HMS Beagle Model Ship Project
Maiden Voyage (July 2, 2011)
Around 10:30 in the morning, with the air heating up about five degrees each hour, we hauled the cart to the edge of the Carmel Reflecting Pond. First we floated the Beagle for a bit, tested and adjusted the rudder tension and then... off she went for the first time.
We spent about two hours on the water with a wind that alternated from being becalmed to fairly light. A few sudden gusts heeled her over a bit, but not enough to bring the water up to her scuppers.
The rudder proved to be fairly ineffective at turning in the light wind. Couldn't get enough speed going to tack, so I ended up boxhauling a lot to change direction.
Then a pirate ship showed up, firing at us with at least one giant 48 pounder cannon! Just look at that splash!
After a lengthy calm and suspecting a stuck rudder, my Beagle began slowly drifting close to an undesired encounter... so out I went to play Poseidon.
Yards all seemed to work well, though it was a challenge to find the light and shifting wind direction for long.
With the time past lunch and the heat already reaching 90 degrees, we called it a successful maiden voyage.
Not sure if the difficulty in turning was just the lack of wind, or if my 3x long rudder still wasn't long enough. I'll probably make a clip-on extension for the next go and see if that makes a difference. I see lots of experimenting to be done with the mizzen sails and jib for the next time as well.