Spring 2021 – Regattas, Foils, Trailers


Last year’s Championships were all cancelled but planning has started for the 2021 season — assuming vaccinations are complete, virus spread is halted, and Public Health Orders are removed.

From our US host club for the North American Championship:

Hello sailors,

Thank you for your response to my poll on our 2021 regatta. Very few of you wanted to skip for a second year and are hoping for a try this year. The EYC Board is assessing the situation on a regular basis and based on the current outlook for the summer, they have decided to slowly work towards an opening up of the EYC grounds towards the summer, subject state mandates. With that, our event schedule is compressed into a few months. The good news is that we have reserved the weekend of: August 7 & 8 for the 2021 edition of the “Live on the Edge” Multihull Regatta!

We will monitor the state mandates and will only put the Regatta on if it will be safe for all who want to attend. I will let you know when we open the registration, for now reserve the date. I look forward to seeing you again in August!


EYC Multihull Fleet

So our tentative Regatta dates for 2021  
These are possible only if things progress, borders open up and all things go back to normal.  

July 10 ,11th  Prairie Wind Regatta at NSC Lake Newell Alberta
Aug 7 ,8th      Live on the Edge Multihull Regatta  Eugene Yacht Club, Fern Ridge Reservoir, Oregon  Our NA’s
September 10,11,12th or 17,18,19th  Osoyoos??  Canadian Nationals ??


Two cedar rudder blades, 5/8″ thick by 4.75″ wide and 24″ long. 

If you build rudder blades make sure the grain is perpendicular to the chord (stronger).  Although you can’t see it clearly the left blade grain is perfectly perpendicular to the chord.  These boards are meant for a smaller rudder head than factory.  The cedar came from Windsor plywood sourced from a dump bin of clearance boards.  If you can’t find ideal boards with the grain running the proper way you will have to rotate smaller pieces of cedar and edge glue them to get a board with perpendicular grain.  For additional strength add fiberglass layers or even some carbon fiber with fiberglass and epoxy resin with a final paint coat to stop UV degradation of the epoxy.

Recently while poking around Princess Auto I found some carbon fiber 1/8″ thick boards approximately 5″ by 12″ for $35 each. 

One board will make one rudder head (two pieces).  The white block is a machinable nylon and can be cut with a table saw and drilled easily.  That nylon block is holding the plates together (with two bolts) and connects to the boat gudgeons with the 4″ SS bolt.  The two SS rivets on both sides of the top of the rudder head hold the aluminum bimini tubing (available from canvas shops) on the top of the plates.  The third rivet holds a piece of puck board on the inside of each plate that fills some excess dimension between the plates and is a friction reducer for the rudder blade.  There are three SS bolts with SS washers to help with strength.  The rudder blades are made with cedar and reinforced with carbon fiber.  They are about 24″ long by 9/16″ thick and 4.75″ wide.  The tiller arms will be the next smallest dimension of aluminum bimini tubing that fits perfectly into the rudder head tubing.  You will have to bend these to suit your boat.  Use “eye ends” and “jaw slides” available from the canvas shop to make your cross bar and tiller stick work and also be adjustable.  Why do we do this…the whole setup will weigh considerably less than the aluminum casting rudder head assembly, much larger sized tubing that the factory built boats come with.  It will be set up with through hull rudder blade downhaul line and shock cord rudder blade uphaul cord to make it all work nicely.  It will take some time to make all this and you have to accurately drill your holes (drill press) and be as accurate as possible to make everything work and look nice. 


Remember the trailer to the ABOVE?  Well it was too high to get the boat up there easily so it now looks like the picture on the BELOW.  Although you can’t see it, the plywood storage box has a vinyl roll top covering.  This makes the storage unit a lot more weather-tight and the storage box is more accessible with the increased top access.  If you travel a lot with your boat make sure the trailer suspension and lights are working properly.  Keep your boat snugly tied down to the trailer.  Check your bearing when you stop to see if they are heating up.  Look for metal fatigue cracking close to the hitch coupler and suspension attachment points.  Keep your speed down when trailering to spare the trailer tires and bearings.  Make sure you check air pressure in the trailer tires and the spare tire as well.  Carry a properly sized wheel bolt or nut wrench.  

Jan 2021 Newsletter

At this time it’s difficult to predict how the 2021 season will play out.   Please consider joining or rejoining the Canadian Seaspray Association for 2021.

At this time there are no plans for organized SeaSpray Assn. regattas for 2021, but I will advise if things change.  With no SeaSpray Assn. regattas in 2020, there was no opportunity for our AGM to take place in 2020.

Our season here on Lake Newell this past summer was pretty good.  Formal regattas were cancelled everywhere but there were a fair number of non-organized sailing club activities that played out well. We aren’t participating in a team sport so it’s a relatively safe activity to do during these times.

Get Well Soon Tom!

Here’s wishing Tom Alexander a full return to good health.  Tom (photo below) who lives on Vancouver Island was a regular attendee at the Osoyoos regattas until a few years ago. 

Boat Talk – Paint

Tremclad high gloss oil based paint applied with a foam roller, followed by a foam brush to level the paint really can freshen up an old boat. This is a low tech job anyone can do. Make sure you do good prep of the hull first. The most preferable choice for hull restoration is to wet sand. Gel coat can be freshened up a good deal by sanding and polishing and is preferable to painting. Paint may be preferable when no amount of sanding, etc. will brighten up the gel coat, staining cannot be removed or repairs to the hull have been made which make it impossible to make a consistent finish. There are better harder finish paints available that can be sprayed on as well.

This particular SeaSpray (photo above) is a foam core construction boat. The foam core boats are heavier but the hulls seem to hold their shape better. If you want a faster boat try to reduce as much weight (boat too?!) as possible and keep your hulls clean and smooth.

Boat Talk – Masts

The original SeaSprays were built lighter than later models. They were also “sock sail” boats so the rig was lighter as well. You can reduce the weight of your extruded mast a bit by grinding or cutting away some of the unnecessary metal. Some masts had horizontal cuts placed on the sail track portion (don’t cut into the main tube) of the mast to help the mast bend a little more. More bend will help to flatten the mainsail for better upwind flow over the sail.

Sock sail mast cap

The top cap can be removed and replaced with a wooden plug (sealed and screwed on) if you like as well. Many of the masts have main halyard pulleys that are too small (some masts had the bigger sized pulley and work fine). A 1″ or slightly bigger pulley(could use an appropriate harken cheek block) at the top will help to raise the mainsail. Removal of the bottom pulley and cutting away the sail track up to the gooseneck will reduce a bit of the weight and possibly place a horn cleat below the gooseneck for an easier downward pull and lock of the mainsail halyard. Make sure you use non-stretch rope for your halyard. You could even rig a 2:1 system for the main halyard. You really want the top of the sail to stay as close to the top of the mast as possible.

Track end view after riveting the two lengths on.

The other option, if and when more sail luff track is available, is to build a mast using 3″ irrigation pipe. This type of mast system is around 5 lbs lighter than the extruded mast. It will cost you some money, maybe upwards of $350 to build a mast like this but you will get a much bendier, lighter halyard sail system mast.

The extruded mast system is around 23 pounds weight with all the stuff attached. You might be able to cut a pound of weight off of the extruded mast. The tube mast with the sail track attached is around 16 to 18 lbs. The sock sail tube mast is around 12 or 13 lbs. One suggestion I heard about the extruded mast would be to fill it with muriatic acid and let the acid etch away some of the aluminum. Really didn’t think I would want to try this, leaks, safety, etc. but maybe it would work. If you try it make sure to rinse with lots of water and neutralize the acid.Both sock and halyard sail systems have their proponents. After getting used to the sock system I don’t feel there is any difference in time required to set up the boat with either system.

Boat Talk – Renovation Project

So, say you want to get a used Sea Spray and fix it up.  What is a used SeaSpray worth?  If you can find one of the original earlier, narrow slot (3/4″ instead of 1″ wide) daggerboard trunk models you could save a lot of work in not having to remove the two part foam.  These models used a couple of full sized bulkheads inside the hulls to provide strength instead of the multitude of fiberglass ribs.  They also have a finer bow that cuts the water better.  They likely will weigh less and sometimes a lot less.  Depending on the condition of the hulls a boat like this would be worth more than a later model.   Some earlier production, but not the narrow daggerboard slot boats, from Calgary used styrofoam blocks for flotation and these generally weigh less as well.  Remember Sea Sprays started out as race boats for the purposes of training potential Tornado sailers.  They eventually morphed into stronger heavier more rugged sailboats for the recreational market.   The most likely boat you will find in the used market is the later, heavier models.  There are advantages to getting a late model foam core Sea Spray. 

A rear deck opened for work on the transom. Note the stiffening ribs

Although they weigh more they are generally in better condition with hulls that keep their smooth shape (no wavey look punctuated with rib locations along the hull).  Weighing your finished Sea Spray requires that it weigh no less than 180 lbs all up so if you end up with an older model that could weigh 160 lbs all up, you are required to carry 20 lbs for racing purposes.   You could spend up to or more than $3500 for a complete overhaul with everything new, so if that is your plan, make sure you don’t pay $2000 for a used Sea Spray that requires a whole bunch of work and expense.  With a trailer, a good price might be in the $500 to $1000 depending on the boat model/condition and trailer type/condition (registered or not).     

Example of foam to be removed

Nearly all of the used boats I have acquired have needed a lot of work.  Waterlogged overweight boats can be difficult to re-right if you capsize, not as lively to sail, and harder to manhandle when loading or launching.  The ropes become filled with dirt over the years and are nearly impossible to run through the pulleys and need to be replaced.  If they have been replaced with nylon or polypropylene rope that doesn’t work well on a sailboat, get dacron non-stretch line.  Often the rudder blades and daggerboards are in broken or poor condition and may need replacement or a lot of work to restore.  Sails nearly always need to be repaired and battens are often missing.  Many cleats don’t work and the tramp is pulling out of the extrusion.  

Fixing up an old sailboat, that can be fixed, is a cost effective way to get into the sport. If a SeaSpray were built today it would likely cost way over $10,000 just for the boat so it’s worth your time and expense to restore an older boat.  Besides you are doing your part for the environment by keeping an old boat out of the land fill.  Whether your intention is to race, sail recreationally or make a more attractive/reliable/functional boat for resale fixing up your Sea Spray is a cost effective investment. 

Boat Talk – Now for something completely different

If you have the time, check out Fulcrum Speedworks newest boat the “Rocket”. It is a fresh take on a really old sailboat type. From the sailing videos of the Rocket, the lighter weight difference really helps the performance. The price is relatively inexpensive compared to new comparable boats and it comes with a launching dolly! A little more research about Dave Clark and his positive approach to sailboat building is infectious. It’s nice to see such a progressive approach from a boat builder.

Canadian Championships Regatta Update

From Lake Osoyoos Sailing Club:

At last night’s exec meeting of the Lake Osoyoos Sailing Club it was
decided to cancel the 2020 Canadian National Seaspray Championship Regatta
because of COVID – 19.  Although this is disappointing it was felt to be the
prudent thing to do. We’ve been having minimal club activities to protect
members and guests.  Stay safe, all.
Stan Storwick

It really shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone that this decision has been made. Although we all enjoy getting together at these events, we shouldn’t ignore the potential contact dangers associated with travelling to the regatta site. This virus cannot move on its own, it can only move when people move to or from a place outside of their ‘bubble’.

Prairie Wind Results

From Don Snell, Newell Sailing Club:

Eight SeaSprays participated in an open weekend sailing time on July 11 and 12 at Newell Sailing Club.  Some impromptu, socially distanced racing took place and the results are shown in the attached photo. 
The weather for the weekend was pleasant and about 8 other boats participated as well.  It is hoped that by next summer the normal Prairie Wind regatta will happen.  
Take a look at the windknife website from Britain again if you are interested in getting a new set of daggerboards.  One of our club members has acquired a set and I also bought another set for a second SeaSpray that I own.  So far I think that they work well and are a real time saver compared to building a set of wood/fiberglass boards.  You still have to fit them into your daggerboard trunks and seal the ends of the aluminum boards.  They do not float so some system of attachment to the boat is necessary.  The next item would be a set of light weight rudder blades.  If any of you find a source let me know.
As far as I know some type of event will happen at Osoyoos the second full weekend of September.  I will keep you posted if and when I learn more about that.  

Prairie Wind Regatta NOR

Don Snell sent this along regarding the Prairie Wind Regatta in Brooks, AB

Hi All,
The Newell Sailing Club will host a very non-typical regatta at our regular time frame July 11 and 12th 2020.  It will still be called the “Prairie Wind” Regatta however it will be a “bring your own food and beverages” event. There will be some (possibly 10 or more) on site tent camping spaces available.  Hotels and other camping are available in the area as well as there may be space left in Kinbrook Island Campground as well. 
You should contact John by phone (number on the notice of race) to let him know you will be attending so that we can follow government regulations in regards to our current viral situation.  At the moment the club hall and other buildings on the club’s grounds will be off limits (this may be subject to change).  The park bathrooms will be available for public use.   
The club will follow the current health regulations and expect members, competitors and guests to follow all mandated requirements. 
I have attached the Notice of Race and also you can view it on the Newell Sailing Club’s website under the regattas page.  Planned races to a maximum of 10.
We do not expect a large number of competitors but we could attract a fair contingent of SeaSpray sailors.  
You may also contact me at 403 362 7196 Don, for more information.   Please continue to check the Newell Sailing Club’s webpage for info or changes to this event. 

— — — — — — — — — — — 

from Steve Sherry…
In regards to the late Terry Clow

I remember his sail. It may be owned by Phil Minnehan.  Terry was a fun guy.  We had good adventures on the water.   

More Information: NA Regatta

June 12, 13 and 14   2020

The information below will help you plan if you intend on coming to this event.   Thanks go to the Eugene Yacht Club for their generous offer to camp on their grounds.  This helps to keep costs down and is helpful to the sailing group for convenience, socializing, help, etc. Thanks to Michael Butler for  being the liaison with the Eugene Yacht Club.

I feel this is a very generous offer for the extra day of competition and considering the distance some of us will travel it makes perfect sense.   For those of you who are thinking about coming this is a chance to explore some new areas and sample the scenery and lifestyle of this part of the country.

(from EYC contact):

“The EYC Board unanimously voted to support the Sea Spray Nationals as part of our LotE Multihull Regatta and the Friday prior. Here is the offer from EYC:
– Sailors are welcome from Thursday through Sunday night to camp on the EYC grounds
– participate in Thursday night club racing as practice race, $2 burgers after racing (club function)
Access to and use of club house
Racing: EYC will provide Committee Boat and Rescue boat, with EYC member driver at minimum. I will solicit volunteers from our Multihull Fleet for additional people on these boats.
We have our permanent Olympic Circle as an optional race course, we use that for Thursday night club racing. It allows for windward-leeward courses, triangle courses and combos of those. We can use that for the Friday racing, simplifying the course set up and thus easy to get many races in.
Friday night:
From here on out, you will be part of the LotE. LotE has its usual Friday supper for early arrivals, your group can participate in that. We will run the Sea Spray fleet as a separate start and scoring within LotE and as such they will participate in the overall Pennant and in the Team Trophy. Optional: we can score them as LotE fleet over the two days and then you can award the Nationals based on the three day results, or you can only award the three day event, I leave that up to you to decide.
The upcharge over the normal LotE regatta fee will be $25/boat, to cover Friday’s use of EYC assets. With a minimum of 6 boats.

Beware: EYC does not allow any pets on the grounds. Next door we have Richardson Park, part of Lane County Parks which allows pets and where you can camp as well..

The Sea Spray fleet will be responsible for boat rules compliance and for any special awards. If this is workable for you, I can add the Sea Spray Nationals to our normal registration process and include the $25 extra EYC fee.
If you need to add additional fees to cover trophies, etc., we can add that in as well and forward that portion to you. Or you can manage it all separately, that is up to you. If you want to combine with LotE registration and LotE awards, I would like to know asap, as I am about to post the NOR and open the registration. We can communicate on what you further need from the registration process.
I hope you can get your group warmed up to the idea to combine with LotE, we would love to be able to host your Nationals!
Let me know if you have any questions. My cell phone: 541-619-0221
Hope to hear from you soon.

Best regards,


Jan 2020 Newsletter

2020 SeaSpray North Americans

Some recent email discussion has the following proposed and most likely site for the 2020 SeaSpray North Americans.  There is a chance that they would give us a Friday start as well so possibly plan to get to the Eugene Yacht Club, Oregon area by Thursday.  Camping on the lawn area is also possible and Eugene is a short distance away for those that would prefer to stay in a hotel/motel.

LIVE ON THE EDGE MULTIHULL Regatta • June 13-14, 2020

Eugene Yacht Club is located on seven acres on the shore Fern of Ridge Reservoir just twelve miles west of Eugene, Oregon.

The most northern of the MHRA events. You can camp on the lawn (I believe) and they feed you etc and do a very good job (I am told). So it would be convenient, and not too far from Canada? Pretty sure we could get our own start. The early date is the issue, so that is why I am bringing it up now, before asking them. The weather can still be unsettled – a chance of rain in June.  Check the links below for more information.





I just sent a request to Larry Cox at Eugene YC for a fleet start, and to see if they will give us starts on Friday.  Michael Butler

This is closer for many of us to drive and the venue location offers a number of interesting areas to explore before and after the event.  A trial balloon of this event was sent to the attendees of the 2018 North American event and at this time six have indicated they would plan to attend this event.  Unless there is some major objection in the next few days over this time and location for the North Americans, plan to make this your destination for the 2020 SeaSpray North Americans.

Check the Eugene Yacht Club’s website for upcoming information on this event as well as any pre-registration requirements.  Often times pre-registering will save some money.

The SeaSpray Canadian Nationals will take place at the Osoyoos Sailing Club on the second full weekend of September including the Friday.  More info to follow on this event as well as pre registrations, etc.  Plan to pre-book your accommodations.

Trailer Storage Box

This fall I had some time to modify one of the two SeaSpray trailers I have.  After making do with small storage boxes on these trailers I thought about buying a larger cargo trailer.  The price and dealing with a third trailer gave me the big idea to modify one of the trailers I have.  It still needs some work a.k.a. getting the boat up and down on the rack as well as organizing the interior.  The box is 4′ wide, 5′ tall and 10′ long so plenty of room inside.  It is now possible to bring more things along like bicycles, camping gear, windsurf equipment.  Weight is an issue as the axle is good for 2000lbs so not a lot of extra capacity, maybe up to 500 lbs. not including the boat.  I estimate the box added 350 to 400 lbs.  Putting insurance on everything might be a good idea.


I would welcome your articles on anything relating to your boat, travel to and from events or other related activities or boat projects.

Next issue-sometime soon.

Fall 2019 Newsletter

Snell Wins North Americans

Congratulations to Don Snell for winning the 2019 North American Sea Spray Championship.  Congratulations also go to Richard Braul for second place and Rupert Holmes-Smith for third place finish.  There were 11 Sea Sprays competing but unfortunately no American competitors were present.  The races were hosted by the Osoyoos Sailing Club with good winds on Saturday and Sunday allowed for 10 races overall.  Friday being the sit on the beach day with only one race on that day.  It should be noted that Chris Scheuren a non-competitor won the Turkey award for attempting a long distance trip with a motor boat without a very necessary gas tank.  Outboard motors can run without a gas tank albeit for only five minutes.  Good thing they had oars in the boat!  There were a few capsizes but no rescues.   John Cormack was able to attend as race officer.  The usual format of running races from the fore deck on land was changed and the races were run from a MacGregor 26 race committee boat on the water.  A windward mark and downwind gate of two marks were placed and the start/finish line was maintained square to the wind and the windward mark was shifted as necessary due to wind shifts.   CLICK HERE TO VIEW SCORING

New Sails

Gary Ford offered some other sail source with the following information….Hi Don, further to our conversation regarding the design of sails for your seasprays. I can send you my notes based on my design and the associations one design sail measurements in both SI and Imperial sizes.
Gary was able to design his sails using this program and have the sails made off shore at a very reasonable price.  More info to follow on this subject.  There are also sail kits available from Sailrite out of Indiana US.  These are a fairly full design but could be modified if conversations with their sail designer take place.  At the moment the cord/camber ratio is about 10:1 but could be flattened a bit to 11:1 if desired.  Make sure they design the sails using the allowable foot roaches for the main and jib.  Having built a jib some adjustment to the patches is needed and I would recommend a slightly longer luff wire for the jib (say at least 2″ or 3″).  There are material choices as well.

The Windknife Daggerboards

After using these boards for the Nationals and the North Americans I would recommend their use if you want to replace or upgrade your dagger boards.  Having built a number of sets over the years the aluminum boards represent a real time saver.  You will have to fit them properly in the trunk which will involve a fair bit of work in order to prevent water slopping up the trunk.  Even after sealing the boards they still do not float so attaching them loosely to the side stays is recommended.
After capsizing in one race my big concern was not to loose one or both boards.  I did have a side shock cord under tension holding them in place but my main concern was to make them secure.  Even after turtling and righting the boat they stayed in place because of the sideways force of the shock cord.
They did bend (but not permanently) when levering the boat to a sideways capsize position and stepping on them close to the hull did not permanently bend them so I would say they withstood a somewhat moderate force.  The trailing edge is sharp and placing a piece of oak or maple with a saw kerf to help quide them up and down inside the trunk makes for a smooth workable action.  I used blue styrofoam in front of the boards inside the trunk and top and bottom was finished and aligned with bondo with the short strand fiberglass strands in the mixture.

For more on this topic see Don’s previous article about these foils.

Waiting for wind on Friday afternoon.

Relaxing and discussing all things that matter

It’s not all about sailing when you attend a regatta.

There was lots of socializing and relaxing too.  The Lake Osoyoos Sailing Club provided some outstanding meals as well.
Wine and cheese Friday night had a wide variety of local wine.  The weather was great on Friday, good on Saturday (with moderate winds) and on Sunday it rained with slightly less wind than on Saturday.  Gas prices dropped to $1.25 per litre in Osoyoos on Saturday, somewhat of a deal in BC.

UPDATED – It’s A Wrap


The 2019 SeaSpray North American Championships marks the end of the racing season for the class and while I haven’t received the full results, I can announce that Don Snell has regained the NA Championship.

Friday saw the usual dying wind conditions which meant only one race was completed and Saturday, once the direction stabilized, saw near perfect winds for SeaSpray racing and some very exciting racing.

As soon as the full results are available, I will post them on this website. In the meantime, here are a few photos from Friday & Saturday.



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