RL Reno (rlreno@worldnet.att.net)
Tue, 24 Aug 1999 07:31:08 -0700

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West Wight Potter Website at URL
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Brad- I would look into 3 things:
1. Ask about the hull and deck upgrades to stiffen the boat.
2. Consider getting the Baja trailer. Boat rides lower for launching
and gives more stable ride, especially on rough roads (potholed parking
lots seem to be the worst!)
3. Ask if they will put 2 reefs in the main sail. The first one should
be rigged for jiffy reefing about 6 inches above the lowest batten
(usually this comes below the batten, which Jerry B. says is too low-
and I agree with him fully). The second set of reefing points should
also be set deep to make the main tiny. Unlike the hull upgrade, this
is something any good sailmaker can do for you. But I would do it now-
somehow wind knows when a shakedown cruise is happening.

With a totally solid boat and ability to reef down to tiny sails in a
blow you are more likely to enjoy heavy weather on an even keel.

Regardless, you can't go far wrong with a new Potter. If you are like
most of us, you will be putting bizarre options on it for the duration,
so I would not worry too much about adding additional gizmos now. Try
to visit other boats to see what things seem to be useful rather than
just in the way.

One last note, I just saw an HMS 18 for sale on the list (#38 or so as I
recall) for less than 4000. I have the same model, and if it is still
available and in even halfway good condition, I would consider getting
it NOW and pocketing all the rest of that cash for your own special
upgrades. Those old boats are built like tanks! (not to denigrate the
new boats, which are real nice). I was totally set on a new boat last
year, but a cruise in Greg Yu's HMS 18 and Jerry's recommendations
convinced me to go the used route. No regrets.

HMS 18 #42 Bluebelle