and thick enough; a forecast that is dry enough, warm and windy enough; a launch site that will accomodate the fleet, friendly locals, and all the other variables... some of the areas being scouted are believed to be very thin, freshly frozen sheets of ice.
Today was a day for finishing up. The big project was mounting the plank to the hull and doing an alignment. I also spent some "quality time" on the sharpener getting rid of a couple of small flat spots on my inserts.
After a final sanding I deflected the plank to 500 lbs, then applied the first (and likely final) coat of epoxy. The spring-constant changed almost imperceptibly, from the "raw state" value of 149 lbs/inch to 151 lbs/inch after shaping. Since I'm a geek, I fit the data
I spoke with 4691, somebody has the runner mold, but who?
I'm building a few sets of inserts, and one or two sets will be available this month. will post photos of progress...
(actually, it's back on the jig to let the epoxy completely cure...)
I pulled all the clamps off, quickly cleaned off the excess epoxy, and eagerly checked the deflection. It looks pretty good, about 145 lbs/inch so it deflects just under 1 3/4 inches with me on it. I'm guessing it will stiffen up a bit as the glue gets to full cure, and rounding the edges will probably soften it, so it will probably end up very close to this value.
The final (and most lengthy) part of the repairing my DN after the crash on Jan. 2nd was to build a new plank.
This is what is covering most of the Bay
Launch site looking East.By enlarging the picture you can see further out past the launch site is fairly new ice, with very little snow cover.It was only about 3" in thickness,so still needed a little growing.The Temp this week are showing a real cooling trend,so building ice should not be a problem.
This is how much Snow we got Friday night.It is about 1.5 cm easily sailable in the 10 mph winds today.Nice smooth black ice under the coating of snow.
Little harbour to the right of lauch site at Silver Harbuor.About 700 yds long by 500 yds wide.Being I was the only Ice Boat sharing the ice with a couple fisherman and a buddy of mine and given the fact it is a shawllow bay with 6" of ice made for safe sailing.Further out from Silver Harbour the Ice was very smooth with just a light covering of hoar frost.Given the fact it was only 3" thick it was probably sailable but wise by myself not to.
Few from Silver Harbor today,looking out towards the Sleeping Giant.there istill some open water about 1.5 miles out.