Above: With her damaged bulkheads replaced, the Evelyn 32-2 sailboat RUSH is back in action. Several weeks later, the new bulkheads proved they could handle the stress of a heavy knockdown and a major storm during the infamous 2002 Chicago to Mackinac race.
If you race a sailboat long and hard enough, it eventually will reveal its weaknesses, sometimes violently. My friends and I race an Evelyn 32-2 called Rush. Less than a month before the 2002 Mackinaw races, we were competing in the Saginaw Bay Yacht Racing Association, Gravelly Shoals race. Throughout the race, the wind had been building and we were a little overpowered with a full main and 150% headsail. We had completed about 45 miles of the 50-mile race when the starboard chainplate decided it had enough and pulled out of the bulkhead. Continue reading →
Hopefully, you can stand one last story about El Niño. I work for Bay Metro Transit in Bay City, Michigan, and the long hot summer of 1998 was especially hard on some of our transit buses. Our 27′ buses are a front wheel drive unit, powered by a Cummins Diesel engine mounted below the driver’s seat. We were experiencing dozens of air conditioning compressor failures, along with various other problems due to the overheating. While this was happening, the manufacturer also realized it had a problem, and equipped all subsequent buses with a fan on the side engine cover of the bus that sucked the hot air out of the engine compartment, curing the problem. Continue reading →