Skip navigation

Monthly Archives: July 2009

Ryan has recently received a new computer from his Mother, Dr. Abbe Finn, P.H.D., or “Doctor X” as she is known to RFOR.  The significance of this is that this computer has a disc drive which enabled Ryan or “Rybo” as Doctor X calls him, to load his Rosetta Stone program which contains the entire language of France, known as “French”.  So rather than spend time updating his blog, Ryan has been spending his time gently massaging this program into his cluttered and inefficient brain.

He would like you to see the stickers he put on his little boat, hold on, I need to look up the name… Myrna Minkoff?  That’s what it says.  His boat, Myrna Minkoff.

Blog# 588

Apparently he had been trying to get those big Ullman stickers to say on his sails, but nature would not allow it, so BAM!  on the side of the boat.  It says here that the Lewmar Sticker is also new.

Then there is this.  Personally I find this disturbing, but hey I just work here.Blog# 589

A Grim Reaper?  I think a Jesus fish would be more appropriate.  Oh, wait, it says here it’s was a sticker being sold for a cancer charity initiated by Tom Neill.  Interesting choice of characters.  Oh, apparently it’s an reference to Tom’s series of boats named “Nightmare” which had the GR as their mascot.  Take that Jesus fish!

Tempting fate or tickling it?  Beats me, I’m just filling in for the dude.

Your trusty companion,

Calypso Finn.


This EP-Prime is tough stuff.  It’s a two part epoxy primer, and if you can spray it on, do so.  Spent hours today hunched over one rudder with a sanding board getting this thing smooth.  I tried using a power tool, but couldn’t control it enough for this fine work, especially when you are trying to protect the trialing edge of the rudder.  Plus it just wasn’t sanding as well as the board.

Blog# 586

The black spots are carbon and they show the high spots.  This side is pretty good now, and I’m almost done with the other side.  When both rudders are fair, Charlie is going to help me spray them with another thin coat of EP-Prime, one last bit of sanding, and then we’ll paint them.  I was going to use orange EP-ZO-HP, which is what the bottom is, and is Epaint’s high performance paint, but I changed my mind.  It’s fast stuff, but nothing is as fast as no bottom paint, and since I can lift the rudders out of the water at the dock, I’m just going to paint the rudders orange and then clearcoat them.

I have to go to Lorient tomorrow to meet Conrad for the gear, so won’t be onto the other rudder until Saturday, unless I get back early

Also got word back from Olive about my B&G mast head wind unit.  He thinks it’s “out of order” as he put it.  He’s bringing one from work so we can continue checking the instruments and wires.  He also may have a spare one for me which would be quite nice.  Additionally I picked up Mike’s survival suit from the pizza shop.  I don’t know if it will be legal, but I’m brining it to find out.  It’s been used.  Mike didn’t tell me how, but I’m sure it was necessary.



I spent most of the day stripping the paint off the rudders and filling the lows to fair tomorrow.  The rest of the day was spent sanding the EPaint bottom of Myrna and her keel.  I’m dedicating this activity to Pat Kent.  He was often reminding me that the bottom was not smooth enough to race with, and that the boat might actually sink out of shame for hitting the  starting line with such a rough bottom, blah blah blah.  It wasn’t a priority in Louisiana though, at least that’s what I told him.  However, now that I can smell an approaching race I can hear his voice again, and somehow he’s more convincing, so I went ahead and did it.  The activity may seem ritualistic, but it actually does make the boat go faster.  The bottom is nice and smooth Pat, you can rest now.

Blog# 583

This has actually been a few days work, and I sanded through in some spots on the keel.  I’ll go over those areas with more EPaint and sand it down again.

I’ve also made headway with the safety equipment for the Mini Port Medoc race on August 26th.  Conrad Colman ( has offered to lend me his life raft,  survival suit and flare kit for the event, which is hugely kind of him, and cuts down a lot on my cost for entering the race.  Mike Birch may also have a suit to give me in the nearby city of Auray, but I need to go check it out and see if it fits all of the certifications required by the class.  It would be nice to own one though, especially if I am going to be sailing this winter here.

Now this!

Blog# 580

Mast track.  More like it, eh?  Thank you Sebastien at Pro Fil Composites.

More sanding tomorrow.


I know nobody is reading this blog anymore.  I can see the stats.  So now it’s time to take the gloves off.  I’m printing everything right now.  Every high and low.  I’m also going to start blaming everyone for my problems, so sit tight…

So, without any further delay, I want to list the top ten parties I deem responsible for screwing me over this year.

1. The media.  I’m suing the internet.

2. People from the mid-west.  No explanation needed.

3. Blockbuster.  I have not lived in New Orleans for years.  Stop calling me about late rentals!

Okay, I’m B.S-ing.  I just wanted to do a build up to a rant that doesn’t actually exist.

Look at this!

Blog# 576

That’s the mast.  There is a carbon tube (not uni-directional) bonded to the mast and faired in with epoxy puddy.  Mostly it’s microballoons.  I sanded this last weekend and Sebastian at Pro-Fil Composites routed out a slot down the middle and clear coated it.  This shot was before I sanded it.

I just picked it up last week, because I didn’t have the money until then to pay for the work.  It was expensive, but should work.  I’ll take a picture of the finished product soon.  It’ looks very nice now.


Blog# 579

I spent the last two days in Lorient at this old WW2 submarine base getting my ISAF safety at sea certificate.  I need this to race in B level offshore races here.  It’s all about the paperwork over here, which doesn’t quite suit me.  What does suit me is that I was ten minutes late on the second day, freaking out, because I thought everyone would be pissed for me holding up the class, and when I showed up, there were folks hanging out smoking, and other people hadn’t shown up.  So what my close friends call “Finn time” on account of my Brother, Sister and Dad always being late for everything, is simply known as “time” here.  Am I generalizing?  Sure.  What are you going to do about it?

Onto more personal matters.  I have the mast and am ready to put the boat in the water to sort the electronics out.  That help is free for now, so I need to make sure I’m not wasting Olive’s time and have everthing in order for him to go through.  I have not launched the boat yet because I need insurance and have been working with Beth Perry on that.  We have a quote that is of course high, and prevents me from buying safety equipment to race, so I’m trying to sort out my plans for the rest of the season.

On Wednesday I get a survey for the insurance company (165 Euros).  Hopefully I soon after get a policy after dropping $1,600 Euros to get the paper work flowing.  From there I move the boat to down town La Trinite s/Mer and step the mast somehow.  I pray this can all happen next week.

Then I work with Olive to get the electronics sorted for real, not just testing leads etc…  Who knows how long that will take.

After that I need to get the boat measured by Classe Mini to make sure it’s legal to race (at least 200 euros).  I need to get that out of the way soon, so I’m not doing it right before an event.

Then, I need to borrow a life raft, survival suit, and maybe some flares.  It just depends how much money is left over after I buy the EPIRB.  They are very strict about regulations here and my EPIRB and raft are not up to standards.

My goal is to do the Mini Port Medoc race which starts on August 26th (  It’s a 280 mile solo race, and it’s the only one I have a chance at making considering my finances.

What’s difficult about this is that I have so many in-kind sponsors who have given me great equipment to work with, but I never was able to raise any money for logistics or get the safety equipment sponsored.  Logistics and safety equipment have eaten my personal budget.  So that’s where I’m at.

If anyone who reads this knows anyone with the following equipment who isn’t using it from August 23rd to August 30th, please let me know.  I need to squeeze in one race this season at least to justify any worth to my in-kind sponsors.  If I sound desperate, well, you don’t have to read between the lines.  I will return all of the equiment immediately after the race, but this is the last race of the season besides Transat, and I can’t qualify for that now.

-Liferaft:     must comply with ISO 9650-1 standards.

-Survival suit:    must comply with ISO 15027-1 standards, category A, guaranteeing a minimal thermal protection of 0,75 clo immersed (whatever that means) and it has to be stated on a tag attached to the suit.

-EPIRB:    The 406 Mhz and 121.5 Mhz Sarsat-=Cospas EPIRB autonomy must be of at least 48 hours at a temperature lower than 20 degrees Celcius.  The MMSI number has to be coded for the ongoing year in the name of the boat and owner (Myrna Minkoff and Ryan Finn).

-Flares:      4 red parachute flares

4 automatic red hand flares,

2 floating smoke flares

1 Seamark dye marker (min, 40 gr)

2 white signal hand flares

-Dan buoy to OSR standards

-Watertight high powered spot light

Those are the big ticket items, that I need to race.  If you read through it, thank you.

Yes, I’m looking for a job here and studying French.

Well, now you all know what’s up!

And that stick in the last post isn’t attached to anything.