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Archive for November, 2008

Speed Seal – For Quick Seawater Pump Impeller Changes

Thursday, November 20th, 2008

Speed Seal was designed to simplify the removal of water pump covers by eliminating the need for tools.  Most sea water pumps require the use of a screw driver or ratchet to take off the cover plate.  As many of you know, there is usually little physical room for such a job.  The lack of room coupled with the frustrations related to time may be a negative enough experience to keep some sailors from performing the preventative maintenance their engine requires. The Speed Seal was designed to eliminate this frustration.  


Speed Seals cover plates are similar to those installed by your pump’s manufacturer, with a couple of exceptions.  The first difference is the cover plate comes packaged with a set of thumb screws instead of your standard flat/Phillips head versions.  The thumb screw head allows you to quickly release and remove the screws by hand.  The second feature the Speed Seal offers is a slotted plate.  By this, I am referring to the bottom two bolt/screw holes of the plate.  These two holes are not actually holes, but open-ended slots.  With this type of plate you do not have to completely remove the bottom two thumb screws.  With the screws still threaded into your pump you are less likely to drop them into the boat’s bilge.  The slotted plate will also assist you in getting the plate on more rapidly by allowing an exact line up when the bottom screws are left installed or installed prior to the plate.


The Speed Seal plate eliminates the need for a paper gasket.  Those plates that work with an engine formerly employing a paper gasket will now have a built in o-ring along the plates underside.  These particular plates are also machined to fit your pump by imitating the depth of the former gasket, as not to affect the impeller’s rotation.  Pumps that utilized the use of an o-ring prior to the Speed Seal plate would continue to do so.  

Usually Torresen Marine is able to cross reference your marine engine with a Speed Seal.   


If you do not find a cross for your engine listed Torresen Marine will require a few different dimensions from you.  First we will need the plate’s outer dimensions (diameter if a round plate).  We will also require the bolt centers and size. Please also let us know if your pump currently seals via use of an o-ring or a paper gasket.  Unfortunately, if your cover plate is not squared or circular we will not have a Speed Seal match for you.  


Each Speed Seal kit includes the cover plate, a set of thumb screws, and an impeller remover.  In cases where you will need an o-ring to replace an original equipment paper gasket, that will also be included.  Cover plates are constructed of 1/4″ naval brass, while thumb screws of marine grade 316 stainless steel are utilized.  Spare thumb screws and o-rings can also be purchased for replacement.  


Please contact the Parts Department at Torresen Marine for any Speed Seal questions you may have at 231-759-8596 or     

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Let There Be Light – Section One

Thursday, November 20th, 2008

One of the most problematic areas on a mast is the electrical system. This article will focus on the specifics related to a proper mast lighting system. This system can be divided into the light fixtures themselves, the circuitry and connections, and the proper use of these lights. In this article we will focus on light fixtures. The following sections will discuss wiring the mast light circuits and their proper usage.

The quality of light fixtures varies from the simplest incandescent plunger bulbs to solid state LED construction Obviously the price of these fixtures varies greatly as well. I always said that if I were to manufacturer a light fixture and want it to last, it would cost several hundred dollars. Probably wouldn’t sell enough of these to keep the heat on in a yurt. Therefore, it is important to make the best circuit with what we have. Light fixtures can range in price from as low as $60 to as high as $395 depending on construction processes.

Most fixtures are very simple with friction-fit bulbs. After testing many systems, I have found that the biggest enemy is moisture. Even though most light fixtures have sealing technology, eventually moisture gets everywhere. Even the best-sealed fixture will condense as temperature and humidity levels change throughout in as little as one day. This moisture attacks the bulb connection material and causes corrosion until, after time, the conductivity of this connection fails. The answer to creating longevity in this type of fixture is to simply clean the contact surfaces with a red Scotchbrite cloth. Then replace the old bulb with new and coat the contact surfaces with electrical grease. At this point we have given up on eliminating moisture. Instead we want to control where it lives in this light fixture. In this case, everywhere but on the contacts themselves.

If we want to eliminate moisture we have to look into LED construction. These lights have solid-state circuitry and the whole package uses printed circuit board technology. Perko and Aquasignal make relatively inexpensive LED mast head lights for use as an “all-around” white light. Lopolight on the other hand makes a masthead light that really is state-of-the -art, completely encased in a special epoxy resin mold and an anodized aluminum case, thus eliminating exposure to the elements.

The basic benefits of LED technology are that the electrical draw is less that 30% of incandescent lights, shock and vibration resistant, and the life expectancy is usually rated at 50,000+ hours. At this point I need to explain something about LED lights. A common misconception is that LED is a light that is used to illuminate. Ever purchase an LED flashlight? They look cool, but even with clusters of diodes and magnification lenses they don’t cast off a powerful beam to see with. That said, LED lights are meant to be seen, not to see by. These points explain some issues that pertain to common problems with light fixtures. The next article will introduce the wiring components and their associated effects.

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North Texas Road to Rolex Clinic Graduates 41 Women Sailors

Tuesday, November 11th, 2008

Oak Point, Texas, USA – From Oct. 31 – Nov. 2, in Oak Point, Texas, 41 women sailors representing six U.S. states, Canada and Mexico took part in the Road to Rolex Clinic at the Dallas Corinthian Yacht Club (DCYC). Coached by international competitor and coach Elizabeth Kratzig (Corpus Christi, Texas/Miami Beach, Fla.) and designed to prepare women sailors for US SAILING’s Rolex International Women’s Keelboat Championship (Rolex IWKC), the three-day clinic featured drills on the water in International J/22s, as well as classroom learning about keelboat racing. At the conclusion of the clinic, organizers held a short series of races where Lynette Edenfield (Fort Worth, Texas) and her team were victorious. A three-time Rolex IWKC participant, Edenfield will receive a $200 credit toward her entry fee in the 2009 Rolex IWKC, scheduled for October 7-10, 2009 at the Rochester Yacht Club in Rochester, N.Y., USA.

“We had 10 teams sailing in J/22s generously loaned by club members and local Southwest Circuit racers,” said Gayle Finster, DCYC’s Road to Rolex Clinic organizer. “This Road to Rolex Clinic was an experiment of sorts as there had never been one in which individuals could sign up with borrowed boats provided. Most clinics are conducted with complete four-person teams and participants bring their own boat. It turned out to be a successful endeavor and many more women were able to participate and network with other women interested in forming teams. More planning was involved in matching up team members and rounding up boats, but everyone agreed it was worth the effort.”

The weekend started on Friday with Kratzig leading a discussion with assistant coach Bryan Calk on sail controls and the effects of each adjustment on the shape and performance of the jib and main sails, and how to adjust upper and lower shroud tensions for varying wind conditions. Later that evening the DCYC club members hosted the group for a casual get-together.

Saturday’s schedule started with a chalk talk in the clubhouse by Kratzig and Calk, and then the group hit the water for short windward/leeward legs to practice roll tacking and teamwork. “Elizabeth hopped from boat to boat providing individual team coaching,” said Finster. “She handily adapted to the varying levels of skill and the variety of teams that were new to sailing with each other. Before the winds died for the day, we did some tacking-on-the-whistle drills. After the morning sail, we spent the rest of the day in the clubhouse discussing tactics, starting strategies and interpretation of the new racing rules for 2009.”

Sunday was devoted to sailing and racing, from 8:30am until 3:30pm. “It was nonstop learning and drills,” continued Finster. “At mid-day the wind started to ease up, so the Race Committee decided to hold the mini regatta early at 1:00.”

Although the group thought they were done with drills, Kratzig had one more trick up her sleeve: She instructed the fleet to do 10 rolling starts. “The average age of our participants was 45 and everyone hung in there and gave 150 percent,” said Finster. “The many starts allowed us to experiment with different types of start strategies in a group of 10 boats. Tired yes, but everyone gained new experience. After that we did downwind starts leading to big pile ups at the leeward mark. This drill tested our mark rounding skills in a crowd, and we all took away some good lessons.”

Though there was a sigh of disappointment when participants learned the event will not be in Houston in 2009 due to damage from Hurricane Ike. “We know the event will be exceptional at the Rochester Yacht Club in New York,” said Finster. “We’re hopeful there will be a good showing of these fine women who sailed this past weekend.”

The Road to Rolex Clinic in Oak Point, Texas, is the first scheduled on a calendar of clinics leading up to the 2009 Rolex IWKC. The Road to Rolex Clinics were initiated by US SAILING and Rolex Watch U.S.A. in 1997 to provide women sailors with additional opportunities to hone their sailing skills. Locations where past clinics have been held include a dozen U.S. locations, South Africa and Holland. Each participant received a copy of the Road to Rolex Clinic manual written by Betsy Alison, a five-time Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year. Alison has won the biennial Rolex IWKC five times and is the coach of the U.S. Paralympic Team. Additionally, each participant received a copy of a DVD from Kratzig featuring video analysis taken during the clinic.

Competitors included:

Debbie Adams, Dallas, TX
Ginger Armstrong, Dallas, TX
Jill Ball, Oak Point, TX
Linda Bays, Edmond, OK
Patricia Bazan, San Diego, CA
Laurie Berger, Dallas, TX
Ann Binion, Webster, TX
Dagny Boaz, Garland, TX
Lisa Carlson, Santa Fe, NM
Louellen Coker, Denton, TX
Dawn Darling, Centennial, CO
Megan Doren, Dallas, TX
Shawn Dulemba, Flower Mound, TX
Lynette Edenfield, Fort Worth, TX
Patricia Escorihuela, La Jolla, CA
Gayle Finster, Pilot Point, TX
Laura Grunewald, Benbrook, TX
Heather Hamilton, Tyrone, GA
Christina Hamlet, Plano, TX
Peggy Henderson, Plano, TX
Ann Hicks, Frisco, TX
Allyson Hopper, Euless, TX
Kathy Irwin, Heath, TX
Julie Jacob, Grapevine, TX
Emily Macfarlane, Englewood, CO
Stephanie Meadows, Dallas, TX
Tiki Miller, Heath, TX
Pam Newton, Carrollton, TX
Bowman O’Connor, Dallas, TX
Jeannie Odza, Plano, TX
Debbie Pace, Grapevine, TX
Michelle (Shelley) Peterson, Dallas, TX
Susan Pollan, Dallas, TX
Kathy Roach, La Mesa, CA
Tonja Sanchez, Denton, TX
Sue Strasia, Placitas, NM
Gillian Thomson, Kelowna, B.C.
Susan Torney, Houston, TX
Amy Williams, Blue Ridge, TX
Marsha Wulff, Dallas, TX
Vicky Zink, Albuquerque, NM

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Lewander Announce Crew Changes Changes for Ericsson 3

Monday, November 10th, 2008

CAPE TOWN, South Africa – Ericsson Racing Team skipper Anders Lewander today announced crew changes to Ericsson 3 for Leg Two of the Volvo Ocean Race.

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ESPN to Air Chicago Mack Documentary

Wednesday, November 5th, 2008

Today, Chicago Yacht Club announced that ESPN Classic will air a one-hour documentary about the 100th Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac presented by Lands’ End Business Outfitters. “The Mac” is the world’s longest annual freshwater sailing distance race. The 100th Mac took place this past July, with more then 430 boats crossing the starting line. This documentary will be presented by Rolex Watch USA, the Official Timekeeper of the 100th Mac. ESPN Classic will air the documentary on Sunday, November 9, 2008 at 11:00 a.m. Central, and again on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 5:00 p.m. Central.

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Mayhem Takes Title at 2008 IRC East Coast Championship

Wednesday, November 5th, 2008

Annapolis, Maryland – With the defending champion, John Kilroy’s Samba Pa Ti, out of the mix, the 2008 IRC East Coast Championship title was up for grabs this past weekend in Annapolis, Md. The three-day regatta, run by the Storm Trysail Club’s Chesapeake Station, consisted of a 29.64nm distance race on Friday and five windward/leeward races on Saturday and Sunday. In the end, Mayhem, the TP52 owned by Ashley Wolfe (Calgary, CAN), won IRC Class 1 and was crowned the overall 2008 champion among the 35 competing boats. Arethusa, a NYYC Swan 42 owned by Philip Lotz (New Canaan, Conn.), won IRC Class 2 and finished second overall in fleet.

In Friday’s distance race, Mayhem came on strong and finished a mere two seconds behind Jim Mitchell’s (Zurich, SUI) Reichel/Pugh IRC 52 Vincitore, and corrected to second overall in class and fleet.

The next challenge for the fleet – racing under the guidance of Principal Race Officer Wayne Bretsch – was windward/leeward racing. Mayhem won both of Saturday’s two races with Vincitore close behind in second, but Vincitore incurred damage that prevented it from racing on Sunday. Ennio Staffini’s (Annapolis) Judel/Vroljik 52 Anema & Core turned up the pressure to finish each of Sunday’s three windward/leeward races with enough time allowance to correct time-wise in first place. However, Mayhem’s distance race performance – weighted at 1.5 times the finish position – combined with its scores in Saturday and Sunday’s races to take the 2008 title.

In the remaining classes, it was consistency that paid off for each winning boat. Arethusa, a NYYC Swan 42 owned by Philip Lotz (New Canaan, Conn.) won IRC Class 2; Rush, a J/109 owned by Bill Sweetser (Annapolis) won IRC Class 3; and Foxtrot Corpen, a Beneteau 36.7 owned by James Keen (Solomons, Md.) won IRC Class 4. Class 4 consisted of all Beneteau 36.7s.

“The event is getting good traction,” said Regatta Chair Bill Kardash (Annapolis). “We’re attracting boats from outside the region, which is what we want to do, and we are constantly looking to improve the regatta. We had four starts and that makes for good racing. We did notice a small decline in entries this year, around 20%, and that is most likely due to the economy. Overall we had pretty close racing and that’s evident by the fact that one third of the boats finished first in a race.

The 2008 IRC East Coast Championship was organized by Storm Trysail Club’s Chesapeake Station and hosted by the Annapolis Yacht Club with sponsorship from Annapolis Yacht Sales and support from Beneteau U.S.A. and Lewmar.

For more information about the 2008 IRC East Coast Championship, including results and a link to online racing photos and videos go to

Results – 2008 Storm Trysail Club – IRC East Coast Championship

Oct. 31 – Nov. 2, 2008 – Annapolis, Md.
Finish, Yacht Name, Type, Owner/Skipper, Hometown, Race results, Total Points

IRC 1 (IRC – 5 Boats)
1. Mayhem, TP52, Ashley Wolfe, Calgary, CAN – 3, 1, 1, 2, 3, 3, ; 13
2. Anema & Core, JV 52, Ennio Staffini, Annapolis, MD, USA – 4.5, 4, 3, 1, 1, 1, ; 14.5
3. Sjambok, RP 45, Michael Brennan, Potomac, MD, USA – 6, 2, 4, 3, 2, 2, ; 19
4. Vincitore, RP 52, Jim Mitchell, Zurich, SUI – 1.5, 3, 2, 6/DNS, 6/DNS, 6/DNS, ; 24.5
5. Javelin, Farr 49, Owen Brooks, Annapolis, MD, USA – 7.5, 5, 5, 4, 4, 4, ; 29.5

IRC 2 (IRC – 11 Boats)
1. Arethusa, NYYC Swan 42, Philip Lotz, New Canaan, CT, USA – 1.5, 1, 3, 4, 1, 4, ; 14.5
2. Catapult, J/122, Marc Glimcher, New York, NY, USA – 6, 2, 5, 1, 3, 2, ; 19
3. Tsunami, NYYC Swan 42, Preben Ostberg / Bud Dailey Jr. , Rockville, MD, USA – 7.5, 3, 4, 3, 2, 3, ; 22.5
4. Flying Jenny VI, J/122, David Askew, Annapolis, MD, USA – 4.5, 7, 7, 2, 4, 1, ; 25.5
5. N/A, Farr 40, Kevin McNeil, Annapolis, MD, USA – 10.5, 6, 2, 6, 7, 8, ; 39.5
6. Act One, King 40, Bill Titus Stern, Milligan, Roche, Newport, RI, USA – 3, 4, 10/SCP, 12/DNS, 6, 5, ; 40
7. Sundance, Farr 40, Gary Beer, Washington, DC, USA – 9, 10, 8, 5, 5, 9, ; 46
8. Endorphin, Farr 40, Erik Wulff, Washington, DC, USA – 12, 5, 1, 8, 11, 10, ; 47
9. Yellow Jacket, Farr 40, Larry Bulman & Jeff Scholz , Bethesda, MD, USA – 13.5, 8, 10, 7, 8, 7, ; 53.5
10. Convictus Maximus, Farr 42, Donald Nicholson, Scotch Plains, NJ, USA – 15, 11, 11, 10, 9, 6, ; 62
11. Upgrade, Farr 395, Peter and Debbie Gibbons-Neff, Rosemont, PA, USA – 16.5, 9, 9, 9, 10, 11, ; 64.5

IRC 3 (IRC – 10 Boats)
1. Rush, J/109, Bill Sweetser, Annapolis, MD, USA – 1.5, 1, 1, 4, 7, 4, ; 18.5
2. Kalevala II, Grand Soleil 37, Tapio Saavalainen, Washington, DC, USA – 10.5, 4, 3, 1, 3, 1, ; 22.5
3. Saykadoo, J/109, Stephen McManus, Severna Park, MD, USA – 7.5, 3, 4, 3, 2, 7, ; 26.5
4. Swift, Navy 44, Andrew Poulin, Annapolis, MD, USA – 3, 5, 8, 5, 4, 5, ; 30
5. DownTime, Beneteau First 40.7, Ed/Molly Freitag, Annapolis, MD, USA – 10.5/SCP, 2, 6, 10, 1, 3, ; 32.5
6. Overlap, Beneteau First 40., Andrew Roberts, Moorestown, NJ, USA – 12, 7, 5, 2, 6, 2, ; 34
7. Flirt, Navy 44, Kellen Browne, Annapolis, MD, USA – 6, 6, 7, 7, 5, 8, ; 39
8. Mummbles, M30, Brad Kauffman, Annapolis, MD, USA – 9, 8, 2, 8, 8, 6, ; 41
9. Defiance, Navy 44, James Licata, Annapolis, MD, USA – 13.5, 9, 9, 6, 10, 10, ; 57.5
10. Integrity, Navy 44, Maile Cornish, Annapolis, MD, USA – 15, 10, 10, 9, 9, 9, ; 62

IRC 4 (IRC – 9 Boats)
1. Foxtrot Corpen, Beneteau First 36.7, James Keen, Solomons, MD, USA – 4.5, 2, 1, 2, 1, 1, ; 11.5
2. KA’IO, Beneteau First 36.7, Art Silcox, West River, MD, USA – 3, 1, 2, 7, 4, 2, ; 19
3. Vitesse, Beneteau First 36.7, Gary & Melanie Tisdale, Lewiston, NY, USA – 1.5, 3, 5, 4, 3, 3, ; 19.5
4. Dreamboat Annie, Beneteau First 36.7, Chip Devine, North Potomac, MD, USA – 6, 6, 4, 5, 2, 4, ; 27
5. Team Aegis, Beneteau First 36.7, Jim Kershaw, Leesburg, VA, USA – 7.5, 5, 7, 1, 7, 5, ; 32.5
6. Jubilee, Beneteau First 36.7, Keith Mayes, Tracys Landing, MD, USA – 9, 8, 8, 3, 5, 7, ; 40
7. Shock Wave, Beneteau First 36.7, Jeffrey Caruso, Crofton, MD, USA – 10.5, 7, 6, 8, 8, 6, ; 45.5
8. Amritha, Beneteau First 36.7, Nathaniel Tower, Baltimore, MD, USA – 12, 4, 3, 9, 9, 9, ; 46
9. Pegasus, Beneteau First 36.7, Peter Firey, Vienna, VA, USA – 13.5, 9, 9, 6, 6, 8, ; 51.5

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Ericsson Racing Team’s Nordic Crew Captures Third On Leg 1

Monday, November 3rd, 2008

CAPE TOWN, South Africa – Swedish skipper Anders Lewander led Ericsson Racing Team’s Nordic crew on Ericsson 3 to third place on Leg 1 of the Volvo Ocean Race. The crew finished this morning at 0408 GMT with an elapsed time of 22 days, 16 hours and 8 minutes.

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Ericsson 3 Due in Cape Town Early Tomorrow

Monday, November 3rd, 2008

CAPE TOWN, South Africa – Ericsson Racing Team is expecting Ericsson 3, skippered by Anders Lewander, to arrive in Cape Town in the early hours tomorrow morning, Monday. (more…)

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Ericsson Racing Team Wins Leg 1 of The Volvo Ocean Race

Monday, November 3rd, 2008

CAPE TOWN, South Africa – With the sun rising in Cape Town, South Africa, over a tranquil Table Bay, skipper Torben Grael and Ericsson Racing Team’s International crew on Ericsson 4 this morning became the overall leaders in the Volvo Ocean Race when they won Leg 1 at 0554 GMT.

Ericsson 4 earned 8 points for the leg victory, which it attained with an elapsed time of 21 days, 17 hours and 54 minutes, and leads the overall standings with 14 points. Ericsson 4 crossed the finish line under Table Mountain flying full sail on a calm sea.

“We feel very good about it,” said Grael, the Brazilian. “But there’s a lot of race to go. This is just the beginning.”

The Ericsson 4 crew included skipper Grael, navigator Jules Salter, watch captains Stu Bannatyne and Brad Jackson, trimmers Horacío Carabelli, Tony Mutter and João “Joca” Signorini, pitman Dave Endean, bowmen Ryan Godfrey and Phil “Blood” Jameson, and media crewman Guy Salter.

In a thoroughly eventful and entertaining 6,500-nautical-mile leg from Alicante, Spain, the crew of Ericsson 4 experienced highs and lows only found in the Volvo Ocean Race.

The highs were plentiful and included leading the fleet through the Straits of Gibraltar alongside teammate Ericsson 3, placing second at the scoring gate at Fernando de Noronha, and setting a world 24-hour speed record of 602.66 nautical miles (pending ratification).

“It was pretty eventful, there was a lot going on with Tony getting off and the lead changing so many times. It was pretty exciting,” said Bannatyne, the watch captain competing in his fifth Volvo race.

There were also lows to contend with, such as losing crewman Tony Mutter at the Cape Verde Islands to an infected knee, which took a valuable crewmember out of the rotation and left the crew shorthanded with nine active members. The ensuing passage through the Doldrums was far from planned and forced the crew to play catch-up.

“The hardest moment was entering the Doldrums and deciding to take a hit on mileage to set up for a westerly pass,” said Jules Salter, the navigator. “Obviously, there’s always something gong on in the race. There’s a couple times when the fleet compressed and restarted again. It makes it hard.”

Along the way the crew was learning valuable lessons. They were in such close contact with rival Puma of the U.S. that they were able to do live, two-boat testing, changing sail configurations or trimming angles to gauge speed differences.

“It seemed like they we were in sight of them for maybe 80 percent of the leg,” said Salter.

Now that the leg’s over, each crewman has his own agenda. Jules Salter was looking forward to something nice to eat and something nice to drink, before sitting down to start planning the next leg.

Bannatyne, however, said he experienced the best moment of the leg at the finish, when his wife surprised him by flying into Cape Town from New Zealand. He was planning to have her join him for a breakfast of eggs and bacon followed by a cold beer.

Ericsson Racing Team’s second entry in the race, the Nordic crew on Ericsson 3, is also gunning for a podium finish. At the 0400 GMT position report, Anders Lewander’s crew was 347 nautical miles from the finish and 28 miles ahead of Green Dragon.

Yesterday afternoon Ericsson 3 went into Stealth mode, where it hides is position from rivals for up to 12 hours. While in Stealth mode Ericsson 3 made a jibe away from Green Dragon to obtain a stronger covering position.

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