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June 1, 2012

New Navstation Computer?

I’ve used small netbooks previously (look at the EeePc line for one low-power solution). These have worked well, but this year It looks like we will have a different configuration: The EeeBox and a small 14-inch USB-connected display: The display burns 5W or less, and with keyboard and mouse plugged in, and the […]

February 2, 2010

Three Bridge Fiasco, 2010

Mark Missed, Mean Mouse, Much Mayhem That was our Three Bridge Fiasco in a nutshell.  This is the biggest race of the year on San Francisco Bay — Saturday, January 30, doublehanded or singlehanded, 311 boats entered, 282 boats started, and 242 boats finished.  The rules are unique: three marks — Blackaller buoy (near the south […]

September 8, 2009

Racing on No Ka Oi

You may recall that as VALIS was sailing home from our recent northbound attempt, we discovered that we were entering the Golden Gate at the same time as No Ka Oi, returning from Oahu.  No Ka Oi had raced in the 2008 Pacific Cup, and as a result of our radio contact out by the […]

August 27, 2009

Sailing on the Bay

Yesterday Mary, Edward Killeen, and I took VALIS out for a sail on the bay.  At first it looked like the fog was going to be hanging around, but as we left the slip the sky began to clear and we had nice warm day.  The wind started out light, but once we got out of Sausalito […]

June 30, 2009

Google Earth Track – our northbound adventure

Here (attached) is the Google Earth “.kmz” file showing our track up and down the coast. You can also see the ships we were seeing with our AIS system. I have included placemarks for the major weather buoys along the San Francisco to Seattle route. I swear that we can sail better tacking angles than […]

April 14, 2009


Just received this from our good friend Jack Thomas, Commander of the U.S. Navy “Skinny Dragons”: ——— Re: Pirates If you’ve been watching the news, you might have seen a familiar four- engine turboprop flying around.   Cheers, Jack ——— I would like to say “Thank You” to Jack and the Skinny Dragons.  You guys […]

February 1, 2009

Three Bridge Fiasco Report

Rich and I had a great time sailing in the Fiasco.  We saw some old friends, made some new ones, had a few minor close-calls, and experienced quite a variety of conditions. Our start time was 10:18:18AM.  Almost a dozen other boats shared the same starting time, and since the various starts were spaced by about […]

January 25, 2009

Three-Bridge Fiasco

VALIS will be racing in the “Three Bridge Fiasco” on Saturday, January 31.  This is a race sponsored by the Singlehanded Sailing Society (with singlehanded and doublehanded divisions) and should be a lot of fun.  As this point there are 322 entries, and there is still almost a week to go for sign-ups.  VALIS will be […]

November 22, 2008

VALIS is a Cover Girl!

And here she is, gracing the December 2008 edition of SAIL Magazine: This shot was taken by Peter Lyons, when we were heading out the Gate for a pre-Pacific Cup offshore overnight shakedown.  From left to right the crew is: Rich (at the helm), John (completely hidden behind Rich), Michael, Alan, Steve, and me up […]

April 18, 2008

Communications and Navigation Technology aboard VALIS

I have actually been asked to describe the systems and programs we use on VALIS  for communications and getting our weather forecasts.  Here it is: Any comments or suggestions are most welcome.