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Old 05 September 2023, 11:29   #1
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Country: UK - England
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Boat name: Nimrod II
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One old guy's daily outing (Aerotec, Tohatsu 9.8 2T etc)

Since Covid struck and coincidentally we became official pensioners I've made quite a few changes to our outfit and they way we use it but for reasons of a staggering family workload until yesterday I'd tried some of the items individually but we hadn't the chance to test all the elements together. For once family, weather and tide Gods all looked upon us with favour and off we went.

We've always been daily inflate folks and as long as I can lift both SIB and outboard this will continue. Of course this needs a roomy car and in a moment of madness during Covid we bought a Mercedes Viano with a day van arrangement. Huge vehicle that swallowed all the gear with ease and huge fun to use but after a year of 26mpg and van-like driving attributes I swapped for a S-Max which has proved more suitable overall. Took seats 6&7 out as we'd never use them and for a car the load space is huge. Pic shows all the boat, OB and kit for a day out packed in without the need to fold the seats and all under the load cover.

Next pic is the outfit spread out in our "local" launch area favoured setup location. Its 270m from the slipway but very quiet away from an otherwise packed seafront area (with impossible parking), always parking at this location, soft grass to put the SIB on and nicely shady.

The main change we've made to handling the outfit is to remove the air floor from the Aerotec when we pack, it takes the main bag well under 40kg which I find manageable.

We were nearly caught out this visit as unknown to us 150m into our trundle to the slip the road was closed to traffic and the Aerotec only just squeezed through.

I still favour wetsuit trousers, dinghy boots and rash vest for daily outings with top layers added as needed.

At the slip the bow trolley can be clearly seen. This is an absolute life saver as pulling along is so much easier than having to lift the weight and pull with your arm twisted round. My last non-trolley outing ended up with two months of physio to get my shoulder back right. I knew I was hurting but male pride made me carry on well beyond the sensible. By chance the transom wheels fit on the trolley and Mrs F happily trundles back to the car while I put everything in place and warm the engine at the slip. I like this bow trolley in particular as it steers so you can make tight and three point turns easily.

Continued in a moment...
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Old 05 September 2023, 11:31   #2
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Country: UK - England
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Good to see you out again David.

I checked the pics first and thought the caption: "tight squeeze" was referring to your clothing!
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Old 05 September 2023, 11:45   #3
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It's getting them off Max when you've been in the water that is the challenge!

We were so lucky with the weather, sun and 25deg is not always on offer when you forward plan a day out. Tide was perfect too being almost 1m above the usual norm and top of the tide around 4pm which suits us for a relaxed drive/setup then half tide launch.

The forecast wind increased from the expected almost nothing to 17kts from the east which allowed a long fetch into this area so more waves than chop once further out which I prefer really.

On the way out a first for us, a sunken yacht in the main channel. I mean I've seen old wrecks on the margins of estuaries but something with masts poking up was new to me. No warnings/buoys either. Wonder what happened?

This was the first time we'd both been in the Aerotec at sea since my outboard change from 15hp Yamaha to the 9.8hp Tohatsu 2-stroke. As ever the Tohatsu was an easy start, quiet at idle for a 2-stroke and would go into gear at tickover then pull away smoothly with no fluffing or stall danger. Very low fuel use too. However... as I said first time two up at sea with dog and all kit... sluggish to plane, only 13kts seen just once and only 4200 seen on the revs. It has the standard 8.5" pitch prop which given that's just 0.5" less than that on say the Mercury 15hp 2-stroke is probably asking a too much with draggy hull and fair load. I'm going to order an OE 7.5" pitch later and see how that goes.

I did of course try it one up without the dog too and then it popped onto the plane and made 16kts, forgot to check the revs though.
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Old 05 September 2023, 11:58   #4
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This was the dog's first time at sea too so we made a few trips out to different places and then returned to the pontoon so he could stretch his legs. He seemed happy and was quite keen to jump over to other boats in the moorings if they had perched seagulls. Had a pontoon cafe lunch too so it was all quite low key.

The extra helm seat I fitted to the Aerotec worked well, after a decade of advising tube sitting I'm happy to have greater comfort and variety of position. Also a great success were the Bengar brand seat cushions I bought from Germany a while back. They are very dense foam so compress far less than many hence give better support for old seat bones. Big vote for hers from Mrs F easing the jarring of the basic Aerotec wooden seat with its 4mm of foam. Anything that silences the complaints from the bow when dropping off a wave must be good.

I'm going to go through all my kit again as we really do carry too much and every bit of weight and faff saved is a benefit.

With this week's weather how much did we wish we'd the whole week down there.

Just off out to the drive for the big wash down and check over.
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Old 05 September 2023, 15:01   #5
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Nice write-up, David; thank you.

It must be said that there is something extraordinarily eerie about your picture of the sunken yacht. It's like a warning to other yachties.
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Old 05 September 2023, 15:13   #6
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Great pictures, always a pleasure to see a SIB being used from the boot of a car/van. SIBs best feature, its portability.
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Old 05 September 2023, 18:14   #7
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Nice read and description of your day David. Always interesting seeing others setups and what works for them.
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Old 05 September 2023, 19:20   #8
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Thanks guys... yep it's all about what works for you.

Flushing and assessing what we could lose in terms of weight today, this happens every time I try and sort to lose weight... the keep pile remains huge.
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Old 05 September 2023, 19:22   #9
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This did amuse me... you leave the RIB to snatch a quick G&T then this happens.
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Old 05 September 2023, 19:25   #10
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Another bit of age related research... the marine mapping handheld Garmin is getting harder to read when my variofocals are splashed with seawater and I take them off. Bigger and brighter screen needed. I'll see what's about with an integral battery. Don't want to go back to a separate battery. I mean charts are a luxury on a SIB but I've been used to looking at them since a kid and it's a hard habit to lose.
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Old 05 September 2023, 19:28   #11
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Really good to see you out and about on the water after your trials and tribulations of the past few years.

I was surprised to see a helm bench in the picture (saw the pic before I read the post) I find the ideal position for me is one cheek on the tube and one cheek on the bench, works for me!

I've forgotten your dogs name, but he seems to have taken to the SIB like the proverbial duck to water.

Do you think you'll manage another outing this year David?
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Old 05 September 2023, 19:38   #12
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Yep we're 100% getting out to test the new reduced pitch prop in a couple of weeks. I'd hate to go into the winter with it all packed away and not know if that prop resolves getting on the plane with less delay.

Dog is Tazz. Yep overall he was OK as any outing is great for a dog. He loves the car but we gave him a soft intro to sibbing.
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Old 05 September 2023, 19:41   #13
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Great to see you out David as you say life gets in the way, loved seeing your dog on the tubes too re kit it must be a generational thing carrying too much I’ve just dumped 30 year old stuff in good nick but never used hope this is the start of more outings for you and mrs F and of course the pooch.
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Old 05 September 2023, 19:41   #14
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>>ideal position for me is one cheek on the tube and one cheek on the bench

Funnily enough that's where I seemed to find myself but it was nice to have that padded seat to slide across onto more centrally when circumstances dictated.
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Old 05 September 2023, 19:48   #15
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Thanks Jeff. Do you know every time like today when I have the SIB kit laid out on the garage floor Mrs F says why do we take this and that we've never used it... but I always sell it on the safety/prepping need. Mind you today I did weed out spares for the previous two outboards we no longer have... I mean I really don't need to carry them.. do I?
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Old 05 September 2023, 19:51   #16
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Iíll bet it was good to get out on your boat after so long ashore.
Iím constantly trying to rationalise what I carry, but usually fail miserably. Enjoy th e rest of the season.
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Old 06 September 2023, 09:22   #17
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Where is this fella?

So on the bench with the cushion you don't ever feel like you'll be ejected from the boat?

Looks like a lovely day, jealous. I spent Sunday doing chores wishing I hadn't spent Saturday procrastinating about doing chores .
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Old 06 September 2023, 09:54   #18
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It's at West Mersea on Mersea Island just a bit south of Ipswich.

Ticks so many boxes for us... free slip usable at 95% of tide state, modern floating pontoon, adj cafe, seafood cabin, toilets, chandlers etc. Loads of moored boats to have a look around and plan your upgrade! Choice of messing about down the sheltered creeks, going down a long estuary or out to sea depending on the weather. Even the RNLI station next to the slip for fast response.

Re the SIB seat it's more secure than being on the tube and anyway all my life I've had good balance on a boat and never felt at risk in the roughest of weather on the tube. This is just about comfort really.
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Old 06 September 2023, 11:46   #19
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Ah yes, I was at West Mersea buying a trailer for my sailing dinghy last year. Bought some crabs from the Oyster Bar restaurant while I was at it. Marked the place down as a place to take a boat .
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Old 06 September 2023, 14:13   #20
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Yep Mersea is a very decent smallcraft area.

>>>constantly trying to rationalise what I carry, but usually fail miserably.

This is my third go and a bit more success with a ruthless attitude... 8kg of things and one of the three dry bags we carry moved to garage storage.
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