Friday, July 30, 2010

Giant Tree Limb: 1 Jetta: 0

In case you were concerned about the lack of web updates in the last 24 hours, I sincerely appologize. I was a little preoccupied yesterday....

I was quietly sitting at my desk after lunch yesterday when Tucker, a member of the fulfillment team came up and said, "a tree limb fell on your car". After my initial reaction of, "really?", I ran downstairs and down Severn Ave to find this. (see picture at left) Seems the serious storm on Sunday knocked a limb loose and I decided to pick the wrong parking spot for the day. I guess I'll think twice about parking under trees from now on.
Half off APS had beaten me to the scene and were checking out the damage and luckily for me a few had already gotten a tarp because of course, it began pouring a few minutes later. So, with some help from some of the boys, we (I drove the car forward while the boys grabbed the tree) were able to get it off the car and covered with a tarp without too much water going in.
After visits from the Annapolis Police, calls to the town about their faulty tree and many, too many, to the insurance agency it looks like with any luck I will have blue back in a few weeks. Or, maybe take up everyone's advice and turn it into a Jetta convertible? Hmm, you know, it could be quite nice around Annapolis in the summer and the roof already needs to be replaced so I guess I'm already mostly there? The winter might be a little cold though. Pass.
In any case, the only pieces of safety glass left holding together from my windshield was done so by my trusty Delaware Sailing sticker. I'm glad to see the power of the Del team kept their act together. I guess a trip to Newark is going to be in order for a new one. Luckily, no one was hurt or around when it happened so at the end of the day the only loser in this battle is my Jetta and my wallet. Glad I could test of the battle of Jetta vs Tree for everyone. Results are conclusive... Tree definitely wins.

Dodging storms for another successful Thursday Night Race...

Thunder clapped and rain came somewhere around 3 pm yesterday afternoon but they skies parted long enough for Thursday night racing last night. Cameras out and coolers stocked we managed to get some racing in before the next line of summer storms rolled through. With one race under our belts the wind died and the sound of hissing beer cans could be heard across the water.

Some of the APS crew sailed a J22 and were lucky enough to get a tow to the docks before the wind totally shut off. Thanks Dan Phelps/Spinsheet!

Here are a few snapshots Lynn, our receiving manager, took while doing RC...if you were out or are interested in seeing more click here!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Code Zip by Camet

Camet came out with a new version of the popular selling 'Code Zero' technical shirt called, 'Code Zip'. The main differences in the new technical shirts are the long front zipper that gives added ventilation and the high mini mock neck for sun protection. The shirt is made from the same double circular knit fabric that is known for its wicking abilities and for providing maximum UV protection. The lightweight top is very comfortable and made from 100% polyester, making it ideal for custom decoration. It can easily be dye sublimated with your team or business logo.

Check out the short video for a closer look at the new Code Zip by Camet.

Monday, July 26, 2010

APS Sails?

In addition to all the fun tweaky bits for your Laser, APS now has practice sails in stock. Our Laser sails are made from 3.8 oz cloth with more resin than the class legal sails. The result is a sail that will hold it's shape better and last longer.

These sails are a great way to save your class legal sails for the important regattas and have a great looking, fast sail to use for weeknight or frostbite racing if your local fleet allows it. I used the sail the other week for SSA's TESOD series and it's just as fast (probably a bit faster since it was brand new) than the class legal sails out there.

Our APS Laser sails come with tell tails already installed. They also include battens and an APS Pro Clew Strap. I'll have more details about the clew strap next week, it's the best on the market and it comes free with your APS Laser® practice sails!

Check out our opti and sunfish practice sails too for all your practice sail needs.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Now With More Holding Power!

One of the great things about sailing the Laser® is that even the most Gucci of upgrades is only going to set you back less than a dinghy boat unit (a mere Ben Franklin rather than a big boat grand). This year we're offering a couple different new things for the Laser that will make your life easier and help keep your head out of the boat.

One of the upgrades we're offering is the Laser® Pro Clew Inhauler. It attaches to the old outhaul cleat on the boom and hooks on to your clew to pull the sail forward when you ease the outhaul coming around the mark.

It's super easy to install - you just fold it in half and luggage tag the middle of the shock cord to the cleat. Then just cross the shock cord under the boom and hook it onto your clew strap or through the grommet. You can leave the shock cord on the boom when you're not racing making it super easy to hook up when you're rigging.

The other upgrade is the Laser® Pro Daggerboard Downhaul Kit. It's an upgrade for the daggerboard shock cord that comes with the boat. It mounts to the eyes aft of the mast and attaches to the daggerboard with a tiny snap shackle. This provides a lot of downward tension on the board and helps hold it down tighter in the trunk. Combined with the new daggerboard brake you have the ultimate system to keep the board down upwind.

If you haven't checked it out we also have a section devoted to mainsheet options for the Laser®.

Here's a short instructional video by yours truly on how to install the Daggerboard Downhaul Kit.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

A short review on Spinlock's New 'Zero' Buoyancy Aid

Spinlock’s latest High Agility Buoyancy Aid, ‘Zero’ is here! The 50N Zero vest is designed for the more performance sailboat racer. Spinlock put more thought into the construction of the 2010 vest. They took a look at how sailors move around the boat during races and designed the vest to be less restrictive so that the vest moves with the body, rather the body with the vest. The vest itself is very lean and includes high-stretch panels, again, allowing for unrestricted movement.

The other cool feature about the vest is the combination of the vented back and mesh panels. This feature is a huge advantage for racers because your average padded vest does not allow room for breathing. The mesh siding allows air to move through the side of the vest into the back paneling that is contoured to allow the air to travel out, cooling you off and making the vest less like a sauna. The back vents also allow water to quickly drain from the vest which is nice when your being drenched by waves. In all, Zero offers a very efficient design.
Other neat features include:

• Hand warmer pockets with neoprene inside and two mesh pockets
• Quick drain design allowing water to exit the vest
• Body fit belt for easy and accurate adjustment
• Slim profile fit
• ISO 12402-5

When I tried on the vest it felt very lightweight and I had more mobility compared to other vests that are fully padded within. Right around the waist of the vest is where the most mobility is available, making bending a whole lot easier. The adjustable straps are a plus and much easier to adjust compared to other buckle systems. I’m not a huge fan of the top zipper cover that seems to catch on things and flip inside out but, that’s minor compared to the rest of the vest. I think the look of the vest is nice, nothing too incredible. The color combination is a fun mix of light gray, black and green. James looked like a Ninja Turtle in the vest which we all thought was super cool and I’m sure he did too!

I think the most important thing about this vest is how it fits and moves with your body.

Below is a short video with a closer look at the inside function of the ‘Zero’ vest.